More of Alison’s here
Laurie’s website here
“I came up with a method using temperature controllers, moisture and backlighting. It took a while but I eventually got the hang of it. It’s not really a particular high tech process and the work does not function as a permanent installation. The cloud remains for only a few seconds. The physical aspect is really important but the work in the end only exists as a photograph.“
More of Berndnaut’s work here
© Irena Lagator Pejović, Resistence Reservoir, 2012. Equation in english, montenegrin and german written on an ex Mazut (fuel oil) reservoir @ garden of the Ministry of Culture, public project for Cetinje, Montenegro
“All utopias fail in the Balkans: the greater Serbian principality in the Middle Ages, the Ottoman Empire, the Danube monarchy, the greater Serbian monarchy, the Yugoslavian multi-ethnic state, market-based socialism and, in the future possibly, the European Union, too.
At the same time, all the states that arose from the legacy of the old Yugoslavia have to find new identities. The permanent diminishment of the states since the Ottoman Empire and the Danube monarchy were dismantled into tiny states such as Kosovo did not solve the fundamental problem of the western Balkans: the establishment of ethnically homogeneous societies which, in an ideal scenario, represent the basis of the modern nation state.
The new societies, too, are ethnically heterogeneous structures, the basis of which cannot be, in the long term, about ethnicity and nationalism – their downfall would be the price to pay. These societies are thus unintentional laboratories of the post-modern era and have an uncertain outcome.(…)
Irena Lagator understands her artistic function as “a social strategy”; art as the vehicle of the human – that is, of the social civilising. With this claim, she belongs to a post-avant garde generation of artists who no longer herald the presumptuous claim to the liberation of mankind and the salvation of human pre-history from misery. The radical art avantgardes of the classical modern period often forgot that the freedom of art also always contains its social responsibility. Art’s complete freedom implies the artist’s absolute lack of responsibility. Political theory can sing a song about the absolute freedom of the totalitarian agitators; aesthetic theory still has to learn it.
The project on “unlimited social responsibility” sets high standards among societies which would only like to take on limited responsibility. Even over fifty years ago the conservative art historian Hans Sedlmayr spoke of the “loss of the middle way” which, among other things, he saw in the radical autonomy of the arts and the ever-threatening collectivisation of societies.
Irena Lagator avoids the danger of pronouncing (artistic) truths by devising multiple realities; and by changing perspectives she denies the observer and artistic creation any one-dimensionality. Her installations with thousands of material fibres may communicate an insight into the fragility of our knowledge and what we believe to be certain.
What is more, her installations communicate an awareness of how fleeting time and space are, of the finite nature of everything and of human endeavour. Nevertheless, she calls for responsibility on the part of artists and societies: with gentle reason she reminds us whether we want to find ourselves in the museum of the humane or in the memorial to the collective lack of reason, to the barbaric lack of responsibility.”
excerpt of Michael Ley‘s Art and Reason, or: Art as Social Strategy
This image is from yesterday’s official communication by the Portuguese PM about new austerity measures. It shows a reporter wearing an Iron Maiden t-shirt. I know it is symbolic but I like to imagine it could be a code, a message given to rise a sort of underground army. Yes, I know, sci-fi, maybe I’ve seen “The Fight Club” too many times, but we need to believe we can take this government down, or else we’ll go mental. In the climax of our national anthem it reads “às armas”, aux armes!!! It doesn’t get more symbolic than this.
The video starts at the moment when the editor chooses to change angle to show the reporter. Thank you both!
“Alma has always made things with her hands and now tries to find ways to combine her fine art background with photography. She has used origami in the past as props in her photographs, but in this series ‘Cosmic Surgery’ the origami has become an integral part of the final image.
The series has three distinct stages. Firstly Alma photographs her sitter, then prints multiple images of the subjects face and folds them into a complicated origami modular construction, which then gets placed back onto the original face of the portrait. Finally the whole thing is re-photographed.
Origami is very meditative, you can get lost in the world of folding for hours. It is also extremely delicate and fragile, so by giving each geometric paper shape somewhere to sit within the final image, the origami has been given a backbone.
