An art book wants you to embrace your failures

To be an artist is to know failure. We know it intimately, in our smudges and our typos. We fear it, anxiously hesitating before we draw the second eye, afraid that we cannot replicate the perfection of the first. Failed It! by Erik Kessels challenges these feelings, arguing for the beauty of our mistakes. It’s part photobook, showcasing many beautiful and hilarious examples of imperfection across different creative mediums. But it’s also part guidebook, seeking to dispel our fear of mistakes and, in doing so, remove an obstacle to reaching our full potential as artists. While some of the photographs…


Waiting Rooms is a building-sized game about the struggles of bureaucracy

When I left the Rubin Museum of Art’s Waiting Rooms exhibit, I had 14 yellow tickets, 24 pennies, and a form with a picture of a unicorn on it in my pocket. It sounds like the random hodgepodge of garbage a quirky Tina Fey character might carry, yes, but within the world of the exhibit, it was a veritable fortune. Created by architect Nathalie Pozzi and game designer Eric Zimmerman, Waiting Rooms is a building-sized game about bureaucracy. In it, the museum is divided into a series of nonlinear rooms, each with their own arbitrary task to complete as well as…

sophie and howl

The beauty of Hayao Miyazaki and VHS glitches

The first time I ever watched Princess Mononoke (1997) was on a grainy bootleg from a relative. I was a kid, maybe nine-years-old, but the otherwise beautiful film’s terrible quality was ingrained in my psyche. Since I was only nine, its fuzziness didn’t bother me. It wasn’t until I was much older, and more appreciative of the crisp existence of blu-rays, that I was able to rewatch the film and re-fall in love with it all over again. Still, that first grainy take on the film rests as my first “true” experience with a Hayao Miyazaki film, and was my gateway…


Expect vertigo as you gaze upon Sub.Division’s perceptual landscapes

It’s easy to get lost in perception-skewing art. Artist Bradley G. Munkowitz, better known as GMUNK, is easily one of the most intriguing (and prolific) visual designers around. His portfolio spans from the astounding holographic sequences of Tron: Legacy (2010) to Box, an artistic and technical project of synthesizing “real and digital space” (created with Bot & Dolly, where Munkowitz served as design director). Munkowitz has a long history with contorting technology in new, artistic-leaning ways, while combining color and practical effects (as with Box) in the process. Some grid-like spaces feel like they span miles In Munkowitz’s latest project,…


The Lion’s Song aims to depict the loneliness of history’s greatest minds

Originally created as a short title for a 2014 Ludum Dare game jam, old-timey narrative adventure game The Lion’s Song is now getting a full release. According to a new trailer for the game, four episodes are planned in total, expanding it beyond the “finely honed short story” of the original and into an extended interrogation of academic life in fin-de-siecle Austria. The game stars three different turn-of-the-century artists and scientists as they struggle to find inspiration and learn how to cope with the pressures of success, as well as those of their time period. “To succeed in a world of…

Let it Die

Let Suda 51 Die

It is rare that a piece of key art is worthy of comment. That ugly, industry-saturated term, “key art”, tells the whole story, bringing to mind images of focus testing promotional images usually of men with guns facing away, silhouetted in the light of an explosion. But this bit of key art, this is something special. Let’s just lay it out here, for your enjoyment. Observe the faded tones, the dappled light. Look on the grim reaper, posed classically, one hand stretched towards a prostate victim. Take in the towering pile of city, punctuated with plumes of smoke, the distant…


New painting collection stands up for the value of digital art

We live in a time of artistic plenty. At any moment, anyone with an internet connection can simply type a few words into their browser and have immediate and free access to history’s most famous paintings, music, and theater. Even lesser-known works are often available to view as photographs on the personal websites of the artists who made them. This is easy to take for granted, but it is important to remember that seeing a work of art used to require either purchasing it for oneself, visiting it in person, or at the very least buying an art book. With…


Computer algorithm mimics Rembrandt, creates his next painting

I’ve never seen The Starry Night (1899). I mean, obviously I’ve seen it. Pictures of it are everywhere; in textbooks, on t-shirts, and just about everything in between. But I’ve never actually been to MoMA and seen the physical painting The Starry Night itself. Art has been at odds with replication for centuries, all the way back to when the very earliest printing technology suddenly made art cheap enough that common (see: not rich) folk could own it. When art is no longer confined to a museum, the line between what is and isn’t art gets more and more blurry. The…


Degraded portraits of royals reflect their obsessive inbreeding

It is commonly known that the in-marrying of families was an aristocratic trait used to ensure the purity of a monarchy or empire’s bloodline. Unlike the infamous incestuous relationship between Cersei and Jaime Lannister in Game of Thrones, these relationships held significant political power, and weren’t considered subversive, but rather the norm. Michelle Vaughan explores this idea through the Spanish-Austrian Habsburg royal family in the exhibition Generations. the idea of degradation through the pursuit of improvement In these works, Vaughan works conceptually with the idea of degradation through the pursuit of improvement. Hyperallergic likens this, aesthetically, to our modern pursuit of perfecting digital images,…