Thursday, 23 October 2008
We've all driven down the road and seen lorries pass us with 'Clean Me' engraved in dust on its windows. But have you seen anything like this before? This is dirty car art - artists getting their hands dirty and creating images on car windows. Check the website (link below) for more images.
Sick of unsightly skips sitting on your road? How about giving it a skip conversion, adding beauty, and possibly a new social spot to your street? That's what British artist Oliver Bishop-Young decided to do - taking a Fluxus ideology to the extreme, he has adapted the skip to be a mobile swimming pool, a meeting point, somewhere to play table tennis, and even a place to practice your skateboard skills:
Sweden: The warm late summer weather contributed to record crowds as Kivik's apple market.
There is an art theme to the market with the traditional apple sculpture that is erected at its heart each year. This year's work by Emma Karp Lundström is entitled "After Frans Floris Pomona" and uses 35,000 apples on its 104 square metre canvas. Some 70,000 nails hold the nine apple varieties in place.
Ry Cooder caused an international sensation when he introduced the world to Cuba's son musicians with his 1997 CD Buena Vista Social Club. The CD, which met with extraordinary critical and popular success, went on to win a Grammy, and helped fuel America's current love affair with Latin music.
In 1999 Wim Wenders released his documentary of the same name, in which he profiles the legendary Buena Vista Social Club musicians, recording their experiences as they perform in Cuba and abroad, eventually appearing at New York's Carnegie Hall. Hailed as "splendid ... a sheer delight" (New York Post), "glowing-embers documentary " (Washington Post) and "more incisive introduction to the peculiar world of Buena Vista than any live performance could provide" (The New York Observer), the film helped immortalize both the music and its now-famous practitioners who had been living in near poverty, all but forgotten in their own country.
So, is it goodbye to Banksy? I very much doubt it. In fact Westminster Council has probably done him a favour. Since when would an outlaw have wanted the approval of the sort of bureaucracy that puts waste disposal operatives instead of dustbin men on our streets?
After death, banning is about the best thing that can happen to an artist.
It's not every day that a children's toy becomes a design icon but in the case of LEGO's minifigure, those tiny plastic male and female figurines that animate (in an inanimate sort of way) children's building block creations the world over, icon status seems oddly fitting.
2008 marks the minifigure's thirtieth year in production - an impressive milestone in design as much as business, considering that the basic look of the figurine has remained virtually unchanged since its inception - a body, three LEGO bricks long, beneath a head, one brick high, with that mini plastic toupee clipped on top.
When you consider that an astonishing seven LEGO sets are sold around the world every second, it's no surprise that the miniature builders, firemen, cops, and nurses (as well as 'celebrity' guest figures including Darth Vader and Indiana Jones) have become so ubiquitous - over four billion are scattered around the globe. If they ever decided to form their own autonomous state it'd be more populous than India and China combined. Now there's a scary thought.
Sunday, 19 October 2008
This film is both heart rendering as well as heart warming. It shows Afghanistan in the 70's and the invasion of the Russians and the Taliban.
Saturday, 11 October 2008
The website is a full of wonderful and random creations, such as the Drum Machine, which involves Japanese kodo drummers in bright 3D beating out a hefty tune, using their heads in place of sticks. Check out the video below of the drummers at work.
Go check more wonderful creations here: www.tokyoplastic.com
One of the most prominent designers to come from Cardiff in the last decade is the wonderful Pete Fowler - who is responsible for most of Super Furry Animals' artwork and branding over the years, and also has his own brand of toys which is very popular in Japan.
INGMAR BERGMAN IS UNQUESTIONABLY among the best known Swedes in the world. He is not only Sweden’s foremost filmmaker of all time, but is generally regarded as one of the foremost figures in the entire history of the cinematic arts. In fact, Bergman is among a relatively small, exclusive group of filmmakers – a Fellini, an Antonioni, a Tarkovsky – whose family names rarely need to be accompanied by a given name: “Bergman” is a concept, a kind of “brand name” in itself.
Swedish films, and Scandinavian films in general, are known for stark landscapes and slow pacing and the author of this image is probably Ingmar Bergman. Bergman’s way of portraying his country in his films had a massive impact in the 1950s and 1960s. Around the world the people of Sweden was regarded as brooding, depressed and consumed by guilt. And Sweden itself was, according to the American Associated Press: ”the claustrophobic gloom of unending winter nights, its glowing summer evenings”.
Then, in the 1970s, Bergman involuntary changed the international view on Sweden again. It was in 1976 that the Swedish tax administration began a witch hunt on the director, who was brought from the theater by uniformed police. This was later recognized as the work of power hungry administrators and he was freed from all charges, but he was mentally broken. Around the world, the view of Sweden as a Soviet in miniature was cabled out.
This made not only Bergman aware that ”anyone in this country can be attacked and humiliated by a special kind of bureaucracy that is growing like a raving cancer”. At the same time, Swedish author Astrid Lindgren (writer of ”Pippi Longstocking”) was supposed to pay 102% in marginal taxes. Stories like these did not only change the view of Sweden, it also had its consequences within the country and the social democratic party lost the next election after 44 years in power.
