quasi-objects: lorenzo oggiano.

I’ve always loved the intersection of the digital and the organic, and how the hyper-depiction of seemingly natural subjects can be rendered so realistic that they border on seeming fake. Working in both video and 3D-generated visuals, Lorenzo Oggiano works inside a high-def macro world where his images play with polarity. Beginning his study in 2003 and still on-going, his “Quasi-Objects” series is obviously beautiful, but glistening grotesque; informed by the laws and evolutions of nature but not actually formed by them. Up-close, I can see flower stamens that resemble insect eggs and, with a blink of the eye, smooth skin that becomes scales and water drops mirror light like multi-faceted eyes. There’s a line where attraction and disgust run almost parallel, and he’s walking along it a spine-tingling way.

From Oggiano’s site: “Quasi-Objects” is an art project consisting of 3d generated videos and prints, a practice of “organic re-design” – started in 2003 and still in progress – that aims to stimulate thought and dialogue on the progressive relativisation of natural forms of life as a result of techno-biological evolution. “Quasi-Objects” regards data actualization, the production of biologically non-functional organisms and ecosystems as transient output of an operative practice: aesthetics of process.

Life is a real and autonomous process independent from any specific material manifestation.”

Via But Does It Float

sticky monster lab: the loner teaser.

As Mrs. Peacock said during the dinner party in Clue, “I mean, I have absolutely no idea what we’re doing here. Or what I’m doing here, or what this place is about, but I am determined to enjoy myself. And I’m very intrigued, and, oh my, this soup’s delicious, isn’t it?”

So, soup aside, we find ourselves watching Sticky Monster Lab’s trailer for a “new animation and compilation album” called The Loaner. Much like Mrs. Peacock (and you’d be surprised how often I find myself genuinely thinking that), I’m very intrigued.

I’ve been a fan of designer toys and monster for as long as I can remember, and here they are: animated, in a digital world, living their lives. The ultra-digitized animation style is one of my favourites, and when it’s done as well as this I get giddy. These monsters are on point.

Alright, The Longe, I’m not sure what’s happening yet, but your teaser is triumphant. Consider me teased! I anxiously await the end of November 2011, when all will be revealed.

Also, I’m not sure who the loner’s little pink animal friend is, but it reminds me of that episode of Futurama where Fry finds out the dog he thought forgot about him spent the rest of his life waiting for him to come get him. It’s called “Jurassic Bark,” and if you want to weep until all your innocence is lost, I suggest you go watch it.

matt pyke & friends: super-computer-romantics.

Any time Matt Pyke is about to release new work feels like Christmas Eve. My favourite digital artist and motion designer ever, Matt’s simply unbeatable at creating innovative, organic and jaw-dropping work for his own studio, Universal Everything, and some of the world’s biggest brands. (You may have heard of them: Nike, Chanel, Nokia, MTV and the London 2010 Olympics. Whatever. NBD.) He’s also the mastermind behind my favourite motion design project ever, the inimitable Advanced Beauty. If you haven’t seen it, get it. Buy it. Find it. Watch it. It’ll change your life.

One of my fave facets of Matt’s work is how it never seems forced or even “created” – somehow it feels like everything he does (“organic digital” is what I like to call it) just comes into being. It flows as easily as if it washed up on a shore or floated in on a breeze. Plus I’ve emailed with Matt a few times and he’s also a really stand-up guy and a class act all around.


In his first ever solo show, Matt’s taking over Paris’ La Gaîté Lyrique with Super-Computer-Romantics. Guest-curated by Charlotte Leuozon and with sound design by Matt’s brother and frequent collaborator, Simon, the exhibition features 8 separate environments covering more than 26,000 square feet. Pyke says “The approach is one of a romantic view of technology and of really kind of being optimistic about what you can do with technology and how you can create beauty with super-computers, how you can create pieces of video work and pieces of audio-visual work.”

Reading La Gaîté Lyrique’s extensive info on the event, I started to get light-headed and giddy: “Here, a 3 meters high walking monster, endlessly transforming itself. There, a monolithic block invites viewers to peek into a singular experience – witness the birth of materials at a molecular level. On the mezzanine, stands a crowd of generative living sculptures, grown from code. Facing them, a huge projection of a never-ending procession of bodies, struggling against a hurricane of sound. Each piece can be considered a supercomputing beauty seeking emotional sensations and feelings whose magic breaks with rational functionalism. Remixing primitivism, minimalism, pop culture and 19th century landscape painting, the exhibition Matt Pyke & Friends takes us to a romantic theatricality reaching a subtle and meaningful relationship between technologies and the viewer.”

