Photographs by Paul Johnson Document a Once-Thriving Farm Community Subsumed by Rising Waters

In the northeast corner of North Dakota lies Devils Lake. It is the largest natural body of water in the state, and yet it holds within it a seemingly unnatural phenomenon. Once-prosperous farming communities used to stand where the lake now is, the reach and depth of the current waters subsuming the abandoned tall silos, stately houses, and squat barns. The lake began rising in 1993 and has risen 35 feet in just over two decades. Due to a lack of outlet for the water and a period of heavy rains in the early 1990’s, the high water simply never subsided, rendering the formerly productive area completely uninhabitable and taking 300 homes with it.

 
DSC_6299.jpg
 
DSC_6316-1.jpg
 
DSC_7774.jpg
 

Minnesota-based photographer Paul Johnson (previously) set out during two different seasons, summer (via kayak) and winter, to witness and document the lost community. Large trucks sit embedded up to their wheel wells in thick ice, a silo door is seamlessly mirrored in the water that reaches over its threshold, and barns lean at spectacularly acute angles, seemingly glued in place by the surrounded fresh or frozen water.

 
 
 
 
DSC_7779.jpg

“Abandoned places hold a wistful appeal to me and I think to many of us,” Johnson shared in an interview with Passion Passport. “They are the final chapters of unknown stories where we’re left to ponder the details. Their quiet stillness can spur thoughts about the nature of time and the processes of decay and reclamation.” If you are interested in further reading about the history of the area, Modern Farmer has a long-form story from the perspective of a Devils Lake native.

Source: COLOSSAL

Iceland & Botswana United Through The Flight of Birds & Abstract Landscapes

Iceland_ZackSeckler-a.jpg

Photographer Zack Seckler (previously) continues to document the Earth’s surface from above. The New York-based artist travels to a wide range of landscapes, and flies above them in small airplanes to provide a zoomed-out perspective. His abstracted images simultaneously show the unique beauty of each location’s topography, while also highlighting the continuity of our shared planet. In places as different as Botswana and Iceland, the rippling surface and cool tones of waterways, the graceful paths of birds in flight, and the rich texture of forests and brush are united in their rugged beauty.

Iceland_ZackSeckler-8.jpg
 
 
Zack_Seckler_Retrospective_06-1.jpg

Seckler’s upcoming solo show, Above, at ClampArt in New York City opens on June 27 and runs through August 9, 2019. You can see more from the artist on Facebook and Instagram.

SOURCE: Colossal

Shadowy Animals Infiltrate Desolate Spaces in Illustrations by Jenna Barton

“Shiver”

“Shiver”

Utah-based illustrator Jenna Barton creates shadowy portraits of animals inspired by her dreams, travels, experiences, and the aesthetic and emotions of the rural environments where she grew up. While she does integrate watercolor into some of her illustrations, Barton’s work is primarily digital. The style she refers to as “magical-realism-animal-gothic” came about around 2017, after she completed her BFA in Illustration and decided to take some time to escape the constraints of school and to focus on art that she cared about.

“Tracers”

“Tracers”

 

I hark back a lot to my childhood in Idaho, as well as looking to my current environment in Utah, to inform my work. I’d like to capture the strange emotions that I always felt in rural and empty places, and the daydreams I’ve had there. It’s those luminal spaces that I like best, and I’m interested in the structures that bring the human world into nature—radio towers, houses, power lines—especially in the absence of humans themselves.

 
“Grease and Smoke”

“Grease and Smoke”

Barton tells Colossal that many of her subjects are mammals because they share traits with humans, “while at the same time existing in a very different world from them.” Lurking big cats and silhouetted dogs and deer stare blankly with white eyes and stoic postures against relatively simple backgrounds—a window, a staircase, clouds—which give the illustrations a sense of mystery. “Animals with elegant silhouettes, like canines and deer, are special favorites for their graceful looks and sense of motion,” Barton explains. “I give most of my subjects glowing white eyes to indicate the presence of a supernatural element and to suggest that the figures pictured are something between animals and spirits, or gods.”

