Produce: for growing, eating, and portraiture! Giuseppe Arcimboldo painted these crazy portraits/still lifes/reversible portraits that were simultaneously still lifes in 16th century Italy, including a series of the four seasons. Those four paintings were later turned into massive sculptures by Philip Haas, and they are now on display through October 27 at the New York Botanical Garden. Just look at Summer!
Amazing, right? Apparently some of the vegetables—like the eggplant and the corn, and is that an artichoke?—were brand-new to Europe at the time. Get more details at The Salt blog, and let’s go visit them and appreciate their massive scale for ourselves. When the rain lets up, of course.
[Photo courtesy New York Botanical Garden via NPR]
Come to the Oakland Cat Vid Fest on Saturday and support the East Bay SPCA »
Saturday is FULL of events on both coasts, you guys. And this one sounds like so much fun: the Oakland Cat Vid Fest! How much fun? Let’s see:
The Great Wall of Oakland is collaborating with the Walker Art Center to bring the Internet Cat Video Festival to Oakland! On Saturday, May 11, from 3 to 10 p.m., an estimated 5,000+ cat-lovers and friends will be celebrating felines and exploring the low-art of Internet cat videos together, in real-time, as we transform West Grand between Telegraph and Broadway into a cat-lovers wonderland. Best of all, proceeds benefit the East Bay SPCA!
During the day, cat-lovers and their allies can peruse cat and pet products and arts and crafts from a host of vendors, adopt cats from local rescue centers, learn about kitten fostering, listen to live bands, nom delicious human food from local food trucks, and participate in a plethora of cativities, including art projects.
As the sun sets, festival attendees will gather in front of the Great Wall to view the Bay Area premiere of #catvidfest, [Minneapolis, Minnesota’s] Walker Art Center’s curated collection of Internet cat videos. See your favorites: “Henri,” “Cats Playing Patty Cake,” and “Cat Says NOM NOM NOM.” The Great Wall’s artist in residence group, Bandaloop, will perform a cat-themed aerial duet off the 100-foor wall before the screening.
The Oakland Internet Cat Video Festival is a unique community event celebrating cats, art and technology while educating the public on the importance of cat adoption and kitten fostering.
Ridiculous and delightful, right? Check out this recap of the original CatVidFest that now works as a preview for Saturday’s event!
For more information, visit Oakland Cat Vid Fest online.
Got a tip about an awesome vegan-friendly event? Let us know! We love fun!
These are some of reader Camilla Taylor’s gorgeous insect-based jewelry! None of it is made of actual insects, of course, Ms. Taylor is both talented and a longtime vegan, and cares so much about our invertebrate friends, she is looking to donate some of the proceeds from the sale of her jewelry to an insect-based charity, “preferably specific to arthropods.” How thoughtful! Unfortunately, she can’t find such an organization based in the U.S.
“Vegan” graffiti on a McDonald’s mural: Pro or con? »
On the one hand, McDonald’s is disgusting.
On the other:
The mural was painted in 1987 by Iranian-born artist Saeed Danosian, who worked at the restaurant while developing his art career. Danosian passed away in 2008, and [restaurant manager John] Patterson plans to recreate the mural in the artist’s honor.
And finally, this could be a double-bluff by someone who hates vegans and wants to make us look like a bunch of mural-hating brats.
So, what do you think?
[Photo by McDonald’s via Ecorazzi]
Guest contest: Donate to win a beautiful portrait of a farm sanctuary animal! »
Sharon Lee Hart is the author of the photography collection Sanctuary: Portraits of Rescued Farm Animals, and a participant in this year’s Farm Sanctuary Walk for Farm Animals, for which she’s asking for your help fundraising. If you help, you could win a 16-by-16-inch photograph of your choice from Sharon’s book. Take a look—they’re beautiful!
Sharon says it’s as easy as 1-2-3:
- Donate $10 or more to support me in the Walk for Farm Animals; 100 percent of the funds raised go to Farm Sanctuary. Make sure you include your email address so I can contact you if you win.
- Wait: I will chose one winner at random from those that donate between today and Sept. 30. I will contact the winner no later than Oct. 5 and ask them to select the photograph they would like from my website.
- I will print your chosen photograph with the finest archival materials, expertly package it up, and ship it off to you in a timely manner.
Want to know more about the book? Sharon can tell you all about it!
This first monograph by Lexington–based photographer Sharon Lee Hart is a book of dignified black-and-white portraits of rescued farm animals, accompanied by handwritten stories by sanctuary workers. A long term vegetarian turned vegan, Hart considers farm animals “some of the most abused, overlooked animals on the planet.”
For this project, she traveled to sanctuaries in Virginia, Florida, Maryland, Michigan and New York State to document “the lucky few who are free to live out their lives in peace.” Not surprisingly, after spending time with the animals she discovered that each had its unique personality. “Some are quirky or funny, while others sensitive, shy, playful, intelligent, mischievous, or inquisitive. And all seemed to have complex emotional lives.”
These characteristics come through in Hart’s poignant photographs. Essays are by Karen Davis, president of United Poultry Concerns; Kathy Stevens, founder of the Catskill Animal Sanctuary; and Gene Baur, founder of Farm Sanctuary.
