Saturday, 31 July 2010

Scarlett Johansson for D&G Make Up Sping/Summer 2010

Scarlett Johansson is again the face for Dolce and Gabbana make up line for Spring/Summer 2010. In the new ads featuring the gorgeous actress, she is again seen to be Marilyn Monroe inspired. Sensually applying make up, her eyes tell the story and it is a stunning shoot. There is just noone out there who is as glamourous as her!

Friday, 30 July 2010

Ernesto Neto at the Hayward Gallery 2010

I went to the Hayward Gallery today to see the work of Ernesto Neto who is a Brazilian Artist. His work was really stunning and not only was pretty but it also allowed guests to play around with his stuff, which also seems to be an experimentation of how people interact with a space.

The sci-fi/floral structures were very well made and the subtleties in shape and colour were really inspiring. Also, the use of windows, holes and layers meant that people could look through and between the structures, providing fascinating viewpoints everywhere you look.

Here are some shots taken at the Hayward~

Other works by Ernesto Neto:

I've definitely added him to one of my favourite artists!

Wednesday, 28 July 2010

Ai Weiwei

Ai Weiwei is a Chinese artist who is well known for his installations; the use of shape, repeating patterns and symmetry not only looks stunning but gives your mind something to think about. He will be commisioned for the next Turbine Hall exhibition at the Tate Modern. I am intrigued as to what he will bring there, and if the following works are anything to go by, it will be extremely stunning. I cannot wait to visit the Turbine Hall when the work is up.

Tuesday, 27 July 2010

Life Tunnel by Atelier Bow Wow at the Hayward Gallery 2008

Another installation featured at the Hayward Gallery in 2008 was the Life Tunnel by Atelier Bow Wow, a prismic length of tunnel that allows people to crawl through, the sharp and crisp shapes forming reflective surfaces and almost illusional properties.

I really like the almost crystalline structure it appears when looking through the tunnel; part of it looks like its going to close up and eat the people inside and also reminds me of the James Bond circular thing... I'd loved to have gone and seen it for myself if only I knew about it before!!!

Monday, 26 July 2010

Los Carpinteros- Showroom at the Hayward Gallery 2008

Los Carpinteros had an installation at the Hayward gallery in 2008, featuring an explosion of suspended objects which could be seen through a hole made in a brick wall. This is an exciting piece which reminds me of the work of Cornelia Parker, and had I known about this earlier, I would have used it in my art exam project as the method of suspending objects as well as the theme of destruction and reconstruction made this almost perfect as an artist to look at.

Friday, 23 July 2010

Inception Film Review

I Had been wanting to see this for a while, urged by the comments my friends have made about its awesomeness... so went and saw it today with my sister!

Dom Cobb (Leonardo DiCaprio) is an extractor, someone who can steal ideas from people's dreams, and is forced to do so, causing him to lose his family. Failing his extraction mission, he is offered a chance to be reunited with his children by Saito (Ken Watanabe), who wants Cobb to plant an idea into the heir of rival power company, Robert Fischer (Cillian Murphy).

Leading a group of specialists starred by Ellen Page (Ariadne, architect), Joseph Gordon Levitt (Arthur) , Tom Hardy (Eames, forger) and Dileep Rao (Yusuf, chemist), Cobb must skillfully implant the idea into Fischer's mind through a dream within a dream within a dream and be able to escape successfully, with the possibility of ending up in "limbo" if they fail; their job made more complex by Cobb's past (his wife's suicide) and his own subconscious interference.

The idea of the film is rather simple, but the way it is carried out may confuse. The first half hour of the film consisted of Cobb recruiting his "specialists" for the job which provides good background information to the idea of entering the dreams, and how the whole thing works, with the remainder of the film actually being the "job". Whilst this first part may be less exciting, it gives necessary information that we must grasp in order to enjoy the rest.

The special effects of the film were outstanding, and several times throughout the movie I just went "WOW, how did they do this!" I particularly liked the explosions during Ariadne's first time being in her subconscious, and also the action scenes during the second dream (hotel) with the anti-gravity.

The idea of a dream within a dream within a dream was not as confusing as people make it out to be, and I was able to follow the film most of the way. It was near the end (and the ending itself) that provokes thought and the audience will have to make their own mind up about what happens, or what is real and what is dreamt.

The ending would've been extremely simple had the spinning top stopped spinning, confirming that Cobb was back to reality and reunited with his kids. The fact the it cuts before it stops (if it ever does) suggests that he could still be in a dream, backed up by the fact his children have not aged.