“Stairwell”

“Stairwell”

Barton’s otherworldly works are available as prints via her webstore, and you can also check out more of her animal portraits on Instagram.

SOURCE: Colossal

Sculptor Dan Lam Bridges Digital & Analog Worlds Through Squarespace

 
“Center of Attention”

“Center of Attention”

 

Artist uses intriguing blends of organic shapes with synthetic colors, textures, and materials to form scintillating sculptures. While each artwork appears to be an almost naturally-occurring form, Lam combines complementary color palettes to create visual tension and carefully applies forms each spike and indentation by hand. The artist often documents her organically-shaped sculptures in outdoor settings. Sunlight captures the glint of shimmering finishes, foliage complements the spiky textures, and Lam herself appears half-hidden while holding her work.

With her keen eye for presentation, Lam relies on the website builder to showcase her eye-catching artwork. “I used to host with another service and while they were easy to use, I didn’t have a lot of flexibility as far as customization and overall look. Squarespace has allowed me to have a really nice portfolio while making it very easy to create a temporary web shop or as-needed email blast.”

“Come Together”

“Come Together”

“Undertone”

“Undertone”

 
Part of Dan’s Creation Process

Part of Dan’s Creation Process

 

Lam stays focused on producing her labor-intensive artworks year-round, and admits that her computer-savviness takes a back seat to her artistic prowess. But gives her the tools she needs to manage her career as an artist: “The intuitive navigation of Squarespace is probably the most helpful thing for me, as someone who doesn’t like to spend a lot of time on computers,” Lam explains. “I had a friend start the site for me and I’ve taken over from there—which is kind of amazing because website stuff used to stress me out.”

Lam, who has a substantial following of over 200,000 on Instagram, deftly uses the visual intrigue of her work to spark curiosity and build a bridge between digital and analog worlds. She often shares videos that capture the process of making each piece or showcase the dimensionality of finished works. Lam uses her site to integrate her social media presence: a dedicated page in the navigation is filled with colorful behind-the-scenes videos and photos of her studio practice. “I think the mystery of the materials and how they come together piques the viewer’s curiosity, especially digitally,” Lam explains. “Maybe they spend a little extra time on it—whether that be looking, trying to sneak a touch at a gallery show, or Googling the materials.”

 
“Recreational”

“Recreational”

 

Although Lam’s sculptures are sought after for collectors and gallery shows—including a solo show on view this month at Hashimoto Contemporary in New York City—the artist shares that she is excited by the range of opportunities for artists to share their work. “In the past few years, I’ve noticed there have been more and more opportunities for visual artists through all kinds of different outlets, from companies hiring artists to do murals inside workspaces to cities funding public art. Fine art seems to be seeping into the mainstream culture. It’s creating a larger space for artists to exist that wasn’t there when I was growing up.”

SOURCE: Colossal

Europe’s First Underwater Restaurant Doubles as a Marine Research Center

 
SnohettaRestaurant_04-960x640@2x.jpg
 

At Under, a new restaurant completed by architecture and design firm Snøhetta, splashes of aquamarine light dance across tabletops and dishes. This greenish blue hue is emitted from a portal at the front of the space that, as its name suggests, peers underwater and into the depths of the North Sea. The half-sunken restaurant is located at the southernmost tip of Norway, with one side of the structure built into the coastline, and the other resting against the seabed.

Snøhetta Founder and Architect, Kjetil Trædal Thorsen explains that the new building “challenges what determines a person’s physical placement in their environment.” In this building,” he continues, “you may find yourself under water, over the seabed, between land and sea. This will offer you new perspectives and ways of seeing the world, both beyond and beneath the waterline.”

SnohettaRestaurant_06.jpg
SnohettaRestaurant_09.jpg
SnohettaRestaurant_05.jpg

In addition to serving as a restaurant, the submerged building also functions as a marine research center. Interdisciplinary research teams will be invited to study the surrounding the biodiversity found along the southern coast, with the goal of building a machine learning tool that will monitor and track the species at regular intervals. Under’s design was also planned with these populations in mind. The building was built to function as an artificial coral reef, and will become integrated into the sea as limpets, kelp, and other underwater life begin to grow from its concrete shell.

