You are looking at a rock poster for the band Wolf Eyes by Chunklet Magazine Majordomo Henry Owings. This faux manhole cover was silkscreened onto an actual LP record (in my case, a Christian record by "Storytime Revival Band"). Now that's Crafty!
It's time to send mad, mad, mad, mad, mad props out to close personal friend of Extreme Craft, Kate Bingaman. Kate runs the website Obsessive Consumption, and has been a busy, crafty lady lately, churning out cuddly stuffed dollar signs, shirts, pins, and books...not to mention her art. Did I mention the art? Notably, Obsessive Consumption V.1 served as a journal of EVERY shred of ANYTHING that Kate purchased for over a year (earning the obsessive in the website name). I can't really tell you how entertaining it is to trawl through photographic evidence of her consumer joy...you just have to experience it for yourself. As anybody who has been through graduate school can tell you, there is only one thing that consumer joy while getting your MFA can bring...and that is a mountain of debt. Kate's not afraid to share the big scarlet "D" (for debtor) that she pinned on herself while paying back all of that debt.
Fortunately for us, that Scarlet "D" is Obsessive Consumption V.2, which chronicles Kate's road to debt-free living. She has been making drawings of all of her credit card statements, which she has packaged in a handmade book Shop and Awe. Additionally, the website contains links to other consumerist memes, ongoing projects, and the fabulous Obsessive Consumption Store Extravaganza, where you just might be able to purchase true happiness. I'm totally serious. LINK
London-based interactive media artist Matthew Falla has created an ingenious new way to remix music. As I understand it, Falla has designed CD packaging that contains a screen printed visual "circuit board" that contains information about the tracks on a CD. The user draws with a conductive marker on the packaging, connecting the the lines. The packaging is then inserted into a USB card reader connected to a computer, which controls the playback of the CD. Matthew's other projects include a bird feeder that discriminates against pigeons, a sneaky pirate TV souvenir, and a cut-out computer. LINK
I follow Rosie O'Donnell's weblog pretty religiously. It's an orgy of free verse about her life, her friends, the nature of celebrity, and whatever dadaist thoughts pop into her head. So I admit...I didn't exactly start reading it because I'm a fan of her poetry, television show, or acting (save the sublime Riding on the Bus with my Sister), but sustained reading of Rosie's blog is, I think, an unparalleled look into the sould of a person living within the celebrity sphere. Somehow, in all of the blog reading, I missed the fact that Rosie has an amazing Flickr photostream. In addition to pictures of her friends and family, there are plenty of collages and assemblages that she makes. While she may not be the next Joseph Cornell, she's amazingly prolific. Let it Bleed, Rosie!
What's the matter with Austin? From Hope Perkins' gangsta embroidery to Whitney Lee's softcore latchhook rugs, the town seems to be a lightning rod for extreme craft. Enter Jenny Hart, another founding member of the Austin Craft Mafia. She makes lavishly embroidered portraits of Country and Rocknroll icons, including Iggy Pop, Dolly Parton, and the White Stripes. Equal parts Andy Warhol, Nudie Cohen, and seedy tattoo artist, Hart takes embroidery to its logical extreme. As if running her own site and being a co-founder of the Austin Craft Mafia wasn't enough, Hart runs the Sublime Stitching, a website filled with her kits, books, projects, and thoughts. Submit! LINK
Dennis Stevens runs the thought-provoking weblog Redefining Craft. Periodically, he publishes a podcast on the site featuring thinkers from the Craft world discussing current issues. Dennis is trying to change the monolithic American Craft Council from the inside, bringing up issues of growth and future development for the Council's upcoming leadership conference. In the podcast, he interviews Dr. Stanley Bulbach, a fiber artist who packs a PhD in Ancient Near Eastern Studies. In the Interview, Dr. Bulbach talks about his struggles in cultivating critical thought within the Fiber Art Community.
Download MP3 HERE
Last night, I was listening to an old recording of Mother Maybelle Carter at the Newport Folk Festival circa 1963. She was giving an autoharp workshop, and explaining how she started to play the autoharp to mimic Sara Carter's distinctive flat-picking guitar style. It is precisely this MacGyver mentality that drives many crafters to create...not stopping to wonder too long whether something is possible, just getting down to brass tacks and doing it. I've always suspected that something similar is at work in scientists. Princeton University has just published the first in what I hope will become an annual event--The Art of Science competition. Princeton invited scientists in their community to submit images obtained in the course of their research. The results are staggering--nearly 200 entries from 100 individuals in 15 departments. Did you ever wonder what it might look to stare down a fallopian tube from inside the uterus? Wonder no more. I've attended more than my fair share of scientific symposia, and most involve endless powerpoint presentations and poster sessions done entirely on Microsoft Word. The quality of these images negate every screenbean that I've had to endure. LINK via BoingBoing
I have come to accept the fact that many of my friends live vicariously through me. Not everyone can handle living life with the knobs turned up to eleven. I'm always playing Whirlyball games against notable rock bands, drinking spicy ginger ale in seedy taverns, and...um... I guess that's as debaucherous as I get. Anyway, The New York Times blew the lid off of the whole debaucherous Rocknroll lifestyle in yesterday's Style Section. Check out this exchange between members of the Los Angeles Band Marjorie Fair:
Anything crazy - wink-wink - happen on the road?
"Evan taught me how to sew," the bassist, Scott Lord, said with genuine reverence. "He could thread a needle in the dark even when the road was bumpy."
"Er, that's not really a good image for our image," said Evan Slamka, the 30-year-old lead singer and guitarist. "I was making alterations."
I always knew that that crocheting posed a big threat to the establishment. While the British are spending their time trying to ban hoodies (or Bunnyhugs as twisted Canadians refer to them), a Washington D.C. law firm has its knickers in a twist over crocheted nudes being exhibited in a gallery in their building. A new exhibit at the Eleven Eleven Sculpture Gallery entitled Not The Knitting You Know features work by Ming-Yi Sung, a Washington area elementary school teacher who crochets sculptural nudes in allegorical and mythological settings. Certain humans at the law firm, who share the building with the gallery, were offended by the sculptures, and ordered them to be removed. The artist was initially (rightly) offended by their request, but has shown her grace (and wit) under fire by KNITTING A BUNCH OF FIG LEAVES for the exhibition. Viewers will now find crocheted fig leaves on the figures, and a codpiece (shaped like a real cod) on one of the male figures. LINK Thanks, Kacy!
This body of work was created during a Summer 2010 residency at the Pottery Workshop in Jingdezhen, China. These porcelain vessels explore traditional Chinese iconography as refracted through a decidedly Western point of view.