There is something quite alien about the manipulated faces, as if they belong to some futuristic next generation. In these portraits the children become uncanny, while their parents are seen in a more familiar moment.
With the simple act of folding an image Alma can transform each face and make a sort of flattened sculpture. By de-facing her models she has made their portraits into her own creations.”
Alma’s website here
“Recently one Sunday I spent the day at the kitchen table playing with oranges, copper wires and galvanized nails. My hope was that I could make this on going project work with a single piece of fruit. I tried cutting it into slices and wedges but that ever present voice in my head reminded me the SIMPLER IS BETTER. It only seemed logical to use the orange’s natural wedges as the cells for the battery. The wedges are held up-right with an armature of small wooden skewers. The LED is nestled with in the bounds of the orange wedges. I’m still amazed this worked…though it did require 14 hours of exposure.”
“I began installing the work at 9 in the morning. I had no frame of reference for how long the process would actually take. I didn’t want to start too early fearing I would get done too soon and potentially wear out the “batteries” before I could start my photographic exposure, thus wasting a lot of time and fruit. I worked all day and took no break, I was still wiring the orchard after sunset. I finished install at 8 pm then began my 4 hour exposure on photographic film. The final image was created using a large format camera that uses color film measuring 4×5 inches.” making of video here
More of Caleb’s work here
“Microbiologist-turned-photographer Zachary Copfer has developed an amazing photo-printing technique that’s very different from any we’ve seen before. Rather than use photo-sensitive papers, chemicals, or ink, Copfer uses bacteria. The University of Cincinnati MFA photography student calls the technique “bacteriography”, which involves controlling bacteria growth to form desired images.
Here’s how Copfer’s method works: he first takes a supply of bacteria like E. coli, turns it into a fluorescent protein, and covers a plate with it (does this remind you something?). Next, he creates a “negative” of the photo he wants to print by covering the prepared plate with the photo and then exposing it to radiation. He then “develops” the image by having the bacterial grow, and finally “fixes” the image by coating the image with a layer of acrylic and resin.“
© Zachary Copfer, Bacteriograph of Albasaurus, E. coli genetically modified to express GFP
“Photosynthesis by microscopic organisms produces the majority of the life supporting oxygen that is required by all living things. In return, our reciprocal relationship provides them with carbon dioxide.
The photograph is created by millions of these organisms as they carryout photosynthesis. When photographic negatives are placed in front of the organisms, they move towards the varying degrees of light and form eerie, temporary images. They seek out the light they need for photosynthesis and leave behind a haunting trace of this life-giving process.”
“Video still; green algae drawn towards sunlight during photosynthesis. Letters and symbols were created by thousands of microscopic, single celled algae as they moved towards light. Each letter took around fifteen minutes to form. The algae ‘spell out’ the scientific formula for photosynthesis; the process through which they provide most of the Earth”s oxygen.”
More of Susan’s work can be seen here
The embroidered tattoo is part of the fashion collection “Slow down…”. Latex layers
have been revived, reinterpreted and transformed into a skin. A skin embroidered with
“Our skin has a second layer of skin. A layer full of life, which serves as a membrane for exchange. This body membrane is made from the same substance as the world. The human body does not end at the skin, but invisibly expands into space. The hidden membrane exists between our body and our surroundings. We can enter this invisible micro level with a microscope; we enter and magnify the micro world. What happens if we make the micro world of the human body perceivable? I want to confront people with the fact that our body plays host to countless bacteria and that a balanced perception of the body is closely linked to a balanced perception of the self.” via Deezen magazine
“Sonja Bäumel, supported by the bacteriologist Erich Schopf, has found a unique way of visualizing the invisible surface of the human body. She uses a gigantic petri dish as canvas and the bacteria living on her own body as colour. She develops and speaks a language combining art and science and thus creates a biologically living whole-body picture.
After the application of the invisible bacteria colour on the body, the body is imprinted on agar, the nutritive substance for bacteria, which is first filled into a huge petri dish (210cmx 80 cm). After a few days, a living landscape is growing there. It consists of a unique mixture of life forms on Sonja Bäumel’s body on a certain day, in a certain Viennese area. With this project, she wants to highlight the existing invisible infrastructure in order to understand and make use of it.”
