Archives for posts with tag: Batman

It is said that art is often an honest reflection of societal issues at large. History shows that for centuries art has been a sort of barometer, documenting larger issues through the lens of the artist. This certainly holds true for the work of Italian artist Alessandro Rabatti. His series Facebank serves as commentary for the very uncertain financial state of the world today, with a humorous bent, of course. Rabatti alters iconic faces on currency (related posts here and here and here) from around the world, “disguising” them as fictional superheroes. Despite the seemingly fun nature of these pieces, Rabatti’s intent and message is likely much deeper. For one, by altering the faces of these historical figures to look like familiar comic book characters with a rich (albeit fictional) history of their own, Rabatti remarks on their economic and political status, looking to them as possible “saviors” of the global economic crisis. There is an implied trust in these figures, both real and fictional, so the dialogue Rabatti initiates with this series could really go on and on. Oh, and these works are just plain cool looking. From conception to execution, we’d say Rabatti has creative super powers of his own.

Via alessandrorabatti.com

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Pop art is alive and well. Having materialized in the 1950s as an alternative to the traditions of fine art, the movement draws from popular culture and often relies on irony. As we’ve noted before, our highly connected, celebrity-obsessed culture is a breeding ground for such art, so it’s no surprise that it seems to be a particularly thriving art scene these days. And many artist have emerged as household names through the years, such as Andy Warhol, Keith Haring and Roy Lichtenstein. Though not quite that prominent (yet), Brazilian artist and designer known as Butcher Billy has a tremendous body of work that pushes pop art forward, while also paying tribute to the past. Butcher Billy is “known for his illustrations based on the contemporary pop art movement. His work has a strong vintage comic book and street art influence while also making use of pop cultural references in music, cinema, art, literature, games, history and politics.” This is just a small sample of his extensive, diverse portfolio. If you didn’t know Butcher Billy’s work, now you do. Killin’ it, indeed.

Via Behance and curioos.com

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Given the sudden break in the weather (at least in the northeast), we thought it fitting to feature this mesmerizing series by New Jersey-based photographer Michael Massaia. We’ve all been there before, when the mood goes from delight to distress when you drop your ice cream on the ground, only to watch it slowly melt into oblivion. Massaia taps into the latter sensation with his Transmogrify still life photos. There is something captivating about the swirling remnants of Spider-Man and Dora the Explorer. Massaia not only captures interesting patterns and colors with these pieces, but he also awakens memories of summers past through these abstract, yet vaguely recognizable forms.

Via michaelmassaia.com

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We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again… the proliferation of superhero movies in recent years has spawned all sorts of superhero art (here and here and here), which we are generally fond of. If art is a barometer for cultural consciousness, then fantasy and escapism seem to be at the forefront of people’s thoughts lately. Dubai-based fashion and portrait photographer Martin Beck, however, looks at these extraordinary characters and personas as rather ordinary, beyond their colorful costumes. Beck’s series, We Can Be Heroes, is a collection of superbly gritty portraits of regular people with regular struggles, who might not otherwise be viewed as heroes. Beck, in his own words: “When we think of superheroes, we think of perfect bodies and beautiful faces., achieving unbelievable feats. There are people we idealize as characters that can do no wrong and only seem to exist in our daydreams. This project tries to humanize superheroes. Despite our flaws and failures, each of us, in our own way, can be heroes to our family, our friends, our colleagues and we all have the potential to help others. My Heroes are regular people not restricted by race, religion or beliefs. They live among us, they surround us, they are everywhere. Everyone is a superhero.”

Via martinbeckphotography.com

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It’s not often that we, the general public, are exposed to the ancestry of superheroes and other fictional characters. Stories of family roots have sometimes been depicted on the pages of comic books and graphic novels, and briefly on film. But Italian photography duo Carlo Marvellini and Andrea Marvellini, otherwise known as Foto Marvellini, have documented their heritage through some very impressive “historical” portraits. We are really taken with the authenticity of their work… well done. In their own words: “The historical company “Foto Marvellini – Milano” was founded when photography was born. As their old motto used to say, the Marvellini brothers performed “Portraits for everyone. Even for those who don’t want to be portrayed”. Through the generations Marvellini’s historical grew higher, becoming a great gallery of phantomatic characters. Hidden until today, this precious collection is now spread all over the world, as Andrea and Carlo Marvellini, the last heirs, desired.”

Another “historical” post here.

Via fotomarvellini.com and Facebook

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Milan-based designer/illustrator/author Gerald Bear seems to have a bunch of questions in that tremendously creative brain of his. And he answers many visually in his ongoing series Unconventional Heroes. What if all Doc Brown could afford was a Fiat (instead of a DeLorean)? What if Michael Knight did his life’s work from a talking VW Beetle? What if the Mystery Van was a Ford Thames van? Unconventional is a great adjective to describe these fantastic illustrations by Bear. He taps into not only a love of automobiles/transportation, but also a fascination with pop culture, and of course, the art of illustration. Bear marries these altogether in a pleasantly unexpected series that keeps us wanting more. Keep ‘em coming!

Via Behance

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It seems as if we are currently in the golden age of superheroes, at least if the release of major motion pictures is a gauge. These characters seem so pervasive in popular culture today, not just in the US but worldwide, that inspired works of art are almost inevitable. French photographer Sacha Goldberger really raises the bar with his phenomenal series Super Flemish. Goldberger uses not only superheroes, but also science-fiction and a few other characters from popular fantasies, and poses some intriguing questions: What if Superman was born in the sixteenth century? What if the Hulk was a Duke? How might Van Eyck have portrayed Snow White? And he answers them beautifully in this mashup of modern day superheroes, Flemish painting techniques and Elizabethan-era fashion. These works are really quite exquisite, and certainly thought-provoking. Well done, Mr. Goldberger!

This series is slightly reminiscent of work by British artist Steve Payne. More superhero related posts here and here and here.

Via sachabada.com

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UK-based illustrator/designer Andy Fairhurst has amazing artistic abilities, specifically in the realm of what he refers to as “digital painting”, his tools of the trade being his iMac, digital pen and tablet. He also has a strong affinity for science-fiction and fantasy. Together these talents and interests have given birth to quite a body of work in a style all Fairhurst’s own. There’s a common stylistic thread throughout his works that we really love, and his sense of composition is particularly striking. Reimagining movie posters is a long tradition (as exhibited here and here and here), and Fairhurst’s work is among some of the best we’ve seen.

Via andyfairhurstart.com

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It is often said that artists and writers reflect on their own lives and experiences through their work. If that’s the case here, French illustrator/designer Belhoula Amir has felt lots of isolation in his life. Or he’s just very adept at telling stories that put our place in the world in a unique perspective through his beautiful pictures. Either way, these series of works, under the umbrella title Alone, is striking. Amir’s use of color and space speak volumes, in terms of his storytelling. He has even introduced well known superheroes to his work by capitalizing on existing narrative to reinforce his theme. And it works brilliantly. Well done. Prints available here.

Via a-bel.com

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Superheroes are often revered not only for their remarkable abilities, but also their superior body types and physiques. Chicago-based artist/illustrator Alex Solis turns that perception on its head in this fantastically funny series (which has actually expanded beyond superheroes to feature #famouschunkies). We love how Solis captures the essence of each character, so they are instantly recognizable, but super-sizes their bodies in a strangely endearing way. Some might say that this vision is a more cerebral endeavor… social commentary on American culture and our obesity epidemic. But somehow, we think Solis is using his own super talents to invoke a little laughter into our day. Mission accomplished! We can’t wait to see more.

Via Instagram

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