In a sea of glossy billboards and digital signage, a hand-painted mural can stop you in your tracks. Many of the most strikingly photorealistic ones are the work of Colossal Media, which has whipped out the paintbrushes and scaffolding for companies ranging from Disney and Pepsi to Marc Jacobs and Comme des Garçons. The Motion Picture Association of America’s The Credits has captured some of the company’s painters at work, as they use hand-painted murals to prepare the world for the second coming of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. We think both Leonardo and his namesake would approve.
Opposing bunches of talented young people shuttle purposefully from one side of a rectangular surface to another. Sound familiar? No, it’s not the World Cup—sorry, the 2014 FIFA World Cup™—but Marina Abramovic‘s restaging of her 1978 performance Work Relation. And hold on to your Sambas, because the film (below), which was shot in Brooklyn by Dustin Lynn and debuted today on Nick Knight‘s Showstudio, was made in collaboration with Adidas. And so the eleven performers, wearing not only white lab coats bearing the monogram of the Marina Abramovic Institute but also Adidas kicks as they go about their competitive task, evoke a team of clinically precise athletes, with Abramovic in the role of wise—and presumably very well-compensated—referee.
Spend even a few action-packed moments with the invigorating YouTube channel of Casey Neistat and you’ll soon be yearning for an adventuresome escape from the screen: isn’t it about time you grabbed your passport and hopped on a plane, and then a skateboard, bicycle, motorcycle, and surfboard—or at least climbed behind the wheel of a Jeep after a monster downpour? The intrepid filmmaker has followed up his J. Crew-sponsored guide to stylish travel with a characteristically DIY approach to luggage for himself and his bright pink penny skateboard.
Paola Antonelli‘s twenty-year career at the Museum of Modern Art has been a journey through many facets of design, “from cute chairs and fast cars to video games and now also the idea of violence,” she told the audience at the recent DLD (Digital-Life-Design) conference in New York. Watch her talk from that confab below to gain insight into the darker side of design as explored—and hacked, penetrated, manipulated, penetrated, and exploded—through Design and Violence, an online curatorial experiment that explores the manifestations of violence in contemporary society.
When did beauty become a dirty—or at least obsolete—word for artists and designers? Stefan Sagmeister weighed on the issue in his stimulating—ok, beautiful—presentation at last week’s DLD (Digital-Life-Design) conference in New York City. Watch the video below for an aesthetic journey that goes from the industrial shed that is Memphis’s Cook Covention Center (“Elvis had truly left the building.”) to a consideration of the impact of Sagmeister’s fellow Austrian Adolf Loos to faux Mondrians (can you tell the real from the fake?) to a mesmerizing coda complete with jiggly gelatin typography.
The fifth annual School of Visual Arts MFA Design Criticism (a.k.a D-Crit) conference, “Lingua Franca,” drew an impressive, international crowd to the SVA Theatre, where members of the Class of 2014 presented their thesis research alongside guest speakers such as writer and curator (at Hong Kong’s new M+ museum) Aric Chen, material anthropologist Emily Stokes-Rees, and creator of the MIT Press Mediawork project Peter Lunenfeld. Those that missed—or want to relive—last Friday’s proceedings are in luck: videos of the sessions are now available online. We suggest beginning with novelist and critic Nicholson Baker‘s keynote address, “Wrapping Sentences Around Things”:
Style.com and the rest of the Condé Nast crew elected not to repeat last year’s rather awkward livestreaming of the arrivals at the Metropolitan Museum of Art Costume Institute gala, but they did keep a camera trained on the indefatigable André Leon Talley on Monday evening as he held court at the top of the carpeted granite stairs shouting terse greetings (“Instagram! Patricia!”) and complimenting ensembles. The result is a series of very, very short videos such as this one, in which Talley and Tom Ford discuss the work of designer Charles James, the subject of this year’s spring Costume Institute exhibition; the textile of Ford’s own sumptous white waistcoat (spoiler alert: silk!); and the sartorial preferences of Ford’s toddler son.
Biographer and art critic Deborah Solomon stopped by The Colbert Report this week to discuss her latest book, American Mirror: The Life and Art of Norman Rockwell (Farrar, Straus, and Giroux), which reveals that the American-as-apple-pie artist wrestled with severe depression and was consumed by a sense of inadequacy. The real scandal, for Colbert, is that Rockwell was not the political conservative that he has been made out to be. Among Solomon’s revelations is that he [gasp!] voted for Kennedy.
In the deepest reaches of an IKEA superstore, no one can hear you scream. OK, so they can hear you, but they cannot be bothered to listen, because who can heed the anguished cries of others when attempting to decide between the Söderhamn (in Replösa? in Isefall?) and the Härnösand, or maybe the Tidafors, but what about the Strandmon (does that still come in Skiftebo)? Grab your morning course of meatballs, pull up an Esbjörn, and treat yourself to Daniel Hubbard‘s dramatic reenactment of the lost-in-IKEA-by-way-of-Alfonso-Cuaron‘s-Gravity experience. We think it’s out of this world.
It’s experimental animation! It’s pottery! Stop, you’re both right! Watch the creations of Devon, England-based Ramp Ceramics (that stands for “Roop & Al make Pots”) come alive in this film by Jim Le Fevre, Mike Paterson, and the aforementioned Rupert (“Roop”) and Alice (“Al”) Johnstone. The production was commissioned by the UK’s Crafts Council.