follow us in feedly
‘Monumental Nobodies’: Artist paints civic sculptures with a subversive twist
09.01.2016
12:34 pm

Topics:
Amusing
Art
History

Tags:

001rockstarquick.jpg
‘Rockstar.’
 
In Glasgow, the city where I live, there’s an equestrian statue of the Duke of Wellington. This category-A monument situated on Queen Street, outside the Gallery of Modern Art, is famous not for its subject but rather for the regularity that traffic cones are placed on the grand Duke’s bonce. No one knows who puts them there. No sooner is one removed than another has replaced it. The Duke and his orange and white headgear are a symbol of the gallus nature of the city.

According to the city council, it costs $15,000 a year to have these pesky cones removed. A few years ago, the council considered raising the statue higher onto a second plinth—thus preventing any cheeky wee monkeys from hoisting yet another one on its head. In response, a Facebook campaign was started to save the cone. It received 75,000 “likes” in the first 24-hours. Since then the council installed CCTV cameras in a bid to capture the culprit(s) cone-handed.

This morning as I walked past the statue a fresh cone sat a jaunty angle on the Duke’s head. It’s not a mark of disrespect but rather a questioning of our inherited values, identity and history. History, after all, is written by the victors.

Matthew Quick asks similar questions about history, identity and inherited values with his series of paintings Monumental Nobodies. His starting point was “the monuments of empire and what happens to the things left behind, how they might be represented, or reutilised or reinterpreted.” He was also inspired by the sonnet “Ozymandias” by Percy Bysshe Shelley that tells of:

Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert. . . . Near them, on the sand,
Half sunk a shattered visage lies, whose frown,
And wrinkled lip, and sneer of cold command,
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things,
The hand that mocked them, and the heart that fed;
And on the pedestal, these words appear:
My name is Ozymandias, King of Kings;
Look on my Works, ye Mighty, and despair!
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal Wreck, boundless and bare
The lone and level sands stretch far away.

The broken visage is all that remains of the once great king. Though there is a slight irony in the sonnet’s conceit that Ozymandias’ memory lives on in the lines of Shelley’s immortal posey.

Quick was reminded of this poem after watching television footage of American soldiers pull down a statue of Saddam Hussein in Baghdad during the Iraq War in 2003.

Removing the contemporary politics of the moment, I thought: ‘This is an invading army going in there and basically destroying art’.

The soldiers actions made Quick think of the ancient sack of Rome—“Except that the Visigoths were barbarians and the Americans did it for the cameras. It was a deliberate and stage-managed act,” as he explained in an interview

This led Australian Quick to produce Monumental Nobodies—a series of paintings re-examining our relationship with civic and classical sculptures.

Quick was late to his career as an artist. He had been a graphic designer, author, lecturer and art director before he started painting in earnest. When he was thirty-six, he was diagnosed with melanoma. The doctor’s prognosis was not good. It was suggested he may only have five years left to live. This caused Quick to reevaluate his life.

If you have only got a certain amount of time, what would you really like to be doing? It was the wake-up call I needed. Now I’m in a big rush. I am making up for lost time – what I’m doing now is what I’ve always wanted to do.

Thirteen years on, Quick is thankfully still alive and continues with his chosen career. It’s been over a decade since he turned “pro.” Since then he has won over sixty awards for his artwork and has exhibited in Australia and Europe. Technically brilliant, his work is powerful iconic and wonderfully cerebral. 

Quick started Monumental Nobodies before ISIS began thuggishly destroying historic buildings and artwork.

When you think about what ISIS is doing now, destroying artwork, we condemn that justifiably … but when the Americans did it, it was celebrated. These sorts of things intrigue me.

A statue of Saddam Hussein can be replaced but ancient monuments and temples cannot.

The irony is that when I started working on this series, the stuff with ISIS hadn’t happened. It has given it an extra layer of gravitas.

More of Matthew Quick’s work can be seen here.
 
003thegreatcoverup.jpg
‘The Great Cover Up.’
 
004theeternalstrugglequick.jpg
‘The Eternal Struggle.’
 
