Man Turns His House into Renaissance-Style Masterpiece

Robert Burns, a 63-year-old retired decorator from England, has turned the interior of his house into a modern-day Renaissance masterpiece.

After years of painting other people’s houses in boring, pastel colors, Burns got bored. He remembers thinking he had spent 15 years of his life applying the exact shade of magnolia with a paint roller, and was in desperate need of a creative outlet. One day, he bought two books about the Vatican at a car boot sale, and suddenly discovered the Italian Renaissance. Even though he had never been to Florence or Rome, he said to himself “How difficult can this be, I’m a decorator”, and that’s how it all started.

When he started working on his Renaissance interior, the self-taught artist redid his first painting three or four times because he thought it didn’t look good enough, but he soon got the hang of it and began to understand how great classics like Caravaggio or Michaelangelo did their works. While acrylics didn’t seem like the right kind of paint at the beginning, he soon learned they worked quite well if he got the technique right, and now his entire house is painted with acrylics.

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Artist Creates Writers’ Portraits in Their Own Words

Ohio-based artist, John Sokol, has created a collection of portraits depicting some of the world’s most famous writers, using their own immortal words. Face reading takes a literal meaning when it comes to Sokol’s “Word Portraits” as he uses lines from some of their most popular works to outline their faces, and recreate lines and wrinkles. Easier said than done, I’m sure, but Mr. Sokol’s works really do their subjects’ justice.

While actually trying to read every word John Sokol uses in his works seems practically impossible, the idea of using the authors’ own words is brilliant. If you’d like a unique portrait of your favorite author, head over to John Sokol’s website and take a look at his beautiful Word Portraits. They’re well worth a few hundred bucks, if you ask me.

 

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Taiwanese Hairdresser Makes High-Heels from Human Hair

Owner of a small hair salon in the small Taiwanese city of Taichung, Tsai Shiou-ying has recently attracted media attention with a series of original artworks made with human hair.

After winning various awards and prizes for her hair-cutting skills, the 54-year-old hairdresser decided to explore her artistic side by using discarded hair to make various works of art. She recently showed off some of her creations, including beautiful brooches, a life-size pineapple made from hair, a rat sculpture, and her pride and joy – a pair of high-heel shoes. “I personally love high heels very much, but I am flat-footed. I can only look at them and try them on, but if I buy them they will only be stored away until mold grows. I can’t wear them, so I want to make a pair of heels that I really like. This way, even if I can’t wear them, at least I created a work of art,” Tsai told Reuters.

A single pair of “hairy” high-heels takes a whole month to make, and Tsai Shiou-ying needs hair from at least three people, usually friends and neighbors. She says only real hair can be used to create her unusual artworks, as artifcial hair simply can’t handle all the heat and super glue she uses. Tsai is now planning to start work on hair dresses and corsets.

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Car Lover Builds His Own Lamborghini Reventon

A Chinese car enthusiast from Kunming has spent around $13,800 to turn his old Nissan A31 into the sports car of his dreams, a Lamborghini Reventon.

What’s a car lover to do when he likes a luxury car so much, but can’t afford to buy it? Build one of his own, of course, and that’s just what Asan, the owner of a hair salon in Kunming, China, decided to do after he fell in love with the Lamborghini Reventon. he has always been a fan of the Italian car manufacturer and dreamed of owning one of the petrol-powered road beasts one day, but when he saw the new Reventon costs around $2,3 million, he decided to take a different approach to realizing his dream.

The first thing he did was buy a Lamborghini he could actually afford – a miniature model of the Reventon, which served as inspiration for the three welders he hired to turn his 1995 Nissan A31 into one of the most exclusive cars on Earth. All the parts used were replicas or self-made, except for a genuine Lamborghini RB25 engine. His team of workers only needed 12 days to complete the body of this home-made Lamborghini Reventon, and Asan estimates the whole deal will only cost him around 90,000 yuan ($13,800). Not too bad, considering the price of the original alternative.

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The Wooden World of Levi van Veluw

Dutch artist Levi van Veluw has recently 3 rooms covered with over 30,000 wooden blocks, balls and slats, as part of his last installation. Absolutely everything in the rooms, including every inch of the floor, walls, ceiling, even himself are covered in the same material – 4 square centimeters dark brown wooden blocks.

Every one of the 30,000 wooden blocks was made and glued in place by van Veluw, who also covered himself in them for his signature formal approach to self-portraiture. This unique installation, called Origins of the Beginning, is inspired by various aspects from the artist’s childhood bedroom, where he apparently spent many hours alone, between the ages of 8 and 14.

In case you’re wondering why van Veluw is burning the desk, in the video below, it’s because he had an obsession with fire, as a child.

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Couple Claim They Are Jesus Christ and Mary Magdalene

A couple who claim they are reincarnations of Jesus Christ and Mary Magdalene have recently set up camp in Queensland’s Bible Belt, joined by 30 – 40 followers.

