Category: art

Charmaine Olivia

Charmaine Olivia [self III]

Charmaine Olivia is an artist’s artist.

This San Diego-born, San Francisco-based self-taught artist is extremely prolific, regularly doing more than half a dozen gallery showings a year. Her work is colourful, imaginative, intense, and gratifying to those who see the emotion behind each subject.

Olivia is a revolving, evolving door of inspiration, and the phases she goes through is evident in her work. She is also accessible online, having a presence on tumblr, instagram, facebook, and twitter. You’ll find her personal posts to be revealing about her views on art and working as an artist, and the peeks she gives into her personal studio make you like her that much more.

She is especially loved here at UrbanLandfill, where we regularly play a cat-and-mouse game with her store, trying to get our hands on her limited-edition prints to decorate our office.

Charmaine Olivia

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© 2013 Charmaine Olivia All Rights Reserved.

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Xtreme KinematiX // Marin Myftiu

All images courtesy of Marin Myftiu

Marin Myftiu’s career is one worth watching.

Take one look at the designer behind the Xtreme KinematiX, and you’ll see why. His portfolio showcases his interest in car design, along with his keen aptitude for aesthetics. The freelance designer and architect spares no artistic expense when it comes to designing this new generation electric roadster.

All images courtesy Marin Myftiu

What’s distinctive and alluring about the XKX is the feline ideal – that is to say, the car was designed to physically resemble a feline predator. The car in profile almost gives you a sense of a predator ready to pounce, the body long, lean, and light, with little interruptions on the frame. Looking at it straight-on, the roadster resembles an aggressive expression of an attacking feline.

Looking at roadsters from the 1960s, they were linked to a minimalist approach, though its doubtful they were categorized as much. The cars had to be light, but powerful, giving the illusion of aerodynamic fluency. It makes sense that the XKX was based on car designs from that era, and one look from the comparisons will tell you that this car is a further improvement on the roadsters from 50 years ago.

XKX mirrors. All images courtesy Marin Myftiu

An interesting characteristic of the XKX are the 1cm disappearing mirrors. Fully operational when the car is turned on, these mirrors slide into a shallow hatch made within the doors when the car is turned off, adding to the aerodynamic design and preventing any damage to them while parked.

All images courtesy Marin Myftiu

Aerodynamics in a roadster is always important, and you’ll find that the speed of, and indeed the energy consumed, by a roadster is in direct proportion to the intake system which allows the air flow to find the path of least resistance around it. For the XKX, this problem – presented by the introduction of a much smaller and cooler power plant – was resolved by broadening the side deflector intakes, allowing air to flow behind the front wheels, glide along the sides of the cars, and reroute to the rear deflector intakes. This greatly reduces drag and the total flowing path.

All images courtesy of Marin Myftiu

The most exciting part of the project, at least for us here at UrbanLandfill, is the process in which a layer (piezoelectric transparent sheet) which houses the body of the XKX stores energy created by air pressure causing friction against the car, which is converted into electricity, and fed back into the car’s battery. This increases both efficiency and performance. Since 60% of the energy used by a typical car on a highway is spent to counter air friction, you can see why this innovative idea makes a problem into an improvement on an already beautiful vehicle.

Marin Myftiu is a designer we will watch closely, knowing his work signals a change in the car industry. Innovation and elegance go hand in hand, as demonstrated by the XKX. They are not mutually exclusive. In time, we will see Myftiu’s designs as the rule, not the exception they are today.

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All images courtesy Marin Myftiu.

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Marin Myftiu

Website Love — The Impossible Cool

If UrbanLandfill were a girl, it’d have a crush on The Impossible Cool.

An  elegant and effortless site about the old Hollywood charm, The Impossible Cool curates an amazing collection of photographs, each one a perception of Hollywood at the time it was taken. Photos of Seberg, Connery, Taylor, McGraw, Hepburn, McQueen, and countless others (including artists and musicians) mark the website, with little interruption save for an introduction for those who may not know the photographed.

But that’s not the only reason why The Impossible Cool is…well, cool.

Founder Sean Sullivan has been able to showcase what society wants – charm, civility, manners, and grace – and what it is completely lacking at the moment. When you enter his world, you find a world where adults acted like adults, women were alluring, and men were gentlemen.

Cheers, The Impossible Cool.

