Sofia Kesidou created a series of works called Paper Clips which explores a banal object as a unique subject. Hundreds of pencil drawings show the beauty and the movement in a simple strip of metal.
In drawing the paper clip, restricting aspects such as scale are lost as the object is presented in a more abstract form. The point was to show and see the beauty of shapes and details in ordinary objects.
I think learning focus on simple beauty is essential and I found this simple project very powerful and stunning.
Russia has a long history of creating and using art for social progress. My personal favorite are the Peredvizhniki (the wanderers) who broke away from the restrictive and formal artistic framework of the late 1800’s to portray a more humanistic, realistic and natural expression of life.
But with regards to Design, no artistic movement has had more influence than Russian constructivism, both functionally and aesthetically; from Bauhaus to De Stijl.
Functionally because art became considered a practice for social purposes, that art should attribute a social and moral responsibility and the belief that artists could be an agents for change by creating socially engaging works.
Aesthetically because Constructivism art was intentionally visually striking to captivate attention.
The same philosophy which would later also be applied to all Russian Design, from Architecture to Fashion and is still relevant today.
Admittedly Constructivism art was sometimes nothing more than propaganda rhetoric, however the Russian government soon this stopped this emancipating and ambitious abstract art movement, stating that it was not representational enough.
Mexico is home to many sophisticated crafts. A few of which have a very bold graphic style that would not be out of place in today’s high design culture. Unfortunately the majority of skilled Mexican craftspeople don’t have the tools to work in the modern design industry and remain unknown, undervalued and underpaid.
Huichol artisans from the Sierra Madre in Central Mexico are a good example of extremely talented individuals that get virtually no international exposure. A few years ago I started a workshop introducing Adobe Illustrator to a handful of Huichol teenagers, so that they might learn to apply their good understanding of form and colour to commercial design.
Some of the most fascinating Mexican crafts are made by Huichols, they include embroidery, bead sculptures which you can see clicking HERE
Cymatics is the science, or art of turning sound into form, “a looking glass into a hidden world”.
Cymatics is mostly done through a Chladni Plate, which is a speaker like device through which various sound frequencies are passed. With every change in pitch a different and often detailed pattern is naturally formed in the medium which happens to be placed on its surface. Be it sand, a single liquid like water, oil, or a mix of various density liquids, every medium creates unique patterns to sound, like the images below (also known as Chladni Patterns after German physicist and Musician Ernst Chladni).
Just over a year ago I wrote several posts about the new sculptural, aesthetic Triangulation trend in art and design also known as Low-Res. This year you can begin seeing it in high end statement footwear like the new Nike Lebron XI.
Ahead of the curve, digital artist Zach Dougherty has taken the triangulation aesthetic a step further and added motion, offering new interesting insights into sculpture and an exploration of “classic” form.
Nature based Algorithmic Designers Jessica Rosenkrantz & Jesse Louis-Rosenberg of Nervous System spoke on Growing Objects at the Carnegie Mellon University School of Design Lecture Series on November 1, 2011.
Imagine printing a custom graphic on a footwear upper with a laser, then being able to erase the graphic to print a new one by simply placing the footwear in a freezer. Bi-Stable Thermochromic Inks allow just that.
Thermochromic (temperature sensitive) dye’s have existed for some time. Some will remember the Global brand that produced Global Hypercolor fashion garments back in the early 1990’s.
More recently furniture design by Jay Watson titled “Linger a Little Longer” featured Thermochromic paint.
However Bi-Stable Thermochromic Ink is a recent innovation which provides 2 stable states of ink. Like a switch, Bi-Stable ink can be activated to be coloured or non-coloured, and won’t fade like ordinary Thermochromic Ink. Only high heat will switch the colour off and only intense cold will switch it on.
To achieve a high print resolution a focused heat source like laser is used, this is called a Shader Printer.
Imagine a Converse Chuck Taylor with a canvas graphic which can be changed over and over again for the fraction of the price of a new shoe. A redesign which creates no waste, pollution and shipping costs. $10-$20 for laser artwork purchased from Converse or online and printed at a retail outlet.
Check out the videos below for further information.