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Strange Sculptures from Around the World

Thursday, February 2nd, 2017

The sculptures that find their way into museums are usually elegant and beautiful to look at. Proportionate bodies support attractive faces and an other-worldly charm emanates from these lifeless forms. But, there are artists who aren’t fans of conventional standards of beauty. They use their talent to shock and startle viewers. Here are some really bizarre statues from around the world!

Goslar Nailhead, Germany

This creepy statue is situated in front of the Town Hall in Goslar, Germany. Sculpted by Rainer Kriester in 1981, it is said to act as an allegory of being at the mercy of overwhelming powers. No wonder the nails pierce the head is such a brutal fashion!

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Giant Hand, Chile

Four fingers and a thumb stick out of the desert sands in Atacama. Depending on how you see it, the hand appears to be reaching out to the sky or sinking to the bottom of the earth. This 11 meter tall gigantic hand was built by Chilean sculptor Mario Irarrázabal in the early 1980s.

hand

The Awakening, National Harbour

An over 70 foot tall giant appears to struggle to extricate himself from his sandy prison. As though frozen in a photograph, his partially-freed body sticks out of the earth. His fingers are curled and his mouth hangs open in a silent scream. It seems as though he would come charging at us if he did succeed in fleeing his subterranean prison. The sculpture was created in 1980 by J. Seward Johnson, Jr.

The Awakening sculpture, National Harbor, Maryland.

The Giant Eyeball, Dallas

Chicago-based artist Tony Tasset created this veined eyeball as a symbol of knowledge and power. The sculpture is 30 feet tall and has been made from fiberglass, resin, oil paint, and steel.

michael cagle

Image courtesy: Michael Cagle

The Headington Shark, Oxford

Designed by sculptor John Buckley, the shark is said to “express someone feeling totally impotent and ripping a hole in their roof out of a sense of impotence and anger and desperation… It is saying something about CND, nuclear power, Chernobyl and Nagasaki.” The sculpture was installed on the 41st anniversary of the Nagasaki atom bomb drop.

the guardian

Image courtesy: The Guardian

 

Awe-inspiring Sculptures from around the World

Thursday, August 25th, 2016

Sculptures are intriguing creations because they give us a glimpse into the mind of the sculptor. These tangible works of art embody unique perceptions and challenge us to look at the world differently. A single creation offers us so much to explore; firstly its boundary-pushing symbolism and then, its technical and visual brilliance, which stands as testimony to the artist’s skill. Every sculpture is unique in its message and this is why, it becomes almost impossible to select a “best” creation. However, there are some sculptures that move you more than the rest and for you, these become personal favourites. Here is our list of favourite sculptures from around the world.

The Force of Nature – Lorenzo Quinn

Lorenzo Quinn overturns the image of Mother Nature as the protective life-giver by imagining her as a tempestuous woman hurling the planet and all its contents around in circles. He does this to remind us of the brute force of nature and what the human race stands to encounter if it fails to protect and preserve her. The destruction caused by hurricanes in Thailand, Southern U.S. and other places in the world inspired him to visualize this unsettling masterpiece.

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The Veiled Christ – Giuseppe Sanmartino

This is, perhaps, one of the finest sculptures in the world. The limp figure of a lifeless Christ lies on a futon. The two cushions meant to support his head fail to prevent it from drooping to the side. At the feet of the bed lie the instruments responsible for his suffering and death. The most striking aspect of this sculpture, however, is the flimsy veil draped over the body. So realistic is this veil that one feels like it will leave its resting place if greeted by a gust of wind. The perfectly-detailed creases and folds lend a fluid quality to the veil and its silken translucence can be gauged from the anatomical details it reveals. It take a very inspired hand to create so life-like a sculpture, especially from a single block of marble!

