Meet Ai Hasegawa, the Woman Who Wants to Give Birth to a Shark

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With a population nearing nine billion people and food shortages becoming increasingly problematic, the human race needs sustainable solutions if it wants to survive. Japanese designer Ai Hasegawa has come up with a very controversial approach to solving environmental and food-related issues – the possibility of women giving birth to various animal species and eventually eating them.

In one of her most intriguing projects yet, “I Wanna Deliver a Shark…”, Ai Hasegawa tackles “the problem of human reproduction in an age of over-population and environmental crisis.” She envisions the possibility of humans one day giving birth to their food and satisfying both their nutritional needs and that of giving life. The 33-year-old says having a human baby isn’t as simple as some people think, especially with our world about to face a major food crisis. She argues that bringing new humans into this world is definitely not the answer, but giving birth to endangered animal species might be just what we need to survive. “We are genetically predisposed to raise children as a way of passing on our genes to the next generation but we live in an age where the struggle to raise a child in decent conditions is becoming harder with gross over-population and difficult environmental conditions,” Hasegawa says. “We must also eat, and we are equally facing growing food shortages as a result of over-fishing, land use and a growing population. By giving birth to an edible animal it might place more value on that endangered species and help prevent it’s extinction.”

Ai-Hasegawa

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Clothing in a Can – Designer Mixes Fashion and Science to Create Spray-On Fabric

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Spanish fashion designer Manel Torres is the man behind the world’s first spray-on clothing, which is applied directly on the body and can be washed and worn again just like your regular clothes.

It may sound like something out of a futuristic film, but Manel Torres actually patented his amazing spray-on clothing back in the year 2000. He came up with this original idea while studying for his MA in Fashion Women’s Wear, at the Royal College of Art, London. Torres was aware of the slow process of creating regular garments, from weaving the actual fabric to dyeing it and tailoring the clothing items, so he tried to come up with “a futuristic, seamless, quick and comfortable material.” I’m sure most of you can come up with even more outrageous concepts than a spray-on fabric, but the Spanish designer was determined to make his a reality. Since he had no real knowledge of chemistry he sought the help of scientists at the London Imperial College, and after years of research and testing, Manel invented the spray that turns into a wearable second skin in contact with the human body.

spray-clothing

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Fashion Designer Gets Married in Dress Made from 100,000 Bread Tags

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Australian fashion designer Stephanie Wilson married her high-school sweetheart in a unique dress made from 100,000 plastic bread tags she had collected over the last 10 years.

Stephanie Wilson and Will Wapling met and became friends while attending Belmont High School in Geelong. After completing Year 12, the two became a couple and moved in together. Stephanie remembers there was a pile of bread tags on the window sill of their home which they kept adding to. She and Will used to joke that when there were enough tags to make a wedding dress they would get married. It may have been a joke to them, but as soon as people found out about their plan they started collecting bread tags and giving them to the lovebirds. At one point, they were getting so many that Stephanie had to get bigger jars to store them in. Then, 10 years later, they realized their idea wasn’t so crazy after all, and decided to go through with it. Having dozens of jars full of plastic tags sitting in their home, Stephanie and Will were sure they had enough bread tags to make the dress. It turned out they were wrong, but luckily the groom-to-be had a baker cousin who came to the rescue with rolls of fresh tags.

bread-tag-dress

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World’s Bounciest Chair Is Made from 65,000 Rubber Bands

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It might look like just a colorful art piece, but Justin Moeller’s rubber band chair is functional piece of furniture able to sustain a grown man’s weight. The young industrial designer created the unique in 2011, by hand, from over 65,000 rubber bands.