Bergman is by many charactarised as a genius. But there is only one way to celebrate the genius and that is by making his films accessible. He might be concidered as kind of a national monument in Sweden, but it is the films that is the monument. It is a scandal that they are not available for everyone to see!”
Welsh multi-millionaire Mike Young - the man who designed and created the cartoon character Superted - wants to sponsor Cardiff City's new stadium. Superted would be the first superhero in the world to have his own football stadium.
I've been a City fan since I was a schoolboy, maybe 10 years old, and I went to watch Cardiff play Leeds. Trevor Ford played for the Bluebirds that day and John Charles was centre-half for Leeds. Both were great Welsh players, but it was Ford's day - he scored a hat-trick and City won 4-1. Now I get back as often as I can, around six or seven times a season. I've lived in Los Angeles for 17 years now and at one stage I went 10 years without seeing them lose. That ended last season when they lost against Leicester City in the Carling Cup.'
Bluebirds fanatic Young, aged 60 and from Barry, has a studio and runs his own company, Mike Young Productions in Los Angeles.
'We are the largest independent animation company in America. We do more animation than Disney,' he added.
Superted isn't the only celebrity to sponsor Cardiff City. Local band the Super Furry Animals had their logo on the Bluebird's shirts when they released a single called 'Man Don't Give a Fuck' as a tribute to the 70's maverick Cardiff City player, Robin Friday.
Just like pet owners tend to look a bit like their animal friends, a new study has revealed that cars which are perceived to have angry, masculine and powerful 'faces' are more appealing to customers. This marketing psychology is an integral part of the design process and a way of subliminally targeting a specific audience of customers.
What type of cars take your fancy, and do they all look angry or have a friendlier face?
There's only one place to go if you're after the most inventive and original watches on earth. And yes, it's no surprise that they're all designed and created in Japan. It was the Super Furry Animals who pointed their international pulses towards this grand shop. All the watches that are created are limited editions and only produced for a short time to maintain a totally unique watch for yourself. You will not find watches like these anywhere else in the world except for specialist shops in Japan.
Harold and Maude is a cult classic movie directed by Hal Ashby in 1971. The film, featuring slapstick, dark humour, and existentialist drama, revolves around the exploits of a morbid young man – Harold – who drifts away from the life that his detached mother prescribes for him, as he develops a relationship with septuagenarian Maude. The film wasn't well received on its release. However, with more and more appetite for quirky and humorous films, this film has proved to be a huge inspiration on similar movies, such as the recent Royal Tenenbaums and its director Wes Anderson.
Watch the whole film here:
Matt Vis and Tony Campbell conceived The International Art Police in New York in 1998, but it wasn’t until both moved to New Orleans that they started their first tour of duty.
Since then they have completed successful tours in New York, London and Belfast and Dublin, as well as being on a tour of duty in Venice for the 2007 Beinnale.
Officers Campbell and Vis write tickets to artists and gallerists in an attempt to uphold the general rules of art, it must be stressed that this pedestrian form of criticism has no role in defining good or bad art. Racing car drivers are often ticketed for speeding, but their driving skills are not in question. Many citations have been written and numerous violations have been avoided due to their continued presence on the art beat.
Came across an excellent photoblog that documents street style and fashion of the older generation. Ari Cohen, the creator, says: "Our aim is to take photos of elders with a unique sense of personal style that has developed with age. We notices so many amazingly dressed older people in New York and are having a great time getting to know them, hearing their stories and capturing a bit of their style to share with others."
Ladyhawke is the alter ego of the solo musician Pip Brown who has recently released her debut album on the Modular label. Her music is very nostalgic and been likened to that of Cyndi Lauper and New Young Pony Club. Her new album is bursting with eighties musical references and this image is well packaged in the marketing side of the Ladyhawke campaign.
The makers, FM3, have constructed nine drones varying from two seconds to 42 seconds which repeat endlessly in the listener's ear until the "track" is switched to the next drone. They come in different colours, so you never know which one you'll get through the post. It's a must design to have to help you relax, work, and write blogs!
Friday, 10 October 2008
Hans & Anita Ekedahl run their own gallery and art shop on the Swedish Island 'Gotland'. For many years they have been famous for their pottery, glassware, paintings and postcards of watercolour images of the island, painting warm and romantic summer settings of villas and flowers and in contrast, blistering cold days by the sea. They attract tourists from all over due to their beautiful representation of the island.
The artwork is moving as it represents my childhood and memories growing up. It’s also really inspiring that this couple have set up a successful business based on their passion and skills in art and crafts. Their gallery is a ‘must see’ on the island and is advertised in the Gotland tourist guide.
Thursday, 2 October 2008
A current favourite artist is 'Linn Olofsdotter' who focusses on illustration. She's worked for a number of clients such as Starbucks, Levi's, BIK BOK, Computer Arts and loads more. Her combination of illustration with lots of different textures and colours takes them to a deeper and more interesting level. She inspires you want to pick up a pen or a paintbrush and be really creative. It's really great to see a combination of hand drawn & scanned images looking so professional.