It’s amazing what you can do with scaffolding! Ben Long creates amazing animal inspired Scaffolding Sculptures! They are “Inspired by his experiences working on building sites as a teenager, the project asserts the value of a disciplined working practice, the hard graft of manual employment and celebrates the role the construction industry plays in the advancement of urban development.” Take a peek at some of our favorites, including pieces from his Great Travelling Art Exhibition on the next page!
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While back in San Diego this weekend, we couldn’t help but wander around my alma mater, UCSD… and of course, we had go down the snake path and see the new house perched upon the top corner of the engineering school! Fallen Star by Do Ho Suh is the latest addition to the Stuart Collection of pieces around campus, and it is an amazing one! With this fully built and furnished little house lifted up to the rooftop by a crane, it even has a flower and vegetable garden with a little path leading up to it next to the dean’s office. While it wasn’t open for visiting when we went by, it was amazing to watch the making of construction time lapses and videos in the lobby, and faces pressed against the window to see the garden and house. Even more amazing, we watched this hummingbird just sitting so close to us, perfectly still on the cable of the garden for some time as the sprinklers went off on the roof… take a peek at the pics on the next page!
p.s. We were just running around, so the pics are all from the HTC One S i’m just starting to try out!
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Often, the best types of travel takes you unexpected places to experience things you couldn’t even imagine! Next up for NOTCOT is Linz, Austria! We’re thrilled to head to the annual Ars Electronica Festival for Art, Technology, and Society August 30 to September 3rd… where the some of the world’s most incredible cutting edge artists, technologists, designers, scientists, thinkers, and more will come together. From exhibitions, to talks, to getting to see incredible interactive projects we’ve only seen online in person… and a chance to meet the people behind them!
As they explain it, “The 2012 Ars Electronica Festival, the Linz, Austria-based, world- renowned celebration of excellence in media art, opens on August 30. The theme: “The Big Picture - New Concepts for a New World.” This year’s conclave will showcase inspiring best- practice examples from art and science in calling for a new, open perspective conducive to the development of a viable vision for our future. The Festival is an inquiry into what it takes to compose such a Big Picture and just how it can be implemented. Dozens of scientists, scholars and artists from all over the world will convene in Linz from August 30 to September 3. They include: artist/scientist Joe Davis (US); George Church (US), genetics professor at Harvard Medical School; robotics engineer Hiroshi Ishiguro (JP); Adam Bly (CA), founder of the online science magazine Seed; curator, author, video filmmaker and cultural journalist Jens Hauser (DE/FR); and Julius von Bismarck (DE), the hot young star of the European media art scene.”
While an award for the Free Universal Construction Kit is what is bringing Shawn and I to the festival, between preparing for his talk and designing the display for the toys, we’re starting to get giddy about projects we’ll get to see at the Ars Electronica Festival… take a peek at some of the incredible projects on the next page!
It’s been a few years since i’ve been to a Miss Van show ~ you can see pictures from some of her 2006-2007 shows in the NOTCOT archives… tonight, i popped by Miss Van’s solo show“Wild At Heart” at Copro Gallery. A playful series of work filled with masks and her signature ladies with a focus on the eyes… The press release says Choosing to focus on details while isolating different body parts, such as eyes and mouth, Miss Van adds, “The masks allow me to show more feelings, other sides of a same character, hiding the face, partly or totally and embracing the animal strength, personality and attitude. I am illustrating the chemistry between the feminine delicacy and the bestial instinct, natural and raw and we all have this duality inside.” This show is sponsored by fashion brand, Citizens of Humanity, which is branching into the arts. Show visitors received Citizens of Humanity t-shirt collaboration with Miss Van (only in girls sizes!) with a print of one of the eyes from the show on them, and she will also be featured in the premiere issue of a new collectible print publication by Citizens of Humanity launching this August.
Take a peek at the show and the t-shirt on the next page!