Justin Moeller was in his final year at the Appalachian State University, in Boone, North Carolina, when a friends suggested he move past the traditional “rubber band ball” idea and use the office supply to make something truly unique – a chair. She noticed the strength and quality of the bands Justin was already experimenting with, and though an office chair would push the idea of what a rubber band is meant to do. Inspired by this suggestion, Moeller traveled to stationary shops in four different towns, buying up their entire stock of rubber bands each time, and even made some return trips once the shops restocked. He spent over $200 on the 65,000 stretchy bands and worked on building and perfecting his one-of-a-kind chair for 336 hours. “It almost looks like a fun toy that has been enlarged to a human scale where the user is sitting in a giant toy,” the designer says about his three feet-tall creation. “But though it may look like it is all for fun it also happens to be very comfortable. The back is made from rubber bands weaved within themselves to create a springy sitting area that softly holds the user.”

rubber-band-chair

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Designer Covers $500,000 Gold Ring with a Piece of His Own Skin

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The Forget Me Knot gold ring created by Icelandic fashion designer Sruli Recht is not your usual piece of luxury jewelry. The artist had a strip of his own skin surgically removed and mounted on a 24-karat-gold band.

We’ve featured some pretty bizarre jewelry on Oddity Central in the past, like the human-bone accessories of Columbine Phoenix, the finger and toe nail-clipping jewels of Rachel Betty Case, or the human hair necklaces of Kerry Howley, but Sruli Recht has managed to one up them all with his human skin ring. The eccentric designer shocked everyone when he decided to undergo surgery and have a strip of skin removed from his abdomen, to use on his very unique Forget Me Knot ring. After the operation, the 110 by 10 millimeters piece of skin, with the hair still intact, was salted and tanned before being mounted on the gold piece of jewelry. You can own this little part of Sruli Recht for the “small” price of €350,000.

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Designer Creates Fashionable Dresses Out of Thousands of Colorful Rubber Bands

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Bulgarian-born designer Margarita Mileva spends around 90 hours painstakingly knotting rubber bands together to create wearable dresses. Her latest creation numbers 18,500 rubber bands.

The first time we featured Margarita Mileva on OC was back in 2011, when she created a stunning pastel dress out of 14,235 pieces of rubbery office supplies. She beat that record by knotting together a 10-kilogram garment from orange and black rubber bands, inspired by the spirit of Polynesia and the tattoos of the Maori. It took 150 hours to complete, and comes with matching rubber band shoes. “I always had an eye for jewelry and love to design clothes, knit and make collages,” 49-year-old Mileva says. “So when I started making jewelry from reusing paperclips, punched business cards and rubber bands, it didn’t come as a surprise to anyone. Rubber band dresses were the next step – I am trying to create unique pieces that I would like to be seen as conversation openers.”

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California Water Tower Is Actually a Beautiful 3-Storey House

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If you look at the structure located at 1 Anderson Street, Seal Beach, California, you can see nothing but an ordinary water tower. But after a closer inspection you’ll realize it’s not filled with water, but common household items. It was several years ago, when the 100-year-old 9-storeys-tall water tower with a capacity of 75,000 gallons had outlived its purpose and was going to be torn down that a few local architects began taking interest in the structure. The tower was originally used to service steam engines traveling on the California coast. After the trains stopped running, the water tower was rendered useless. It was in danger of being demolished in the 1980s, when the architects stepped in, got permits and converted the tower into a beautiful home.

The process of converting a century-old structure into a home was no easy feat. First, the original water tank had to be removed and placed in a parking lot. After 18 months of renovation, a skilled team of engineers worked together to lift it up and put it back in its original place. A commercial elevator and two jacuzzis were added as the final touches to the 3000 sq ft. house. One of the jacuzzi tubs is actually on the upper deck and provides a view of the ocean. Almost every window in the house is fitted with stained glass. There are also two master bedrooms, a maid’s quarters, and four bathrooms. One of the bathrooms has rotating walls, so you could enter in the bedroom and come out from the hallway. The entertainment room has a 360 degree view, a built-in movie theatre, electric blinds and an indoor fire pit. From one direction you get to see the Pacific Ocean and the Catalina Island, and from another you get a view of the Newport Beach, Long Beach, Port of Los Angeles, San Pedro and San Bernardino Mountains. On a clear day, you can even get a glimpse of Los Angeles.

