Michael Light is an aerial photographer currently based in San Francisco. He focuses on the relationship between contemporary American culture and the environment. Michael uses large format cameras to take breathtaking photos of landscapes as he flies over them. The bird’s-eye-view perspective of his shots highlight how urban expansion is forever changing the landscape. Once arid deserts are being converted into neatly landscaped suburbia. Michael’s work has been exhibited both on the national as well as the international level. His work is also displayed in The New York Public Library, the Victoria & Albert Museum in London, The Getty Research Library,and the the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.
DALeast is a 29-year-old Chinese artist who currently lives and works in Capetown, South Africa. He has recently been unleashing his talent on unsuspecting walls all over Capetown. His street paintings are huge in scale and can often be hundreds of feet across. DALeast’s signature style is to make his paintings look like thousands of metal shavings. He studied Sculpture in the Fine Art Institute in his hometown of Wuhan in China but dropped out a year before graduation. He spends at least half the year just traveling and has left his mark in New York, London, Miami, and his native China.
Kai Fagerström is a Finnish photographer who managed to document woodland creatures taking over abandoned houses. He calls the series “The House in the Woods“. It’s set in a several cottages near his summer house where nature is slowly taking over. He said: “Deserted buildings are so full of contradictions, I am fascinated by the way nature reclaims spaces that were, essentially, only ever on loan to humans.” It takes quite a while for all the elements of the perfect shot to come together, which is fine with Kai, because to him, the journey is more important than the destination.
This house was designed for a special exhibition in Germany and is open to the public for visiting. It is the brainchild of Klaudiusz Golos and Sebastian Mikiciuk who aptly named it “The world stands on its head”. The Cape Cod-style, 120-meter-square house is built with a steel frame to withstand its awkward architecture. Everything inside it is upside-down. Only the stairs were spared to enable people to get to the second floor. It still stands in Trassenheide, a German town on the Baltic Sea island of Usedom.
Escif is a Spanish street artist whose work has also been popping up in Italy, France, and Canada. Unlike most street artists who uses loud, often clashing colors, Escif tends to use simple lines and subdued colors. It is the humorous and often direct commentary on sensitive social issues such as politics, capitalism, and the economy that makes Escif’s work stand out. For Escif, the message is far more important than the style. Escif is quoted saying: “I’m not looking for decorative paintings, I try to wake up viewers minds.”
Friedensreich Hundertwasser is an Austrian sculptor, painter and architect. He is best known for his colorful, quirky, and oddly shaped buildings. He first became famous for his paintings, but it wasn’t until the 1950s that his building designs brought him worldwide acclaim. His buildings all sport his trademark labyrinthine spirals which can also be found in the postage stamps and flags he designed. One of Friedensreich’s most famous work is the Hundertwasserhaus apartment block in Vienna. The building has a roof covered with earth and grass, undulating floors, and large trees growing from inside the rooms, with limbs extending from windows. He refused to be paid for it, insisting that he did it in order to “prevent something ugly from going up in its place”. Friedensreichhas always been against monotonous architecture, he even called for a boycott of architecture with straight lines and demanded the right to create individual structures. He died in 2000 at the age of 72.
Mu Boyan was born in the Shangdong province of China. In 1997, he graduated from the Central Academy of Fine Arts with a degree in Fine Arts. He obtained her Master’s degree in 1995 from the same university. His work has extensively been exhibited throughout the world. One of his more recent work tackles the touchy subject of obesity by featuring an adorable, but undeniably fat Sumo wrestler. Fat is fat, but there are two ways of looking at it. While an excess of adipose tissue may be unattractive to Westerners, in the East, it’s a sign of decadent wealth. After all, only people who can afford to be fat are those who can afford to eat more food than they absolutely have to.
What looks like an unwashed pair of underwear is actually a wood carving by Mary Leu. Her laundry list of carvings also include: a filthy pair of socks, a lacy bra, a brown hand towel, a pair of gardening gloves, and a remarkably detailed handbag complete with wooden zippers. Leu’s attention to the finest details in her life-sized carvings sets her work head and shoulders above the competition. It takes her anywhere between tree months to a year to complete a single piece. Leu also owns and operates her very own Fine Carving Gallery.
David Edwards describes himself as a full-time miniaturist. He has been pursuing his craft since 1983 and now has an impressive collection of teeny, tiny, everyday household objects. Among them are: hairbrushes have real bristles in tufts, combs with teeth accurately scaled, a Victorian breadboard with the word “BREAD” carved in relief, a “cut-throat” razor, and what is perhaps the world’s smallest violin with real catgut strings and a soundpost inside. What makes it even more remarkable is that there are no cast or moulded parts in any of David’s pieces, all are “scratch-built” using the finest materials available. He’s now in his med-seventies, and while he has slowed down production, he has no plans of putting aside his craft.
David Stooke calls himself the NewAgeTraveller on deviantART. Relocation had him busy for a while, when he came back, it was a pleasant surprise for him to find his 2500+ visits to his account. He had been selected as one of the daily deviations, which increased the traffic to his account. The quality of his paintings helped as well. They could be described as a cross between photorealistic and classic.