The latest dose of natural inspiration from our resident zoologist and London-based editor, Justine Aw.
It’s an unusual sight for most of us, beautiful birds captured on camera, not in the freedom of flight, but tangled in the confines of mist nets. Photographer Todd Forsgren captures birds in unusual poses. Inspired by the work of Audubon, bird-watcher Forsgren’s photos shows fascinating bird species captured in mist nets, the thin barely visible nets that act like huge spiderwebs used by researchers to collect data on birds.
Unlike Audubon’s original subjects which were shot, stuffed/mounted, then painted, Forsgren’s subjects are only briefly captured by researchers before being released (after being weighed, measured and given leg rings). The photographs are poignant and beautiful glimpses at some rarely seen species in often awkward poses, which Forsgren describes as the “fragile and embarrassing moment before they disappear back into the woods, and into data”. Beautiful! See more selections from the series on the next page!
Home and cleaning through things after the last month of nearly non-stop travel, found this Cartoon Network 20th anniversary poster from SD Comiccon ~ can you believe its been 20 years?!?!?! And even crazier ~ can you find all the characters in the poster? Larger view of the poster and the check list on the next page!
The latest from London-based editor, Justine Aw.
Last night we had an incredible evening at the Tate Modern, exploring the surrealism galleries in the dark, experiencing the art of the Tate in an entirely new light (literally!). It was the first of a season of Tate Blackouts during which the gallery will dim the lights and invite visitors to explore and experience the surrealism galleries by the illumination of their own Little Sun.
The Little Sun is designed by Olafur Eliasson (who was also behind the Tate’s Weather Project) in collaboration with engineer Frederik Ottesen. The Little Sun can provide light to the 1.6 billion people worldwide who have no access to mains electricity. Safer and cleaner than kerosene lamps, the Little Sun is solar powered, turning 5 hours of natural light into 5 hours of Little Sun light, and with a 3 year battery life.
I loved the idea of bringing the Little Sun inside an art museum, and the fact that the object is simultaneously a resource for developing nations and itself an art object used to illuminate and experience modern art in a city like London! Playing with Little Suns inside a blacked out Tate Modern, meant beautiful light graffiti! More photos of the Tate’s surrealism galleries experienced by the light of the Little Sun on the next page!
Another comic-con is upon us ~ and last night did a quick loop around preview night to see what inspiration and amusement was around. While not nearly as crazed feeling as previous years felt (so far!) ~ here’s a peek at the toys and displays that grabbed me! From hover boards and monstrous creatures from the Hobbit ~ to angry woebots and kobe ~ HUGE transformers to shrympees and rhinos ~ Hypnotoad to monster toytems ~ and so much more! Take a peek at day one on the next page!
Another highlight from New Designers this year was the Wire Wonderland series from Hayley Dix. The beautiful wireframe birds look like charming, whimsical drawings perched on real branches! They are both abstracted and natural at the same time. More photos of the adorable woodland creatures on the next page!
Another highlight from Show RCA 2012, is the work of ceramist and illustrator Sophie Alice Wiltshire. Wiltshire’s beautiful illustrations make gorgeous mugs and stunning tiles! Her illustrations are inspired by visits to the incredible spirit collections at the Natural History Museum, London (which are my favorite collection there too!). More photos of her beautiful natural history inspired pieces on the next page!
The exhibition consists of two rooms, Jette and Fabrik. Jette suspends a catcus in a terrarium in the room with the help of a freely drifting helium-inflated weather balloon. In Fabrik, stalactite like structures descend from the ceiling as if they are dripping the hand blown glass terrariums from the ceiling to the floor below. See more pictures of this stunning exhibition (that i wish i could see in person!) on the next page!