More ‘Monumental Nobodies,’ after the jump…

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
Unsettling sculptures of the Torrance family from ‘The Shining’ that you can never unsee
08.04.2016
09:20 am

Topics:
Amusing
Art
Movies

Tags:


Danny, Wendy and Jack Torrance sculptures.
 
Sculptor and artist Clair Monaghan says that she enjoys building and animating characters that tell a “story.” In this case Monaghan managed to scare the shit out of me by re-telling Stanley Kubrick’s 1980’s adaptation of Stephen King’s 1977 novel The Shining by creating three sculptures based on Danny, Wendy and Jack Torrance. I feel compelled to warn you that Monaghan’s bizarre sculptures cannot be unseen, much like the film itself.
 

An image of the jacked-up teeth in the mouth of Wendy Torrance sculpture
 
I’m especially freaked out by the jacked-up looking teeth protruding from Shelley Duvall’s clay face (see above). The sculptured choppers sent me scurrying to look at photos of Miss Duvall to see if in fact her actual teeth were that askew. While they are not perfect they are definitely not of the full-on hillbilly back-room dentistry variety that Monaghan created. Sadly Monaghan hasn’t updated her blog or website since 2012 and at that time it did not appear as though she was interesting in selling any of her clay Torrances. Which leaves us to revel in her curiously weird sculptures of three of cinema’s most famous faces frozen in time—just like Jack. 
 

 

Jack and Wendy Torrance together forever!
 
More after the jump…

Posted by Cherrybomb | Leave a comment
Sculptures of post-apocalyptic people in disturbing situations
07.28.2016
12:33 pm

Topics:
Art

Tags:


A curious sculpture by Kirsten Stingle
 
Atlanta-based sculptor and ceramist Kirsten Stingle found her calling after being profoundly affected by the horrific events of 9/11. She decided that she needed to get back to the creative roots that she had originally grown while a member of a long-running theater group in Florida. So she left her career in social welfare, but this time instead of getting her creative kicks from acting, Stingle delved into the delicate art of ceramic sculpture. Her profound works reflect the artist’s desire to push her voice “inside” her creations via the medium.
 

 
It would be easy for the grim overtones of Stingle’s art to overshadow her accomplished handiwork. The graceful flow of her figures make them appear as if they are about to move. Like a despondent street-corner mime, they are impossible to look away from. Her highly detailed works have distinct personalities that they wear in their frozen faces. Some resemble silent movie star Clara Bow if she had been catapulted into some future world (nearly) devoid of color. Here’s Stingle elaborating on the thought process that helps inspire her while when she’s busy building her perplexing “people.”

We try to appear very normal, but how we struggle with those different layers makes us human. We need to not only look at them but recognize the choices we make. I’m looking at the search for truth and struggle for redemption, as well as our own personal and societal limitations. How we adapt to those limitations is what shapes who we are.

Stingle will be showing the newest members of her ever-growing ceramic army in a solo exhibition in Atlanta called “Sacred and Profane” at Signature Contemporary in October.
 

‘Horseplay’
 

‘Little Cuts’
 
More of Kirsten Stingle macabre sculptures after the jump…

Posted by Cherrybomb | Leave a comment
Meat: Strange, disturbing and grotesque sculptures of flesh and bone
07.22.2016
10:01 am

Topics:
Art

Tags:

000RCscul.jpg
 
Russel Cameron creates surreal life-like sculptures of flesh and bone appendages.

Cameron’s sculptures of deformed limbs and freakish body parts look like they belong in a David Cronenberg movie or are perhaps some remnant meat blown off by an IED, or animal parts, trussed and ready for cooking. His artworks are almost obscene. They are disturbing, grotesque but at the same time compelling and strangely beautiful.

Cameron is a self-taught sculptor based in New York. According to a mission statement at the Macabre Gallery Russel’s main objective when creating a sculpture:

...is to give it life, feeling and a place among us, whether it be a classic bust or a deformed limb mounted on a sheet of wood the piece should speak and tell a story to the viewer.

A majority of Russel’s sculptures possess human characteristics such as skin texture and some form of anatomical structure, these traits all play an essential role in the creation of each piece.

