Thank you for your love

September 11, 2010

Tara Donovan, material muse

August 25, 2010

The first study for my Maya class is to create a black and white snap shot using primitive objects. SO I’m encouraged to be slightly more conceptual, a wink at my SAIC days, and found myself looking at some old slides of Tara Donovan.

Using common objects – a comment on waste and reuse? the economy of materials? the value of Art? – Donovan creates a ceiling of billowing Styrofoam cups, a wall of plastic straws, a landscape of tar paper; you have no choice except to inspect the space, to graze over the magnitude and the simplicity.

No comparison with the experience of walking through one of Donovan’s installations, the documented work is still beautiful, animated and luminescent; with elegant simplicity, Tara Donovan’s art offers appropriate inspiration for my homework. A simple object that I can repeat, stack and arrange is ideal, so I’ll borrow the Styrofoam cup…with coffee.

Punch biopsy and the Bot fly

February 22, 2010

Not for the faint of heart; I came across this video of a punch biopsy in the name of research. (My homework assignment is to draw a non-surgical medical procedure).

And for a special treat, my favorite video of bot fly larvae being extracted from some dude’s back. Yowsa!

The McQueen is Dead

February 11, 2010

It saddens me deeply to hear that the iconic British designer, Alexander McQueen, 40 was found dead today. He was truly inspiring in his runway productions outing fashion as performance art. One of my favorite designers ever, McQueen elevated the runway then flew above it, he made it a stage and then flooded it; he seamlessly mixed Gothic Victorian styles with surrealist proportions, Renaissance headdresses with birds of paradise; and he crossed bones by introducing the skull as signature couture.

So break out your lovely skull scarves today and long live McQueen!

I wanna be a scratcher

February 10, 2010

This week I finished my first pen and ink drawing for my technical illustration class; the heart, the whole burrito. It was interesting to see that the history of medical illustration is dominated by a medium that requires so much care and is completely unapologetic.

Drawing in pen & ink is seductive and it’s also revealing in that flaw equals character. SO in consilodation with my academic life, I got some new ink from my tattoo artist, Nuco.

The line work he started here is not unlike the treatment of the pen in the drawings I made for class; sensitive to pressure, deliberate, permanent. To be the tattoo-ee, your skin is extremely receptive to the nuances of the line being drawn, it’s painfully exhilarating.

Nuco’s  going to give me a chance to try out the tattoo gun sometime if I get some friendly saps to let me scratch my own art into their hams, so get in line, boys, I’ll give you my heart!

Viva la Ink!

Happy Birthday, Wolfie!

January 27, 2010

Sylvie Fleury: Rocket Model

January 19, 2010

This past week has taught me that it’s going to require a conscious effort on my part to keep up my blogging…I’m exhausted after spending three days installing/deinstalling/reinstalling Parallels, Windows 7 and 3dsMax; not having the mouse plugged in, not realizing it for a day; emailing my professor incessantly including an email on how to delete an object (it’s fn + del — not intuitive); and now attempting our first exercise into 3-d modeling: build a rocket.

Taking a break from my installation woes, I spent some “research” time looking for new music, shopping for shoes, and browsing artists’ websites I like. Since I was looking for rockets to model for my assignment I searched for some old Sylvie Fleury images. She is a contemporary Swiss pop artist. I once read that she drove an old ambulance-painted sedan around her home town; her apartment interior was decorated like some kind of medical institution. That is awesome.

Urs Fischer, you melt my wax heart

January 3, 2010

My first blog of the new year is in occasion of the Urs Fischer exhibit, Urs Fischer: Marguerite de Ponty, currently at the New Museum and where I spent a delightful afternoon on my birthday. The first time I saw an Urs Fischer installation was at the Whitney Biennial (two or three biennials ago); a deconstructed, or rather demolished gallery wall. I was totally inspired: I too wanted to fight with those white walls and gray floors! And I too wanted to bust out of the claustrophobic gallery space!

Fischer’s installations are personal; the space is transferred from something generic into a habitat that reflects the artist’s skewed version of reality. The middle floor of the three-floor exhibition featured a small hole along one wall and on close inspection, under the influence of a motion sensor, a rough prosthetic tongue is protracted!  But the actual installation is so much more; the entire gallery was covered with trompe l’oeil wallpaper made from photographs of the exact space. In the second image, only the one exit sign and two flourescent lights are actual structures, the rest is wallpaper, in fact even the beams are fake and the wallpaper ceiling is about a foot lower than the real ceiling. A  surrealist’s representation of minimalism!

Down a floor, Fischer assaults the viewr: enter a crowded room with larger-than-life objects represented on mirrored blocks. Watching your own reflection (I do love mirrors) and those of other museum patrons is as big an experience as the objects are exaggerated.

Pepper Heart

December 27, 2009

Check out more awesome animations by PES at I can’t get enough of his amazing stop-motion, and while most of the animations have little to do with anatomy, this was just too delicious to pass by without a proper post! I’ve been waiting for an appropriate excuse to blog about PES and “My Pepper Heart,” short and sweet, fits the bill.

Because I can’t help myself…here’s one more!

If you really want to know what to do with left over Christmas decorations, ornaments, wrapping paper, bows, and un-re-gift-able presents, let PES inspire you! Here’s to flying during the holidays!

Tim Hawkinson

December 14, 2009

As the semester winds to an end and it’s time to clean off my icon-congested desktop, I can’t help but procrastinate by going through some of my archived files. I came across these images: works by one of my favorite artists, Tim Hawkinson, from a lecture I presented as a TA to Anne Wilson’s “Time Material and the Everyday” class. Hawkinson truly inspires me and his transformation of materials from pencils to fingernails has a creative pulse that makes me weak!

Hawkinson’s art draws from experiences of the human body, so the relevance to biomedical visualization can be uniquely appreciated. These are just a few examples taken from his retrospective some years back at the Whitney (I went to the exhibit 2 or 3 times and barely missed the sister show in LA!).

The image below is actually a functioning time piece in which the stitches act like hands of a clock to tell time. Hawkinson did a whole series of such subtle time pieces including a hair in a hair brush, the twist tie of a garbage bag, the metal ring of a soda can, and more.

Hawkinson’s muscles of facial expression! This piece is titled Emoter and is controlled by a analogue contraption of the artist’s invention. Much like his musical instruments, there is an intrinsic relationship between the machine and the behavior of the artwork, in this case a self-portrait.

Uberorgan unfortunately was not installed at the retrospective; the 300+ foot indoor sculpture is best presented in a space like MassMOCA. In title it refers to Nietzsche’s Ubermensch and [relates conceptually to the subversion of human pretentions]. It is a conglomerate piece that recalls the inside of the thoracic cavity with lung-like sacs that you can see fill up a huge room. Hawkinson often integrates sound with his sculptures and the Uberorgan functions like a giant bagpipe as the “lungs” fill up and expel air.

Images from the Tim Hawkinson Retrospect at the Whitney, Mass MoCA