Opening this Thursday and running until May 21, 2011, the show will also feature a full-sized theatre screen with a retrospective of all of Pyke’s commercial and artistic work to date as well as a public lecture, from Matt himself, on the subject of “creation.”

Getting me all hot and bothered for the upcoming show, today Nowness debuted a stunning teaser vid for “Supreme Believers”, one of the installations from Super-Computer-Romantics. The Universal Everything Vimeo channel has also released a teaser for the exhibition. Both are classic Pyke and I want more, more more.

Here’s a video of Matt himself talking about his vision for the exhibition (and giving some visual glimpses into what he’s got planned). 

I need to see this show. I NEED IT. If anyone would like to take me to Paris to see Super-Computer-Romantics, I’m not above begging. I’m a pretty decent conversationalist, I sleep well on planes and I know some French. I’ve also never met an escargot that I didn’t like. Just putting that out there.

If you want more Matt Pyke (and why wouldn’t you), here are past posts on Forever, a video installation for the Victoria & Albert Museum; the new brand identity they created for MTV International; their gorgeous 2010 reel; and here’s one of Universal Everything’s most recent works, a series of digital installations for Chanel:

+ via @universalevery

william campbell: the lemon tree.

The Vimeo hompage is one of the happiest places on Earth. Seriously, the other day I tried to imagine what my life was like before Vimeo and I honestly couldn’t remember. I’ve put up a mental block. It must have been a dark time.

For yet another example of Vimeo’s unrelenting bad-assedness, it’s where I found William Campbell’s “The Lemon Tree”: a moody, gravelly examination of the moment where, if you’ve spent your entire life striving to have absolutely everything, you may realize one day that, in fact, you have nothing.

matt pyke: advanced beauty.

As creator and all-around genius behind UK design shop Universal Everything, Matt Pyke serves up some of the most eye-catching and jaw-dropping digital design on the planet. His client list includes heavy hitters like Apple, Adidas, MTV, Coke, Nokia, Nike and a little shindig called the 2012 London Summer Olympics.

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The anticipation for his latest project is keeping me up at night: Advanced Beauty is a series of “sound sculptures” curated by Universal Everything with sound design by frequent collaborator Freeform, the music project led by Matt’s brother, Simon Pyke. Each segment is visually and sonically unique and directed by groundbreaking designers from around the world – including visionaries like Marc Kremers, Karsten Schmidt, Thomas Traum, Alex Peverett, Tom Scholefield, Paul Simpson, and Jonathan Garin.

If the awe-inspiring trailer and lushly color-filled first segment by New York-based designer Mate Steinforth are any indication, then we’re in for a total breakthrough when Advanced Beauty finally drops in Spring 2008. I think it’s pretty safe to say right now: Advanced Beauty will be the shit.

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random website friday: desktopography.

As someone who spends a large part of they day starting into a Powerbook, Desktopography is one of my fave sites.

Each yearly exhibition features desktops from digital designers around the world. The work is nature-themed, the whole idea being to bring a fantastic view of the natural world to your computer screen. The designs are so hot you’ll have a hard time picking just one, but since they’re free to download you can switch up your desktop whenever you like. Even better, link back to each designer’s home site from their Desktopography submission and explore their full portfolios whenever you need a little time out from your daily routine.

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creationism + evolution = duelity.

What better way to take the piss out of the whole creationism vs. evolution debate than by forcing one side to see the merits (and faults) of the other through the paradox of telling the opposite story?

Duelity, a Freaky Friday-esque take on natural history, was created by Vancouver Film School students Marcos Ceravolo and Ryan Ulrich. The switch up goes down as the creationist theory is presented through the scientific findings of the General Organization of Development (G.O.D.), while the evolutionary theory is given through an impassioned biblical oratory complete with Darwinism illustrated in Vatican-y stained glass.

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The video comes in three versions: “Creationism”, “Evolution”, and then the total brilliance and exact execution of the project really shines when you watch the third version – “Duelity” – where both stories unfold simultaneously. Totally awesome.

Via Cool Hunting


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