The beautiful Blooming Spark I Chandelier was created exclusively for Vessel gallery by by Hsiao-Chi Tsai and Kimiya Yoshikawa. This floral light is a mesmerizing mix of colors, uv/incandescent, and materials…
As described on the Vessel gallery blog, “Tsai and Yoshikawa come from textile and sculpture backgrounds respectively. Their joint practice has cumulated in some extraordinary pieces that marry unexpected materials such as neoprene, acrylics and UV paint with lighting and installation. Their bold use of colour and modern sensibility combine to produce joyful, imaginative work. The pieces are contradictory being synthetic, organic and hand made all at the same time. Well known for their public and private commissions, for Vessel Gallery they have produced a vibrant unique sculptural chandelier in acrylic that resembles a bouquet of alien botany launched at Superdesign 2011, London’s premier design and art exhibition. Blooming Spark I is made in an edition of 9 + 3AP. Price £11’250. Dimensions: Height 55cm x Diameter 100cm. Blossom Spark I consists of 4x lamps max 60W E27 and 9x UV lamps. It is wired as two separate circuits that can be controlled independently.” See more details of the Blooming Spark I in light and dark on the next page.
New show just went up at Gallery 1988 Melrose: MEMES! Yes, all the ridiculous internet silliness inspiring art! My favorite… Leontine Greenberg’s two pieces, Oh Noes and They be stealin’ my bucket”, inspired by the LOLrus and Bucket meme… see the original on the next page… and the full show here.
On the way in to Ben Jones’ installation with the crazy 8 bit video room at the Avant/Garde Diaries Transmission LA: A/V Club at MoCA… you go through a trippy and beautiful triangular digital tunnel… see the video on the next page! (I could have sat mesmerized in there for some time!)
Ara Peterson & Jim Drain created a mind trip of household fan driven pinwheels which are dizzying and fascinating to walk through at Avant/Garde Diaries Transmission LA: A/V Club at MoCA… Constantly spinning as you wander through them and feel slight breezes coming from different angles, they suck you in if you fixate too hard on a particular one… and looking back it’s amazing to see that it really is just regular fans strategically positioned moving them! See the video and more pics on the next page!
If you’re in LA before May 6th, Ben Jones’ installation at the Avant/Garde Diaries Transmission LA: A/V Club at MoCA is a must… no pictures or video can do the nauseatingly bizarre feeling of being in a never ending 8-bit race justice… but that being said, in case you can’t make it here, here’s a peek at how it felt on video on the next page!
One of the artists that caught my eye at the Avant/Garde Diaries: Transmission LA: A/V CLUB was Sage Vaughn… take a look at some of the moth covered drip paintings on the next page!
On amazing packages that just take your breath away, Natalya Zahn’s book, Tropical Forest, just arrived in this stunningly illustrated mailer! How beautiful is that Takin? Natalya Zahn is a natural illustrator based out of Cambridge, MA and a selection of her work and other nature related discoveries are on her blog, i (heart) odd-toed ungulates… the book, Tropical Forest, contains text and illustration from her blog between 2010 and 2011. They look stunning printed in this Blurb book! Take a peek inside on the next page!
OVM Love is the stunning new store and jewelry line from artist, James Jean. As his introduction explains, “Unexpectedly, I also started developing a line of fine jewelry, scarves, and objects with support from my friends in Japan. I traveled to Tokyo 5 times in the past year, before and after the tsunami, to shepherd OVM into existence. As I explored this new medium, motifs in my work found new expression in precious metals and materials. Drawing inspiration from forms in nature, OVM is a place of luminous fantasy and dark decay. Four major series of fine jewelry will be released this next year, along with textiles and design objects.” The pieces, the photography, and the packaging is beautiful! I can’t seem to resist the liquid motion he captures in sterling silver (both light and black rhodium) sometimes with a dash of diamonds. Each piece is handcrafted in japan. Even the cases they come in are a work of art ~ with what looks like milled wood beautifully “dripping” in the lids… take a look at the pictures on the next page!
The latest from our resident zoologist and London-based editor, Justine Aw.
