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    Around the Block: David Zinn’s Quirky Chalk Cartoons Spring to Life in a New Short Film

    
    Animation
    Art
    Illustration

    #chalk
    #drawing
    #public art
    #short film
    #street art
    #video

    January 15, 2021
    Grace Ebert

    
    If you’ve walked the streets of Ann Arbor, Michigan, in the last few decades, you’ve probably spotted the wide-eyed monsters and mischievous dragons of David Zinn (previously). Since 1987, the artist has been drawing chalk-and-charcoal creatures in site-specific works that wash away with the rain. Drain pipes become robotic dogs, a pillar morphs into a giant pencil, and a green monster pops out of a brick walkway.
    A new short film directed by Jonnie Lewis dives into Zinn’s practice by animating his signature cartoon cast that greets the artist as he walks around the city. Watch “Around the Block” on Lewis’s Vimeo, and check out more of Zinn’s eccentric creatures on Instagram.  (via Laughing Squid)

    #chalk
    #drawing
    #public art
    #short film
    #street art
    #video

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    Dialogo: A Frenzied Short Film Translates Indiscernible Audio into Kinetic Sound Sculptures

    
    Art

    #flowers
    #kinetic
    #language
    #neon
    #sculpture
    #senses
    #sound
    #video

    December 28, 2020
    Grace Ebert

    [embedded content]
    Juxtaposing natural elements and mechanics, “Dialogo” harnesses the frenetic, indiscernible components of language into a synesthetic experience. A mix of stop-motion and live-action, the short film features entirely hand-crafted sculptures by the Madrid-based design studio blo que. Each motorized work translates human utterings into movement, whether through an undulating tube of neon or oscillating florals, generating new associations in a conversation between the senses.
    To represent the original audio in a visual manner, blo que converts the speech waveforms into animation curves, which subsequently mobilizes the sculpture’s engines. “This is the voice of nature and order or the control of what cannot be controlled,” the studio says. “The passing of time in nature (freezing, rotting, etc.) is connected to the time of sound reproduction. This bond creates relationships between human emotions, language, and nature.”
    blo que details the lengthy creation process for the film on its site, and you can follow future projects that merge the tangible and digital on Vimeo and Instagram.

    #flowers
    #kinetic
    #language
    #neon
    #sculpture
    #senses
    #sound
    #video

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    Sound Artist Zimoun Channels Frenetic Movement in Expansive Kinetic Sculptures and Installations

    
    Art

    #cardboard
    #installation
    #kinetic
    #sculpture
    #sound
    #video

    November 6, 2020
    Grace Ebert

    
    Swiss sound artist Zimoun (previously) harnesses the power of quick, chaotic movements in his large-scale installations and kinetic sculptures. Each artwork is composed of simple materials like cardboard boxes, wooden dowels, and cotton balls, among other common objects. Zimoun assembles multiples of the same configuration—think teetering sticks and metal washers suspended on a wire—and motorizes one portion, causing them to rattle back and forth.
    Because each component is made by hand, they have slight differences that prevent them from synchronizing, despite all the motors being connected to a single current. The frenzied movements contrast the calming, whirring sounds the artworks emit, which mimic raindrops or a repetitive drum. This juxtaposition is just one example of the many comparisons the artist draws: chaos vs. order, mass vs. individual, simplicity vs. complexity, and manufactured vs. organic.
    Considering this theme, Zimoun names each piece by listing the materials used to connect the discrete components and the whole. For example, a recent project that forms a square on the floor (shown below) is titled “1944 prepared dc-motors, mdf panels 72 x 72cm, metal discs Ø 8cm, 2020.” “In my work, I do not try to transport specific associations but rather to create atmospheric spaces and states that invite us to observe, think, and reflect on various levels,” he says.
    In the compilation video above, Zimoun showcases a variety of the sculptures and installations from his extensive body of work, many of which you can explore individually on Vimeo and follow on Instagram.

    “1944 prepared dc-motors, mdf panels 72 x 72cm, metal discs Ø 8cm, 2020.” All images © Zimoun, shared with permission
    “1944 prepared dc-motors, mdf panels 72 x 72cm, metal discs Ø 8cm, 2020”

    #cardboard
    #installation
    #kinetic
    #sculpture
    #sound
    #video

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    A Turbine-Faced Pilot Returns from War in a Surreal Animated Short About Love and Transformation

    
    Animation
    Art

    #black and white
    #short film
    #surreal
    #video

    October 30, 2020
    Grace Ebert

    
    Presented by the National Film Board of Canada, an animated short by Montreal-based director Alex Boya considers the complex effects of war through a heartwarming tale. “Turbine” opens with a woman climbing aboard a train that inches along the track like a worm. The black-and-white film then chronicles her journey reuniting with her pilot husband, who returns from war with an airplane engine permanently replacing his face and subsequently falls in love with the ceiling fan.
    Through incredibly rich renderings—the wrinkles on the characters’ hands and the whorling patterns in their hair are particularly detailed—Boya depicts peculiar scenes and quiet domestic moments to share a story about love, humanity, and transformation. In an interview about “Turbine,” the director says the film’s distinct style came about organically:
    It felt like creating sober instructional illustrations of real things, with an honest attempt to simply survey their opaqueness and shadows in a photorealistic world. Just like I focus on the water instead of on my body when I swim, it works not to think of style, but simply on the subject matter that is being drawn.
    For more short films, see the board’s Instagram and Vimeo, and check out Boya’s site to explore the entire Turbine Universe, which is complete with dozens of sketches and gifs of the hybrid character.

