Teahupo’o From The Sky

Surfing Magazine has released this spellbinding drone footage of surfers charging the infamous Teahupo’o wave break in Tahiti. The footage provides a new beautiful perspective of this powerful surf spot.

The name ‘Teahupo’o’ loosely translates to English as “to sever the head” and is regarded as one of the most challenging surf breaks in the world. The wipeout 3:17 minutes into the video helps explain why. The drone piloting at the 3:30 mark, when the camera films two waves in a single sequence, is incredible. And to top it all off I’m pretty sure the surfer at 3:53 is lit on fire!

The moody music is a song by Brigitte Fontaine called “Le Goudron”. Do the video justice and watch it at full screen with volume up.

Via Metafilter

Broken Porcelain Lady Figurines

Jessica Harrison takes old ceramic statues of fancily-dressed women and disembowels them. These found porcelain figures, that are typically seen occupying a special place your grandmother’s credenza, are reimagined in the most gory of ways. The juxtaposition of the prim statuettes displaying their decapitated heads and freshly opened throats without changing their demure expressions is striking. Despite having appeared to have been subjected to an awful violence (perhaps their own), the Georgian and Victorian-era figures remain decorous figures. The results are gory and macabre while also being kitsch and playful.

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There is a great interview with Harrison about the meaning behind her work on The Skinny. Many of these images can be purchased as signed and numbered prints on Harrison’s website.

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First Ever Extra Terrestrial Zinnia Flower

First Space Flower

This orange beauty, bathing in natural sunlight for the first time, is the first Zinnia flower to have ever grown entirely in space. It’s part of the VEG-01 experiment on the International Space Station.

The Veggie experiments will allow the crew members to begin the first steps of in-orbit food production as well as educational outreach and recreation for long-duration missions. The experiment allows scientists to gain a better understanding of plant cultivation and will help determine ways to carry out self-sustaining life support systems during long distance space travel, possibly to Mars.

The facility has previously grown lettuce which was consumed by the crew last year. The next set of crops, called VEG-03, has two types of Chinese cabbage and more romaine lettuce. It will arrive at ISS in March via SpaceX’s CRS-8 mission. In 2018, NASA will send a set of dwarf tomato plants to ISS and we could witness crew members eating the first space salads.

Surprising, the Zinnia flowers almost died from over watering, a mold outbreak, and too much bureaucracy from NASA:

In late December, Kelly found that the plants “weren’t looking too good,” and told the ground team, “You know, I think if we’re going to Mars, and we were growing stuff, we would be responsible for deciding when the stuff needed water. Kind of like in my backyard, I look at it and say ‘Oh, maybe I should water the grass today.’ I think this is how this should be handled.”

The Veggie team on Earth created what was dubbed “The Zinnia Care Guide for the On-Orbit Gardener,” and gave basic guidelines for care while putting judgment capabilities into the hands of the astronaut who had the plants right in front of him. Rather than pages and pages of detailed procedures that most science operations follow, the care guide was a one-page, streamlined resource to support Kelly as an autonomous gardener. Soon, the flowers were on the rebound, and on Jan. 12, pictures showed the first peeks of petals beginning to sprout on a few buds.

Space Flower

Space FlowerAll photos via Scott Kelly/NASA

Pretty/Dirty

This weekend I visited the Marilyn Minter retrospective at the Museum of Contemporary Art Denver (MCA). All the work was captivating in beautiful and disgusting way. Her juxtaposition of glamor and grit, of the revealing and the disturbing, and of the intimate and the amplified shown throughout the entire show. The title Pretty/Dirty couldn’t have been more apt. A great review of the exhibit can be found at Hyperallergic.

Pretty Dirty 2“Pop Rocks” by Marilyn Minter

I was more impressed with her paintings than her photographs or videos. Above is a full-sized photo of Minter’s painting “Pop Rocks”. It’s a gigantic 9 feet by 15 feet. Outside of their sheer size and incredible detail, I’m fascinated by the process used to create them. The paintings start as heavily mixed and manipulated Photoshop negatives taken from earlier photo shoots. This new image is then turned into paintings created through multiple layers of translucent enamel paint on aluminum giving a rich hallucinatory look.

The final layer is applied with fingertips to create a softening of the paintbrush lines. And when you look closely you can see evidence of fingerprints and smudges all over her works. Below is a detail of the condensation from “Pop Rocks”

Pretty Dirty 5Detail of “Pop Rocks” by Marilyn Minter

The Marilyn Minter retrospective will be showing at MCA through the month so hurry up and go see it while you can. You can find a few more of my photos from the exhibit below.

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New York Public Library Has Over 670,000 Digitized Items And Some Very Cool Tools To Access Them

Acrobats far from their mountain home -- grizzly bears in a street at Jacksonville, Florida. [1905] 1870?-1906?Acrobats far from their mountain home — grizzly bears in a street at Jacksonville, Florida. [1905] 1870?-1906? via NYPL stereograph collection

Earlier this week the New York Public Library enhanced access to over 670,000 digitized files in its massive database of digital collections. This includes access to free books, paintings, newspaper clippings, digitized streaming video, prints, botanical illustrations, photographs, maps, manuscripts, sheet music, menus, hundreds of thousands of public domain images, and more. Some of the documents date back as far as the 11th century

Best of all, NYPL has created some really cool tools to search, access and utilize the collection.

All of the Public Domain items are “No permission required. No restrictions on use.” They digitized these items specifically so that people will reuse and remix for your personal projects. So much so that NYPL announced the NYPL Labs PAID Remix Residency for artists, information designers, and software developers that is designed to spur transformative and interesting new uses for their digital collections. If that isn’t enough NYPL is adding high-quality machine-readable metadata to the hundreds of thousands of assets and providing an API!

Well done, NYPL. Go forth and reuse!

via Coudal