The Cool Conceptual Art of Horacio Salinas

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Horacio Salinas is an acclaimed conceptual still life photographer who manages to turn the most common objects of every day life into works of art.

The New Yoirk based photographer of Argentinian decent has worked with some of the most important publications in the world, including Vogue, GQ and the New York Times. Asked how he would describe his original work, Horacio Salinas said: “”If I have to do one picture about a topic, I want that picture to say everything in a second.” All I know is his creations put a smile on my face, and that’s good enough for me

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The Contaminated Ceramics of Tamsin van Essen

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They may look like ceramic cups that haven’t been washed in years, but these are genuine artworks made by British designer Tamsin van Essen.

Using various “foreign” materials, the artist managed to mimic the infestation of various bacterias on ceramic bowls. As real as the contamination with Salmonella and Streptococcus may seem, the bowls are perfectly clean and ready to be used. Even knowing that, I doubt anyone would be crazy enough to actually use them.

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Mona Lisa Mosaic Made of Burnt Toast

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For the last 10 years, Maurice “Toastman” Bennet has been making incredible masterpieces from pieces of toast. His last work of art is a giant crunchy replica of Mona Lisa.

Last week, the Toastman spent most of his time at the K-11 shopping mall, in Hong Kong, working on his newest work for the upcoming Food Art Festival. His entire studio smelled of gas and burnt toast, but the final result was fully worth it. He managed to create a beautiful replica of Mona Lisa eating a pink ice cream, out of around 6,000 individual pieces of toast. And he did it all by using a blow torch to create patterns and different color tones.

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The Pencil Tip Masterpices of Dalton Ghetti

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Many artists use pencils to create their works of art, but in the case of  Dalton Ghetti, his pencils actually become artworks.

49-year-old Dalton Ghetti loved to carve things as long as he can remember. As a child, he used to carve his friends’ names into the sides of pencils and offer them as presents. Later, he took sculpting more seriously and began making large wooden sculptures, until he decided to challenge himself and make really tiny artworks. He experimented with many mediums, such as chalk, until the day he discovered pencil graphite.

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The World’s Biggest E.T. Fan

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With thousands of E.T. collectibles, some dating back to 1982, Nick Gjoka can proudly call himself the world’s biggest E.T. fan.

In 1982, when he was just 4 years old, Nick’s mother took him to see E.T. He doesn’t even remember that, but he does know that’s when he unboxed his first E.T. doll, at his grandfather’s house. He kept receiving all kinds of E.T. toys, and he would ask his parent’s to buy them whenever he saw them in stores, but it wasn’t until his teen years that he began putting together an actual collection.

Nick’s parents are both collectors, so he has always been familiar with garage and yard sales. At the age of 22 he was already looking on eBay, going to various sales and buying everything related to his favorite extraterrestrial. His friends and family realized his passion and started helping him in his quest of creating the world’s largest E.T. memorabilia collection.

In 2002, the re-release of the movie brought with it new E.T. collectibles that got Nick Gjoka interested in collecting. Later that year he visited Universal Studious, from where he returned with $300 worth of E.T. memorabilia. His collection grew two, maybe three times in only a few months time.

Nick Gjoka and his amazing collection were featured on VH1’s hit show Totally Obsessed, and he became known all around the US. Nowadays, Nick isn’t hunting for E.T. collectibles as he once did, because he hasn’t got the time or space anymore, but he says he’s always interested in new additions to his sizable collection.

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Ear Pull – A Manly Game That Will Test Your Ears

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One of the most difficult games I’ve ever heard of, Ear Pull is an old Inuit tradition that has competitors test the strength of their ears.

The Ear Pull is as simple as it is painful. Two contestants sit down in front of each other with their legs straddled and interlocked, place a loop of twine around one of their ears, and at the referee’s signal, start pulling back until one of them either yields or the loop of twine comes off from one of the ears.

