I passed by this enigmatic mural, located on the north side of 2nd Street, just west of First Avenue, (right next to Julie’s Vintage) while on the way to meet Geoffrey for lunch. Part Eagle, part, Eyeball and part Fish, this work of street art really has everything! The artist’s signature is visible in the lower, right corner of the above image, but I am unable to decipher it or find him or her via a search for “Jonac” — which is what the signature appears to say. Any clues on the artist’s identity, please leave it in the comments – thanks!
Note: The artist has been correctly identified as Lonac in the comments below, many thanks!!
Le Faux Miroir (1928) presents an enormous lash-less eye with a luminous cloud-swept blue sky filling the iris, and an opaque, dead-black disc for a pupil. The allusive title, provided by Belgian surrealist writer Paul Nougé, seems to insinuate limits to the authority of optical vision: a mirror provides a mechanical reflection, but the eye is selective and subjective. Magritte’s single eye functions on multiple enigmatic levels: the viewer both looks through it, as through a window, and is looked at by it, thus seeing and being seen simultaneously. The Surrealist photographer Man Ray, who owned the work from 1933 to 1936, recognized this compelling duality when he memorably described Le Faux Miroir as a painting that “sees as much as it itself is seen.”
In a backyard garden in Austin, Texas, lush with native succulents and clusters of Baby Doll Heads on Sticks, artist Scott Stevens has built a unique totem to his favorite musical performer, Alice Cooper. Scott has given Worleygig.com an exclusive on this larger than life representation of Cooper’s iconic eye makeup and how the sculpture came to be.
“I started with a discarded metal fence pole set in a concrete plug,” Scott explains. “Once that was in the ground, I cast a concrete footer around the plug for stability. I used found metal pieces, lathing, tar paper, and lots of bell wire to tie it all together. To create the form I used Portland cement mixed with sand on top of the armature (metal framework). I learned a lot about methods and materials while putting the sculpture together.”
“The totem changes color — ranging from blue green to blackish, depending on the time of day and on the position of the sun. Although Alice’s makeup is black, I didn’t want a big black piece in the middle of all the green cacti. Home Depot pulled through for me again with an exterior satin latex that was mixed to match Liquitex Green Permanent Deep. I dug the hole on Feb 1st and finished painting on July 5th, 2014.
Scott continues that, “It was truly a labor of love – during which I battled loads of mosquitoes! I had been working on drawings of the idea for years and I was motivated to build it this year because Alice was playing a show here in Austin on July 15th (on his tour with Motley Crüe) and I was hoping he would come to visit my yard! I saw him also in Dallas on the 16th – he blew the Crüe off the stage at both stows – and I’ll see him again in Houston on October 11th.”
Few will argue that the city of Chicago is a fantastic place to go for a vacation. The food is amazing, there are a million places to go and things to do, and even if the weather is crap – as it was on my recent Chicago vacation – there’s tons of stuff to do indoors. But if you are lucky enough to get the good weather, then you can spend a lot of time outdoors because Chicago has breathtaking architecture and outrageous, randomly scattered, publicly displayed works of art. The latest contribution to Chicago’s city scape is called EYE, a three-story tall eyeball sculpture conceived and created by local Chicago artist Tony Tasset, which was installed earlier this week in Chicago’s Pritzker Park.
According to a CNN report: Tasset chose an eye because it is a powerful symbol that has been used throughout history – by the Egyptians, for example. He designed a similar but much smaller sculpture for a park in St. Louis, Missouri. The steel reinforced fiberglass EYE has a blue iris because that is the color of Tasset’s eyes. The installation has a psychological edge to it and some people could find it creepy, Tasset acknowledged, calling it “surrealist-noir.”
If you’re planning a trip to Chicago, be sure to do it now because the EYE will only be on display until the end of October (hey, after that maybe they’ll bring it to New York)!
Watch a video of the EYE during its construction phase at this link.