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Dutch Artist Spends 20 Years Building Life-Size Replica of Noah’s Ark

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Inspired by Noah’s Ark from the Book of Genesis, Dutch artist Johan Huibers built a modern day replica spending a whopping $1.2 million on it. His reasons for building the vessel  – he feared the effects global warming would someday have on his country, flooding included. The idea came to him in 1992, when he had a dream about his native land submerged in a flood similar to the one in the Book of Genesis. He continued to think about it until he finally did something about it. And the result is a 130m long, 29m wide, 23m high ark that he completed in 2005. Weighing almost 3000 tons and built from Swedish pine reinforced with steel, it is quite hard to believe that ark might be seaworthy at all, but this modern-day Noah assures us it does indeed float.

A carpenter by profession, Johan Huibers has now opened his full scale ark to the public and is attracting thousands of tourists from the world over. Located in Dordrecht, the Netherlands, the ark is something that would even surprise Noah, for it has a restaurant, two cinemas and of course, a menagerie of life-sized plastic animals. Towering over the flat Dutch landscape, the ark is easily visible from a nearby highway. Across the arks main hold is a huge space of stalls, where visitors can view a large collection of stuffed and plastic animals like zebras, gorillas, lions, tigers, bears and buffaloes. There’s also a petting zoo, where less dangerous real-life animals like dogs, sheep, rabbits, ponies and a few exotic birds are housed . On each level of the boat, around its edges, are displays about the history and dress of the ancient Middle East, a few scenes from the life of Noah, and games for kids like water pumps and levers that lift bales of hay. But the ark is not just about tourist attractions. Down below, there exists a honeycomb system of hatches, each opening an area where food could be sealed in for long-term storage. The curvature of the upper deck could be used to collect rainwater and also to let the horses and other animals get some exercise. Huibers says that his boat gives people a pretty good idea of how Noah’s ark would have worked in practice.

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24K Gold Pills Will Make Luxury Addicts Poop Gold

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Created back in 2005 by by late New York artist Tobi Wong in collaboration with Ken Courtney, these swallowable 24G gold pills are said to turn your innermost parts into chambers of wealth”.

Gold Pills were originally launched by Wong and Courtney as part of their ‘Indulgence’ line – an art project that comments on society’s ‘ever-expanding market of luxury items’, but in the last seven years, they’ve become quite the hit with luxury addicts, and their price has skyrocketed to $425. That’s probably just chump change for rich kids looking for new ideas to take their already decadent lifestyles to new heights, so it’s no wonder Citizen:Citizen, the webstore selling the pills states that they are ‘temporarily unavailable’. It’s not clear if for the above-mentioned price you get one or three gold pills, but I bet some of the people who bought them actually swallowed them to see if it makes their poop glitter. Either that or they are really big fans of Tywin Lannister.

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Serafin Villarán, the Man Who Built His Own Castle

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Located in Cebolleros, a small community in the province of Burgos, northern Spain, Castillo de las Cuevas, or Castle of Caves, is the result of one man’s ambition and determination. Serafin Villarán dreamed of having his very own castle, and he single-handedly turn his dream into a reality.

Born in 1935, in the town of Burgos, Serafin was a simple man, working as a welder in a local factory. He didn’t have much experience in construction, until that day in 1977 when he got the idea to build himself a fairy-tale castle. He was 42 years old, yet he decided to follow his dream of create a castle-shaped home for him and his family. He bought a piece of land, and without any real architectural knowledge began working on his masterpiece. He mainly used rounded stones which he collected from the nearby rivers Nela and Trueba, and fixed them together with concrete to give his Castillo de las Cuevas an authentic look. Construction began without a preconceived plan, and according to his family he relied only on his imagination and books on Spanish castles as inspiration.

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Man Builds UFO House to Prove His Ex-Girlfriend Wrong

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Thinking of going to Roswell in the hopes of spotting a UFO? Don’t bother, just head out to the southern coast of Puerto Rico where you’re guaranteed to see one. It may not be able to fly, but it’s bizarre shape and colorful decorations make it quite a sight.

