06 February 2014

wall not found
I came across this street art recently, and in today's technological world I thought it a very clever piece. It is a proposed wall piece from UK-based John Scarratt that also doubles as a clever advertisement. That 404 error page has made us all cringe from time to time. This clever idea brought about from something so annoying put a little smile on my face.

24th January 2014

I've always love the sound that is produced from the piano. Most songs that I have an instant rapport with will no doubt have piano in them somewhere. This love of the piano stems across to my love of art that incorporates piano as well. Here is an interesting piece. It is a piano created with buttons.

Upright piano 2011

Artist, Augusto Esquivel used 30,000 buttons to create it! It took him two and a half months to finish and said he measured a real upright piano to translate it into his technique. Augusto states, "For this particular piece, the most challenging part was to create the keyboard. To create it, I sculpted the same amount of white and black keys, using the same length, width and space in between, to duplicate the real object."

Upright piano 2011

He continues, "I am often obsessed with comparisons of reality and potential and the balance between them, in art: the idea of chaos in perfect order: an object seemingly solid to the eye can also be fragile and inconsistent to the touch; a common object used to create a piece of art becomes transformed into something complicated and intriguing".

04 November, 2011

sand sculpture
In 2001 when I heard of a Sand Exhibition to be held at Palm Beach, Sydney I found myself rather intrigued. This was an event I was sure to pay a visit. Once again, my mind would be opened up and exposed to yet another, somewhat different, medium in which art would be displayed.

My eldest daughter was only 3yrs old at the time, and I was sure she would love to see these elaborate sandcastles up close. As a kid she very much enjoyed making sandcastles on the beach.

I remember walking away thinking incredible! It was just incredible how these artists carved these magnificent 3D sculptures from sand. The sculptures would be constructed using river sand, which is a finer material when compared to beach sand and therefore more suited to being sculpted. The sand used was shipped specially for the event. 2,500 tonnes of sand was used by 18 sculptures.

It is the sculpting phase, which initially draws the most attention from the public. Typically entrants begin construction before the opening of an event, whilst during the event sculptor's work as "performing artists", creating each sand sculpture through the event and completing it prior to the close of the event. This way patrons can view the process, return to view the progress, and eventually view the finished sculpture itself.

Watching these sculptures come to life before my very eyes was amazing. This particular type of exhibition will be one that I will always remember. I have not heard of any other sand sculpture events since that one, so feel very priviledged to have experienced it.

28th October, 2011

My early discovery, of melting images, through Dali was re-lit during the tenth annual exhibition of Sculpture by the Sea, 2006. This incredible melted van stood out above all else. I was completely, and still am, in total awe of this incredible creation.

hot with a chance of a late storm
Artists Johnathon Kneebone and James Dives from Advertising Agency 'The Glue Society' created the remarkable van. The sculpture of the melted Mr. Whippy ice cream van was placed on Tamarama Beach, ready for it's showing.

The concept aim of this showpiece was a statement on the perils of Global Warming. The foam and urethane construction a price tag of $22,000. I must admit, if I had the money I would be more than tempted to purchase it .. I just love it!! The unique and fitting concept is one that I love to share with my children.

It won the Allens Arthur Robinson People's Choice and the NAB Kids' Choice Awards.

The annual event, Sculpture by the Sea began in 1996. In 1995, founder David Handley was living in Prague when he visited an outdoor sculpture park in Klatovy, Northern Bohemia. Handley was so inspired; he decided to recreate a similar event in Australia.  Each year works are spread across the cliff from Bronte Beach to Bondi Beach via Tamarama Beach. Over 100 sculptures are exhibited and an estimated 450,000 visitors are attracted to view them.  Hot with a chance of a late storm has kept me coming back year, after year, after year. I find the yearly wait as exciting as Christmas. I love the walk, and although over the years I have grown my family I have always made the trek, and have always found that one piece to stand out above the rest.

hot with the chance of a late storm

21 October, 2011

Salvador Dalí was one of the first artists I discovered. It was 1990. We learnt about him in art at school. Dalí was a surrealist artist. He painted real objects, made them look real, but then he made a fantasy of the painting from his dreamland. Surrealism is an art movement that is a cultural movement that began in the early 1920's. Surrealism works feature the element of surprise, unexpected juxtaposition, which is placing objects together, that normally would not be together. His use of melted clocked ignited an interest in me that I had not felt with any other painting. I used his painting The Temptation of Saint Anthony, as the inspiration for my end of year major art piece in year eight.

