The Uncanny Feather

Using biological elements to create fluid forms of movement, artist Kate MccGwire takes bird feathers and assembles them into strange, intertwining forms. Playing with materiality, the artist uses feathers to mimic flowing water or curving scales, creating “images that both attract and disturb the viewer” – an unnerving beauty.

Is it a new creature, or a plant? Perhaps not even a representation of a living organism at all, making the objects exhibited even more uncanny; the fluidity of material yet stable nature of the pieces are like representations of an object in motion, yet frozen in time. The artist is “using the language of nature to create unnatural forms” challenging the viewer’s expectation of the use of material, manipulating it into “undulating, organic, otherworldly form[s]”, neither slick and on objects ready for flight, nor daintily soft and plumy on a pillow surface.

This connection of opposites allows us to think about how our perceptions of materiality and aesthetic influence our expectations of certain materials and objects.

-Anna Paluch


Andy Goldsworthy   Natural Land Sculptures

“Andy Goldsworthy is an extraordinary, innovative British artist whose collaborations with nature produce uniquely personal and intense artworks. Using a seemingly endless range of natural materials—snow, ice, leaves, bark, rock, clay, stones, feathers petals, twigs—he creates outdoor sculpture that manifests, however fleeting, a sympathetic contact with the natural world. Before they disappear, or as they disappear, Goldsworthy, records his work in superb colour photographs.”

The materials used in Andy Goldsworthy’s art often include brightly coloured flowers, icicles, leaves, mud, pinecones, snow, stone, twigs, and thorns. He has been quoted as saying, “I think it’s incredibly brave to be working with flowers and leaves and petals. But I have to: I can’t edit the materials I work with. My remit is to work with nature as a whole.” Goldsworthy is generally considered the founder of modern rock balancing. For his ephemeral works, Goldsworthy often uses only his bare hands, teeth, and found tools to prepare and arrange the materials. Wikipedia

I feel kinda bad whenever I see Trekkies refer to JJ Abrams as Jar Jar Abrams 

because Jar Jar Binks tried really hard, always wanted to be helpful, and showed a great deal of respect to everyone. When he messed up he understood his faults, apologised, and tried harder not to disappoint people. 

Jar Jar Binks would never think of releasing a movie where the female officers weren’t given rank insignia. 


APLES green design & build redesign homes for those living in cramped and badly ventilated townhouses in urban Vietnam. Their aim is to create cool, open and comfortable living environments that also have unique beauty.

For this home, the plants, trees and fuid transitions between each space enable natural airflow, whilst also creating visually beautiful scenes, the visibility expanded by open doorways and glass doors. The pool on the first floor plays an important factor in cooling hot air in the house as well as providing enjoyable swimming space. The brick latticework across the house and the descorative concrete roof combine, allowing the heat to escape whilst also letting in natural light without direct sun.

This combination of natural light, soothing materials, inviting spaces and a healthy living environment, allows individuals to live and own houses that in the past could only be experienced in luxury resorts and villas.

Photographs by Hiroyuki Oki.

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