Like all in Björk's creative coterie, mask-maker James Merry (what a name!) works with the hand of a craftsman and the soul of an artist. For the British native — who splits his time between bustling New York and a remote cabin in Iceland, surrounded by mossy outcroppings and fields of lavender — it's all about quiet contemplation and profound transformation.
Living and working in Baku, Azerbaijan, artist Faig Ahmed distorts and deconstructs the patterns and shapes of traditional Azerbaijani rugs, incorporating modern motifs — glitches, melts, spikes — to create mesmerizing optical illusions. A graduate of sculpture from the Azerbaijan State Academy of Fine Art, Ahmed and his merging of traditional and experimental textiles are a very real carpet ride.
Slavs like tracksuits and they like to squat. They squat to chat, imbibe, appreciate art. They squat in submarines, on skis, under car hoods — invariably in a tracksuit. Here, a near-endless gallery of squatting Slavs in tracksuits. They are, of course, an internet sensation...
Part shoe designer, part inventor, Benjamin John Hall produces highly conceptual footwear — in London, by hand — that challenges traditional notions of cobbling. Following shoes that self-destruct, his latest avant-garde venture is Laboratory 12, a seven-piece collection of experimental shoes, each highlighting a covert tactic used by the KGB and other secret police.
With her hand-carved paintbrushes, Rebecca Szeto is getting a handle on great women of art history. As a faux-finish painter, the San Francisco artist collects only humble, end-of-life paintbrushes, which serve as both means and end.
The slow pace of whittling down the handles gives Szeto time to reflect on each individual and individual brush — a tribute to the Old Masters.