Artist Uses 200,000 Ants to Create Unique Painting

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Painter Chris Trueman, from Claremont, California, has created a unique painting by using 200,000 dead ants instead of paint.

The painting Chris calls “Self Portrait With a Gun” actually features his younger brother, dressed as a cowboy, holding his dad’s rifle. From afar this unusual artwork looks more like an old yellowed photo, but as you approach it, you realize it’s actually something completely different – a painting made of ants.

To the artist, this bizarre ant painting represents how humans learn about things abstractly, only to have their impressions changed as they get closer to them. But actually completing his masterpiece wasn’t the simplest task, mostly because he hated killing the creatures he perceives to be ” right on the line of what I consider intelligent life.” When he first began the project, he decided to catch the ants himself, but the ants in San Francisco, where he was living at the time, were too small. So he decided to order them online, from a guy who was breeding and selling them as food for lizards.

First he ordered just 1,000 ants, because he didn’t know how many he would need for the right density, but then he started ordering 40,000. They came in peanut-butter jars, and seeing them moving around in there, it was hard for Chris to make a decision. He couldn’t release them, because they weren’t native to that area, and they could start biting people. So he decided to kill the ants himself. It wasn’t easy, and he even took a 1-year-break, but decided to complete his ant masterpiece,  because he didn’t want the first batch to have died in vain.

Some of the ants dried up and were torn to pieces, so Chris Trueman used them in the large parts of the painting, where details weren’t important, saving the full-sized ants for the detailed parts. he would handle them with tweezers, placing them on the Plexiglass canvas and coat them in a painting resin called galkyd.

Chris Trueman‘s ant painting is on display, at an art gallery in San Diego, and is priced at $35,000.

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Garden Turned into Real Life Candyland Board Game

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A fan of the Candyland board game, ever since she was 3 three years old, Facebook user Kan-Dee Corner worked meticulously to transform her garden into a real life version of the famous game board.

As a child, Kan-Dee Corner always dreamed about her very own magical Candyland, and now that she’s all grown up, she decided she can make her own magic, and began building a real life version of the board game, in her garden. She started in summer of last year, took a break for the winter, and resumed the building process this spring.

Using parts of three versions of the Candyland game boards, and adding her own themes, Kan-Dee Corner created 17 micro gardens, each with its own theme, color and smell. She did most of the work herself, but her neighbors were very supportive as wel, and one of them even created that nice little shed.

Check out photos of the building process below:

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Man Transforms Old Car into a Transformer Statue

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Using his old Lada Samara Diva as an art medium, artist Nikola Nikolov has built a 2 meter-tall statue, named The Transformer.

The Transformer was created to symbolize the relationship between man and machine. The artist cut up his old Lada Samara Diva into pieces, which he later sculpted and welded together in the shape of a robot. The sculpture’s unusual position denotes the robot is at the moment between knowing what he was and what he has become.

The Transformer sculpture is 2 meters high, 80 meters wide and weight 90 kg.

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The Phone-Book Carvings of Alex Queral

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51-year-old Alex Queral carves phone-books to create amazing portraits of celebrities such as Clint Eastwood or Kirk Douglas.

‘In carving and painting a head from a phone-book directory, I’m celebrating the individual lost in the anonymous list of thousands of names that describe the size of the community.’ That’s how Alex Queral explains his art, adding that he also enjoys creating an ‘object of longevity’ out of something that otherwise gets discarded every year.

The Philadelphia based artist got the idea of using phone-books as an art medium, 14 years ago, while he was looking for some wood to carve. He spotted a pile of discarded phone-books on the pavement, and the idea just hit him. Since people mostly use the internet, to look for things these days, most phone books just get dumped somewhere, so he sees his art as a way of recycling them.

Alex Queral carves up to two phone-book sculptures a month, then paints them with transparent acrylic paint, to make them durable and give them a glossy finish. So far, Queral has immortalized iconic figures like the Dalai Lama, Barrack Obama, Clint Eastwood, Jack Nicholson, and many others.

The artist admits it’s pretty difficult to deal with a careless cut that ruins everything, right when he’s about to finish a piece. But all he can do is start his carving all over again.

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Housing Estate N – An Eccentric World Built of Cardboard

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Abandoned Housing Estate Number N” is a unique miniature city, made entirely from corrugated cardboard.

So far I’ve seen a city made of toothpicks, another one made of staples, but this is the first cardboard city, for me. Created by a Japanese artist whose name eludes me, Housing Estate Number N is an ever-growing project that started back in 2001. The paradox of this art installation is that although it’s mostly abandoned, it keeps growing and evolving, with each passing day.

