Brain Pickings

Posts Tagged ‘art’

09 FEBRUARY, 2011

Panorama: A Woodcut Fold-Out Travelogue Promoting Biodiversity

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We have a soft spot for creative, playful takes on the book medium. So we’re head-over-heels with Panorama — an astounding fold-out children’s travelogue by author Fani Marceau and illustrator Joelle Joviet, originally published in France in 2007.

A journey from Bangladesh to Scotland to Antarctica unfolds, literally, in stunning black-and-white woodcut illustrations across 15 magnificent spreads, each a whimsical portrait of a different exotic locale. Underlying the narrative is a subtle yet thoughtful message about sustainability and biodiversity, adding a richer context to the pure aesthetic joy of the experience.

Panorama is as much an engrossing educational experience for young readers as it is an absolute masterpiece of design for aesthetic poeticism aficionados of all ages.

Thanks, Kirstin

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09 FEBRUARY, 2011

The Future of Art: An Immediated Autodocumentary

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Last week, we featured Aaron Koblin’s insightful thoughts on the digital renaissance. The interview, produced by futurism exploration outfit Emergence Collective, was actually part of a larger “immediated autodocumentary” — a full-length documentary short and edited in an extraordinarily short amount of time — on the future of art, released this week. The film features interviews with 13 leading digital artists and creative entrepreneurs, interviewed at the 2011 Transmediale Festival in Berlin, and explores everything from remix culture to the role of content curators to collaborative creativity.

That is the role that we [curators] play — making connections between things that might not otherwise be obvious connections.” ~ Heather Kelley

The idea of originality and proprietariness also contributes to the whole Great Man Theory, which is slowly disintegrating — the idea of the genius, the Freud, the Marx, the Leonardo, the Einstein… They’ve come up with an idea that’s completely related to the man that came up with it. Whereas, today, the ideas just get thrown out there and used, and it’s that use that in a way is the art, rather than the person who comes up with the idea.” ~ Ken Wahl

via Swiss Miss

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07 FEBRUARY, 2011

Stephen Biesty’s Engineering Illustrations: Art Meets Science

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British illustrator Stephen Biesty is a master of “engineering art” — remarkably intricate and detailed yet imaginative drawings of building, vessel and vehicle cross-sections, historical panoramas, castle cutaways, inside-out views and other fascinating intersections of architecture, art and egineering. A prolific author, his books are a treasure trove of curiosity and delight. Our favorites: Incredible Cross-Sections, a magnificent tome of spreads with cutaway illustrations of the hidden architecture of 18 iconic structures, from a Gothic cathedral to a coal mine to the space shuttle, and Incredible Body, a stunning children’s collection of anatomical cross-sections, in which tiny tunnelers embark upon a fascinating journey of the systems and organs of the human body.

Biesty’s work has also been adapted across a variety of media, including pop-up books (you know we love those), educational games and animation.

via MetaFilter

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04 FEBRUARY, 2011

Rainn Wilson’s SoulPancake: Exploring Life’s Big Questions

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Last year, actor Rainn Wilson surprised us with his insightful and utterly un-Dwightlike thoughts on creativity. As it turns out, Wilson is scholar of human nature and the creative process. His newish book, SoulPancake: Chew on Life’s Big Questions, explores the human condition from a rich and fascinating array of angles, spanning life and death, art and creativity, sex and relationships, the brain and the soul, science and technology, and just about everything in between.

When I got so well-known for The Office, I just wanted to create something positive on the Internet. There’s so much crap out there. I wanted to create something really positive and uplifting, and this blends philosophy, creativity and spirituality.” ~ Rainn Wilson

Beautifully written and exquisitely designed, the book is based on Wilson’s site of the same name (another fine addition to our running count of blog-turned-book success stories) and is the product of his collaboration with social media entrepreneur Devon Gundry, photographer and writer Golriz Lucina, and award-winning journalist Shabnam Mogharabi.

With stunning art by nearly 100 up-and-coming artists and designers, as well as essays by like creative thinkers and doers like Amy Sedaris (whom you know we love)a, David Lynch, Jesse Dylan, Bon Iver’s Justin Vernon, Josh Ritter and Saul Williams, the book is a remarkable feat of philosophical inquiry and creative discovery.

SoulPancake: Chew on Life’s Big Questions is a treasure trove of insights, poems, art, quotes and thought starters on pretty much everything that matters in life — a visually astounding and conceptually compelling journey into being human.

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