Chinese Artist Lives on a Scale to Lose Weight in Public

Chinese artist Wang Jun is going to be spending a whole month at the Yitel and Yi Hotel in Beijing. Not in any of the luxury rooms, but as a display piece in an art project called “Keep Fit Deal – 15”.  He’s going to be spending the whole time on an electronic weighing scale, not even leaving to eat, drink or use the restroom. A live video stream will be tracking his every move, broadcasting it online. Wondering why in the world he would do such a thing? Well, I found it kind of confusing myself, but it appears that he’s trying to accomplish several things at once. The most important, of course, being weight loss.

Wang Jun says he’s 15 jin (that’s about 7.5kg) overweight and he’d like to lose it all in the public eye. So people can always see on the scale how much he’s lost (or gained). Well, the lack of movement alone will make it hard for him to lose weight, but maybe he’s also planning to do some exercise right on the scale. Apart from shedding the extra pounds, he is also interested in using his body as a media outlet. He wants to experience the physical and psychological limits of connecting with a public space. Jun calls his experiment ‘artistic’. Now, that just makes me laugh, how people can call sitting put for a whole month, art. But according to Jun, his project is of an ascetic nature, intended to highlight the social realities of greed and pleasure-seeking, while criticizing the craze in society for the ‘so called-popular’ things.

Read More »

The Gun Powder Drawings of Cai Guo Qiang

Also known as China’s most explosive artist, Cai Guo Qiang uses gun powder to create some truly unique works of art. His technique of igniting gun powder on a paper canvas is considered a new medium of contemporary artistic expression.

Fire and explosion seems to be a very popular art theme these days. We’ve recently covered the works of Radya Timofey, a 23-year-old artist who paints with Molotov cocktails, and Rob Tarbell, who guides the smoke of open flames to create detailed artworks, so Cai Guo Qiang fits right in. The famous Chinese artist started using gun powder as an art medium in 1989, when he used fuse lines to create explosions that lasted between 1 and 15 seconds, for public audiences. But his works has evolved a great deal since then, and he now uses modern technology to create much more detailed works, and even aerial explosions supervised by experienced pyrotechnicians.

Read More »

Man Says He’s Been to Heaven Four Times, Draws Map

No offence to 64-year-old Sibusiso Mthembu, but hearing his story just made me laugh out loud. Of course, the South African from KwaZulu-Natal tells it in all seriousness. And who knows, he may even be telling the truth about having visited heaven four times, so far. The first time was in 1998, and subsequent visits were made in 2004, 2006 and 2008. It all started in 1993, when a white man (an angel, apparently) paid him a visit and told him he was needed in heaven. And now, after several visits, he’s drawing a map to make sure the rest of us ‘unlucky’ ones get what he’s talking about.

But it’s not the fact that he took a few vacations to heaven or even that he’s drawing a map that amuses me. It’s more to do with the stuff he says he’s seen and done there. According to Mthembu, there are 11 heavens in all, and he was taken to the fifth one, Crista, first. It was there, in a city called Sharmoy, that he claims to have met Jesus. The main heaven is Salem, he says, where God’s temple is located. God is apparently in his youth, and of a Grayish complexion. Jesus is white. He saw God for the first time during his second trip, on a planet called Jadalem that’s mostly covered in water and ice.

Read More »

People CAN Fly: Man Takes Off with Custom-Made Bird Wings

How many times have you wished you could soar through the sky like a bird, only to remind yourself that it wasn’t possible? For me, it must have been a million times. But now it doesn’t seem like such a remote possibility, not after watching this video of a man flying with a pair of custom-made wings.

Flying is something humans have been obsessed with, the one form of movement that we’ve never been able to master. Several attempts have been made over the centuries to invent the perfect set of wings that could enable man to fly independently. Now, it appears that this has finally happened, if the claims of Jarno Smeets are to be believed. The authenticity of a video he created of himself flying is being questioned, but it sure does appear like he’s doing it for real. And he looks like he’s having a hell of a time.

Read More »

Hula Hoop Helps Woman Lose Massive Weight

Who knew that an old childhood pastime could actually help adults lose weight. And I’m talking massive weight here. 31-year-old Jen Moore simply hula-hooped her way from a huge 288lbs to a trim 145lbs. Now she’s a fitness trainer with the very same company that helped her shed it all. Sure does sound like a dream come true.

Jen couldn’t hula hoop when she first got started. Not surprising really, looking at her before pictures. But what’s admirable is that she stuck to it, and within two weeks she was able to keep the hoop spinning around her waist. There’s been no looking back since then. Within just three months of learning the skill, she ended up losing 40lbs of body fat. Take a look at Jen’s ‘after’ pictures and you would never believe she was once obese. “I would go to my local YMCA and stake out a little corner on the court while the guys played basketball and snickered,” she says. “From day one, I felt a tremendous difference in my core strength, confidence and energy just from the workout involved in dropping, bending over and picking up the hoop.”