Les Montres Molles, 1968
Salvador Dalí died at the age of 85 (May 11, 1904 – January 23, 1989). The above painting is my favourite of all his paintings. I was drawn to the unusual melting of the time, as I described it.

In 1916, Dalí discovered modern painting on a summer vacation trip to Cadaqués with the family of Ramon Pichot, a local artist who made regular trips to Paris. The next year, Dalí's father organized an exhibition of his charcoal drawings in their family home. He had his first public exhibition at the Municipal Theater in Figueres in 1919.

His paintings are filled with images of violence, death and bizarre sexual practices. His parents believed he was the reincarnation of an earlier child, also called Salvador, who died a year earlier.

Dalí’s 1983 painting, The Swallow's Tail, which was his last work, was inspired by Rene Thom's catastrophe theory on abrupt behavioural changes. Dalí was one of the most controversial artists of the 20th century. Dalí started his career as a Cubist. He subsequently became involved with the Surrealist movement although they criticized him for his extravagant lifestyle and his love of money. He never passed college. He was expelled because he thought he was better than his professors. His strange personality caused much controversy and he was often called eccentric. He was once quoted to say: "I am not strange, I am just not normal".

Dalí's autobiography described the traumatic effects this belief had on his life, and whilst he had loving parents, this undoubtedly caused Dali long-term psychological problems.

14th October, 2011

This artistic piece of work was dedicated to the artist's (Vicki Shield's) mum - "who loved to play the piano". Vicki lived in Bondi for over 45 years, and walked the Bondi to Bronte path regularly, which inspired this exhibit.

piano by the sea
Wow .. it's amazing what can be created using only chalk and varnish, and of course an imagination.  The above stairs were the entry statement to the Sculpture by the Sea, 2010's walk, providing a moment of fantasy as you step onto the life sized piano. People got to enjoy their moment on the piano steps as they left the exhibition.

The piano, bold in it's pitch and exquisite in harmony it is one of the most popular instruments in the world (Wikipedia, 2011). I have always loved to hear the piano played, and one day still hold onto the hope of learning how to play myself. The word piano is a shortened form of pianoforte, the Italian word for the instrument (which in turn derives from the previous terms "gravicembalo col piano e forte" and fortepiano). The musical terms "piano" and "forte" mean "quiet" and "loud," and in this context refers to the variations in volume of sound the instrument produces in response to a pianist's touch on the keys: the greater a key press's velocity, the greater the force of the hammer hitting the string(s), and the louder the note produced (Wikipedia, 2011).

Below, we can see how a piano was incorporated into everyday life, to see if people would take the stairs instead of the escalator if it was fun to do.

piano stairs

"Take the stairs instead of the escalator or elevator and feel better" is something we often hear or read in the Sunday papers. Few people actually follow that advice. The FunFactory.com, a site "dedicated to the thought that something as simple as fun is the easiest way to change people’s behaviour for the better", went out to see if they could, in fact, do just that. See the results here

7th October, 2011

Being a coffee lover myself, I found this next piece of artwork truly extraordinary. It was created using 3,604 cups of coffee!

This 'Mocha' Lisa was created during The Rocks Aroma Festival, in Sydney, Australia and attracted the curious eyes of 130,000 people in just one day. This incredible coffee masterpiece took 8 people three hours to complete as well as the 3,604 cups of coffee and 564 pints of milk. Adding various amount of milk to the cups of coffee created the incredible sepia effect. Four shades were mixed and used to create the 20ft by 13ft replica of Leonardo da Vinci's La Gioconda. When finished, it looked spectacular!

In an interview with The Telegraph four of the eight artists express: "We wanted to create an element of surprise and a sense of fun in the way we engaged with the public”.

"Once we had the idea of creating an image out of coffee cups we searched for something iconic to reproduce - and opted for the most iconic painting in history”.

"The Mona Lisa has been reproduced so many times in so many different mediums but, as far as we know, never out of coffee”.

"The result was fantastic”.

"After much planning it was great to see if coming together so well and the 130,000 people who attended the event certainly enjoyed it."

Incredible planning would have taken place to analyze the different shades required and as to their exact placement in order to achieve this incredible masterpiece. I definitely take my hat off to all involved.

Proving there is no limitation to art American artist and caffeine-lover Karen Eland has certainly taken the cake, or should I say coffee, with this modernized copy of the Mona Lisa. Take a look at Eland's website, “where everything you see has been created using only coffee and water”.

Mocha Lisa
watch the stop-motion video here