Archives for posts with tag: superheroes

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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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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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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Croatian-born, Melbourne, Australia-Based designer Josip Kelava is wildly talented. He has a very specific aesthetic style that really resonates with us. Kelava’s sense of typography is phenomenal, and paired with his excellent illustration skills, this series of superheroes and villains really shines. The way the illustrations interact with the type adds some great dimension.

Via josipkelava.com

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Superheroes (and villains) are often depicted in all their idealized glory. But French artist/illustrator/designer Grégoire Guillemin’s unique perspective is rather striking. Not just for their (highly effective) pop art style, but for his depictions of everyday life, and sometimes compromising situations. Guillemin’s sense of humor shines through these outstanding illustrations (prints for sale here).

Via greg-guillemin.com

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San Francisco-based designer/illustrator Khoa Ho explores the past and present of some notable superheroes in this terrific series. The minimal, monochromatic style gives them some gravitas appropriate to the subject matter. In his own words, Ho says “I took a dive into the origins of these individuals and who they were before they became superheroes to remind us that despite the trials of our past, what we choose to do moving forward is much more important to us and the world we share.” Style-wise, this series is sort of reminiscent of work by Marko Manev.

Via khoaho-thisisforyou.com

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Yes, we have a certain fondness for superheroes, as well as polygonal art (here and here). Once again, an illustrator/designer has merged the two into some impressive works. This time it’s French artist Simon Delart, otherwise known as s2lart. His series of Justice League heroes is made up entirely of triangles, which is pretty impressive given the results.

Via Behance

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