London has become home to over 200 eggs as part of The Big Egg Hunt presented by Fabergé. The eggs created by leading artists, designers, architects and jewellers scattered throughout London in 12 “zones”. The record-breaking egg hunt raises funds and awareness for the charities Action for Children and Elephant Family, through souvenirs (see more on the next page!) as well as auctions of the eggs themselves. Egg hunters can text the code associated with the egg they’ve found for a change to win The Diamond Jubilee Egg. Great way to raise awareness and a wonderful excuse to get out and explore the city!
In addition to the many beautiful eggs, we also love the identity and branding work for created by our friends at Fallon (remember the white rabbit Syfy campaign and sony playdoh bunnies?). Check out more photos of the lovely identity work and of the hunt including our own finds, the Big Egg Shop at Selfridges and some of our yet-to-be-spotted favorites on the next page!
It’s hard to miss Los Angeles’ massive art celebration right now… Pacific Standard Time Performance and Public Art Festival is happening all over the city January 19-29, and is apparently ” the largest cultural collaboration ever undertaken in the region.” Amongst the art and experiences popping up… one of the most surprising and amazing videos to surface is the one of rapper Ice Cube celebrating his passion for the Eames. Did you know he studied architectural drafting in his pre-NWA days? Got to love the way he ends it - saying “Who are these people who got a problem with LA? Maybe they mad cuz they don’t live here.” Yay! For LA!
Ok ~ so the awesome folks at TBWA\Chiat\Day have given us limited edition (of 250) Pacific Standard Time/Ice Cube/Eames posters to giveaway to you guys! For a chance to win ~ leave a comment OR tweet us (@NOTCOT) with YOUR unexpected passion (you know ~ the one besides your obvious dayjob/primary passion.) And we will email or D tweet the winners on Weds Jan 25th, 2012. (Please follow @NOTCOT so i can D you if you win!)
… and for now see more pics of the poster as well as the video of Ice Cube on Eames on the next page!
On interesting interactive installations at CES, Intel had an interactive lifeform generator called the Connect to Life Experience, which was a 168-foot-wide interactive 3D virtual life simulation designed by Stimulant and Foghorn Creative.
Stimulant explains it as follows: “Conference attendees can use any of six stations around the perimeter of the booth to create a shape using their hands, phone, keys — pretty much anything — and the silhouette of that object will be used to generate a unique bioluminescent lifeform on the massive projection surface overhead. The animated lifeforms interact with one another in playful ways, dancing with one another or chasing other lifeforms around the ecosystem.
The system renders approximately 30 billion triangles per second to deliver a 17.6 megapixel image at 60 frames per second, all powered by Intel Core i7 technology. This image is displayed over a 2200 square foot, non-uniform projection-mapped surface using 24 projectors.”
Take a peek at more of my pictures from the experience on the next page ~ there was something very Flow like about the digital ecosystem created ~ and my favorite part ended up being the structure they built where you input the shape/handprint…
Remember Audi’s 2011 CES booth of overlit white glowiness? Well this year Audi actually took it even further and created an equally stark white super bright booth that not only pulled everyone into the light… but trapped them in their infinite kaleidoscopic florescent tube grid of dizzying madness. Then again to be fair i had just walked the show floor all day and could barely feel my feet anyways. Regardless ~ it makes for awesome pictures ~ and some insane reflections on the many reflective surfaces in the booth…
Hard to miss on La Cienega last night was Glenn Kaino’s “Bring Me the Hands of Piri Reis” at the Honor Fraser Gallery. From the large exploded boat sculpture filling the main room ~ to a beautiful series of map inspired pieces ~ to fists ~ photography ~ and so much more… it’s quite an extensive solo show! Take a peek at some of the work on the next page.
Amazing what one can do with thread and ribbon… particularly Brian Wills in his show “Unwound” over at Nye+Brown! Discovered his work while wandering the S. La Cienega Art Walk I showed you other random pictures of inspiration from tonight… take a look at some of the work on the next page!