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Straw Artist Commemorates Big-Ben

Rising proudly from the crop fields between Chester and Nantwich, Straw Ben is a straw replica of the famous Big-Ben, in London.

An ice-cream company from Britain thought of an original way to celebrate Big-Ben‘s 150th anniversary and came up with a very original idea. Using a steel frame and 500 bales of hay, they created a 70ft-tall replica of the famous clock-tower, almost a quarter the size of the real thing.

Nicknamed “Straw-Ben“, this straw masterpiece is surrounded by a fence and even has an alarm to discourage anyone who would try to climb it. Chris Sadler, the ice-cream company’s director, says these safety precautions were necessary, since the sculpture was very expensive.

This is just one of the straw works-of art created by this British ice-cream company and you can see some of their other creations in the photos below:

via Daily Mail

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Mona Lisa Painted in Coffee

Well, I think the name Mocha Lisa fits it best, and it wasn’t exactly painted in coffee, but recreated from thousands of coffee cups.

Mocha Lisa was created during The Rocks Aroma Festival, in Sydney, Australia and attracted the curious eyes of 130,000 people in just one day. This incredible coffee masterpiece took 8 people three hours to complete as well as 3,604 cups of coffee and 564 pints of milk.

The 20ft by 13ft replica of Leonardo da Vinci’s La Gioconda was created by adding various amounts of milk to the cups of coffee. I have to say the sepia effect achieved is simply incredible.

There’s a making-of video at the bottom, if you’re interested.

Photos by Alison Lyons/Solent

via Daily Mail

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Weirdest Super Mario Brothers Tattoos Ever

Mario and Luigi are, without a doubt, some of the most popular video-game characters in history and some people do the most outrageous things to prove their love for them

This dude, for example, got the Super Mario Brothers tattooed on the soles of his feet. I can’t even imagine how much this hurt and, even though the tattoo artist did a terrific job, I seriously doubt these tattoos are going to last a lifetime.

Photos by SimonMarcus

via Pure Nintendo

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Thomas the Trainsformer

With the world going crazy over the Transformers and the Gundam statue of Tokyo, people have forgotten all about nice old Thomas the Tank. But someone found a way to make him popular again by turning him into some sort of Transformer train.

This weird little toy has been auctioned on eBay by a person from Singapore, for a price of S$10. That’s 10 Singapore dollars, which translates to around 6 dollars US. The package is made up of three different color Thomas trains that come together to form the ultimate Trainsformer.

via Like Cool

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The World’s Most Beautiful Banknotes

I’ve never considered money as something beautiful to look at, but I have to admit, some banknotes look better than others. Here are the top 10 most beautiful banknotes in the world, according to David Standish, author of The Art of Money:

Top 10 currencies via CNBC

10. Faroe Islands (Kronurs)

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9. Iceland (Kronurs)

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8. Hong Kong (Hong Kong Dollars)

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7. Cook Islands (Cook Island Dollars)

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6. New Zealand (New Zealand Dollars)

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5. Comoros (Comorian Franc)

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4. Switzerland (Francs)

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3. Sao Tome & Principe (Dobras)

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2. The Maldives (Rufiyaa)

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1. The French Pacific Territories (Franc)

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They’re all interesting, I guess, but here are a few other nice looking banknotes from around the world, maybe even nicer than the ones in Mr. Standish’s top:

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Living Photos by Mole and Thomas

Taken at the beginning of the 20th century, by English photographer Arthur S. Mole and his American colleague John D. Thomas, these living photographs show thousands of American soldiers posing as symbols of American history.

I’ve seen a few of these living photos on the internet before, but it’s nice to finally find some real info about them, like what they represent and how many people were needed to create them.

via Telegraph.co.uk

The Living Uncle Sam: 19,000 officers and men at Camp Lee, Virginia, January 13, 1919

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The Human US Shield: 30,000 officers and men at Camp Custer, Battle Creek, Michigan, 1918

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The living emblem of the United States Marines, formed by 100 officers and 9,000 enlisted men at the Marine Barracks, Paris Island, South Carolina

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A portrait of President Woodrow Wilson, formed of 21,000 officers and men at Camp Sherman, Chillicothe, Ohio, 1918
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The Human Liberty Bell, formed by 25,000 officers and men at Camp Dix, New Jersey, 1918

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The Human American Eagle: 12,500 officers, nurses and men at Camp Gordon, Atlanta, Georgia, 1918

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Living insignia of the 27th Division, New York’s Own, breakers of the Hindenberg Line. Formed of 10,000 officers and enlisted men, March 18, 1919

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In the picture of the Statue of Liberty there are 18,000 men: 12,000 of them in the torch alone, but just 17 at the base. The men at the top of the picture are actually half a mile away from the men at the bottom

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Kissing Animals…Oh Hell No!

Have you ever fantasized about making-out with an animal? You have?!? That’s just twisted…

Although zoophilia and bestiality are taboo subjects in our modern society, artist Saiman Chow tackles these delicate issues in his latest artworks. It’s not my thing, but maybe someone out there appreciates this more.

via Trend Hunter

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Life Span – The Video Collection

What looks like the world’s biggest videotape collection, is actually an artistic display presented at this year’s Venice Biennale of Contemporary Art.