It may sound like a horrific display, to some of you, but the Ear Pull is a registered sport practiced at the World Eskimo-Indian Olympics. Competitors’ faces contort, their ears turn bright red and crumple as the string cuts deeper into the cartilage, and some of them even require stitches. And for what, some of you may ask. Most ear pull competitors say they do it to endure pain, but the old Inuits used to practice this bizarre game as training for enduring ear frostbites.

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Kay Petal’s Needle Felted Celebrities

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Without using any patterns or sewing stitches, Kay Petal manipulates a difficult art medium like wool into amazing needle felted dolls.

Kay Petal discovered needle felting back in 2007, while she was recovering from a rare form of cancer. She had realized life was too short and that she needed to focus less on the mundane things in life, and more on finding the thing she is most passionate about. As soon as she found needle felting online, something happened and she just started researching on it. She had discovered a unique way of bringing wool to life, and she never looked back since.

Kay can create any kind of needle felted dolls, but lately, she has been focusing on making doll caricatures of real life celebrities. Her artistic efforts have been rewarded by various design and craft sites which published some of her works and introduced her amazing talent to the world.

Check out more of Kay’s work on her official site, Flickr and Youtube

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Pocketbike i7 – A Cool Computer on Wheels

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A true case modding master managed to transform a street legal mini motorcycle into a cool, fast computer.

Saibot took a fully functional mini motorcycle able to reach speeds of up to 70 mph and transformed into a super cool computer, also able to run at high speeds, thanks to its premium hardware. The Pocketbike i7 is obviously powered by a speedy Core i7 920 CPU, on an ASUS P6T motherboard, and features an EVGA 9800+ graphics card, a 1 TB of storage and 3 gb of DDR3 – 1333 RAM. He finished off his masterpiece with 5 CCFLs, 1 LED spot light, and two neon under-car lights.

Although he first started working on the project 5 months ago, Saibot said he actually worked on it for 12 days and spent the rest of the time making money and being lazy. Great work!

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Football Hyunday – A Football Fan’s Dream Car

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Created for the Football World Cup 2010, the wacky football car owned by James Baggott is one of only two created by Hyundai.

Designed by car artist Andy Saunders, the Hyunday i10 football car is covered in astro turf and comes complete with its own goal, boot shaped side mirrors, football wheel rims, and a giant football on top. On the inside, this unique i10 has grass effect upholstery, football shaped headrests and little boot-shaped air freshners.

The history of these crazy football cars adds to their charm, Apparently both cars were sent for testing on BBC’s hit show Top Gear, and when they were returned a little damaged, Hyundai decided to give them a unique look, instead of fixing the dents. The company kept one of its astro-turf-covered creations and sold the other.

26-year-old James Baggott bought the Football Hyundai i10 for the specific purpose of selling it on eBay and raising some serious funds for a charity foundation. He figured many football fans would love to drive to away games in such a vehicle, and now invites all of them to place a bid for it. The opening bid for the Hyunday football car is at 1,995 British pounds.

 

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Vintage Vampire Killing Kits at Ripley’s Museums

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Vampire killing kits were a must-have for wealthy nobles traveling to Eastern Europe, during the mid 19th century, and with vampires making a comeback (at least in Hollywood), these things may still be useful.

There are only a few original vampire kits in the world, and most of them, 26 to be exact, can be found in Ripley’s Believe It or Not museums, in 8 countries around the world. With interest for vampires on the rise, in the media, vampire killing kits are among the most popular of Ripley’s  exhibits.

Most vampire killing kits were made in Boston, and contained a crucifix, bible, wooden stake, holy water, pistol with lead bullets and various concoctions meant to wreak havoc among blood suckers. They were available by mail order, for people traveling to remote regions like Transylvania, where people were talking about vampires well before Bram Stoker invented Dracula.

