Mad Love for David Lawrey & Jaki Middleton

OMIGOSH omigosh omigosh. So this morning I'm perusing It's Nice That, my favorite art/design blog (for lots of reasons), and see this awesome little video depiction of Michael Jackson which uses a zoetrope (!!!) & I just have to check out the rest of this duo's work.

If you're a film history lover like me, you'll enjoy their methodology. These guys are Aussies whose "collaborative practice draws on popular visual culture, art history and cinematic traditions to create works that engage the viewer via optical phenomena, juxtaposition and repetition." Cinematic parlor tricks & -tropes galore. Take what you will from the "meaning" of the works; the simple visual effects and careful re-appropriation of old-school tricks like Pepper's Ghost are enough reason to appreciate their works.

Some of my favorites: Magic Mountain, which references not only Edward Scissorhands but also the pinnacle of my sixth-grade birthday party & beginning of obsession with horror film & cinematography, The Shining. How's that for a run-on sentence?

In another delightfully creepy Kubrick reference, Forever and ever and ever uses a mechanical Thaumatrope to juxtapose a Diane Arbus photo of twins with an image of the hallway from The Shining. Twins are just plain scary anyway, dopplegangers with mystical powers. I've never met a set of twins that didn't freak me out, and this is another reason why (sorry.)

Finally, in a very visually reminiscent style of Michel Gondry, You're not thinking fourth dimensionally is a piece with a great title that uses the Pepper's Ghost effect to produce a ghost train. Watch the vid, and remember how great it was to ride the Tower of Terror at Disney.

Looking at these pictures, I realize another element in the allure of their work: the perspective of a single viewer.

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