Entitled Life Span and displayed in a small church on Garibaldi Street, this giant block full of VHS videotapes is the work of Australian artists Claire Healey and Sean Cordeiro. In numbers 195,774 tapes and features a total recording time of 66 years.

Life Span is a physical representation of what a human being can see from its birth, to the day it dies.

via Drugoi

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A True Hand-Made Flag

If you thought you were going to see a hand-sown flag, then I’m going to have to disappoint you, but this is something way cooler.

The “left behind children” of migrant workers  went to work in China’s larger cities or abroad, together with volunteers from the University of Science and Technology, have made a 60-square-meters flag of China, using their hand imprints. The artwork was unveiled at Lintou middle-school, Hashan county, on July 21, 2009.

This is was their way of celebrating the 60th anniversary of the People’s Republic of China.

via China.org

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Meet the Real Life Invisible Man

35-year-old Liu Bolin, from Shandong, China, manages to camouflage himself in any surroundings, no matter how difficult they might be.

Liu works on a single photo for up to 10 hours at a time, to make sure he gets it just right, but he achieves the right effect: sometimes passers-by don’t even realize he is there until he moves.

The talented Liu Bolin says his art is a protest against the actions of the Government, who shut down his art studio in 2005 and persecutes artists. It’s about not fitting into modern society. Despite problems with Chinese authorities, Liu’s works are appreciated at an international level.

Photos by CATERS NEWS and Liu Bolin

via Telegraph.co.uk

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Fairytale Jewelry by Alidra Alic

In her new jewelry collection, “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland”, Alidra Alic showcases some of the weirdest rings I’ve ever seen.

But I mean that in the most positive way possible, the rings look very original, and even though you couldn’t wear on a day-to-day basis, Alidra Alic’s rings are perfect for a fantasy-themed party.

Photos by Dorte Krogh and Katrine Rohrberg

via  Cool Hunting

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Man Builds Oil Rig Out of Matchsticks

51-year-old David Reynolds, a dormer oil rig worker, spent 15 years of his life creating a matchstick replica of the Brent Bravo oil platform, from the North Sea.

The 21-foot-long, 12-foot-high wooden model weighs over half a ton and contains more than 4 million matchsticks, each of them polished and glued into place. David started working with matchsticks when his son bought him a matchstick train to build. He completed it in a few weeks, then started working on an oil rig.

He first built a smaller replica of an old platform he worked on for five years, before starting work on the big one. He calls them the Cathedrals of the Sea and spent up to 10 hours a day creating the finest details.

David Reynolds said he thought about destroying his masterpiece because he needed the space in his shed, but his wife convinced him to put it on display at the brickworks museum, in Southhampton. He also added he spent around 1600 British pounds buying matches from a wholesaler, buying them from a corner-shop would have put a 46,000 pound hole in his budget.

David’s matchstick oil platform is a worthy competitor for Patrick Anton’s matchstick Minas Tirith

via Telegraph.co.uk

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Rice Field Art in Rural Japan

You may think crop circles are cool, but they nothing compared to the rice field murals found in villages like Inakadate, Japan.

Using purple and yellow-leafed rice, combined with the more traditional green variety, the villagers of Inakadate create true agricultural masterpieces. This all began in 1993, when people thought of doing something spectacular, to revitalize the area.

During the first nine years, people only created a rice representation of Mount Iwaki, but then started plating intricate models. Landowners in the area agreed to use their parcels to create a 15,000 square meters “canvas” and, using a computer to pinpoint where every rice seed would be planted, managed to create some extraordinary works of art.

This year, in the village of Inakadate, people could see Napoleon and a Sengoku warrior, both on horseback, coming to life in the rice fields. The artworks are invisible from ground level, so the curious have to climb the village’s mock castle tower to admire them.

More than 150,000 people visit Inakadate every year, to see its amazing rice field art. That’s an impressive number of people considering the village has a population of just 8,700.

via Daily Mail

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Waldspirale – The Wooded Spiral of Darmstadt

Located in Darmstadt, Germany, the Waldspirale apartment-building was designed by Austrian artist, Friedensreich Hundertwasser, and built during the 1990s.

There are other apartment buildings in Darmstadt, but the U-shaped Waldspirale is special. Its diagonal roof is covered with grass, shrubs and trees and the facade follows an irregular grid organization.

Waldspirale has over 1,000 windows, but no two are the same. The handles on the apartment doors and the windows are also unique.

Waldspirale was completed in 2000 and people actually live in it.

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Dear Diary 1.0 – A Desk-Embedded Computer

This could be a sign of things to come, in a few years, desk-embedded computers may not seem like a novelty.

Designed by Marlies Romberg, a young graduate of the Utrecht School of Arts, Dear Diary 1.0 aims to be a fusion between the real world and the digital world. Here’s how Marlies explains her artwork:

“Personally, I am fascinated by how the world is changing into a digital world. To me it seems that; the digital world is personal but not private at all. For example, when I Google to find information about a friend, I will most likely find information about his life, his pets, his company and maybe a review on a digital camera that he has recently written. Notice that the digital verb ‘Googling’ has recently got the status of a real verb in the Netherlands. Just another example how the two worlds become one.”

Perhaps the coolest thing about the Dear Diary 1.0 is the porcelain and silicone Signet USB stick.

via Moco Loco

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