Thursday, 19 October 2017

Recipes Organized into Component Parts in Food Styling Photos by Mikkel Jul Hvilshøj

All photos © Mikkel Jul Hvilshøj

In a shoot for Nordic cookware brand Eva, Copenhagen-based photographer Mikkel Jul Hvilshøj lets the ingredients speak for themselves. In flatlay photos on rich matte backgrounds, Hvilshøj creates compositions of raw recipe materials like carrots, star anise, and lemon that seem to suggest that the cookware itself is an essential element in classic Scandinavian food and drink. You can see the full series on Behance.

This Heat-Sensitive Edition of Fahrenheit 451 Can Only Be Read by Flame

This week the Anne Petronille Nypels Lab at Van Eyck Academie in the Netherlands shared a video of an edition of Ray Bradbury’s classic Fahrenheit 451 being held up to a flame. The video was not an ironic twist on the book’s overt message of censorship, but rather a demonstration of the experimental work’s hidden capabilities. The book was screen printed by French graphic design collective Super Terrain using heat sensitive ink, which conceals the book’s text behind a layer of black when at room temperature. You can see more of the collective’s experiments with printed matter on their website and Instagram. (via Open Culture)

11 Incredible LGBT Travel Movies

An old cinema sign
Earlier this year, I added an LGBT column for the website to make the site more inclusive and talk about issues that affect some members of our community. We hear from LGBT voices about their experiences on the road, safety tips, events, and overall advice for other LGBT travelers! Returning this month is our column leader, Adam from Travels of Adam to share some of his favorite LGBT travel films!

Of the many things that motivate me to travel and explore the world, movies are definitely one of the strongest influences. Cinematography helps us experience different worlds, stories take us to new places.

And as the experience of coming out feels like a journey for so many LGBT people, it makes sense that there’d be many LGBT movies that cover the emotional journey of discovery alongside the physical adventure of travel.

From Oscar-winning classics like Brokeback Mountain to cult favorites like To Wong Foo, Thanks for Everything! Julie Newmar to arthouse cinema by Almodóvar and John Waters, many films inspire us to travel.

This is my list of all-time favorite LGBT-themed movies that include traveling, and they come in all genres, from silly comedies to thoughtful dramas, from Hollywood masterpieces to indie productions.

Brokeback Mountain

A two main characters from Brokeback Mountain standing beside their truck
Brokeback Mountain is (rightfully) at the top of any LGBT movie list. This 2005 movie tells the story of two cowboys and their annual trip from Wyoming to Texas. The beautiful scenery of the mountains and the men’s camping trip is the perfect background for this painful drama, which depicts how many gay relationships, however they’re defined, frequently start as friendship, but how there’s also often a struggle with society and one’s personal boundaries. Despite the tragic outcome, the story reminds us that love triumphs over hate — and over physical distance.

Priscilla, Queen of the Desert

A scene from Priscilla, Queen of the Desert
From the mountains we travel to the desert. Two of my favorite movies are inspired by sand and hot winds. The first one is a classic and has become a gay cult movie. Set in Australia’s Simpson Desert, 1994’s Priscilla, Queen of the Desert is actually the name of a bus used by two drag queens and a trans woman to cross Australia on their way to a casino in Alice Springs. Along the journey, the characters interact with rural populations, aboriginal Australians, and homophobic gangs. A young Guy Pearce and award-winning costume design make the film especially memorable. The film’s combination of humor and drama is essential to any road trip movie, because traveling gives you exactly that: laughs and tears.

C.R.A.Z.Y.

A scene from the film C.R.A.Z.Y.
The second desert movie on this list is a more recent (2005) Canadian production, and the desert depicted is that of the beautiful city of Essaouira, Morocco (though the setting of the movie is actually Jerusalem). C.R.A.Z.Y. is a story about acceptance and family life, but it includes an honest portrayal of traveling as a way of silencing the voices in our heads, only to return home completely empowered and strong. It follows Zac during his journey of coming out, which includes an escape to the Middle East before he reunites with his friends and family back home. Moreover, the soundtrack includes many iconic gay anthems, including Patsy Cline (“Crazy”), Giorgio Moroder (“Here to Eternity”), and David Bowie (“Space Oddity”).

To Wong Foo, Thanks for Everything! Julie Newmar

Men dressed in drag sittin in a car
This 1995 film seems to be inspired by Priscilla, but the producers insist that production started before the Australian film was released. To Wong Foo follows the lives of three New York drag queens (Wesley Snipes, Patrick Swayze, and John Leguizamo) on a road trip from NYC to Los Angeles for a drag competition. Naturally, their car breaks down and they end up stranded in small-town America, where they have several comedic and dramatic encounters with the local police and other stereotypical Southern characters. The movie shows both the welcoming and homophobic attitudes of the American South, but for me, the best part is the combination of black, Latino and “white” narratives during the road trip. By overcoming stereotypes and hate — mostly depicted in the figure of a police officer — the drag queens change the lives of many people and rediscover the value of friendship.