    #black and white
    #short film
    #surreal
    #video

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    Affected by a Central Force, Dancers Perform Implausible Bends on a Perpetually Spinning Stage

    
    Art
    Dance

    #performance art
    #video

    September 29, 2020
    Grace Ebert

    
    “Celui qui tombe,” or he who falls, is an illusory performance from self-described circus artist Yoann Bourgeois (previously) that opens with six dancers on a spinning platform. As the central stage turns, the performers run forward to fight the perpetual motion, even though their efforts keep them in the same spot. The sextet moves easily throughout the performance, grasping onto each other and stopping in neat lines as they respond to the stage’s revolutions. As Kottke notes, the centripetal force of the platform makes it possible for the dancers to contort their bodies into seemingly implausible positions, like the acute bends shown below, and remain standing.
    Bourgeois created “Celui qui tombe” in 2014 and shares an extensive collection of similar illusions on YouTube. You also can keep up with his work on Instagram.

    #performance art
    #video

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    Textile Artists File Their Nails in Tiny Grooves for Traditional Japanese Weaving Technique

    
    Art
    Craft
    History

    #Japan
    #nails
    #textiles
    #video
    #weaving

    August 25, 2020
    Grace Ebert

    Image courtesy of Kiyohara Seiji
    Along with a comb and shuttle, textile artists crafting “tsumekaki hon tsuzure ori,” the intricate and durable brocades that are part of Japanese traditions, employ the jagged tips of their fingernails. Common in the Shiga prefecture, the ancient technique utilizes the weaver’s grooved nails to guide the threads down the loom, ensuring they’re placed tightly together. The “tsuzure ori,” or tapestry weave, has roots in the Muromachi period (1336 to 1573), while this specific method has been in Japan for at least 1,000 years, according to Kiyohara Seiji, a representative of Kiyohara Textile Co., Ltd.
    To see how the comb-shaped nails work and the ornate textiles they’re used to produce, watch the video below. (via Laughing Squid)

    

    #Japan
    #nails
    #textiles
    #video
    #weaving

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    A Disorienting Short Film by Lydia Cambron Recreates ‘2001: A Space Odyssey’ in Quarantine

    
    Art

    #COVID-19
    #humor
    #movies
    #science fiction
    #short film
    #video

    August 16, 2020
    Grace Ebert

    [embedded content]

    Eerie, hypnotic, and faithfully depicting the dismal reality that is 2020, a new short film by Lydia Cambron envisions her recent quarantine experience under the frame of Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey. In 2020: An Isolation Odyssey, the New York City-based designer recreates the 1968 version’s iconic ending as a way to “(poke) fun at the navel-gazing saga of life alone and indoors,” she writes in a statement.
    Positioned vertically, the characters’ movements are synchronized perfectly, but while the original film’s Keir Dullea wades through the ornate home in an astronaut suit, Cambron sports a face mask and latex gloves. The reenactment is situated in the designer’s one-bedroom Brooklyn apartment, and while it maintains the domestic qualities of the original, it also features contemporary updates, like a MacBook sitting on the table rather than a lavish meal. She even parallels the minutes-long credits precisely.
    Cambron notes that the contemporary version considers a similarly disorienting life. “Multitasking while #wfh, conjuring guilt or longing with unused exercise equipment, your entire being reduced to a measure of time—these scenes all illustrate the absurd comedy of trying to maintain control during this unprecedented and unpredictable time,” she explains.
    Follow Cambron’s parodic explorations—which include an annual exhibition titled JONALDDUDD— on Instagram and Vimeo. (via Daring Fireball)

    #COVID-19
    #humor
    #movies
    #science fiction
    #short film
    #video

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    10,000 Pigeon Feathers Cascade from a Bookcase in Kate MccGwire’s Latest Installation

    
    Art

    #birds
    #feathers
    #installation
    #video

    August 11, 2020
    Grace Ebert

    “Discharge” (2020), mixed media installation with pigeon feathers, approximately 480 x 70 x 370 centimeters. All images © Kate MccGwire, shared with permission
    Based in west London, artist Kate MccGwire is known for her serpentine feather sculptures and discomfiting artworks that coil and ooze in every direction. A recent installation follows in that tradition as it pours down like a massive gush of water from a built-in bookcase. Composed of approximately 10,000 pigeon feathers, “Discharge” stands nearly five meters tall and cascades to the floor in feathered ripples. While the plumes lining the main chute are in shades of gray, those at the bottom are lighter, evoking the ways water appears white when it crashes.
    The delicate feathers are sourced ethically from pigeon racers who collect the plumes in August and October when the birds molt. MccGwire sorts the materials in her studio, separating the ones that curve left from those that bend to the right, before arranging them in captivating, color-specific patterns. “When visitors see the piece for the first time they are drawn to the phenomenal scale, rhythmic patterning, movement, and perfection of the piece,” she says of the mixed-media installation. “But are often perturbed and revolted when they understand what the material is,” which is exactly her intention. By juxtaposing the raw materials with the finished artwork, she asks viewers to consider the everyday beauty that’s often overlooked.
    “Discharge” has been exhibited in an evolution of configurations in South Korea, Berlin, Paris, and now, Harewood House in West Yorkshire until August 14. Take a video tour of the current exhibition—which also includes a massive feather rug and encased sculptures—and find more of MccGwire’s voluptuous projects on Instagram.

    

    #birds
    #feathers
    #installation
    #video

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