Sonja’s website here
© Simon Starling (with Yasuo Miichi), Self Portrait (as Henry Moore), Uranotype print, 2011
still from a video about the project “Embracing the Remake”
“Kintsugi (金継ぎ) is the art of fixing broken pottery with a lacquer resin infused with powdered gold. The “recycling” of once valued objects, now broken and destroyed represents an art practice of rebirth and renewal. At this moment of world economic depression I find the practice of Kintsugi to be one of optimism. This USA project, Embracing the Remake, will enable me to study with experts at the Hiroshima City University, visit a lacquer workshop in Kyoto, and study existing objects in collections in Tokyo and Kyoto. My goal would be to create a series of photographs documenting these artworks of transformation as well as updating the practice of Kintsugi by “repairing” contemporary unique objects and broken mass-produced commodities.
In 1915 Marcel Duchamp created the first readymade, “an ordinary object elevated to the dignity of a work of art by the mere choice of an artist.” I propose to extend Duchamp’s allegorical procedure of redeeming common mass produced objects to include the Japanese practice of Kintsugi. I realize that Kintsugi was limited to the repair (or redemption) of valued unique collectible works of art. However, the idea of revaluing and once again elevating worthless broken objects into objects of desire is an interesting proposal.”
“Augustin Rebetez breathes energy in his works. He has developed a very ownable style over a very short period of time, even though this is not easy to put in a box. With a combination of free and staged photography using his immediate surroundings, he constantly surprises with his work. Augustin is not afraid to cross over with sculpture, film, photography and even drawings. He is one of the rare new and raw talents that the world of photography is waiting for. The fact that he studied in Vevey and lives in the region came as a pleasant surprise for the international jury. The proposed project will be a very welcome catalyst to further develop his creative madness.” excerpt from the statement of this year’s Vevey award.
“In many of her works Jenny Holzer explores political themes, in particular abuses of power and atrocities of war. In her series ‘Lustmord’ (1993-94) – meaning rape murder in German – Holzer created a number of works addressing war crimes in the former Yugoslavia in the 1990’s, in particular the violent physical abuse, rape and murder of women that occurred. In this series Holzer displays photographs of text on human skin, some of which includes women’s blood mixed with ink.
Holzer often creates tension by conveying bold statements and the use of contradictory terms and viewpoints. She deals with the public and the private, fact and fiction, the universal and the particular, and the body, including body politics. In ‘PROTECT PROTECT’, for example, Lustmord Table (1994) also references torture and bodily harm. In this work Holzer displays human bones with silver bands impressed with words by rape victims, perpetrators and witnesses. (…)
Many of Holzers work focus on unnecessary cruelty. She wants people to react and recoil. Holzer would like there to be less fear and cruelty in the world and her work is an expression of her empathy with human suffering and injustice. She is also exploring human fallibility, situational ethics and self-reflection, whilst often focusing on universal questions.” via acca education
Stuart’s Thirteenth Spectacle (time), 1980, can be seen here
“Stuart Sherman, a member of the important generation of American avant-garde performance artists who rose to prominence in the late 1960s and early 1970s, developed his own unique style across various media, the impact of which continues to resonate with the avant-garde eight years after his death. He devoted a large amount of his time to the creation of performances he called “spectacles”, which often took the form of small tabletop performances. These performances involved the manipulation of both familiar and unfamiliar everyday objects atop one or more folding TV dinner tables. Performed by a poker-faced Sherman, the spectacle performances sit in a unique hybrid space that moves between references to various genres including comedy, magic, musicals, minimalism, surrealism, opera, three card monte games, fluxus, and vaudeville. Through these performances, which consisted of series of intricately structured object manipulations, he crafted a unique identity both as creator and performer. While the spectacle performances were generally miniature in scale, they were certainly not miniature in ambition, exploring with great wit topics such as time, language, mortality, eroticism, and personal identity.” via NYU 80WSE Gallery press release