The winning entry to build China’s Pavilion at the Milan Expo 2015 is a stunning reinterpretation of a public space. Designed in collaboration between Tsinghua University and New York-based Studio Link-Arc, the duo rejected the notion of a typical pavilion, and instead came up with a structure that resembles billowing fields of wheat. It’s a thoughtful and creative twist on the Expo’s theme, “Feeding the Planet – Energy for Life.” According to the architects, the 5,000-square-meter space entitledLand of Hope is centered around the idea that, “hope can be realized when nature and the city exist in harmony.”
The Pavilion’s floating roof plays a large role in capturing the spirit of the Expo. Conceptually, the undulating form merges the city skyline to the building’s north with the natural landscape to the south. It’s designed as a timber structure that references the raised-beam system found in traditional Chinese architecture, and is clad in bamboo shingled panels to reference the country’s terracotta roof construction.
Inside, there will be exhibitions and cultural offerings from the 40 Chinese provinces. The centerpiece of it all is the “field of hope,” a multimedia installation that’s a landscape of LED “stalks” meant to mimic the form of wheat. After visitors have taken in the Pavilion’s sights, sounds, and short films, they can stand on a raised platform outside and enjoy the expansive views of the Expo’s grounds.
What may look like an example of Photoshop trickery was actually created by throwing some high powered glow sticks into the waterfalls of California. Using long exposure that would range from 30 seconds to 7 minutes, San Francisco-based photographers Sean Lenz and Kristoffer Abildgaard transformed the waterfalls into nocturnal underwater rainbows.
“This project came from months of refining a simple idea that finally turned into a concept worthy of using for an entire series,” says Kristoffer. “We were both fascinated by artificial light such as glow sticks, lasers, flares, and being big on landscape photography we tied them together in hopes of creating something that we had never seen before,” added the artist.
Even though neon lights is something completely unnatural and unrelated to the settings of the photoshoots, the final results in their ‘Neon Luminance‘ series are very harmonious.
The ‘From the Lenz’ artist duo also worked on lighting the nature around the waterfalls, and used various head lamps, road flares and even taking advantage of the moonlight: “Although this series was meant to focus mostly on glow sticks in waterfalls, we are exploring the idea of creating artificially lit landscapes in general as well, such as mountains, lakes, tree lines, grass fields and caves,” Mr Abildgaard added.
Canada-based photographer Matt Molloy brings sky photography to a new level. By stacking hundreds of separate sky shots he is able to achieve an incredible brush-like effect. Each final picture in his “Smeared Sky” series is a result of combining from 100 to 200 photographs.
The number of pictures he uses depends on various factors, such as weather conditions, cloudiness, or whether the object in the picture is moving or static. “Sometimes the clouds are moving quick and there’s lots of them. If I stack too many photos from a timelapse like that, it can get a little messy,” says Matt, adding that it’s usually mid day timelapses that cause more problems.
Matt has been shooting timelapses for over three years now: “For every day that I don’t shoot a timelapse, I probably shoot two the next day,” he says. What draws Matt to this process most is the experimenting, as you never know what you’re going to get in the end. That’s especially true with the sunsets, as the sky gets increasingly darker – but Matt says these timelapses seem to work very well.
Our first Artist of the week and with these inspiring images well deserved too!
So last night for some unknown reason I was feeling quite inspired. Really for an art blog, I should be referencing an artist as my inspiration but in truth it just came out of nowhere! I was looking at some of my work I had done when I was younger (16/17) and decided that I wanted to play around in Photoshop with the photos to see what I could come up with now. As regular Photoshoppers would know using the software can sometimes be quite restrained and hard to portray and sort of expressionism. However, I thought to myself “I’m going to go a bit crazy with this and see what happens”…
This was the result and i’m pretty happy with it. It looks like a mixture of some of Francis Bacon’s work and the album cover of the Sex Pistols “God Save the Queen”. Also, I think it has a bit of a cubist element to it. This is probably because my girlfriend never stops talking about Pablo Picasso as she specialises in studying him at University and it has now become engrained into the right side of my brain!
Anyway, I just wanted to share this with everyone. What do you think? Could it be any better? As an artist I know work can always get better and its never quite finished however I just thought this piece looked quite interesting and could be inspirational to some people.
Every time you see a crowd of Catalans gathered in one place, a strike or a riot is the safest guess, however sometimes it might mean a different and truly spectacular thing. What turned out to be a typical way to celebrate any bigger occasion, doesn’t get any more impressive than in the Concurs de Castells (“competition of castles” in Catalan), where hundreds of people compete in who will form a bigger one.
The competition is held in Tarragona every two years and attracts over 20 000 viewers. Last year 32 teams participated, each one consisting from 100 to 500 members. The towers reach from 6 to 10 levels in hight, and are built from men, women and children alike. The usual way is to keep the male team members (and the heavier ones at that) at the bottom, while women and children go up to form the top levels. In order to win the competition, the complexity of the tower is judged as well as its hight.
With the“Strength, balance, courage and common sense” slogan serving as the moto of the tradition, human towers have been recognized as the UNESCO cultural heritage in 2010, and have been considered as one of the most important Catalan traditions for over 200 years now. Below are some stunning shots by David Oliete, capturing the magnitude of the event!
Russian musician and painter Svetlana Kolosova uses her own hand as her canvas as she paints charming little scenes inspired by fairy tales. The Moscow-based artist’s series of hand paintings, roughly translated as Palm Drawings, include a range of stories from classic Hans Christian Andersen tales like The Little Mermaid and The Little Match Girl to Russian folklore like The Snow Maiden, all in beautifully vivid colors.
The multifaceted artist accounts for the lines and ridges of the human hand in each meticulously executed painting. Kolosova makes working with such an unconventionally soft and unruly canvas seem effortless as each image pops and draws the viewer into the magical scene. At times, one forgets they are looking at a painting on the palm the artist’s hand and is simply left admiring the wonderful shades and shapes that Kolosova uses to put a picture to childhood stories.
CMYK is a three-dimensional mural created by the Norway-based design collective, Skurktur. Using spray paints, stencils, and a variety of mixed media, the artists produced this playful scene in which a young child and a grown man react very differently to the colorful “rain” dripping down the side of the building. The flat stenciled shapes interact seamlessly with the drips of water and the half-umbrella protruding from the wall.
As the man rushes along to get to shelter, the young child stands with arms spread wide, exposed to the rain and embracing every drop with great joy and enthusiasm. The innocence of youth and the freedom of splattered paints are directly juxtaposed against the sullen posture and hurried scramble of adulthood. According to the website, the piece was used as part of a campaign for Ricomincia da Te, a movement promoting political and economic reform in Italy.