Considering Complexity and Ritual, an Imaginary Universe Emerges from Psychedelic Digital Illustrations

Luis Toledo has a knack for building ethereal universes. The Madrid-based artist, who works under the moniker Laprisamata, digitally illustrates otherworldly scenes and composite characters formed from vibrant blocks of color, patterns, and mundane objects, like pineapples and leaves. “I am interested in working on the complexity of human beings and animals, working against the medical anatomy atlases that try to simplify living beings. Nature always develops complex shapes, and I try to imitate that,” he tells Colossal. More Continue reading

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Okuda San Miguel Transforms a Stark Lighthouse in Spain into a Technicolor Beacon
September 11, 2020

Situated along the coast in Cantabria, the Faro de Ajo has been transformed from a barren facade into a vivid display of more than 70 hues. The undertaking of artist Okuda San Miguel (previously), the 16-meter tower features a striped bird, wild animals rendered in bold blocks of color, and various dots and squiggles. Now bearing the name “Infinite Cantabria,” it is the first intervention on a Spanish lighthouse. “It has been a unique experience, both because of the artistic challenge that it has brought about for me, as well having carried this project out in my homeland,” says the artist, who is from the region in northern Spain. More Continue reading

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Limp Balloons Slump Over Each Other in Pastel Sculptures by Artist Joe Davidson
September 3, 2020

In varying states of deflation, Joe Davidson’s pastel balloons sag, slump, and flop in every direction. The limp, elongated forms are stacked on top of one another in seemingly precarious piles and resemble latex tubes filled with days-old air. While the sculptures are playful in both color and form, the Los Angeles-based artist notes that they also hold earnest themes of masculinity and aging, two concepts he’s thinking about often.
Davidson prefers to explore new materials and those beyond the bronze, stone, and wood typically used in this medium. More Continue reading

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Painted on Front Pages, Lisa Törner’s Evocative Animals Astutely Comment on Major News Stories
September 2, 2020

Lisa Törner repurposes the front pages of The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and the French weekly Le Canard Enchainé into inky canvases for her expressive creatures. For each edition, the Stockholm-based artist offers insightful commentary on the day’s events: a pensive monkey masks an article about bankers on Wall Street, a turquoise peacock adorns the coverage of Karl Lagerfield’s death, and a slinking leopard is rendered alongside a heartwrenching story about a mother and child, who were separated more than 50 years ago. More Continue reading

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Welded Stainless Steel Creatures by Georgie Seccull Twist and Unfurl in Eternal Motion
August 28, 2020

Australian sculptor and installation artist Georgie Seccull creates large-scale stainless steel sculptures of animals and other creatures seemingly locked in motion. Comprised of numerous pieces cut from metal sheets, the materials lend themselves to organic forms like feathers, scales, wings, or the armaments of crustaceans. Seccull’s work scales up dramatically in her installation practice where she’s filled entire rooms and atriums with suspended pieces. “We are born out of chaos in darkness and come into the light—my process is much the same: I begin with a thousand pieces scattered on the ground, then working almost like a jigsaw puzzle, I pick them up one by one and allow each piece to come together organically and dictate the outcome,” the artist shares in a statement. More Continue reading

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Interview: Kevin Peterson Shares His Fascination with Graffiti and How Optimism Informs His Paintings
August 24, 2020

Known for his scenes of urban decay, artist Kevin Peterson (previously) is profoundly optimistic, a vision he shares in a recent interview with managing editor Grace Ebert. The Houston-based artist often positions lone children alongside wild animals, an inter-species mix that offers an escape from the destruction and hope for the imagined future.

I suppose the kids in my paintings are a reflection of a hope that I have that people will learn from past mistakes and face the future with a sense of calm reason.

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Thick Clusters of Wooden Birdhouses by London Fieldworks Sprawl Across Tree Trunks
August 20, 2020

In London Fieldworks’ delicate creations, architecture meets nature. Its installations feature pine-colored clusters of minuscule wooden forms that appear to grow upon vast tree trunks. Founded by artists Bruce Gilchrist and Jo Joelson, London Fieldworks is a collaborative and multidisciplinary arts practice with projects at the intersection of architecture, sculpture, installation, and film. 
Each of the homes has rounded windows and doors, while those on large evergreen trees resemble natural objects, such as wasp and hornet nests or even fungi and mushrooms. More Continue reading

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A Furry Utopia is Overrun with Delicately Rendered Cats in Kamwei Fong’s New Illustration
August 6, 2020

According to long-held superstitions, a horde of black cats certainly indicates impending misfortune, but for Kamwei Fong, a mass of the furry creatures is actually a fluffy utopia. Containing felines in various emotional and physical states—drowsy, peeved, and deep in slumber— “Wonderfurryland” features a diverse kitty population defined by their rotund bodies, splayed limbs, and puffed tails. Fong even inked cat-shaped environmental fixtures, like a moon, sun, and mountain, into the black-and-white landscape. More Continue reading

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The Best Paper Dolls for Imaginative Crafting and Play
July 29, 2020

