After a pretty busy couple of months (in between all the bank holidays) I’ve finally found the time to share some thoughts on the exhibitions, artists talks & performances from Pictoplasma 2011. The following are some of my highlights, but the line up of artists was huge so I urge you to head over to the Pictoplasma website and check out some of the other artists involved!
First off, is one of my favourite creatures from this years Pictoplasma, PAPP.
PAPP is a nervous little robot creature who lives in a small cardboard box, developed by Hilde and Bard of 3753% Tordal. PAPP runs an opensource program written by Bard, which uses motion sensors to detect potential predators. If PAPP senses a threat, it will turn in the opposite direction and run, but if the threat proves too great, PAPP will shut down all signs of life and become an inanimate cardboard box.
PAPP is both and interactive companion and artist platform/canvas as the Tordal duo run workshops to create new skins for PAPP and for Pictoplasma 2011 they invited a number other artists to doodle on the PAPP box. I managed to get involved during one of the PAPP workshops, creating my own PAPP design and having a lovely chat about art and technology with the Tordal team!
The Pirates are Dead
After a long day on the character walk on the opening day of the festival, I ended up at The Dudes Factory for the launch of their new collection in collaboration with French designer and illustrator McBess.
At The Dudes factory I was able to catch some live illustration by McBess himself and found it most interesting to see the process and completion of such a large piece of illustration. It was great to get up close and personal with the finished piece and inspect some of the detail.
After taking in the live illustration and new tshirt collection, me and the rest of the partygoers were treated to a few numbers performed from the back of a truck by the aforementioned steak loving artist and his band of dead pirates.
After spying a small snippet in the Pictoplasma festival guide, I knew I would love the work of Amandine Urruty. Seeing her original artwork in the character walk and hearing her artist lecture confirmed what I already knew!
Amandine’s illustrated pieces are a healthy mix of grotesquely surreal and painfully cute, filled with unnatural and troubling bodies (think John Carpenter’s ‘The Thing’ bursting out of a Care Bear) all beautifully rendered in coloured pencil. Featuring both in the character walk and the artists talks, I had a chance to experience Amandine describe her extraordinary creative process in her own eccentric way. My highlight was hearing tales of 12 hour horror film filled illustration sessions and finding out the Amandine’s seemingly arbitrary yet amusingly accurate secret formula for the perfect Amandine Urruty piece.
Emphasising the importance of determination and self belief, I found Rilla Alexander’s talk truly inspirational and motivating. It was clear that the sentiment of her talk forms the underlying theme of Rilla’s new book ‘Her Idea‘ which tells the story of Sozi, a creative character on a journey to bring her ideas to life!
On the last night of the Festival, I was blown away Motomichi Nakamura’s performance at the closing party. With a strobing mix of red, white and black (as is always the Motomichi way) and a dose of ultra fast techno with extra bass, Motomichi put on a truly terrifying show. Motomichi’s own brand of fear ended the festival for me, on a supercharged high!
So thats its for my Pictplasma 2011 highlights, its only a small snippet out of the huge number of inspiring artists and events so dont forget to check them all out over at Pictoplasma.com. After experiencing Pictoplasma for the first thing this year, I’m sure it will become a regular fixture in my calendar!