Australian cult watchers are concerned about a new organization known as Divine Truth, led by Alan John Miller and Mary Suzanne Luck, who claim they are Jesus Christ and Mary Magdalene. According to The Courier Mail, the two rely on donations made by their followers in order to sustain themselves, and authorities fear they could be taking advantage of the vulnerable.

Mr. Miller, 47, was born in Luxton, South Australia, and is the father of two children from a past marriage, which ended when he began remembering details from his past life. He seems to believe this is his 22nd life and that he has the amount of divine love in his heart accumulated in 22 life cycles. Now he and his soul mate, 32-year-old Mary Magdalene, real name Mary Suzanne Luck, are reunited and have created their very own little cult, in Wilkesdale. Miller first bought 16 hectares of land in the area, and his followers soon followed his example just to be close to their charismatic spiritual leader.

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Daphne Selfe – A Successful Supermodel at 82

In a world obsessed with physical beauty and aging, 82-year-old Daphne Selfe proves you’re never too old to have a successful modeling career.

The grandmother of four has been working in the fashion industry for over 60 years, and thanks to her perfect posture, incredible cheekbones and long, grey hair she’s now more popular than she’s ever been. Daphne has appeared in commercials for companies like Nivea and Olay, has modeled for designers the likes of Dolce & Gabbana and was featured in fashion magazines Vogue and Marie Claire. She has never had any cosmetic surgery done, and managed to earn up to $1,600 a day working as a model.

Daphne Selfe began her modeling career in 1950. She was 20 years old and her colleagues at a department store in Reading, England, convinced her to enter a local modeling competition, which she ended up winning. Selfe went on to become a house model for clothing manufacturers and furriers and appeared in a few advertising campaigns. She remembers she had a decent career for about five years, but she was nothing special back then.

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World’s Most Expensive Popsicle Costs $1,000

Marquis Los Cabos luxury resort, in Baja California Sur, Mexico, offers its guests the most exclusive popsicle they’ve ever tasted, priced at 1,000 US dollars.

So what makes a simple popsicle cost so much money, apart from the chance to savor poolside in one of the most beautiful places on Earth. Well, rich people tend to have a soft spot for gold, so the world’s most expensive popsicle contains 24 carat gold and Tequilas Premium Clase Azul Ultra, a special brand of tequila which sells for $1,500 a bottle. The frozen treat is served poolside, on a classic plastic stick, with some gold chocolate coins. Although salt would have been much more appropriate for a tequila popsicle, this one contains sugar, to take the edge off.

If you don’t have a sweet tooth and real gold flakes don’t impress you enough to throw a whole grand on a popsicle, the guys at Marquis Los Cabos will gladly serve you a simple shot of Tequilas Premium Clase Azul Ultra for a mere $500.

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Shirley, the Chain Smoking Orangutan

A prisoner at a Malaysian zoo where attendants have turned their backs on animals a long time ago, Shirley the orangutan has developed a nasty smoking habit that is putting her life at risk.

Malaysia’s booming economy places it among the wealthiest countries in the world, but you definitely could’t tell by visiting one of its zoos. According to voluntary non-profit organization, Nature Alert, the south-eastern Asian country has some of the worst animal zoos on the planet, and while the government launched a new law forcing zoos to get up to standard within six months, no one believes this will happen without some serious publicity. A recent investigation conducted at 10 Malaysian zoos yielded some horrifying facts: animals were kept in dirty enclosures barely large enough to turn around in, others had no clean drinking water, while some were even force to perform in front of visitors.

But one of the most shocking cases is that of Shirley the orangutan, who begs for cigarette butts from tourists, in order to satisfy her tobacco addiction. She constantly reaches her arm out through the bars in order to get to the cigarettes and spends most of her day smoking one cigarette stump after the other. Some visitors apparently find her smoking pretty amusing since they blatantly ignore the “no smoking” sign in front of her enclosure and keep throwing her cigarette butts. When she isn’t smoking, the 25-year-old orangutan chews on sharp aluminum soda cans and all kinds of dangerous trash people throw in her cage.

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Argentine Farmer Makes Giant Guitar with 7,000 Trees

Pedro Martin Ureta, an Argentine farmer from General Levalle, has used 7,000 cypress and eucalyptus trees to create a giant guitar in memory of his late wife, Graciela.

Seeing this incredible design for the first time, I bet the first thing that comes to mind is “Photoshop”, but this one’s for real, folks. 70-year-old Ureta embedded this carefully planned design into his farm many years ago, and maintains it in honor of his wife, Graciela Yraizoz, who died in 1977, when she was only 25.