Who’s up on the latest fashion trends, cuts the best figure, and puts together the best looks? A paper doll. A generations-old toy, dress-up paper dolls owe their origins to 18th century France, where they had movable limbs and were akin to puppets. A London company produced the first commercially available paper doll in 1810, […] Continue reading

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Mix and Match Magnetic, Wooden Animal Parts to Invent Bizarre New Creatures
July 24, 2020

As interest in analog entertainment for children grows, a new collection from ESNAF Toys prompts kids to piece together giraffes, foxes, and T-rexes from simple, wooden blocks. Each geometric shape is handcrafted and color-coded. To create an anatomically accurate animal or dinosaur, simply match and connect the magnetic joints.
Helmed by architects Bistra and Anastas, ESNAF Toys was born out of the duo’s desire to provide their son with higher-quality entertainment. “Our home became cluttered with baby toys, and we didn’t like it. More Continue reading

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Rare Black Panther Shadows His Leopard Mate in Incredible Shot by Photographer Mithun H
July 23, 2020

Since 2014, wildlife filmmaker and photographer Mithun H has been pining for sightings of Saya, a black panther that’s been eluding his admirers in the Kabini Forest in India for years. After camping out in the area for six days, the photographer captured a stunning image of the mysterious animal shadowing his leopard partner, Cleopatra.
Mithun H notes that the couple have been together for four years and have an atypical relationship for the species. More Continue reading

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Miniature Sculptures of Biologically Accurate Animals by Fanni Sandor Are Smaller Than a Fingernail
July 20, 2020

Fanni Sandor has been fascinated by miniatures since childhood, constructing her first sculpture from toothpicks, candle wax, paper, and glue at six years old. “In my country, there (are) no traditions of the 1:12 scale miniature making. In my twenties, I met the first professional miniaturist’s work through the internet. I was completely fascinated,” she tells Colossal.
Today, the Hungary-based biologist and artist fashions minuscule baby bluejays clamoring for food, a mouse peeking out from a bit of bread, and a waddling family of mallards. More Continue reading

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Foxes Caught in Dramatic Squabbles and Sleepy Coils by Photographer Konsta Punkka
June 18, 2020

Each spring, Helsinki-born photographer Konsta Punkka (previously) stakes out dens, showing he’s as clever in strategy as the foxes he’s hoping to encounter. This commitment to hours lying on cold, wet ground for hours on end has afforded a splendid array of photographs depicting the furry creatures as they tussle, play, and sometimes, expend pent-up energy gnawing on cars. “Fox cubs are often naturally very curious, so all you need to do is to keep a safe distance from the den area and just lay in the ground and wait. More Continue reading

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Gripping a Plastic Bag, A Massive Fox by Artist Florentijn Hofman Towers Over Rotterdam
June 16, 2020

Residents of Rotterdam’s Bospolder-Tussendijken frequently spot bushy-tailed foxes roaming their streets at night, but now, Dutch artist Florentijn Hofman has given the carnivorous animal a permanent home in the area. He recently installed a massive “Bospolder Fox” that peers over a busy intersection in the neighborhood. Spanning 16 meters, the fox holds a pink bag in its mouth, a gesture that anthropomorphizes the wild animal, as Hofman asks, “Has the Bospolder Fox stolen something? More Continue reading

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30 Hand-Cranked Machines Comprise Amusing Series of Miniatures by Artist Federico Tobon
June 12, 2020

Similar to Lalese Stamps’s personal challenge to create 100 ceramic mug handles, a Los Angeles-based artist has crafted an amusing series of hand-cranked automatons in just 30 days. Federico Tobon, of wolfCat Workshop, used popsicle sticks, metal clips, paper, and scrap material for One Month of Small Machines, a four-week-long project that generated different, moveable figures and animals each day. “The A-HA moment from these projects was when I discovered that using paper gives these machines a very organic feel,” he said. More Continue reading

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This Japanese Zoo is Using Stuffed Capybaras to Visualize Social Distancing
May 22, 2020

Take a seat for lunch at Izu Shabonten Zoo in Shizuoka, Japan, and meet your plush dining partners. To help restaurant patrons visualize social distancing guidelines, the zoo has occupied chairs with stuffed capybaras. The soft toys encourage diners to space out among the tables and maintain an appropriate distance.
With only a few other cuddly creatures in the mix, the institution’s main choice is a nod to its decades-long fascination with the giant rodent. More Continue reading

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Hundreds of Intricately Cut Layers Compose Impeccably Detailed Wildlife Sculptures by Patrick Cabral
May 16, 2020

Manila-based artist Patrick Cabral (previously) layers paper incised with decorative motifs and lacy patterns into dazzling sculptural portraits of wildlife. Ribbed tentacles with alternating gold and white dangle from an octopus, while elegant pieces comprise a rhinoceros’s exterior. Each multi-layered work contains hundreds of individual paper pieces that are entirely hand-cut.
The crowned lion (shown below) spans more than five feet and is one of Cabral’s largest projects to date. More Continue reading

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