Saturday, January 30, 2010

Saturday Sculpture!

Today's "art that makes me wanna write a book" is the work of Portland-based artist Brian Elliot . Brian's work is amazing, combining found objects and hand fabricated parts, done with painstaking attention to detail. Much of his work has a sly sense of humor, and all of it seems to have a secret story. You're always left thinking about the piece and its story, which is exactly what I love, and why it fits the theme of my Saturday posts.

Above is a piece from his raygun series (click picture to enlarge). Brian did write out the storyline for this series, but in his talented hands, it leaves me imagining even more.

Currently, I am obsessed with two projects of his.
First up: the" Aries 2010 Time Capsule", which was commisioned by Nike to debut at the 2010 Olympics. It was just installed at the Boardroom Snowboard Shop in Vancouver BC!
I think part of what is so striking to me on this piece is Brian's perfect details. Like the way he took a bright, shiny, 'finished' piece and dented and chipped paint and scuffed and added grease stains, bringing out the sense of time in this time capsule. A lesser artist wouldn't have known to add that layer of complexity, but Brian understands that great art, like a great book, needs that.

The second project is called "Racehopper'. Below is a photo of the almost finished cockpit, and under that is Brian's rendering of what a Racehopper gang would look like!

I can't stop daydreaming about all the stories this grasshopper-shaped vehicle could play a part in.... If I wasn't so far behind on my editing, I would be writing a story involving Racehoppers right now!

In addition to his sculpting work, Brian also worked for two years as a rigger on the Neil Gaiman book-turned-movie, Coraline. In case you missed the movie, it was incredible. Especially so in 3-D. You can see some pictures of Brian at work on Coraline on his website in the current projects section.

Brian Elliot is just dizzingly talented, and never fails to surprise and engage his viewer.


yokohamamama said...

Love the Aries 2010! I can see it crawling the surface of Titan...or Ganymede...yeah, someplace like that. I haven't seen Coraline--is it something the kids could watch? Or over their heads, do you think? (I am so behind on movies...):))

Aubrie said...

Coraline was so original! It set my imagination ticking away. I don't know what to think of his art, it confuses me but at the same time it makes me want to look harder for the answers.

Jon Paul said...

Wow, great original provocative work. You're spot on: these photos get the imagination neural net popping.

Thanks for sharing them.

Jonathon Arntson said...

Jeez, very Star Wars meets Steampunk.

My word verification is poudhani, I can see the being the name of one of those machines operators.

Southpaw said...

Those are so cool.

Jen said...

I love inspiration!!!

yokohamamama said...

yeah--I keep thinking you could write down the word verification every time, and pretty soon you'd have a totally believable alien language. Made while you wait--for all your scifi needs!

Lily Cate said...

I want a racehopper - now!

Yeah, and a lexicon of what all the word verification words actually mean ;)

Iapetus999 said...

Holy crap, that's my mechohorse right there!
I'd love to see that thing in person.

ann foxlee said...

Iapetus: It is incredibly cool, and the details... even more impressive in person! I loved the starter switch and fuel gauge scavenged from a Model T.
The Racehopper was built to 'match' a car collector's Studebaker (the colors are the same), and before it was towed down to San Diego, we went to a farewell party for it.
We drank Grasshoppers, of course!

Ryan said...

Those ray guns are awesome. Mass potential for props in a movie. Whole lot of talent in this town..

Fellow Portlander and Bransford blog surfer,


ann foxlee said...

welcome fellow Portlander, Ryan! Thanks for commenting :-)

Stephanie Thornton said...

Hi Ann! I left you an award on my blog- yahoo!

ann foxlee said...

Whee! Thanks Stephanie!!

yokohamamama said...

Hey--run over to! they've got j.k. rowling's Harvard commencement speech free for the listening!! (gotta love TED). They've just put it up, so the thumbnail should pop right up (for a while, anyway). Enjoy!