Read More »

Serene Seascape Mural Made of 500,000 Fishhooks

Cuban artist Yoan Capote uses all kinds of unusual materials to create beautiful art installations. For one of his latest project, Isla, he used around 500,000 fishhooks to build a photo-like seascape mural.

Throughout the years we’ve featured a lot of talented artists with the power of turning everyday objects into stunning masterpieces, and today we’re proud to add Yoan Capote to our ever-growing list. The Cuban artist is famous for the way he manages to take common household objects and create beautiful artworks, but I think his latest creation is also his most impressive one. Named Isla, the 26-foot-wide mural was assembled out of half a million intertwined fishhooks, nails and oil. Looking at it from a distance, you’d think it’s just a photo of the calm open sea, but as you draw near, the secret behind the realistic seascape is revealed. Even with the help of 30 assistants, Yoan Capote took since months to complete his fascinating fishhook mural.

Read More »

5 Talented Artists Who Paint with Wine

If there’s one thing I’ve learned writing for OC, it’s that the truly talented are able to create breathtaking art out of literally anything, even ordinary stuff like packing tape or sprinkles. So when I read about wine art, I decided to look up the artists who work with the drinkable medium. After doing a little snooping around, we discovered these five amazing artists, who create the most beautiful wine paintings.

Christina LoCascio

What would a person with a Fine Arts degree and a career in the wine industry do? Why, paint with wine, of course! And that’s exactly what Christina LoCascio has been doing since 2002. She is credited with the development of a new technique using wine as her palette, making use of different grape varieties. Several paintings in Christina’s portfolio reflect a wine narrative – there are vineyards, grapes and wine bottle portraits. She also uses subjects to portray the emotional experience of enjoying a glass of wine. Her art has a very classy, elegant feel to it.

Read More »

Beautiful Leila Khaled Portrait Made of 3,500 Lipsticks

Last year, Palestinian artist Amer Shomali paid homage to Leila Khaled, a woman revolutionary who became famous as “the poster girl of Palestinian militancy” after hijacking a plane, in 1969. He created a unique portrait made of 3,500 lipsticks for an art exhibition at Birzeit University.

We’ve featured many awesome pixelated portraits on Oddity Central, like the one made of plastic bottle caps, by Marry Ellen Croteau, or that of Shannon Larratt, made of 10,000 metal nails, but this is the first one we’ve senn made of thousands of lipsticks. Using the famous photo of Leila Khaled holding an AK-47 and wearing a kaffiyeh, taken by Eddie Addams as reference, Amer Shomali created a sort of canvas out of lipstick holders and then arranged 3,500 lipsticks of 14 different colors to best recreate the Palestinian icon’s visage. Called “Icon”, Shomali’s artwork was featured in a an art exhibition organized at Birzeit  University.

Read More »

The Hikikomori – Japan’s Social Outcasts

Hikikomori (Japanese for “pull in”) is a term that refers to reclusive adolescents and young adults who choose to isolate themselves from social life. With about a million people in Japan suffering from Hikikomori, I suppose you could call it an epidemic of sorts. Except, the condition is not spread through physical means, it’s purely psychological. It is a phenomenon of social withdrawal that’s pretty much swept the nation in the past few years. About 80% of hikikomori are male, in their teens or twenties, and do not leave the confines of their rooms. They don’t go to school or to work, spending their days in the homes of their parents, reading, watching TV or surfing the internet, consuming meals left for them at the door.

A good example of a typical hikikomori is this boy I’ve been reading about. His mother supposedly refused to reveal his name, fearing social retribution for the boy. The 17-year-old was a normal child, but began to hate school about three years ago. This was after he became a victim to bullying and anonymous hate letters. One day, he suddenly returned home and locked himself in the kitchen. He’s been in there ever since, refusing to come out or let anyone in. The family’s response to this most unusual condition is even more strange. They have simply ‘moved on’, accepting the boy’s behavior as something he will eventually grow out of. They’ve built a new kitchen in the house, and his mother takes meals to his door three times a day. In fact, this is the manner in which most Japanese respond to hikikomori – with utmost tolerance.

Read More »

Urine Iron Man Wins Art Competition

The title is a little misleading, so to make things clear, we’re talking about the face of Iron Man made of real urine, in a toilet bowl. This unusual artwork was actually considered better than 600 other entries in a popular art competition.

You don’t often get the chance to associate Iron Man with urine, but this is one of those rare occasions, and we only have a geeky Taiwanese guy to thank for it. But how does one get the crazy idea to paint a portrait of one of Marvel’s most popular superheroes with urine. Well, this particular art school graduate was taking care of business one day, in the bathroom, when he noticed blood in his urine. Now, most everyone else would have panicked and ran straight to the doctor, but not this fellow. Looking at the colors in his pee, he immediately thought of the colors of Iron Man’s suit, and felt inspired to create a portrait of the popular crime-fighter using his very own urine.