The underwater restaurant is open and seats 35-40 guests nightly. You can see more images from the new restaurant and learn about its menu on their website.

 
SnohettaRestaurant_03-960x539@2x.jpg
 
 

SOURCE: Colossal

Vibrant Pulses of Color Expand Across Urban Walls in Murals by Jan Kaláb

Jan Kaláb (also sometimes known as POINT or CAKES) works on vast outdoor spaces to add pulsating concentric circles of color. The Czech artist grew up in Eastern Europe during the Cold War, where graffiti and street art were non-existent. In the 1990’s, Kaláb paved a path for the graffiti community by founding a crew as the Cold War ended and Western influences came to the Czech Republic.

jan-kalab-4.jpg

Kaláb has worked around the world crafting abstract shapes, especially circles, “as an obsessive vocabulary for infinite variations around depth, time, and motion. Playing with circles [brings] organic imperfection and swing into his work” according to a statement on the artist’s website. Kaláboften works on adjacent or curved surfaces to heighten the play between structure and perception in his vibrant murals.

jan-kalad-3.jpg
jan-kalad-2.jpg

Kaláb also has a robust body of work that is shown in galleries, with his first solo exhibition in 2008. The artist’s most recent show “SHAPE & TONE” just ended at Fabien Castanier Gallery in Miami. You can see more from Kaláb on Instagram and Facebook.

 
jankalab-1.jpg
 

SOURCE: Colossal

Black and Red Calder-Esque Illustrations Combine Geometric Shapes into Animals

 
 

When Adam Goldberg, founder of Santa Monica-based studio Trüf Creative isn’t crafting work for a client, the designer likes to engage his creativity with an ongoing series of minimal illustrations titled FAÜNA. The pieces combine black and red shapes and linework to form stylized versions of animals and insects, such as the striped trout above or the patterned snake below.

TrufCreative01.jpg
TrufCreative13.jpg

Although Goldberg is directly inspired by artists such as Joan Miro, Alexander Calder, and Wassily Kandinsky, he is also influenced by the client work he has completed over the years. “The simplicity, geometry, and composure that we try to achieve with our branding work rubs off on the artwork,” he explained to Adobe Create Magazine. “I think more in terms of composition and balance more now than I ever have — and that’s because of the branding work.” You can see more of Goldberg’s agency work on Trüf Creative’s website and Behance.

 
TrufCreative13.jpg
 

SOURCE: Colossal

"Speed" for Canon by Horst Friedrichs, Melville Brand Design, & Slanted Publishers

 
 

At Melville Brand Design our focus is branding and editorial design. What is quite unique about us is that we are also able to add content and stories to our client's projects. The fascinating images by London-based photographer Horst A. Friedrichs provided the story on the surface. Beyond the printed results we created and organized an evening event that attracted a very similar crowed of fuel-infused city dwellers and motor bikers - similarities to the Speed images were intended.

 
9b64dd75237955.5c473a5f517dd.jpg
 
240c8c75237955.5c48276772f91.jpg
c6346475237955.5c482767747dc.jpg
 
31cebc75237955.5c473a5f51f9d.jpg
 
81b06575237955.5c473a5f4e65f.jpg
f3138875237955.5c473a5f5299b.jpg
 
908eb075237955.5c473a5f4f9d8.jpg
 
a414f775237955.5c48276773d5d.jpg
3f567c75237955.5c482767743a5.jpg
 
75dc9c75237955.5c473a5f50193.jpg
 

Speed is the answer. Our client Canon Europe Océ Printing Systems sells a whole range of digital printing press machines. Most of them are multi-format machines, all of them print incredibly fast. To present these machines in a large-scale in-house event it was Melville's task to create exciting and meaningful content. This content was used for the overall appearance of the location, outside and inside, all decoration and most important, the print results in all possible formats that were printed on the machines these days. Needless to say, that the theme "Speed" fitted the machines' main benefit.

 
dea96175237955.5c473a5f510a3.jpg
 

SOURCE: Behance