Six Students Design Solar-Powered Lamps From Collagen, Black Beans, and Agave Plants
June 1, 2020

A 2019 study notes that 1.8 million residents of Mexico live without electricity, while some sources say an additional five million have limited access. In an effort to provide affordable, sustainable solar power, six students from the Instituto Tecnológico de Monterrey have designed lamps that can be constructed easily with materials commonly found throughout Mexico’s rural areas. Using wicker, agave plants, coconut bark, adobe, collagen, and black beans, the designers have created hand-held vessels powered by reusable solar cells and LED lights. More Continue reading

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2,863 Prescription Pills and Candy Cycle Through a Satirical Animated Short
May 30, 2020

Animation director Patrick Smith ingeniously interchanges a variety of pills, capsules, and syringes with similarly shaped candy in a vertiginous new short film. Parodying the ubiquity of modern pharmaceutical use, “Candy Shop” opens by noting that there are a staggering 11,926 prescription drugs available to consumers. Smith shows only 2,863 as he juxtaposes them with individually wrapped sweets, boxes of Gobstoppers, and rolls of Hubba Bubba Tape, which are eerily comparable in size, shape, and color. More Continue reading

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Pop Culture Icons Undergo Taxonomic Studies in These Vintage-Style Illustrations
May 29, 2020

How would you biologically classify a hippogriff? Austin-based illustrator Chet Phillips is offering his own taxonomic studies for some of pop culture’s most iconic characters as part of his Unnatural History series. Through vintage-style illustrations, the artist renders a flying monkey from The Wizard of Oz, Krampus, and The Lion King‘s animated duo Timon and Pumba complete with their identifying information.
You can browse the entire Unnatural History collection and pick up your own print on Etsy. More Continue reading

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Archaeologists Excavate a Stunning Roman Mosaic That’s Untarnished From an Italian Vineyard

Archaeologists made an extraordinary discovery this week when they uncovered a pristine mosaic that’s been hidden underneath feet of soil since the 3rd century. Situated in a private vineyard in the town of Negrar di Valpolicella, the tile flooring is believed to be part of an ancient Domus, the style of home owned by wealthy residents. Since October of 2019, excavators have been working to outline the building’s perimeters and dig for notable artifacts. More Continue reading

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Ai Weiwei Has Designed Face Masks to Raise Funds for COVID-19 Relief

A defiant middle finger, a heap of sunflower seeds, and various mythical creatures are all silk-screened in black ink on the blue cloth backdrops of nonsurgical masks. The artworks the most recent intervention by artist and activist Ai Weiwei (previously) to help raise money for organizations directly involved with combating the coronavirus pandemic.
Inspired by a documentary he’s making about COVID-19, the artist decided to create an entire collection after printing his iconic middle finger onto one of the disposable cloths. More Continue reading

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Adorably Derpy Canines and Chunky Hounds Masterfully Chiseled into Wood by Misato Sano
May 27, 2020

Misato Sano ensures that she always has a loyal companion by her side, albeit with a little less slobber and fur. Based in the Myagi prefecture of Japan, the sculptor carves wooden busts and full figures of well-groomed dogs, preferring to leave the small gouges from her chisel on their textured exteriors. Despite being stationary, the pups have typical canine qualities like plump bodies, panting tongues, and pink bows adorning their ears.
Each figure has a distinct facial expression, whether curious, joyful, or contemplative. More Continue reading

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Doughy Braids and Sliced Fruits Arranged into Sumptuous Pies by Karin Pfeiff-Boschek
May 26, 2020

While many people are spending their days starting batches of sourdough, Karin Pfeiff-Boschek has been busy baking sweet pies with mesmerizing arrangements that appear almost too pretty to eat. She tops each pastry with a delicate floral motif of flaky dough, a precisely arranged gradient of sliced fruit, or a checkered weave braided in rows.
The pastry designer tells Colossal that she was raised in a family of bakers, although pies weren’t her first form of artistic expression. More Continue reading

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