Transamerica

A mother and her son standing beside their truck
Another great story, Transamerica features an outstanding performance by Felicity Huffman as a trans woman, Bree, on a road trip. Her therapist insists that she must make amends with her estranged son, who doesn’t know of her transition, before signing off on her final surgery. Bree drives her son from NYC to Los Angeles under the pretense of being a Christian missionary helping him out of jail and breaking his bad habits. As they travel together and learn about one another, the movie explores the meaning of words like “father” and “mother,” “boy” and “girl,” all the while revealing the characters’ complicated and emotional journey. It’s a story about family life, tolerance, and self-respect.

Weekend

Two men sitting in bed
This 2011 British drama was director Andrew Haigh’s breakout film (before he went on to direct Looking and 45 Years). Two men who meet in a gay club looking for a casual hookup before one of them is to move away. They have a passionate weekend together, sharing intimate details and experiences: their coming out, past relationships, and thoughts on sexuality. It’s the story of that emotional, in-between moment before leaving something behind and starting anew: passionate, intense, and fleeting but unforgettable.

Y Tu Mamá También

Three friends smoking in a car
While some people are hesitant to consider it an LGBT movie, I believe Y Tu Mamá También is clearly about the stigma against bisexuality (or about the freedom to overcome any labels). While on a road trip around Mexico, two teenage boys and an attractive older woman head to the beach, only to discover the secrets of their own passions against the backdrop of Mexico’s political and social realities. The movie deftly combines comedy and drama, and it shows how traveling opens us up to new experiences by fighting societal and interal worries or doubts.

Seashore (Beira-Mar)

Two men talking in an empty field
This lovely film from Brazil tells the story of two young men on a road trip trying to recover legal documents from relatives, with a detour to the beach. The journey gives them the opportunity to reconnect while solving their own internal struggles. One of the boys is gay, and the story follows his internal dilemma of sharing that fact with his friend. Part of the magic of this movie is that it’s a sweet and positive depiction of gay youth. The pain of coming out is mostly absent, and the whole experience is presented as natural and easy, with very little tension. There’s a sweetness to the story, a youthfulness—and, importantly, also a realness. Not everyone has a bad experience coming out. And those stories are just as worth sharing as the others.

Todo Sobre Mi Madre

A woman standing in front of a large poster
It’s impossible to talk about LGBT movies and travel without making a reference to the work of Pedro Almodóvar. Many of his movies reflect gender, politics, and pain. Todo Sobre Mi Madre tells the story of a tragicomic drag queen and prostitute, Amparo, surrounded by a couple of lesbian theater actresses, a pregnant nun, and a mother (portrayed by Argentinian actress Cecilia Roth), all while searching for a trans woman who is the biological father of her son. The tragic story is set in two beautiful Spanish cities, Madrid and Barcelona, and through the protagonist, we learn that every trip has a different meaning at different points in our lives.

Happy Together

Two men dancing in a kitchen
As for Asian cinema, the must-see film is this 1997 classic by Wong Kar-Wai. A gay couple from Hong Kong travel to Argentina, with the objective of visiting the Iguazú waterfalls and resetting their relationship. Their physical trip abroad is a metaphor for their spiritual trip, and includes episodes of depression, emotional pain, and abuse. The story is tumultuous but reveals the power of resilience and shows us how traveling can affect both past and present relationships.

August

A bartender standing behind the bar
August is another gay-themed movie about separation and reunification. After living for many years in Spain, Troy travels back to Los Angeles and begins a journey that explores the boundaries of relationships and the ugly difference between reality and expectations. For me, travel here is a symbolic way to break old habits and learn more about ourselves and others. Returning from a long trip always has its complications, especially when old relationships show up again. But it’s our journeys abroad that add to our own personal stories, and things always change before, during, and after a big trip.

***

We often travel to different places in other to imagine how life would be for us there, to discover new cultures and social contexts and to explore unknown parts of our own being. Many LGBT-inspired films do exactly the same. Today, it’s easy to explore both the real or fictional worlds of gay lives in many films from different cultures, cities, and social contexts as more and more LGBT films make it to mainstream screens. But even if you don’t identify as LGBT, I encourage you to seek out these films that follow unique and personal stories, themes we can all relate to no matter our sexuality or gender.

Maybe the more LGBT movies you watch, the easier it is to interact with others who are different or have a background that’s hard to assess. The same goes for travel. The more international friends and acquaintances you have and the more diversity in your life, the easier to understand and empathize with other cultures.

Note: Some of these films aren’t 100% accurate in their depictions of LGBT people and may seem dated, but many of them have had a positive impact on LGBT culture and continue to be important.

Adam Groffman is a former graphic designer who left a publishing job in Boston to settling in Berlin, Germany. He’s a gay travel expert, writer, and blogger and publishes a series of LGBT-friendly Hipster City Guides from around the world on his gay travel blog, Travels of Adam. When he’s not out exploring the coolest bars and clubs, he’s usually enjoying the local arts and culture scene. Find more of his travel tips (and embarrassing stories) on Twitter @travelsofadam.

The post 11 Incredible LGBT Travel Movies appeared first on Nomadic Matt's Travel Site.