Mr. Ureta met Graciela in the 1960s, when he returned home after traveling to Europe, where he spent a lot of time with artists and revolutionaries. He was 28 when he first saw this beautiful 17-year-old girl and soon decided he wanted to spend the rest of his life with her. Despite the priest’s reluctant attitude, thinking Pedro wasn’t committed enough to loving Ms. Yraizoz all his life, the two got married and proved extremely devoted to each other.

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The Money Sculptures of Justine Smith

London based artist Justine Smith makes original sculptures and collages using real banknotes from various countries around the world.

From the artist’s website:

Paper has always been a primary material in the work of Justine Smith. Her current work is concerned with the concept of money and how it touches almost every aspect of our lives. She is interested in money as a conduit of power and also in the value systems with which we surround it. On a physical level a banknote is just a piece of paper, but it is what a banknote actually represents that is central to Smith’s work. Through her collages, prints and sculptures she examines our relationship with money in a political, moral and social sense, whilst also exploiting the physical beauty of the notes.

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Van Gogh’s Starry Night Recreated with Delicious Bacon

So what do you do when you have plenty of time and bacon on your hands? That’s an easy one, try to recreate some of the world’s most popular paintings.

At least that’s what Instructables user CooperTwist decided to do. He used one package of turkey bacon, two packages of regular bacon, a sharp knife, and two cutting boards, one for actual cutting, and the larger one as a canvas for his bacon masterpiece. He began by cutting the bacon into long strips, according to their color and ended up with five piles of goodness: light turkey bacon, dark turkey bacon, red bacon, pink bacon, and white bacon fat.

He then printed aversion of the original Starry Night and tried to focus on the things that stand out and make it unique: the swirling cloud, the tall village church and the dark treetop in the foreground. He used whole strips for the clouds and cut smaller pieces for the details around the village.

Van Gogh’s Starry Night was also recently recreated with 8,000 bottle caps, by two students from the University of Virginia.

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Artist Builds The Great Wall of Vagina

It’s not as old or as long as the Great Wall of China, but artist Jamie McCartney’s “Great Wall of Vagina” is definitely more shocking.

The English sculptor has spent the last five years working on this controversial artwork, casting plaster molds of 400 vulvas of women aged 18 to 76. The models used for the McCartney’s Great Wall of Vagina include mothers and daughters, identical twins, transgendered men and women, as well as a woman pre and post natal. He wanted to include as many possibilities as he could, and during the five years of work looked for someone who had suffered from genital mutilation to model for him, without success.

So why does someone create such a bizarre, intriguing work of art? Well, according to the artist:

Vulvas and labia are as different as a faces and many people, particularly women, don’t seem to know that… showing the variety of shapes is endlessly fascinating, empowering and comforting. For many women their genitals are a source of shame rather than pride and this piece seeks to redress the balance, showing that everyone is different and everyone is normal.

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China’s Incredible Fruit Pit Carving Art

The miniature folk art of fruit pit carving has been practiced in China for centuries, and is still praised for turning useless fruit stones into valuable works of art.

Nut carving (Heidao), which refers to both fruit pit and walnut carving, became popular during the Song Dynasty (960-1279), and by the time of the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) it had become one of the most appreciated art forms in mainland China, with royalty and high-ranking officials considering it fashionable to wear carved fruit pit accessories. Even today, intricate nut sculptures like those made in Suzhou, Yangzhou, Weifang in Shandong and Guangdong Province are famous for their level of detail and unique characteristics.

Often referred to as “an uncanny work of art“, fruit pit carving requires a series of skills and tools in order to produce a fine piece of art. One needs exceptional three-dimensional carving skills, a great deal of patience and most importantly, he has to be familiar with the irregular texture of a fruit pit. Peach stones are the most commonly used material for nut carving, and despite its many bumps and holes, a seasoned fruit pit carved can immediately tell if a pit is right for the artwork he has in mind.

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Canada Makes World’s Largest Ice-Cream Cake

Yesterday, Canadian company Dairy Queen has set a new world record by making the world’s largest ice-cream cake in Yonge and Dundas Square, Toronto.

It took 100 people over a year to plan the event, but after 30 years and 52 million ice-cream cakes sold, this was the perfect way to celebrate, according to Denise Hutton, vice-president of marketing at Dairy Queen Canada. Dozens of chefs worked around the clock using over 9,000 kg of ice-cream, 91 kg of sponge cake, around 136 kg of icing and Oreo crumbles, to beat the former world record, a nearly 8,000 kg ice-cream cake made by China, in 2006.

After the cake was completed and acknowledged by the Guinness Book of Records, pieces of it were served to the crowd gathered in Yonge and Dundas Square, with 100% of suggested donations going to Children’s Miracle Network. “When else can eating ice cream cake help to fund medical care, research and educational programs so that Canadian kids have access to world-class care? It’s the best of all worlds – a delicious treat and a great cause.” said the charity’s Paul Lethbridge.

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