Fact: The video above is for a Canon printer called the Pixma. Nonetheless it’s an absolutely beautiful commercial that uses simple and abstract visuals to try and create a colorful, vibrant identity. The creators are Dentsu London, who had the video where they used the iPad as a writing tool, so clearly they’re doing some amazing work right now. What they did was stretch a thin membrane over a speaker, put some paint over the top and then played a sound through the speaker, causing the pain to explode all over the place. In order to capture this they used a macro lens and a spinning rig that shoots at 5000 frames a second. Pretty crazy, but with an incredible result.
When it comes to high fashion there are few people as cutting edge, or weird, as Gareth Pugh. The man basically makes clothes for when we’re living in Buckminster Fuller inspired pods on the surface of Mars, and his Spring/Summer 2011 collection is no exception. The video above was created to give a look at his new collection, which visually lands between the imagination of Chris Cunningham and Mark Romanek’s video for Michael and Janet Jackson’s Scream. It’s flashy, it’s edgy and it’s intense, but that’s sort of the fun of it. My favorite part is at the 9 minute mark, so if you can’t make it that far be sure to fast forward and see what I’m talking about.
Imagine, if you will, that you are a cultured and intellectual lady or gentleman attending one of the first screenings of Luis Buñuel’s The Golden Age that took place at the end of 1930 at Studio 28. You, the perhaps unsuspecting viewer, would be confronted with scenes of sadistic cruelty towards animals, bizarre erotic sequences (the most famous of which involves the female lead performing fellatio on the toes of a garden sculpture), stream of consciousness surrealist imagery, anti-bourgeois sentiment and an ending that pays homage to the Marquis de Sade’s horrifying The 120 Days of Sodom. Would you be shocked and appalled or sensuously liberated from the shackles of middle class conformity? Although The Golden Age is reasonably tame by today’s standards, in the 1930s it was as confronting to some viewers as recent audiences found Gaspard Noé’s Irréversible (2002).
Sometimes watching a movie is a bit like being raped.
– Luis Buñuel
Co-written by Buñuel and Salvador Dali, The Golden Age can arguably be considered a moving manifesto for the ideals of the surrealist movement. At the first screenings of the film, a written manifesto did, in fact, accompany the programme, espousing the importance of love, liberation and warning against censorship and the “bankruptcy” of emotion. The film itself is composed of a serious of dream-like vignettes that focus on the passionate and unconsummated love between a man (Gaston Modot) and a woman (Lys Lys).
The loose narrative is filled with bizarre hallucinatory sequences that align lust with the flushing of an excrement-filled toilet, that display sexual frustration through the act of throwing a burning tree out of a window and that consistently undercut moments of tenderness with unexpected violence. For a contemporary audience that is accustomed to certain ideas of visual eroticism, Buñuel opens up a space for uninhibited madness. Notably, the structure of the film, while reasonably linear, flows from disparate events and subjectivities and effectively utilises montage to create a dream vision. To this end, the imagery is replete with sexual symbolism and incongruity, capturing the vocabulary of Surrealist reverie and l’amour fou (mad love). However, this is clearly a perspective on the dreams of two very strange and, dare I say, disturbed men that has proved too much for some censorship boards.
Of course, just about everyone has either seen or heard of the fabulously grotesque eyeball scene in Un Chien Andalou (1929), but I actually prefer the eccentric charm of The Golden Age. For all its lofty ambitions to undermine convention and the Church, I love this film because it so ridiculous and perverse. I can almost see Buñuel and Dali cackling away as they were writing the outlandish plot, mischievously rubbing their hands together while concocting scenes involving murder, scorpions and odd fetishes.
The folks over at Imaginary Forces have put together this great retrospective video of Paul Rand’s work because of his induction into The One Club Hall of Fame which showcases some of his best work from across the years. It also uses a bit of an interview he did a while bac,k and for me, listening to him speak is so damn inspiring. I promise you, this will be the most inspiring 4 minutes of your day.
I’m not entirely familiar with the work of Rachel Whiteread but after watching this video created by the Tate (yes, the museum) I’m becoming quite a fan. Born in 1963 she was the first woman to win the Turner prize and is known for her sculptures, installations and drawings. Her most famous piece (and my favorite part of the video above) is a piece called House, which was a concrete cast of a Victorian house and the reason for winning her the Turner prize. Basically she filled an entire house with concrete and then removed the outer shell of the house, leaving a ghostly hollow remaining on the grounds.
