Archives for posts with tag: Spider-Man

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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Believe it or not, for being such a simple, uncomplicated product, Lego has some particularly clever and thought-provoking advertisements (here and here). Already three years old, this campaign celebrating 55 years of the Lego brand is basically a series of 55 visual riddles, fittingly featuring little more than the iconic bricks. The great minds at Swiss agency Cavalcade are behind these fantastically clever designs, which, much like Legos themselves, inspire a great deal of imagination. We must admit, we’re still struggling to solve many of these, but it’s so satisfying having solved the ones we did. Answer key to the few ads featured here at the bottom of this post. No peeking, try to figure them out for yourself!

Via Behance

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Answers (in order of images): Yellow Submarine, Alice in Wonderland, Three Little Pigs, Purple Rain, Jaws, Spider-Man, The White Stripes, Hunger Games, Four Weddings and a Funeral, Bob Marley and the Wailers, Goldilocks and the Three Bears, Jackson 5, King Kong, Titanic, Stairway to Heaven, I Walk the Line, The Beatles, New Kids on the Block, Little Red Riding Hood, Clockwork Orange, Men in Black, Rolling Stones

Sure, we’ve seen paper cut art before (here and here and here), and we’re very fond of it, by the way. But we’ve never seen anything quite like this. London-based artist/photographer Rich McCor (otherwise known as @paperboyo) brilliantly pairs his paper cut skills with his keen eye for photography. And the results are clever, playful and unexpected. McCor’s carefully crafted silhouettes are brought to life against sometimes familiar and iconic backdrops. While his work may seem simple in concept, there’s no doubt in our minds that these smart compositions require much more skill than one may think. Needless to say, we are thoroughly impressed and inspired. And his growing base of 175,000 Instagram followers would surely agree.

Via Instagram

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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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It’s said that what’s old becomes new again… trends are cyclical to some degree. Our recent past (the 1980s) featured a rise in technology, and 8-bit graphics found in Atari and Nintendo gaming systems. These now rather primitive looking graphics have influenced fashion, music and entertainment, and in this case, art. New York-based artist Adam Lister has been exploring digitalized representations of famous works of art and pop culture figures through watercolor painting, and even 3D printing. Lister’s subjects have included everything from the Mona Lisa, to Monet, to Iron Man. All novelty aside, Lister’s work is an interesting examination in visual familiarity. Most of his works are extremely recognizable, yet they are simply made up of a series of large squares and rectangles, and most details are not apparent. Our visual cognition is quite powerful, and Lister capitalizes on just that, with great success.

Via adamlistergallery.com

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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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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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