I have always been a collector of little things. My first collection was a shoe box full of pine cones. Later I found it more exiting to collect objects that didn’t all look the same, like stamps for instance. My grandfather was a diligent and proud philatelist and used to give me stamps for Christmas. As I child I spent hours organizing and admiring these little artpieces, which is a labour I appreciate now, many years later. As well as being amazing graphic design pieces, these stamps are also icons of a bygone era. A digital print of an Adobe Illustrator file will never be quite the same as a miniature engraving, as many of the old stamps are. Here are some of the favourite pieces from my collection; the rest of the set can be found here: Thirty Stamps
I scanned these images from a book found in Keith Fawkes Books in Hampstead, London. It’s the messiest and most chaotic bookshop I’ve ever been into, but those are the kind of places where strange treasures like “Visions of the Future” can be found. The subtitle reads: “An exciting and novel selction of science fiction art of today”. The book was a British publication, featuring at the time young British artists. Judging from a quick round on google, most of them seem to be active still. So there is plenty of inspiration out there! Here are five of my favourite artworks from the book, which stood out among all the weird and funky sci-fi kitsch.
Russian pensioner Olga Kostina has a very cool art project going on. She is in the process of covering her houses on the Siberian taiga with plastic bottle caps, nailing them to the wooden walls one by one. The themes range from cute pixel animals to traditional Russian macrame motifs, which is a textile knotting technique. The images are the courtesy of REUTERS / Ilya Naymushin. Via Odditycentral.
This short movie by Dutch animators Studio Smack shows the enormous amount of branded images we encounter just by spending five minutes in a big city. Normally however, we are so visually overstimulated that we subconsciously filter out most of it. Hundertwasser, one of my favourite artists, sums it up quite well in this famous quote: “Visual pollution is more poisonous than any other pollution because it kills the soul”.
The Japanese Tradition of turning manhole covers into funky artpieces must be the world’s longest lasting and most extensive street art project. The colorful customization of the covers started in the nineteen eighties, when Japanese authorities issued a standard measure and shape for manhole covers. This new measure ignited strong resistance among Japanese local communities, which in turn led to a compromise giving every municipality full freedom over the artwork depicted on the manhole covers. Below are a selection of images from the Japanese manhole covers group pool on Flickr. Click the images below to go to the respective owners’ Flickr page.