Read More »

Strange Addictions: Woman Addicted to Drinking Her Own Urine

It’s disgusting, funny and sad all at once, what 53-year-old Carrie from Colorado Springs goes through. She has been addicted to drinking her own urine for over four years now. Her urine intake amounts to about 80 ounces a day, and since she began she has consumed over 900 gallons. “I drink almost all the urine that comes out of my body. It tastes like water for me,” she says.

What makes Carrie’s condition all the more weird is that she doesn’t just drink urine from a glass. I watched this video of a program about her on the TLC channel, where she gathers up the courage to confess her habit to her friend Denise. During the confession, she describes in detail exactly what  she does with the urine. Some of it goes in the regular way, through a glass. But then she puts some of it in a Neti pot and drinks it nasally. And some, she actually drinks through her eyes using an eye cup. She even brushes her teeth with it, and saves some so that she can rub aged urine all over her skin. Carrie says that it’s the nasal drinking that hurts the most. “The pain is different than any pain you’ve experienced.”

Read More »

Weird Chinese Massage Therapy Involves Meat Cleavers

If a man came at you with a meat cleaver, your first instinct would obviously be to run for your life. But  not for the people of Hsinchu, in northern Taiwan. Because for them, being tapped with the sharp end of a cleaver is actually a form of therapy that is known to cure many ailments. They line up in large numbers to meet the therapist, who prepares by sharpening the instrument on a wet stone and rubbing iodine all over the blade.

The Chinese knife massage is probably a treatment you’d only expect in hell, but in reality it’s said to increase blood flow, release the body’s stored energy and wash away harmful toxins. The treatment itself is pretty simple: all the therapist does is hold a couple of cleavers and strike the patient repeatedly with the sharp edge. No, don’t be horrified, there’s no blood involved. The trick is to bring down the cleaver with just the right amount of force, and then to not push or pull it once it touches skin. The up-and-down movement of the cleaver is said to release static energy, which leads to self- cure. “Chop, chop, chop, and the pain will go away,” is the motto that the knife therapists use to convince clients.

Read More »

Artist Uses Lovers as Living Paintbrushes

Alexander Esguerra,  a New York-based artist, has invented the perfect recipe for love and art to go hand in hand. The couples who participate in his sessions not only get to make love, they also get to take a great souvenir home – a piece of art born from their sensual ‘act’.

Esguerra invites couples to cover themselves in non-toxic, water based paint and then ‘do as they please’ on a canvas on the floor. At the end of the love-making session, what results is a wonderful painting for the world to admire. It’s just like making babies I guess, equally messy, but without any diapers to be changed later. The concept has caught on pretty well, and is turning out to be quite popular. So much, that he’s actually converted it to a business called ‘Love and Paint’. The art packages are provided at luxury hotels, starting at $2,500. There have been fifty couple participants so far.

Read More »

Chinese Family Turn Abandoned Toilet into Cozy Home

“There’s no place like home!”, I believe the saying goes, and this modest migrant family from China proves it applies even when home is an abandoned public toilet in the city of Shenyang.

Zeng Lingjun was born in a small village, in the Jilin Province of Northeastern China. As a boy, he dreamed of one day attending college, but because his family was too poor he had to abandon his dream and settle for becoming a cobbler and repair shoes for a living. But just because he couldn’t afford to go to college, didn’t mean he was willing to spend the rest of his life in his village. He had bigger plans for himself, so one day, with just 50 yuan ($8) in his pocket, he left for Shenyang, the biggest city in northeast China. Being a hard worker and a skilled cobbler helped Zeng make a living in the big city, and he was soon earning around 2,000 yuan (315) per month. But this wasn’t enough for him to get his own place.

Read More »

The Real Ghostwriter? Mysterious Emails from Beyond the Grave

Looks like the dead have left behind Ouija boards and upgraded to e-mail communication. That is, if the story of Jack Froese is to be believed. The 32-year-old from Dunmore, PA, died last June from a heart arrhythmia. But last November, a couple of people received e-mail messages from him containing personal information that only he could know.

For instance, Tim Hart, his childhood buddy got this message: “Did you hear me? I’m at your house. Clean your f-cking attic!!!” The subject line read, “I’m watching.” Now, according to Tim, only Jack could have sent a message like this, because they had had a conversation about what to do with the attic space shortly before Jack’s death. Jack’s cousin, Jimmy McGraw, also received a similar e-mail, warning him about an ankle injury that he’d suffered after Jack’s death. “I knew you were going to break your ankle, tried to warn you, gotta be careful.” Mc Graw believes the message to be a sign that Jack is trying to connect with him, telling him to move along and feel better.

Read More »

Page 217 of 419« First...102030...215216217218219...230240250...Last »