These are only 8 of the vampire kits in Ripley’s possession, but you can get an idea of how cool they are. I wonder if they’re interested in this 19th century vampire slaying kit we featured a while back. It would be a nice addition to their collection.

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Mindblowing Warhammer 40000 Dreadnought Case Mod

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If you’re as big a fan of the Warhammer 40000 video-games as I am, you know can understand why I find this particular case mod simply awesome.

Combining wood, metal and acrylic, modding master pinchillo has managed to bring the dreaded Dreadnought to life. He started working on this project about 4 years ago, but took a long break, and only recently decided to complete it. He first created the main body, which housed the computer hardware, then moved on to the accessories and details of the computer case. The rotating miniguns are a nice touch.

It may not be one of the oddities you’re used to, but this piece of modding genius was just to cool not to share it with you guys. For more pics of the building process, check out Modding.ru

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Russian Geek Shows Off His Processor Collection

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It’s official people, the world’s biggest geek has been located in Russia. Sporting a collection of over 1,000 computer processors, this dude has no competition.

If someone actually made a top of the geekiest things a man can collect, I’m positive computer processors would be somewhere in the top three. So it feels only natural that this guy be awarded the title of biggest geek of all, for his collection of over 1,000 computer processors. Some are from the time of the Soviet Union (those might actually be worth something), while others are a more modern.

But the oddest thing about this “high-tech” collection, is the setting of the photos, with that carpet on the wall that reminds me of my grandmother’s old home. Not really the right place for such a collection, don’t you think?

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Robert Thierren Creates Furniture for Giants

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Robert Thierren is an acclaimed American artist who transforms ordinary household items into extraordinary works of art by increasing their scale several times.

Thierren was born in Chicago, grew up in San Francisco and later moved to Los Angeles. He first entered the attention of the media during the 1980s, when he began creating common items like doors, coffins or pitchers out of various mediums like copper, wood and bronze. But it wasn’t until he started creating his overgrown furniture series that he became truly famous.

His larger than life artworks are inspired by childhood games and fairy tales, and it does seem to suggest they were taken out of the story of Jack and the Bean Stock. Robert Thierren’s creations aim to provoke an interaction between the viewer, the object and the surrounding environment.

 

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Silvas Capitalis – The Forest Head of Kielder

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Silvas Capitalis, which translates as “forest head”, is an unusual art installation built by the American art group SIMPARCH.

Located on the grounds of Kielder Forest, near the Scottish border, Silvas Capitalis is not exactly the kind of shelter you’d expect to stumble upon while walking through the trees. It’s purpose is to provide visitors and cyclists of Kielder Forest with a refuge, and at the same time, add to the mystery of this place. Inspired by the “watchers” of Celtic folklore – spiritual beings who keep watch over the forest and its inhabitants – who were usually depicted as human heads, the forest head was considered too scary for young children. Visits to local schools were required to test the reaction of the kids, before the actual building began.

Silvas Capitalis is made from hundreds of individual timber blocks, individually cut, sanded and glued into the shape of a head. Visitors can climb up the stairs of Silvas Capitalis and actually look through the eyes of the watcher. The initial plan included carving out its ears so people could hear through them, but due to time limitations, this step was skipped.

 

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Lucy McRae and Her Safety Pin Art

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During the “Rojo Nova Work in Progress” exhibition at the Sao Paolo Museum of Image and Sound, Australian artist Lucy McRae showcased her unique safety pin art.

Trained as a classical ballerina and architect, Lucy McRae has evolved into a body architect who “invents and builds structures on the skin that re-shape the human silhouette.” In a statement, the museum says “her provocative and often grotesquely beautiful imagery suggests a new breed; a future human archetype existing in an alternate world.”

This time, she relied on hundreds of safety pins, glued on most of her body, to depict how evolved humans might look in the alternate world of her vision. The first reaction upon seeing her is something like “what has she done to her body?”, but then you notice the pins are just glued to her skin and you begin admiring Lucy McRae as a work of art.

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