“Mothmeister” is the moniker of the duo behind surreal, fantastical, and unsettling portraits of lonesome clowns and other creatures across varying backdrops. They call their fictional universe Wounderland, a place where the Instagram culture is reflected in drab, masked figures often accompanied by stuffed and mounted animals, a product of the two’s fascination pf and collecting habits in taxidermy.
Spanish photographer AnaHell crafts disconcerting and absurd photos that play with the human form, using various parts of the body as the canvas to create cartoonish characters. The ongoing project Secret Friends mixes the surreal with a documentary-style approach to capturing spots across the world. Using conventions of travel photography, AnaHell sets out to subvert expectations by “quite literally bending reality and creating a new dimension in the midst of ordinary situations.”
Haruhiko Kawaguchi, also known as “Photographer Hal,” released the book “Flesh Love” five years ago this December. The book took couples the artist met at Tokyo clubs and had them pose inside a vacuum-sealed bag. In this process, Kawaguchi only had 10 to 20 seconds to take the photos, in order to avoid danger for his subjects.
This year, JR became one of the Olympic Games’ first artists in residence. And the French artist took the opportunity to a grand level with three massive sculptures scattered across Rio. JR’s black-and-white photos of athletes, erected with scaffolding, loom over passers-by, whether jumping over a building or plunging into the water. The images were installed in Flamengo, Botafogo, and Barra da Tijuca, respectively. JR was featured in Hi-Fructose Vol. 17.
London-based artist Elaine Duigenan’s painstaking process to create the body of work “Blossfeldt’s Apprentice” required two key elements: twist ties and a camera. The project is named for German artist Karl Blossfeldt, whose renderings of plant-life in the 1920s inspired this series by Duigenan. Blossfeldt famously said, “the plant must be valued as a totally artistic and architectural structure.”
Jason DeMarte, an artist/photographer based in Michigan, combines images of artificial flora and fauna and processed food (and other commercial products) to create a new depiction of the natural world in the series “Confected.” Even in the tranquility of each image, the scenes reflect the dissonance inherent in the contemporary experience. The artist says he uses “completely unnatural elements to speak metaphorically and symbolically of our mental separation from what is ‘real,’ and compare and contrast this with the consumer world we surround ourselves with as a consequence.” Follow the artist on Instagram here.