Some of the rooms in the estate are lit and completely furnished, while others are dark and empty. There are even some eerie characters that look like haunting spirits. Though pretty bizarre, Housing Estate N is an inspiring project that will keep growing as long as its creator desires it.

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The Matchstick Art of David Mach

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Using tens of thousands of matchsticks, David Mach creates detailed models of animals, symbols or historical figures.

53-year-old David Mach, from Scotland, has a passion for art and matchsticks, so he decided to combine them and create unique masterpieces. Using a clay mold he creates a plastic or fiberglass model of whatever he wants to create, and then begins the process of sticking matchsticks on it, one at a time. Most of his creations are made with tens of thousands of colored-tip matchsticks, imported from Japan, and take months to complete.

Along with his wife, who helps him run his art studio, David March has so far created over 350 matchstick artworks. They sell for anywhere between $30,000 and $52,000, but they don’t always make it to the auction, as the duo sometimes set them aflame at art exhibitions. With that many matchsticks involved, you can imagine the effect is truly impressive, though short.

Photos via Denoirmont

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LEGO Firearms Actually Shoot LEGO Bricks

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Jack Streat’s LEGO firearms are cool enough to look at, but the fact they actually work makes them uber-cool.

Witha passion for LEGO and guns, there was just one thing Jack Streat could do, and that’s create an extensive collection of LEGO firearms that actually shoot LEGO bricks. From the common AK-47 to the Uzzi and even a working minigun, Jack Streat has created a large part of today’s military arsenal and even made videos of each weapon in action.

Some of you may have seen weapons made of LEGO bricks, before, but the collection created by Jack Streat would make both Rambo and the Terminator crazy with envy.

via NowhereElse

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Australian Artist Builds His Very Own Hubble Telescope

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Peter Hennessey, an artist fascinated with science and astronomy, has created a life-size model of the famous Hubble space telescope.

Judging by the artworks featured on his official website, Peter Hennessey has a thing for satellites, Mars rovers and other NASA equipment, but his latest creation, a model of the Hubble telescope, is his most impressive achievement yet. Made entirely from pieces of laser-cut plywood and steel, “My Hubble” accurately follows every detail of the original.

Rather than using 3D computer software to model every part of his plywood model, Hennessey just used 7 photos of the Hubble space telescope and Adobe Illustrator. Creating the giant model took three months, of which 6 weeks were dedicated to cutting the individual plywood pieces, while the rest was taken up by assembling them.

The life-size plywood and steel model of the Hubble space telescope is now on display, on Cockatoo Island, in Sydney Harbour, as part of the Bienalle of Sydney 2010.

Photos by DesignBoom via DesignBoom

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Trash Artist Builds the World’s First Garbage Hotel

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H.A. Schult, the designer behind the famous Trash People, has teamed up with beer-make Corona to create the world’s first hotel made of garbage.

The initiative to build the “Save the Beach” garbage hotel was started by Corona, in order to raise awareness to the huge amount of waste being washed up on our shores, every day. And who better that H.A. Schult, a designer who has used trash as art medium since 1969, to build a hotel out of the trash collected from various European beaches?

The doors of this bizarre hotel, made of garbage, have opened to the public, last week, in Rome and has already received the support of various celebrities, like Helena Christensen, the famous model, who agreed to spend a night in the Save the Beach Hotel.

H.A. Schult, the creator of the trash hotel said “The philosophy of this hotel is to expose the damage we are causing to the sea and the coastline. We live in the era of trash and we are running the risk of becoming trash ourselves. Do we really want this world?”

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The Incredible Dice Mosaics of Ari Krupnik

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Ari Krupnik uses dice and various other materials to create intricate pixelated mosaics of celebrities and historical figures.

A Software Engineer, in Silicon Valley, California, Krupnik says he uses dice as an art medium because they offer six different shades of gray, depending on which facet is up. He uses a computer to calculate the size of his mosaics and render several variations of the dice. But that’s the easy part, putting them together, by hand, and finding the right adhesive to glue the dice, those are the tough parts.

Apart from dice, Ari Krupnik has used M&Ms and bullet casings, to create some of his mosaic masterpieces. The bullet casings mosaic depicts Eric S. Raymond, author of “The Art of Unix Programming” and features about seven thousand .40 brass casings.

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This Is What a Chinese Transformer Looks Like

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The western world has the Transformers, Japan has Voltron, but what about China? Having decided they want their own transforming robot, a group of students went on to build an original Chinese Transformer. This one is for real, and it’s not even copied (I know, right?).