58-year-old Roberto Sanchez Rivera has been planning his unique UFO house for about 40 years. In a perfect world, I’d be saying his inspiration for the project was love, but this is the real world and Roberto’s true motivation was sweet revenge. In his youth years, when he was just a dreamy, artistic student from a poor family, he courted a girl by sending her love notes decorated with drawings of UFOs, and telling her he would one day build a UFO-shaped house. Not the usual pick-up lines, that’s for sure, but he eventually made her his girlfriend, if only for just three months. After she broke off their relationship, the girl’s mother told Rivera it was because she thought he would never amount to anything in life. Rather than crying his heart out, drowning his sorrow in booze or burying himself in work, the man started plotting his revenge. The truth is he was so devastated that he even contemplated suicide, but then he said “No, I’m going to show her, this person, I’m going to work that much harder to show her who I am.”

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Vegetarian Designer Opens Special Butcher Shop with Fluffy Meats

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It’s called “Aufschnitt” (German for “cold cuts”) and it’s a unique butcher shop created by designer Silvia Wald, who is actually a vegetarian. What’s even more bizarre is that she makes all the “meats” herself, by hand, out of fabric…

Every item on display at Silvia Wald’s Aufschnitt shop looks good enough to eat, only nothing is really edible. The young designer creates all her products from textile material and sells them as pillows, cushions or cool decorations. An engineer for clothing technology, Wald started making her delicious fluffy meats in 2009, as a small project, but after seeing how popular her few sausages were, she started making all kinds of other textile foods, from salami to large pieces of ham, from materials like cotton stretch velvet, lycra, wool or micro fibre. Then she opened her own little butcher shop in Berlin, where she sells her creations to both meat lovers and vegetarians. The designer says her favorite clients are the kids who always like to take a bite of her forever-fresh products,  just to see if they’re edible.

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The Book That Can’t Wait Literally Disappears if You Put It Down

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An Indie Argentinian publishing house has come up with an innovative concept, using disappearing ink that simply fades away in two months time.

Dubbed “El Libro que No Puede Esperar” (The Book That Can’t Wait), this interesting format was pioneered by independent Argentinian publishing house Eterna Cadencia, as a way to promote young authors, who ”if people don’t read their first books, never make it to a second.” The intriguing books come sealed in a plastic wrapper, and once that is removed and the books cracked for the first time, the ink begins to age and in 60 days time readers are left with nothing but the covers and a bunch of blank pages. So if you want to get your money’s worth, you really can’t put one of these books down too often, after you’ve bought it.

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Dresses Made from Red Wine Probably Look Better with Time

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A team from the University of Western Australia have added a bacteria to red wine and managed to create a cotton-like fabric that can be used to make anything from dresses to t-shirts and swimwear.

Although still in the early stages of development, this technique of making clothes from wine could one day become mainstream, at least according to the people who came up with the idea. ’This project redefines the production of woven materials. ’By combining art and science knowledge and with a little inventiveness, the ultimate goal will be to produce a bacterial fermented seamless garment that forms without a single stitch,’ lead researcher Gary Cass said. Still, the technology is far from perfect, and there will probably be a long time before people will be wearing casual clothes made from Pinot Noir or Merlot.

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17-Year-Old Makes Her Own Prom Dress Out of Old Homework

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Just in case you needed more proof that you don’t actually need designer labels to attract attention, here’s the story of Kara Koskowich, who created her prom dress out of old homework.

After graduation, most students never want to look at homework again, but 17-year-old Kara Koskowich actually decided to look good IN it, by making a unique prom dress out of her old math homework. “For me, it’s not a big, spend your money, you have to look this nice, you have to fit into this mould of grad,” the Canadian girl told CBC, so she decided on a more creative and far less expensive alternative to the classic prom dress. So instead of going window shopping, Kara started thinking about what would make a really interesting dress for prom. And although she had made up her mind since March, and even started working on the dress back then, she only barely managed to finish it in time for the big night. ”I did most of it the last week because I’m that kind of person. I procrastinate,” Kara said.

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