Some artistic influences include Zdzislaw Beksinski, H.R. Giger, Francisco Goya and Hieronymus Bosch.

Russel believes everything on earth has it’s place and those who see beauty in what the masses find grotesque or disturbing have a gift worth exploring.

Cameron has work exhibited by the beinArt Gallery in New York and his work is for sale. You can also follow him on Instagram and Facebook.
 
008RCscul.jpg
 
009RCscul.jpg
 
001RCscul.jpg
 
001ARCscul.jpg
 
Long live the new flesh, after the jump….
 

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
Unsettling sculptures convey the aftermath of confrontation and other iffy exploits
05.09.2016
04:40 pm

Topics:
Art

Tags:


“Last Night Party,’ a sculpture by Javier Aguilera.
 
Sculptor Javier Aguilera hails from Spain and his strange, eerily lifelike sculptures look as though they could have been extras in the 1999 film Fight Club.
 

 
Aguilera’s sculptures don’t really tell us too much about how they came to be, and despite the fact that they mostly appear to have been on the winning side of a bare-knuckle brawl, it’s hard to be entirely sure.  From sculptures of hooligans taking what is surely not their first mugshot, to other battered-looking busts of people who (if they could speak) would perhaps quip “you should see the other guy,” Aguilera’s subjects all seem to be the byproducts of a Saturday night spent in the wrong part of town. When Aguilera’s work showed at the Gallery Poulsen Contemporary Fine Arts in Denmark in 2010, the spot-on words “provocatively aggressive” were used to describe the shows silent inhabitants.
 

 
More images of Aguilera’s thought-provoking sculptures follow after the jump. Some are slightly NSFW…

Posted by Cherrybomb | Leave a comment
Jaw-dropping hyper-realistic sculptures of human beings
02.17.2016
03:45 pm

Topics:
Art
U.S.A.!!!

Tags:

Realistic sculptures by Marc Sijan
Sculptures by Marc Sijan
 
The uncannily realistic sculptures of Milwaukee-based sculptor Marc Sijan have been displayed in museums and galleries from coast to coast. His life-sized works are full-time residents at thirty museums. The running joke about Sijan’s creations is that they look so “alive,” that you might actually feel compelled to start a conversation with one of them. This is not at all difficult to understand once you have seen Sijan’s people. Sijan’s subjects are relatable everyday people. Your neighbors and inhabitants of middle-America, people you know or might see in the grocery store—to rather grotesque versions of the human form that have been maligned by age, indulgence or perhaps circumstance.
 

 

 
Part of the rigorous process the now 68-year-old sculptor goes through to achieve the all too human appearance of actual skin for his works consists of 25 coats of paint and varnish. An incredibly private man, it can take Sijan anywhere from six-months to a year to complete one of his contemplative sculptures, which the artist creates with plaster casts derived from actual live models. Nothing, especially imperfections, are spared when it comes to the detail Sujan brings to his sculptures. Goosebumps, broken blood vessels, saggy skin - Sijan’s “people” are about as real as any of us. Like it or not.

Some of the images that follow may be slightly NSFW.
 

“Cornered”
 
Sculpture by Marc Sijan
 
Sculpture by Marc Sijan
 

“All American”
 
More after the jump…

Posted by Cherrybomb | Leave a comment
Bela Lugosi might not be dead: Mind-blowing sculptures of classic movie monsters
10.19.2015
09:26 am

Topics:
Art
Movies

Tags:

Bela Lugosi life-sized sculpture by Mike Hill
Bela Lugosi life-sized sculpture by Mike Hill
 
You may recall that DM has previously featured the work of LA-based master sculptor Mike Hill, and his uncanny life-sized sculpt of FX pioneer Ray Harryhausen being served tea and cookies by his skeleton minions.
 