Wednesday, 18 October 2017

An 80-Foot Steel Kraken Will Create an Artificial Coral Reef Near the British Virgin Islands

All images via Owen Buggy

This past April a massive 80-foot steel kraken was purposefully sunk into the Caribbean Sea on top of a decorated WW2 ship. The former Navy fuel barge and its monstrous passenger were placed underwater in order to jumpstart a new coral ecosystem, while also serving as a cutting-edge education center for marine researchers and local students from the surrounding British Virgin Islands. The project is titled the BVI Art Reef, and aims to use sculptures like the porous kraken as a base to grow transplanted coral.

The Kodiak Queen, formerly a Navy fuel barge named the YO-44, was discovered by British photographer Owen Buggy approximately two and a half years ago on the island of Tortola. Instead of letting the historic vessel get picked apart for scrap metal, Buggy approached former boss Sir Richard Branson about collaborating on a restorative art installation. Together with nonprofit Unite B.V.I., artist group Secret Samurai Productions, social justice entrepreneurial group Maverick1000, and ocean education nonprofit Beneath the Waves, the project was established as both an eco-friendly art installation, and a philanthropic measure to rehabilitate native marine species.

“It’s envisioned that within just a short space of time the ship and artwork will attract a myriad of sea creatures,” said Clive Petrovic who consults on the environmental impact of the BVI Art Reef. “Everything from corals to sea sponges, sharks and turtles will live on, in, and around the wreck. The ship will become valuable for future research by scientists and local students alike.”

To sink the massive ship, the project sought the help of the Commercial Dive Services who safely submerged the vessel off the coast of the island Virgin Gorda. It was the first time the ship had been in the water for nearly 17 years, and was lead to its final resting place by a bevy of boats and helicopters.

Filmmaker Rob Sorrenti filmed the both the construction and sinking of the kraken and its ship, and will premiere a full-length documentary of the project within the next month. You can watch a clip from the upcoming film below. For information on visiting the BVI Art Reef, and to learn more about its educational programs, visit the project’s website and Facebook.

An Exquisite Collection of Paper Pop-Ups Designed by Peter Dahmen

From commercial packaging to artistic creations fused with geometry, paper designer Peter Dahmen is a true master of the pop-up. This new video titled Most Satisfying Video of Pop-Up Cards is a portfolio of sorts spanning the last several years of his work engineering elaborate objects that unfold from the pages of books or the confines of tiny boxes. You can go behind the scenes a bit more in this 2014 film on Dahmen from Christopher Helkey, and you can also try building some of his original designs with these free online tutorials. (via The Kid Should See This)

Win a Trip to the Engadget Experience in LA, a Celebration of Art and Tech (Sponsor)

For one day only in Los Angeles, a series of futuristic art installations and panels will bring together some of the brightest minds in art, entertainment, and technology. The Engadget Experience will be an opportunity to experience one-of-a-kind art exhibits and hear from the artists behind these projects. The Engadget Experience will take place at LA’s Ace Hotel on November 14th, and you can win tickets to be there.

To make The Engadget Experience happen, Engadget gave out the largest prizes ever in the field of immersive tech—$100,000 apiece to teams creating art from VR, artificial intelligence and even search results.

The artistic projects that will be part of the experience include:

   — Dance with flARmingos, a mixed reality experience that features a interspecies dance between humans and flamingos. For artist Karen Lucas, it’s an opportunity to depart from a human-centered worldview.
   — Dinner Party, a virtual-reality thriller based on the true story of the Betty and Barney Hill UFO-abduction incident, the first nationally known UFO abduction in American history.
   — Mapper’s Delight, a cultural tale representing worlds, experiences and gameplay told through hip-hop.
   — Untrained Eyes, a conceptual technology project that takes its inspiration from observing the explicit bias that can be found during everyday image searches within Google and other public-image archives.
   — Your Hands Are Feet, an interactive room-scale VR experience that places you in surreal realities made up of experiential metaphors.

Dance with flARmingos

Dinner Party

Mapper’s Delight

Tickets for the Engadget Experience are on sale now at a temporarily reduced price, but one lucky reader can win two free tickets, plus a two-night stay at the Ace Hotel, a $1,000 airfare stipend and a collection of gadgets that includes the Amazon Echo, Samsung Galaxy S8, Samsung Gear VR and a Smarthome automation bundle.

The Engadget Experience will take place at LA’s Ace Hotel on November 14th. Enter here to win tickets.

Butterfly Specimen Boxes Painted as Multi-Story Murals by Mantra

Wiener Schmetterlinge, 2017. Wien, Austria.

France-based street artist Mantra has been unveiling a series of trompe l’oeil murals that convert the facades of commercial and residential buildings into larger-than-life butterfly display cases in Spain, Austria, France, and Bogota. Seen here are a few pieces from the last year, but you can explore a bit more on Facebook.
(via Lustik)

El asalto de Apollo, 2017. Saragosse, Spain.

Mariposas de Aragón, 2017. Festival Internacional de Arte Urbano. Photo by Juanjo Fernandez.

Mariposas de Aragón, progress.

Yasuni’s Imago, 2017. Thionville, France.

Bogota, 2015.

Collaboration with Stinkfish. Vienna, Austria.