Check out all the photos in Sharon’s book! Best of luck to Sharon and all the participants in the Walk for Farm Animals, and everyone who donates to win a portrait.
Lush’s new anti-animal-testing campaign is more powerful, less exploitative than PETA »
Via Ecouterre, we learn of this shocking new ad campaign from Lush, meant to make explicit the horrors of animal testing by using a LIVE (simulated) NUDE GIRL in place of the non-human animal subject. This window display, featuring vegan performance artist Jacqueline Trades, debuted at Lush’s Regent Street store in London on April 25. It coincides with this Fight Animal Testing site and European Union-centered petition.
What does your Vegansaurus think about it? We’re divided!
It’s very PETA, no? I find it significantly less obnoxious than those “Sexxxy ladies in lettuce-leaf bikinis” or whatever outfits for PETA. This is more freak ‘em out than make ‘em want to fuck you, which is appropriate, because animal testing is horrific and should be treated as such. I take issue with the subject of the testing being a nearly naked woman. The female body is 100 percent commodified in Western society, and I don’t think that this campaign recontextualizes it enough to desexualize it, which is to say, as awful as the tests the “scientists” are simulating performing on her, I see “naked lady” before I see “human-as-animal test subject,” and that bothers me.
I wonder how much PETA has ruined the shock value of substituting a human body for an animal’s. PETA uses conventionally attractive (by Occidental standards) female bodies in varying states of undress for essentially every campaign; is it PETA’s fault now I can’t look at this girl without thinking about all the meat-eating, leather-wearing celebrities in the “I’d rather go naked than wear fur” posters, or women wearing only saran wrap? I hate animal testing, but I also hate the exploitation of any body. On the other hand, how many of the products I slap on my face every day exploited animal bodies before they got to my makeup case?* Because you worked with a performance artist, I think you do win this one, Lush. Sign the petition!
This is pretty horrific, but in an avant-garde kind of artsy way. I mean, just looking at these images is grossing me out, but I can’t stop. Oh those activists, always putting themselves on the line for their causes. And hey, look how much attention and signatures it garnered (nearly 200,000 as of Wednesday night)! Yep, here’s the deal — I’m into it. As long as I don’t have to be the one in the store window, yo.
Isn’t it crazy how art will bring out such intense emotion?! Isn’t it great to really FEEL something? So tell us, what do you guys think? How does this make you feel?
*Actually none, I am a careful makeup consumer.
Vegan edible finger paint! Awesome! Good idea? »
Look what I saw on Inhabitots!* Vegan edible finger paint! Say whaaaa? You heard me. This is totally cool but is it a good idea? Obviously it’s safe to eat this paint but then what if they are at school and the finger paints come out and they are like, “sweet! Snack time!”
*Still not preggers
Picture from Inhabitots
How would you like to own cool, affordable art that benefits beagles rescued from animal testing labs?! You would totally like to! Well, here is your chance! Adam Vass, the bassist for the band La Dispute and a vegan, is selling prints of this old-school tattoo-style piece to raise money for the Beagle Freedom Project (if you haven’t seen their amazing video of some rescue beagles taking their first steps into the sun, WATCH IT NOW. For real, watch it like yesterday).
This tip comes from reader Steph, who tells me Adam is donating 50 percent of proceeds from each print to the Beagle Freedom Project. The prints are selling at a steal for $15! You can get pretty art and help a great cause—everybody wins! Except the evil laboratories who can suck it!
“Matrix” chicken farms are creepy art, not reality »
Here’s a creepy idea: Given that modern chicken farming causes so much pain, why not just lobotomize the things and turn them into unconscious protein-growing machines, à la Matrix? Wired posted about it last week, a reader told us about it, and we kinda freaked out here in the back room. How is that better than going vegan?! That’s so f-ed up!
Then we chilled out. Because as the savviest (nerdiest) of nerds such as myself might notice, Wired’s post is on the mag’s culture blog, not on any of its science pages. Deep breaths, vegans. This ain’t real; this is an architecture student’s creation for a design show. ART. It’s supposed to make you think, not actually happen. And people thinking about the logical extension of how their food is currently produced? I’d call that good news all around.
Read a whole big long interview with the artist if you’re so inclined. You’ll notice dude’s not a saint—he says he could never go vegan, which is a ridiculous thing to say—but I think he’s clever and provocative and good news in general. Red pills for all!
House Rabbit Society’s holiday art show and auction is happening now! Bid on buns, for buns! »
Bunny’s Dream Gift Basket, donated by The Busy Bunny. Click to bid!
The House Rabbit Society and the East Bay Rabbit Rescue have joined forces to host this online auction of rabbit gifts and art! All proceeds go to an emergency medical fund for these two worthy organizations. They’ve got studio sessions with photographer Mark Rogers (get a fancy photo of you and your pet! Bunny or not!), watercolors and mosaics and other rabbitty artwork, and giftcards to Pet Express—all kinds of good stuff to get and receive.
Astrid, by John Beahm. Click to bid!
All the action is happening on Facebook, but you can also bid by calling the Rabbit Center at (510) 970.7575 between noon and 5 p.m., Tuesday through Friday. The auction ends at 1 p.m. on Tuesday, Dec. 6, so get to bidding for the buns!