Nosferatu (or Count Orlok) sculpture by Mike Hill
A close up of Nosferatu (or Count Orlok) sculpture by Mike Hill
 
Widely considered by his peers and fans as one of the greatest sculptors living today, Hill’s deep admiration for his ground-breaking predecessors such as Lon Chaney, Jack Pierce and Rick Baker (and their respective monsters), are brought back to life in his sculptures. Hill has created many sculptures based on the classic monsters created by his heroes like Frankenstein’s monster (based on Karloff’s portrayal in the 1931 film Frankenstein) or the Mummy (also famously played by Karloff in 1932’s The Mummy). Hill has even done life-sized sculptures of Baker (who’s still making monsters and is very much alive) and Pierce in action alongside their iconic, monstrous masterpieces.

Many images of Hill’s shockingly life-like sculptures that even when seen are hard to believe aren’t actually the real thing, follow.
 
FX artist Jack Pierce putting the finishing touches on Boris Karloff sculpture
Life-sized sculpture of makeup artist Jack Pierce putting the finishing touches on Boris Karloff for his role in the 1932 film, The Mummy
 
ScLife-sized sulpture of Lon Chaney as the Phantom of the Opera (1935)
Life-sized sculpture of Lon Chaney as the Phantom of the Opera (1935)
 
More “lifelike” monster sculptures by Mike Hill after the jump…

Posted by Cherrybomb | Leave a comment
Decorate with drugs: Massive ecstasy pills make for ultra-cool pop art
08.24.2015
10:10 am

Topics:
Art
Drugs

Tags:


 
Ecstasy is the only truly postmodern drug, and not just in terms of its place in history, or the completely “I’m so intensely into the many facets of this thing right now”/“I LOVE YOU GUYS” high. Ecstasy has always been produced and marketed with absolutely no aversion to literal branding. Not only are pills produced in pretty colors with cute little logos, the logos themselves are oftentimes the already immediately recognizable icons of corporate giants. It makes sense, too. You might not remember some elaborate little image on the face of a pill after a night of dancing on Molly, but you’ll probably remember the golden arches, the Rolls Royce logo or the Playboy bunny. That Rolls Royce was the best, gotta get more of that, right? See how that works?

A graffiti artist since the age of 14, Dean Zeus Colman now works under his nom d’arts “Zeus,” combining his urban artistic sensibilities with his formal training from Chelsea College of Art. Realizing the obvious pop art potential of ecstasy tablets, Zeus produced these plaster sculptures modeled after actual ecstasy pills to sleek, modern effect. The cheeky chic series is called, called “Love is a Drug,” and you should definitely buy me the Bart Simpson one.
 

 

 

 
More ecstatic art, after the jump…

Posted by Amber Frost | Leave a comment
Artist creates hyperrealistic sculptures of LA gang members as skin-rugs
08.14.2015
10:54 am

Topics:
Art
Crime
Race

Tags:


 
Check out artist Renato Garza Cervera‘s super-disturbing series “Of Genuine Contemporary Beast.” Cervera created sculptures depicting L.A. gang members as rugs, complete with the hokey feral faces a taxidermist would give a tiger or bearskin. If you’re revolted by such a racist and inhumane depiction of dead young men, congratulations—that’s the intended effect; Cervera’s work is supposed to produce discomfort with blatant dehumanization.

Societies always invent new beasts in order to make others responsible for their problems, to express their fears and to invent them a new cover. Mass media play a very important role on this world-wide scapegoating process, by presenting some minorities as uncapable of thinking or feeling, delayed and dispensable people.

The startling detail in the tattoos and skin of each sculpture—right down to their anuses—contrasts so intensely with the uniformity of their faces; the effect is the kind of uncanny creepiness that inspires nightmares.
 

 

 
More of these creepy and provocative artworks after the jump…...
 

Posted by Amber Frost | Leave a comment
‘Living sculptures’ of world leaders, artists, and other wackos
08.11.2015
10:46 am

Topics:
Art
Politics
Pop Culture

Tags:

Andy Warhol living sculpture
Andy Warhol “living sculpture”
 
Valencia, Spain-based artist Marie-Lou Desmeules is a self taught sculptor whose art consists of creating “live sculptures” using real human models as her “base.” That’s right, underneath every one of these creations is a living, breathing human being who had to endure an arduous makeup lasting probably hours.
 