Given the spinning top doesn't stop, I am thrown as to whether the whole film was in a dream, whether everyone was manifestations of Cobb in a dream (and the purpose of the whole thing was to reconcile himself with his guilt), and what actually happened.

Personally, I just cannot accept that everything is a dream, as that kind of ruins the movie, but am willing to accept that everyone else escaped and that Cobb himself is left in limbo, or otherwise trapped in a dream or he himself decided to stay in dream world. Either way, people can make their own minds up and we won't get a conclusive answer.

Leonardo DiCaprio- Cobb
Joseph Gordon Levitt- Arthur
Ellen Page- Ariadne
Tom Hardy- Eames
Ken Watanabe- Saito
Dileep Rao- Yusuf

Also stars Cillian Murphy (Robert Fischer Jnr), Marion Cotillard (Mal) and Michael Caine.

I thought Leonardo DiCaprio was really good in the movie; as his character was most developed, it shows his acting skills and action skills as well. However, attention went more to Joseph Gordon Levitt and Tom Hardy for their comedic one liners. Ellen Page did well being who she was but she didn't seem to aid the plot as much as everyone else (although her character did create all the "mazes"). I didn't think she was really needed in the dreams themselves. Cillian Murphy, Marion Cotillard and Michael Caine were pleasant surprises and provided a strong supporting cast for the "team".

Inception is a thought provoking movie that will give audiences worldwide something to talk about. The original concept and excellent action and effects makes this an unforgettable film with good consistency and believability. The film is backed by a great cast, but also by the man who brought us "The Dark Knight", Christopher Nolan, who successfully creates yet another awesome epic.

Whilst the ending may confuse, shock or even annoy, it leaves you scratching your heads and thinking about the film over and over, perhaps urging you to watch it again, a subconscious inception that will certainly make Nolan a very happy man.

Wednesday, 21 July 2010

Woburn Safari Park

Today, I went to the Woburn Safari Park, and was very surprised at how much fun it was. It was an awesome experience and I would recommend it to all!

The day started off with the "in car" safari, where the animals are free to roam. We saw zebra, rhinoceros and a range of African deer that came very near to our car, which was immensely thrilling. The rhinoceros did a wee whilst we were watching it; last time apparently my cousin saw an elephant poo; unfortunately I wasn't there. There are also some enclosures that we drove in to see the lions, bears and wolves (which was less exciting as they didn't move about that much); another one to see the monkeys (one climbed onto our car) which was exciting (scary for my child cousin though!). You can drive around the park again and again with no limitation.

After the "car" safari, we parked and went into the "on foot safari". We stopped off for lunch at the restaurant, which was an utter rip off (£8 for fish and chips!?) and tasted rather bad. I would not recommend buying food here unless you are utterly desperate and starving! There were limited seating and during lunchtimes would get extremely busy. There are toilets near the restaurant which is placed well. Next to the restaurant, there is also a small stall selling ice cream.

At different times of the day, there are feeds and talks that go on in the different enclosures, and we managed to visit three of these feeds, including the Australian area, where wallabies and ostriches were fed. This was sooo cool as they all ran to eat the carrots and cabbage; they got so close we could touch them, and many people grabbed their food to feed them... Unfortunately, we didn't get a talk about the animals, but the feeding in itself was thrilling enough.

Next, we went to see the squirrel monkeys being fed. They were really small and cute, and the one that stuck was this one carrying its baby on its back. This had an alright talk, but the microphone was really not clear. I didn't pay too much attention to the talk, as the monkeys themselves demanded attention!

The lemur talk and feed was much more animated, although the lemurs themselves were less jumpy and lazier; before the feed, they did jump right past us, which was surprising and made us jump.

There were other animals around the safari, including penguins, lynx (which we didn't get to see), goats and water hogs. Most of these had their own feeding times but we didn't get to see them. Instead, we spent some time playing their adventure playground in the ark, as well as the bob cat slide. They also have swan paddling boats that we played on for about ten minutes.

All tickets cost under £20, with vouchers and coupons constantly available online which gives free child tickets, cheaper family tickets and discounts, making the experience even more worthwhile! Booking online will get you a 10% discount.

Overall, Woburn Safari Park is an exciting day out, and has just enough that you can spend one whole day there. The unlimited circuit of "in car" safari you could take means you can see the animals again and again, and for the price, it is a good deal that will give you a lasting enjoyment, an exciting experience and a yearning to return.


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