I guess she recently had a show at the Hammer Museum here in Los Angeles, I’m bummed that I didn’t get to see it. If any of this sounds interesting you should definitely watch the video.
I’m not exactly sure what goes on durring a flash conference, but the title sequence for this year’s Flash on the Beach (FOTB) is attractive enough to stand on its own. The sequence is the work of Nando Costa, a Brazillian-born Graphic Artist living and working in Portland. But what do magnets have to do with a flash conference? Costa explains: “The choice of materials was driven by the desire to graphically represent the concepts of attraction and repulsion. The idea that graphic artists of all sorts attend events such as FOTB because they are inspired and therefore attracted to each other’s work, while at the same time often competing in the same fields as peers and therefore representing repulsion.”
I know it’s been a while since I’ve posted a desktop wallpaper and I’m honestly sorry about that. To be honest the idea has become a bit stale to me, though I know a lot of you really love seeing something new every week. Well I’m happy to say that in the coming weeks I’ve got a new approach to the wallpapers which I personally find interesting and I hope you’ll like. Until then, I’ve got a few wallpapers that I’ll start giving away in the interim to tide you over, sound good?
This week’s wallpaper is from a guy named Mr. Kiji, whom you might remember from this post several months back. We actually started talking because of Twitter and I asked him if he’d be down to make a wallpaper and he graciously obliged. Halloween is a month and a day away so I thought this would be perfect for those of you looking to get a little spooky early.
I’m pretty sure black foxes hang out in graveyards a lot just like this guy above. Does anyone else think this wallpaper kinda’ looks like camo as well? Or is just me?
P.S. I’ll be discontinuing the PSP size from now on and replacing it with the mega-sized 2650 x1440, something a lot of you have been asking for. In addition, the iPhone wallpaper is now retina display compatible for your iPhone 4, but still works fine on all other models as well.
One of my very talented friends Matt Allard, along with co-collaborator and illustrator Ian Dingman, has released a new book called To Slow Down The Time: Stories. The book takes a really interesting, somewhat backwards approach. Instead of Matt writing the stories and Ian creating illustrations, Matt was actually inspired by Ian’s art and created stories around his pieces. It makes for a great and interesting read, seeing how Matt interprets Ian’s images and crafts these great, short stories. Ian’s drawings are also quite charming and are filled with detail and character, as evidenced above.
It’s also worth mentioning that Matt and Ian published the book themselves which is an endeavor all in it’s own. I’ve already poured over my copy and it’s great to see them follow through with this passion project.
Colin Greenwood, bassist of Radiohead, recently wrote a short piece for Index on Censorship, a British organization centered around the freedom of expression. In it he writes about his experience with releasing Radiohead’s last album, which you’ll remember as the first band ever to introduce the pay what you want scheme for their music. It certainly made a lot of headlines, and in their own words, was quite empowering:
Three years later, we have just finished another group of songs, and have begun to wonder about how to release them in a digital landscape that has changed again. It seems to have become harder to own music in the traditional way, on a physical object like a CD, and instead music appears the poor cousin of software, streamed or locked into a portable device like a phone or iPod. I buy hardly any CDs now and get my music from many different sources: Spotify, iTunes, blog playlists, podcasts, online streaming – reviewing this makes me realise that my appetite for music now is just as strong as when I was 13, and how dependent I am upon digital delivery. At the same time, I find a lot of the technology very frustrating and counter-intuitive. I spend a lot of time using music production software, but iTunes feels clunky. I wish it was as simple and elegant as Apple’s hardware. I understand that we have become our own broadcasters and distributors, but I miss the editorialisation of music, the curatorial influences of people like John Peel or a good record label. I liked being on a record label that had us on it, along with Blur, the Beastie Boys and the Beatles.
All that being said, they’re still unsure how the next album will be released:
We have yet to decide how to release our next record, but I hope these partial impressions will help give some idea of the conversations we’ve been having. Traditional marketplaces and media are feeling stale – supermarkets account for around 70 per cent of CDs sold in the UK, the charts are dominated by TV talent-show acts – and we are trying to find ways to put out our music that feel as good as the music itself. The ability to have a say in its release, through the new technologies, is the most empowering thing of all.
This evening as I was biking home from work at Myspace it started to lightly rain, which was actually nice because it’s been so hot lately. As I stopped at my apartment I noticed there was a giant rainbow above, as you can see in the photo at top. From my kitchen window I can see the sun setting, so I snapped a photo of that as well. Random beauty I thought I’d share.