Silvio Berlusconi as Ronald McDonald living sculpture
Former Prime Minister of Italy, Silvio Berlusconi as Ronald McDonald
 
Desmeules has described her art as a form of “surgery” that does not require invasive scalpels or lasers, just massive layers of acrylic paint, plastic, paper and hair. Upon viewing Desmeules’ finished product, one might be inclined to assume it was created at an LSD-induced papier-mâché party.

Desmeules’ intention was to have people consider what really constitutes “beauty” in our current perfection-obsessed society; she is also interested in the expansion of recognized gender roles. More images from Desmeules eye-popping work follows, as well as a time-lapse video of her creating a “living sculpture” of Andy Warhol.
 
Hulk Hogan living sculpture
Hulk Hogan
 
Lots more amazing “living sculptures” after the jump…...
 

Posted by Cherrybomb | Leave a comment
For the discerning Satanist: Demonic sculptures made from bones
05.14.2015
09:49 am

Topics:
Art

Tags:


Untitled No. 2
 
Sculptor John Paul Azzopardi creates these lovely, elaborate skeletal structures from actual bones to a sort of “Refined Satanist” effect. The works invoke a kind of “pop pagan” iconography—ram’s heads, bats, a mysterious structure that looks like it belongs on an altar etc.—but the articulated detail of each sculpture prevents them from being perceived as too… “serial killer?” Azzopardi does not say where he gets his bones, but they appear to be small animal bones, or possibly small children’s bones, humanely sourced from crooked orphanages and Marilyn Manson’s trash cans.

From his site:

Bone is a collection of fossilized structures that explores the gentle temperance located within the constitution of sound, i.e. its very silent centre.  The architectural relationship that oscillates back and forth from the simple and the complex to the living and the dead connects space and form, creating existential structures of interwoven silence. The death embedded in its form, its life. This might confront the spectator with a spectre, the simulacrum of itself that stalls, halts being something in its tracks.

 

Untitled No. 2
 

Untitled No. 6
 
Continues after the jump…

Posted by Amber Frost | Leave a comment
Check out these marbles: Photographer captures the sculptured testicles of antiquity
10.09.2014
10:48 am

Topics:
Art
History

Tags:


 
Gaze upon the balls of the ancients! Observe their delicate rend’ring from such an indelicate medium! Note the attention to detail! The texture! The asymmetry! The… weightiness?

These photos are from Ingrid Berthon-Moine’s cleverly titled series, “Marbles,” which compiles shots of testicles from classical Greek sculpture—only marble marbles will do. Berthon-Moine did a lot of research on Greek sexuality for the project, and actually answered one of my long-standing questions on ancient art—were the models for these sculptures… really cold? Oddly enough, some counterintuitive idealization of the human form may be the culprit.  Berthon-Moine says:

This interest in ancient classical Greek statuary was prompted by the accuracy of its anatomy, the realism of its stance and the influence it still has on the shape of the male body.

Ancient Greece was a highly masculinist culture. They favoured ‘small and taut’ genitals, as opposed to big sex organs, to show male self-control in matters of sexuality. Today, the modern users as in commerce, cinema, and advertising converted it into a mass commodity telling us about domination and desirability, size matters and the bigger, the better.

Small junk was “in”—how about that? You’ll notice no real shaft in any of the pictures (a few you can even see were even broken off), but you’d like to err on the side of NSFW (or if testes make you testy), I respect that—but if you’re working at a place that would punish you for looking at crops of ancient Greek statues, I suggest you do your damndest to make a career change—someplace that won’t bust your balls, you know?
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
Via Hyperallergic

Posted by Amber Frost | Leave a comment
More, more, Moore: How much is a Henry Moore sculpture REALLY worth???
09.12.2014
12:19 pm

Topics:
Art
Crime

Tags:

01mooreportrait.jpg
 
So, how much is a Henry Moore sculpture really worth?

Well, if we were to judge this by the money some criminals have made from the theft of a few of Moore’s best known works, then we may be surprised to find that a giant bronze statue can be bought for as little as a few thousand dollars.