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The Impossible Cool

Stainless Steel Bangles from Cuyana

Cuyana, \ku-YAHN-uh\ – “to love.” 

[Taken from the traditional language of the Andean tribes, Quechua.]

Minimal design for jewelry seems to be a trend right now, but perhaps no company can marry the fine art of elegant minimalism with social responsibility as well as Cuyana.

Founded by Karla Gallardo and Shilpa Shah, the company concentrates on the traditions of individual countries and societies, and showcases the pieces they have been made for generations. Gallardo, originally from Ecuador, and Shah, an Indian-American, possess a sense of design and strength that few can emulate. With each passing collection, the company grows stronger, not only in their commitment to giving back (a percentage of all profits goes to benefit Charity:Water), but as a role model in sustainable design.

A favorite piece from the India Collection.

A favored piece from the current collection, India.

Design is a personal, and powerful, statement of who we are. Cuyana is an example of how an understated design can say so much about the person wearing it.

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Making Of


Banksy – Myths and Legends

Banksy: A Myth and a Legend.

What could be considered a memoir of one of the most influential street artists, Banksy: Myths and Legends has been released. It is described as including tales of the artist himself. Most of the stories come from Bristol, where Banksy is from, and are labeled as “tall tales” or “stuff from myth.”

While this writer is anxiously awaiting the arrival of the book, you can find a copy on amazon.

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Jay Z & Kanye West ‘Nigg*s in Paris’ [Artwork]

The wait is over.

Jay Z and Kanye West’s artwork for their next single, ‘Nigg*s in Paris’, has been unveiled by Watch the Throne art director, Virgil Abloh.

The cover, which is simplistic and is reminiscent of the French Flag, was created by Givenchy designer Ricardo Tisci and company.

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Anton Kusters // Odo Yakuza Tokyo

Anton Kusters may be the first, and only, Westerner to ever document the Yakuza. 

The brilliant photographer, who spent over two years of his life gaining the trust of the Yakuza and documenting them, put his efforts in a book earlier this year entitled “Odo Yakuza Tokyo.”

The book, which under any circumstances, is riveting and full of arresting photographs, also contains an essay into the photographer’s journey with the Yakuza. The photographs bear witness to the infamous tattoos, the guarding of the Yakuza bosses, and the essay picks up on cultural customs, such as the cutting off of a finger as an apology.

It’s difficult to summarize the subject matter of the book, or even the author himself, since both author and book are to be admired and acknowledged as witnesses to a culture few know anything about. Nothing about this project should be taken flippantly, or dismissed.

The book has been sold out since July, but many of the photographs can be found on Kusters’ site.

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See No Evil [Bristol]

See No Evil transformed Bristol into the city that it is, a cultural landmark in Britain, thanks to several gifted individuals and thousands of cans of spray paint.

Watch this space for news of the upcoming documentary.

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Camilla d’Errico x Joshua Dysart [Helmet Girls]

Graphic novels done by such talented people as Joshua Dysart and Camilla d’Errico cannot be overlooked.

Helmet Girls, an idea based off Camilla d’Errico’s (Nightmares and Fairytales, Sky Pirates) sketches of girls in helmets, is finally coming to fruition as a graphic novel, penned by none other than Urban Landfill friend, Joshua Dysart (Violent Messiahs, Unknown Soldier).

While the excitement is building over this collaboration, information on this anticipated graphic novel is being reserved for New York Comic Con, the East Coast’s biggest pop culture convention.

Watch this space. UrbanLandfill will have more information for you in October.

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France is where stenciling and the street art culture began.

C215 is a Stencil Artist from France.

In the world of art – whether classical, contemporary, or street – one is known not just for their prolific tendencies, but also for the style and compositions they are renown for.

C215 is an incredibly educated and talented man from the suburbs of Paris. The stencil artist, who has 2 Master’s degrees and a PhD from the Sorbonne, worked in export until his daughter was born. He made the switch to stenciling then, and hasn’t looked back.

It is not unusual to find a street artist who has been so formally educated. C215’s distinction comes from his stencils – most are faces, animals, and streetscapes, and are colored quite beautifully with bold hues. His work, done mostly during the day, can be found on rusty doors or mailboxes and on walls that have already been tagged.

What amazes this writer is that C215 has a unique perspective on different emotions that are easily detectable in the face.