During the 1800s, when the art of photography was just getting off the ground, many were pointing their glass plate cameras at one of the unlikeliest of subjects: the tornado. As you can guess, tornados were not an easy subject to capture because of their unpredictability and power. Oklahoma’s McFarlin Library at the University of Tulsa recently acquired a collection that included a photograph of a tornado that hit the area early in the 1890s. This 1896 recording is being called “the first known photograph of a tornado”, although National Geographic and the Kansas Historical Society both have their own contenders that they believe are the oldest. Either way, all of these early photographs are eerily beautiful portraits of a sinister force in nature. To check out more photos and learn the history behind each, head on over to Hyperallergic.
Documentary films exist to show us some form of reality. But what if they could start showing us things in a way we’ve never seen? What if they could show us a reality that looks like something out of this world? That’s what Jake Oelman wanted to do - so he trekked through the Colombian jungles, following his father Robert Oelman, a macro photographer. His quest? To not only capture his father’s work but to also discover the most insane insects of the Amazon. His documentary Learning to See (which recently premiered at SXSW) takes these subjects, both the stinging and flying variety, and magnifies them in order to show these exquisite, strange little creatures in a way we’ve not seen before. This portrait reminds us of the most important battle of all: the world against mankind’s harmful influence. No Film School interviewed Oelman and producer Jerry Aronson and discussed what goes into making a macro documentary. Read here to get the scoop!
NASA has just launched a new “We The Explorers” campaign that will allow you to send pieces of your own original artwork on a roundtrip journey through space! In collaboration with NASA’s OSIRIS-REx team, the art will travel on the first American mission expected to return with a small sample of asteroid Bennu in a few years. The artworks chosen will be uploaded on a chip and carried on board the vessel this September. In a pretty creative move, NASA is embarking on the creation of a unique time capsule that will be traveling and living in space for millennia. The possibilities are almost endless for this opportunity. According to NASA, “Your submission may take the form of a sketch, photograph, graphic, poem, song, short video or other creative or artistic expression.” They are accepting submissions via social media until this March 20. Read more on the initiative here. And remember, there are no creative limits in space!
Jason deCaires Taylor has attracted quite a lot of attention for his underwater sculpture museums and the transformations they undergo once taken over by marine life. Trained in art, Taylor is also a qualified diving instructor and naturalist. A few years ago, he fused all of these life experiences and skills together to create the world’s first underwater sculpture park, Vicissitudes, located in the West Indies.Taylor’s latest, Musea Atlantica, which has been in the making for two years, might be his most ambitious project yet. Check out his thoughts behind the sculptures and images of the otherwordly museum that exists below the surface here.
Somewhere in the windswept valley of Patagonia, Emily sits cross-legged next to her blue Westfalia at the foot of a glacial-blue lake looking up at a series of snow-capped mountains, huddled behind the trees. She holds her newborn, Sierra, in her arms to make the most of the region’s scarce warmth. Her husband, Adam, organizes the harnesses, rope and belay-system with their first-born daughter, Colette, to prepare for a day on the rocks. “When Patagonia gives you warm earth, you sit on it,” reads a caption on the family Instagram page, the primary outlet for neo-beat life, trading notebooks for cellphones and using DSLR cameras to convert their many experiences into a living story, unravelling itself across the Internet, day by day. Read More
These mesmerizing sculptures find hidden beauty and stories by reflecting the patterns and laws of nature. London-based artist Jonty Hurwitz creates ‘Anamorphic Sculptures’ which only reveal themselves once facing a reflective cylinder. Hurwitz took an engineering degree in Johannesburg where he discovered the fine line between art and science.
Collaborating with both nature and time, Andy Goldsworthy creates amazing spectacles of natural expression that are by nature disposable at some point in their own existence. In his words he takes each of his works "to the very edge of its own collapse." Photography hardcovers and a movie (Rivers & Tides) on his work can be purchased at Amazon.