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Image courtesy: Museosansevero

Vicissitude – Jason DeCaires Taylor

This is a very interesting sculpture because, to begin with, it is located underwater. The creation presents a circle of cement-made children, linked to each other by clasped hands. The artist, himself a lover of the ocean and all that lives in it, strives to underline the relationship that exists between man and the environment. Just like his statutes that, over time, effect the underwater ecosystem by aiding the proliferation of coral reefs and marine life, similarly, man, through his growth and advancement impacts society in a transformative way. Also, just as the ocean erodes, corrodes and transforms the statutes over time, an individual is similarly moulded, and transformed by society. Thus, Jason uses his sculpture to comment on growth, chance and transformation, three important factors that effect and impact a person’s life.

primewire

Shoes on the Danube – Gyula Pauer & Can Togay

This incredibly moving memorial is located on the eastern bank of the river Danube. The artwork serves as a reminder of a shameful time in history, when anti-Semitic atrocities were perpetrated on countless civilians. During World War II, the Army Cross militia had shot and killed several Jewish civilians at this very spot. Victims were asked to stand on the bank facing the river. They were then instructed to take off their shoes. A firing squad opened fire from behind so that bodies tumbled into the Danube and got swept away in its current. The 60 bronze shoes designed by the artists are of different sizes and styles and speak of the heartless nature of the killings, where no one was spared, not even little children.

panoramio

 

Image courtesy: Panorimo

People of the River – Chong Fah Cheong

Located on the historical Cavenagh Bridge, Singapore, the sculpture pays tribute to the early residents of the city, who shared a close relationship with the river. They depended on the river for water, for their livelihoods and even simple things, like a refreshing dip on a hot day. Children would often dive into the river and enjoy a cool swim. The artist freezes this moment in time so that we can all appreciate the simplicity and carefreeness of a lost time.

swifty

 

Image courtesy: Swifty

So, which sculptures rank high on your list of favourites?

Miniature Art: Little Things, Big Impressions

Thursday, August 11th, 2016

When people say ‘size matters,’ they usually mean ‘big is better.’ But, some artists have taken it upon themselves to prove to us that this need not always be the case. Welcome to the compact world of miniature art, where tiny creations rule the roost. When we say tiny, we mean minute, minuscule, so small that the creation fits in the palm of your hand or even, in the eye of a needle. Unsure if such petite wonders actually exist? Well, they do and a lot of artists have begun exploring this form of art. Creating miniature art is immensely challenging because you need oodles of patience, skill and of course, a very steady hand to get the details right, not to mention good eyesight. Yet, the end product is so unique and charming that they become instant hits with whoever spies them. Hence, these creations sell at exorbitant prices and honestly, we don’t mind loosening our purse strings if we stood a chance to own something as exquisite as this.

Still not convinced of the marvelousness of these tiny wonders? Here are a few example of miniature art to help you make up your mind.

Miniature Tattoos

We are not talking about minimalist tattoos, but miniature ones, where entire images or scenes are shrunk to fit into a tiny surface area. Eva Krbdk is a Turkish tattoo artist who has mastered the art of creating miniature tattoos. Here are some of her works.

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Image courtesy: Bored Panda Art

Miniature Sculptures

There was a time when people got a kick out of creating larger than life sculptures. Michelangelo’s David and Rodin’s Thinker stand as shining example of this train if thought. However, today, sculptors have begun finding joy in creating masterpieces of just the opposite kind, the smaller than normal kind. Here is an artist who creates tiny replicas of mouth-watering dishes using polymer clay. To view more of her creations, visit her website: http://fairchildartminiatures.com/

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fairchildartminiatures

 

Image courtesy: Fair child art

Miniature Paintings

Painting is a difficult art form, you have to be an astute observer to notice the tiniest details to include them in your painting. Also, you must have the patience to do and re-do every brushstroke as many times as required to make your painting seem life-like. Now, imagine if this painting was about an inch and a half tall. How much more careful, patient and diligent would you need to be to make a detailed, striking painting? Artist Lorraine Loots paints miniature paintings of animals, cosmic bodies, her favourite books and everyday objects. View more of her work on her website: http://lorraineloots.com/

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Image courtesy: Bored Panda

Miniature Books

Reading the fine print is not an easy task, literally and metaphorically. But, that’s exactly what you’ll have to do is you want to own one of these ant-sized works. Those with a craze for shrinking things have set their sights on comprehensive works like the Bible or the tales of the Bard, and have set about compressing them into inch-sized books. Take a look at some of these books here:

finding shakespeare

Image courtesy: Finding Shakespeare

 

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Image courtesy: minibooks7

Well, clearly there’s a need to tweak the old adage ‘Big is Better.’ Maybe it should be something on the lines of Big is Better, but Small is Special!’