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Category: Art related

JR street art: so very fucking cool

Street art over the past couple of years seems to have become very mainstream and therefore has lost a lot of its appeal. There was something so rebellious and so under-the-radar about it once that has now been lost to Urban Outfitters and the like. One “street artist” (I don’t think that title can fully appropriate his work) in particular, however, is changing the typical Banksy game.

(below) Meet JR: a French guy street artist who just won the TED 2011 prize for “changing the world”.

His “street art” blows other street art out of the  water. Using a 50mm camera he found on the Paris metro as a teenager, JR sends humanitarian messages by pasting huge, “as big as one’s house” portraits he took of individuals in public places. His most famous? The Israeli/Palestinian wall, where he displayed images of goofy-looking Palestinians right next to goofy-looking Israelis. The project is called ‘Face2Face’.

"Face2Face" series on Palestine/Israeli border

"Face2Face" series on the Palestine/Israeli border

Banksy tagged the wall too, so I have to give credit where credit is due. But JR seems to make a more humanitarian, engaging statement with his art by using the the war-engaged civilians as his subjects. The beauty of this project is that he makes each individual so identifiably unidentifiable. Photos of Palestinian taxi drivers next to Israeli ones,  in the public eye, up on the very wall that was built to divide such “different” groups of people– and yet, not one person was able to tell the difference between a Palestinian and an Israeli by looking at the huge photographs.

The other beautiful part of the photographs, too, is that they are so very light-hearted, and placed on such a dense and heavy symbol of hate.  I guess one could say the photos ‘Kill (the viewer) with kindness’.

"Face2Face" series

"Face2Face" series

The message he is sending reads loud and clear: The human race is united at core despite our nationalities and beliefs. We are all individual, silly, and beautiful people.

–A frown can be quickly dissolved by a smile, and yes, laughter is the best medicine, in my opinion.

To check out his TED speech, watch this:

JR also came to LA!  (whoop whoop– see below)



Hiroshi Sugimoto

I wanted to post something on a photographer I recently fell in love with all over again.

Japanese/American photographer Hiroshi Sugimoto knows how to take stunning photos.

'Baltic Sea Rugen', 1996, part of the 'Seascapes' series

His work, besides being visually stunning, also tickles the intellect. Sugimoto’s work often reflects his existentialist point of view, toyinh with concepts of perception and reality.

'North Atlantic Ocean, Cape Breton', 1996.

In his ‘Seascapes’ series, Sugimoto makes vastly different images of what appear to be the same oceanic horizon. Standing alone, the images are gorgeous, but collectively, they provoke a kind of heightened consciousness or awareness of something– existence, perception, — of “God”, maybe?

Sugimoto’s ‘Theatres’ series might be my favorite both visually and conceptually. He’s taken photos in different theatres from around the world of movies being projected onto enormous screens. Each photograph is literally a photograph of an entire movie– Sugimoto’s shutter literally stayed open for the entire duration of the film being screened.

'U.A. Walker, New York', 1978. Part of the 'Theatres' series.

Although these are really cool too.  Here are some images from his ‘Diorama’ series and from his ‘Portraits’ series– both series are photographs of inanimate  objects and representations from the Natural History Museum in NYC and Madame Tussaud’s wax museum looking entirely lifelike, begging the viewer to confront the concept of reality and non-reality.

'Earliest Human Relatives', 1994, Dioramas series

'Diana Princess of Wales', 1999, Portraits series

'Polar Bear', 1976, Dioramas series

'Fidel Castro', 1999, Portraits series

There are a lot more photographs I could post, but I won’t because I’m running out of time and am being a bad intern. If you’re still interested, check out his ‘Lightning Fields’ series for more gorgeous ‘graphs.



All I have to say is:

I’m not very articulate, partially because I’m tired and took melatonin about 45 minutes ago and also maybe because I fell completely off the blogging band-wagon, but the above statement is fairly articulate as it is. So that’s that.

Because I secretly really want (but won’t get) a tumblr…

I won’t get a tumblr (or at least I haven’t caved in yet) because I think it’s harder work (and therefore better for me) to stick to a format that requires a certain level of organized thought and effort that tumblr lacks. Although, there is something really wonderful and alluring about tumblrs. They are like inspiration boards/insights into a person’s psyche. But, knowing my inclination towards that type of loose and non-linear thinking, I’m going to resist tumblr for now and keep requiring myself to think and blog in a formatted, linear way.

Except for in this blog post. I have a habit of saving random photos and things that I like (from other blogs, from stumbleupon, from creeping facebook) in a file on my desktop literally called “Random things I like’, but can’t really blog about them because there’s not much to say other than “I really like this photo/drawing/thing”. So here we are.

Enjoy these puppies.

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David Shrigley

Because I feel a need to blog but have nothing pressing that I want to blog about, I’m going to backtrack and pay my respect to an artist/comic I love.

I’ve been a David Shrigley fan for years, and I’m sure all of you have been too. The guy kind of kick-started a trend in a dry and bizarre comedic style that nobody can seem to quite top, and as such he has gained a cultish following (me included) of people who love his dark, bizarre and child-like sketches/prose.

Some of my favorites are as follow:


Some portraits… January/February

I love close-up portraits that show the intricacies of people’s faces. Faces are really beautiful and wild– they tell so much about their owners. I don’t think beauty is found in flawlessness– I think beauty comes from quirks. Crow’s feet, gapped teeth (I’m part of that club), untamed eyebrows… I adore!

Kit 1.

Kit 2.

Kit 3.

Michael 1.

Michael 2.

Michael 3.



Reed 1.

Reed 2.

Reed 3.








If you like Barbie and if you like Dexter…

Then you’ll love Marie Clayton’s photography. A “self-taught” photographer and artist, Clayton has a flare for irony and story telling. She takes the smiling, perfect vision of Barbie (&Ken) and adds some psycho into the equation, creating these scenarios much like scenes out of Dexter, and then some. As illusive a serial killer as Dexter is, Clayton shows that Barbie (and in turn, all that Barbie stands for) can be a serial killer behind a plastic mask, too. And plus, it’s just really funny.

^Haha, my favorite. Clayton’s caption: Failure to perform.


Ruth Erdt

I found out about Swiss artist/photographer Ruth Erdt through a site I love ( Though there’s not much I can say that the site hasn’t already, I felt the need to re-post these photos. They are haunting and spectacular.

^Currently my desktop background. I love the combination of vivid color against a stark white background.

^This photo makes me feel uncomfortable. It’s eerie. I can’t entirely tell if this person is a girl or a boy (though I think a girl…), and I’m wondering why the sign is upside down. She(he?) looks scared, and the lighting with the harsh shadow is lonely and victimizing. And there’s just so much red! I feel like this young person is stuck in a circus freak show and I really want to get her out of there.

^This is my favorite of the photos. I love the nose and the freckles. It captures a sense of intimacy and distant memory.

I hope one of her shows comes to the U.S.!


If you like cats and if you like Banksy, you will like this.

‘exit through the pet shop’

Venice beach/Skaters

Today was my first time in Venice, the place famous for lords of dog town. It was wild. The skate culture there is so cool and attractive and oddly welcoming, and the skaters are all like something deeper than family to each other. It was a fun day to photograph.

I call him Blondie because I don’t know his name. He’s 15 years old and would hardly give me the time of day with his pissy cool attitude, which he backs up with his absurd skating skill, though this photo shows a softness in him that I’m intrigued by.

And he has a tattoo.

This guy’s name is Adam Paul. He’s part of the original dog town crew. He has a kind of regal and wise presence.

Spray paint