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The Industrious Ant

The views expressed are those of the author and are not necessarily those of Scientific American.


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Image of the Week #72, December 10th, 2012:


From: This Steampunk Ant is Transformative by Alex Wild at Compound Eye.

Source: Unnatural Selection show by Robert Bowen.

Visual metaphors are one of the foundations of understanding ideas about the natural world. Some take their cues from the world of design, like chemical reactions depicted as symbols and arrows. Others stem from our propensity to make myths, and Robert Bowen’s The Industrious Ant illustrates this beautifully. Immediately we recognize the ant as a biological machine, perhaps a creature enhanced above its peers and tireless.

Bowen’s use of photo reference itself becomes part of the story told by Alex Wild at The Compound Eye as it pushes Wild’s ideas of acceptable use to a new area. Wild’s photo became Bowen’s painted playground, and out crawled a painting that is less accurate in morphology than the original photo, yet true to the character of the ant itself.

Don’t miss Robert Bowen’s show, Unnatural Selection, open now in Oakland.



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