March 31, 2012 § 2 Comments
Creativity has no limit, no borders, no specific medium. Each artist chooses his medium to express himself, to convey meaning or even to ease the pain. For Japanese artist Motoi Yamamoto‘s his medium of choice is salt (more precisely tons of salt) and his story is a little bit different. He builds giant sculptures entirely out of salt and creates incredibly salt maze floor installations to commemorate his sister, who died at the age of 24 from brain cancer.
He perhaps found the healing power of salt, since, as alice says in My Modern Met “salt has a special place in the death rituals of Japan, and is often handed out to people at the end of funerals, so they can sprinkle it on themselves to ward off evil”.
As a way to deal with grief or not, we can’t stop staring and admiring his pieces of art.
At least, we won’t turn into a pillar of salt like Lot’s wife just by looking at these amazing pieces. See more after the jump
September 15, 2011 § Leave a Comment
August 9, 2011 § Leave a Comment
New Transit Yurikamome (新交通ゆりかもめ, formally the Tokyo Waterfront New Transit Waterfront Line, 東京臨海新交通臨海線): the first Tokyo transit line to be completely automated, which runs solely on computers and connects Odaiba to the mainland, passing through the Rainbow Bridge.
Photographer Appura Pai captured this journey with his long-exposure shots in the new high-speed rail.
See more photos after the jump « Read the rest of this entry »
May 22, 2011 § 1 Comment
Does a book cover always reflect the essence of the book itself? And how the artistic outcome of the cover changes when the same book is translated in other languages? Check out some vintage book covers of Jack Kerouac’s “On the Road” from all around the world.
Super long list of book covers follows after the jump « Read the rest of this entry »
April 8, 2011 § Leave a Comment
Mostly things from the past in this selection of links:
- “I first had a version of this at a Japanese monastery during a silent retreat—don’t ask, it’s a long story” and other pretentious quotes from Gwyneth Paltrow’s cookbook – eater
- Truly interesting: what is newsgathering, what is curating, what is piracy? – boingboing
- Nostalgia: Commodore 64 is back on the market (same exterior, new processor) - New York Times
- In other retro news, 100 Atari games come to the iPhone and iPad – boingboing
- And in other iPad news, here is a gallery of the best iPad self-portraits – mashable
- 600 year old stone markers Japan offer tsunami advice, like: “Always be prepared for unexpected tsunamis. Choose life over your possessions and valuables.” – GOOD.is
March 11, 2011 § 3 Comments
My friend Yumi lives in Tokyo. Telephone lines are down, but I managed to get in touch with her on the internet. She was at work when the earthquake hit. She is now in the famous business hub of Shinjuku, evacuated on the streets. No mass transit works. She decided to walk home, on the north of Tokyo. That’s 7,5 km. I will keep her digital company. This is our path:
Update: Yumi just arrived home safe, after 5 or so hours.
March 9, 2011 § 3 Comments
File this under: incredibly amazing.
Sohei Nishino is a very persistent photographer, to say the least. He roamed the streets of London by foot, took 4000 photographs printed them in his dark room and created this collage by hand (with a little help of the old scissors and glue). The end result looks like an aerial view of London, faithful to its topography, although it is made up from street view snapshots.
And I repeat: incredibly amazing.
Part of the Guardian Eyewitness Series
March 4, 2011 § 2 Comments
Picture this: a line of Japanese people sitting cross-legged. They’re holding matryoska dolls. They have stethoscopes on. The move their hands in unison, never touching the matryoskas. What are they doing? Playing music of course!
These matryoskas are called matryomins and are theremin instruments.If, up to now, you didn’t know what theremins are, that makes two of us.
Theremin is the original electronic music instrument, invented in 1928 by Russian engineer Leon Theremin. According to wikipedia “the controlling section usually consists of two metal antennas which sense the position of the player’s hands and control oscillators for frequency with one hand, and amplitude (volume) with the other, so it can be played without being touched”. Dmitri Shostakovich was one of the first composers to experiment with theremin and it was popular up to the ’60 in movie soundtracks (most notably Miklós Rózsa’s works), but fell out of fashion as more advanced electronic music instruments emerged. It still has a niche audience, and a DIY movement that goes along with it.
February 22, 2011 § 4 Comments
Is water shapeless? Or does it take all possible forms? In his mesmerizing video, Shinichi Maruyama from Nagano, Japan captures the countless shapes that water can take. In slow motion.
It is not the first time that Shinichi Maruyama plays with water. In his past series of photographs, titled Kusho, which means ‘writing in the sky’, he has blended black ink into water and has photographed this ‘encounter’ in order to capture in space and time the creative intersections of these two different media before they merge into one.
February 11, 2011 § 7 Comments
MIT prof. Erik Demaine (a homeschooled prodigy who enrolled in University at 12 and became the youngest faculty member at MIT at 20 years old) teaches such courses as Geometric Folding Algorithms: Linkages, Origami, Polyhedra (video lectures available online).
Demaine is a mathematician, but also an origami artist himself with exhibits in MoMA’s permanent collection:
[And if you are wondering why MIT holds courses in origami, this is the reason: origami folding techniques are used in industrial products like airbags, and, especially, in space technology with objects such as foldable telescopes and satellite wings]
February 5, 2011 § 4 Comments
If you were a camera, not a person, and if you traveled from Tokyo to Osaka on a bullet train, and you were looking out the window and NEVER blinked, this is what you would see:
Tim Lisko took these abstract photographs by keeping the shutter of his camera open, while the train travelled in great speed.
See more photographs at his site, Liskotography.
January 31, 2011 § 6 Comments
The bento is no ordinary lunch box. It is a culinary universe, contained in a lunch box. I admit to having a soft spot for Japanese food and Japanese aesthetics, so it’s no wonder bentos fascinate me. Not just because they are beautiful. Because there is a whole different approach to food behind them.
- Bentos elevate the idea of a lunch box. Not the rushed junk lunch one usually has at work, but the kind you take time to prepare for yourself or loved ones.
- Bentos celebrate the ephemeral beauty of things. The beauty you glance at for a few seconds after opening the bento box and before devouring your lunch. So zen.
- Bentos are all for portion control (bento boxes are notoriously small) and healthy food choices (traditionally rice, fish, vegetables and fruits are the prefered bento choices)
Bentos range from minimal to elegant…
…and from kawai (cute) to completely outrageous (and some times kitch)
See a gallery of the best bento boxes we found on Flickr after the jump