This was how much thieves made on one of Moore’s most revered sculptures “Reclining Figure” (1969-70) after it was stolen from the 72-acre Henry Moore Foundation estate in Much Hadham, England in 2005. Weighing over 3-tons and standing six feet in height and ten feet in length, this elegant bronze statue was valued at $5 million. The theft baffled police, who originally suspected the statue had been stolen to order, but on investigation discovered it had in fact been taken by “a group of travellers from Essex” who sold the giant bronze to a scrap metal dealer for $2,500. A bargain considering the value of the art work and the Henry Moore Foundation’s offer of $18,000 reward for the statue’s safe return.
 
recliningmoore.jpg
‘Reclining Figure’ (1969-70).
 
Over the past decade, Moore’s beautiful sculptures have been the unfortunate focus of thieves across England and Scotland who hope to make quick buck selling these giant art works for scrap metal. In 2012, two men were jailed after stealing Moore’s piece “Sundial” once again from the Much Hadham estate. The dastardly duo sold the sculpture for a mere $75. While “Standing Figure” (1950) was stolen from the Glenkiln Sculpture Park, Dumfries and Galloway, Scotland, and is also believed to have been melted down and sold for scrap.

So, it’s true—crime doesn’t (always) pay and thieves, it would seem, have no idea of the value of art.
 
moorewarren.jpg
Moore by Allan Warren.
 
Henry Moore was one of the twentieth century’s greatest sculptors. Born in July 30th, 1898, the seventh of eight children, Moore was encouraged by his father and mother to be self-reliant and to value hard work:

She [his mother] had tremendous physical stamina. She used to work from morning till night until she was over seventy. To be a sculptor, you have to have that sort of energy and that sort of stamina. Sculpture is of all the fine arts the one which you have to have an absolute physical fitness. You can’t—in the early stages at least—be tired or ill if you want to be a sculptor.

 
hmooreyscpark.jpg
 
Moore later described his childhood as “a very good time” filled with “the warmth and friendship of a large family.” This was when he made his first tentative steps towards a career as a sculptor, playing games with friends at a local quarry where they made small wooden carvings and built clay ovens (“little square boxes with chimneys and a hole at the side, and we’d fill these with rotten wood and light it and blow on the fire to warm our hands in winter”) .

Moore was encouraged in his artistic ambitions by his father, on the condition that he had an alternative career to fall back on. In 1915, Moore became a teacher at his elementary school until he was called up to fight in the First World War, which he later described with characteristic understatement:

For me, the war passed in a romantic haze of hoping to be a hero. Sometimes in France there were three or four days of great danger when you thought there wasn’t a chance of getting through, and then all one felt was sadness at having taken so much trouble to no purpose; but on the whole I enjoyed the Army…After I was gassed at Cambrai I was in hospital for three months and it still affects my voice at times, but as they made me a PT instructor afterwards I suppose I must have got pretty fit again.

After the war, Moore attended the Leeds School of Art in 1919, where he considered himself “very lucky not to have gone to art school until I knew better than to believe what the teachers said.” At college he was influenced by such artists as Henri Gaudier-Brzeska, Picasso, Epstein, and Eric Gill, and in his sculpture he intended to get rid of the:

..complete domination of later, decadent Greek art as the only standard of excellence.

Moore won a Royal Exhibition Scholarship in sculpture to attend the Royal College of Art, London, in September 1921. Here he fell under the influence of RCA Principal, Sir William Rothenstein, who encouraged creativity, originality and the belief that his students should not be held back by England’s class structures as “a man was what he made himself.” Rothenstein also introduced his students to established artists, writers and politicians. This was how Moore found himself one evening talking to the Prime Minister Ramsay Macdonald:

Rothenstein gave the sense that there need be no barrier and no limit to what one can embark upon, and that is very important to a young student. Here was I, a student straight from Yorkshire, and it seemed perfectly natural for me to be standing in front of the fire and talking to the Prime Minister.

This new environment offered Moore the opportunity to try out different ideas in his work:

When I first came to London I was aware of Brancusi, Gaudier-Brzeska, Modigliani and the early Epstein, and of all that that direction in sculpture stood for. I couldn’t help—nobody can, after all—being a part of my own time. But then I began to find my own direction, and one thing that helped, I think, was the fact that Mexican sculpture had more excitement for me than negro sculpture. As most of the other sculptors had been moved by negro sculpture this gave me a feeling that I was striking out on my own.

 
hmooreanimalhead.jpg
Animal Head.
 