If you’ve studied Chinese history, the Three Kingdoms period, to be exact, or if you’ve played any of the Romance of the Three Kingdoms video games ( I know I did), than the name Guan Yu definitely rings a bell. He was one of Lord Liu Bei’s top generals, along with Zhang Fei, and was known for his combat skills, loyalty and righteousness.

A group of graduating students, from China’s Central Academy of Fine Arts, chose Guan Yu as the model for their original Transformer statue. Using the parts of an old Jiefang truck, for which they paid roughly $4,500, these talented students have created a 9.4-meters-tall, 4-ton-heavy Transformer. According to its creators, only his face and blade are original pieces, the rest all came from the truck.

To celebrate their achievement, the talented students also created a video of their awesome Guan Yu Transformer, in action. Check it out.

via 163.com

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Don Lucho’s Casa De Carton

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Chile-based artist, Don Lucho, has created a whole apartment using cardboard and a black marker. His work is called ‘Casa De Carton‘.

Don Lucho’s Casa De Carton is unlike any house you’ve ever seen. It’s got pretty much everything a person needs, only it looks taken out of an old cartoon. Using cut-up cardboard boxes, the artist built an incredible pad, even though no one could really live in it.

the most amazing thing about the ‘Casa De Carton’ is the attention to details: the water in the toilet bowl is actually colored, and there’s even a light-bulb hanging from the ceiling. It might not hold out against bad weather, but at least you can recycle it.

Photos vi Flickr

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Famous Artworks Made with Thousands of Thread Spools

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Fascinated by art, science, technology, and the link between the three, Devorah Sperber uses thousands of spools of thread to recreate pixelated, inverted images of masterpieces, which look like colorful abstractions, from up close.

You must be wondering why the New York based artist uses inverted images, in her art. As I said before, she is interested in science and art alike, and she is trying to address the way our brain perceives visual information versus the way most of us think we see. By hanging thousands of colorful thread spools upside down, she is referencing that our eye lenses project an inverted image of our surroundings onto the retina, which is then corrected by our brain.

In Devorah Sperber’s art, the brain is represented by a clear acrylic sphere that not only inverts the spool artworks, but also focuses in on them, so they look like sharp reproductions of original paintings. Most of her masterpieces are made out of around 5,000 spools of thread, and take between one and six months to complete.

via Yatzer

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Trash Army Takes Over the World

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Created by German artist H.A. Schult, the Trash People, or Schrottarmee, are human figures made of different kinds of trash.

You probably didn’t know this, but there’s an army out there, hell-bent on conquering the world. Each year, it travels to a different location and makes its existence known to the world. But you mustn’t worry, unlike other conquering forces, the Trash Army has peaceful intentions.

The Trash People of H.A. Schult first appeared in 1996, at an amphitheater in Xanten, Germany. They were part of a local art exhibition, but after the idea of traveling around the world was born, the Trash People became an international attraction that showed up in locations like Moscow’s Red Square, The Great Wall of China, the Pyramids of Giza, Rome, Barcelona, and even the Arctic.

Well known for his action art, and using trash as an art medium, H.A. Schult has created 1,000 Trash People out of everyday garbage we humans produce. From Coke and bear cans, to crushed electronics, the Trash people are a representation of our waste society. Every time they show up, grouped in their trademark lines, they remind passers-by that ““We produce trash, are born from trash, and will turn back into trash.”, as their creator himself says.

via 1800Recycling

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Tanys Pullin Creates World’s Largest Cheese Sculpture

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Tanys Pullin, a British chef, well versed in the art of cheese cakes, has broken the record for the world’s largest cheese sculpture.

46-year-old Tanys, who claims to be the Nigella Lawson of the cheese world, had to work her magic on a 600 kg piece of cheddar cheese, in a fridge. Although she enjoys working with cheese, and has been doing it for many years, she didn’t consider herself the best cheese sculptor, and was really nervous throughout the whole process. But after eight days of carving, she created a beautiful cheese crown, to mark the anniversary of the Queen’s Coronation.

Her ‘cheesy’ masterpiece weighs a little under 500 kg, which is way more than the previous record (290 kg). Tanys Pullin is now waiting for an official confirmation, from the Guinness Book of Records.

One might thing working with cheese isn’t very difficult, but cheddar is a very tricky art medium, and Tanys had to keep her cheese sculpture at the right temperature, constantly spray it with olive oil and wrap it up, after each session, to prevent cracking.

Photos by APEX via Daily Mail

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