Much more Moore after the jump, including The Art of Henry Moore documentary

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
Get your luxurious goth on with the skeleton sculptures of Rome
08.07.2014
09:34 am

Topics:
Art
Belief

Tags:


Sant’Agostino, memorial to Cardinal Giuseppe Ranato Imperiali, by Paolo Posi (design) and Pietro Bracci (statuary), 1741
 
There’s a romance to Catholicism that I envied growing up—services attended with Protestant grandparents provided none of the splashy aesthetics Catholicism is so famous for. We certainly weren’t graced with sculptures of super-vigorous skeletons—specifically, skeletons that aren’t letting their lack of skin and organs prevent them from leading active, productive afterlives. Skeletons with joie de décès, if you will.

These Roman skeleton sculptures (documented by Catholic death ritual hobbyist, Elizabeth Harper) exhibit an expressiveness not expected from bones of stone. Harper’s subjects hoist the doors to their own tombs, brandish banners and portraits, and even genuflect before the dead. Congregants are reminded of their own mortality, but the morbid stigma of the skeleton is eclipsed by the dynamic, lush beauty of the sculptures.
 

Gesù e Maria, memorial to Camillo del Corno by Domenico Guidi, 1682
 

San Francesco d’Assisi a Ripa Grande, memorial to Maria Camilla and Giovanni Battista Rospigliosi, skeleton by Michele Garofolino, 1713
 

San Pietro in Montorio: Detail of the relief carved on the tomb of Girolamo Raimondi by Niccolo Sale, chapel designed by Gian Lorenzo Bernini, 1640
 

San Pietro in Vincoli, memorial to Cardinal Cinzio Aldobrandini by Carlo Bizzaccheri, died 1610
 

San Pietro in Vincoli, memorial to Cardinal Mariano Pietro Vecchiarelli, died 1639
 

Sant’Eustachio, memorial to Silvio Cavallieri, 1717
 

Santa Maria del Popolo, tomb of Giovanni Battista Gisleni, made for himself prior to his death in 1672
 

Santa Maria del Popolo, tomb of Princess Maria Eleonora Boncompagni Ludovisi, died 1745
 

Detail of the façade of Santa Maria dell’Orazione e Morte, designed by Ferdinando Fuga, 1738. The inscription on the scroll reads, “Today me, tomorrow you.”
 

Façade of Santa Maria dell’Orazione e Morte, designed by Ferdinando Fuga, 1738
 

Santa Maria sopra Minerva, memorial to Carlo Emanuele Vizzani, by Domenico Guidi, 1661
 
Via Atlas Obscura

Posted by Amber Frost | Leave a comment
Sculptor creates ‘animal skins’ from metal chainmail
07.08.2014
11:25 am

Topics:
Art

Tags:


 
When I first heard of Beijing-based sculptor Shi Jin Song, it was for his 2006 exhibit, Na Zha Baby Boutique. The tongue-in-cheek collection of was a series of deadly-looking steel baby accessories intended for Na Zha, the toddler deity of pranks and tantrums who Song says, “cuts his own flesh and commits suicide to save his father, fights the dragon king, and overturns the universe.” The work was interesting, but a little too precious for my tastes.

Song’s Take Off The Armor’s Mountain has a more surreal feel, and I’d argue makes a far more interesting use of stainless steel. The installation is a series of chainmail “pelts” hung from the rafters of the gallery, as if in a tannery. Despite the metal materials, the “skins” maintain a kind of organic quality with their imperfect geometry and varying sizes (say from squirrel to mountain lion). Before the exhibit opened, the skins were glossed with oil for maximum sheen. Bowls were placed below to collect the drippings and the sculptures appeared to “bleed.”

The effect is gorgeous, otherworldly and perhaps a little tragic, implying both a species of shimmering metallic creatures, and their slaughter and skinning.
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted by Amber Frost | Leave a comment
Page 2 of 3  < 1 2 3 >