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14 Great Examples of Geeky Fine Art

Fine art is alive and well, and artists often incorporate the fun aspects of pop culture—particularly the geek side of the spectrum.

1. Headless Chicken

Internet Week New York asked artists and students if they could draw the internet. The results were quite eclectic, but Barbara Ana Gomez’s submission nailed it on the head in a highly artistic manner.

2. It’s Murray Time

Casey Weldon made these portraits of Bill Murray playing all of Royal Tenenbaums for the “Bad Dads” art show at the Lopo gallery in San Francisco. Prints are available on his website.

3. Wisdom of the Llama

Apparently, Bill Murray is a good subject for geek painters, as evidenced by N.C. Winters' great portrait casting the actor in a religious light. Prints can be purchased at the Gallery 1988 website.

4. In The Garden of Audrey

Allison Sommers painted this renaissance-styled picture of Audrey from the Little Shop of Horrors for Gallery 1988’s “Crazy 4 Cult 5,” their fifth art show dedicated to cult classic films.

5. Da Doo Dionaea

For the same “Crazy 4 Cult 5” show, Scott Scheidly also painted a portrait of Audrey, although his version involved a detailed portrayal of her anatomy.

6. England 932 A.D.

If you’ve ever wondered what Monty Python and The Holy Grail would look like when portrayed in the art style of the time of the film’s setting, then Max Dalton’s contribution to the “Crazy 4 Cult 5” show should answer your question.

7. The First Goonie

This Goonies-inspired pirate piece was Eric Braddock’s submission into the “Crazy 4 Cult 5” show.

8. Hello, Mr. Skeksis

While the Dark Crystal may be one of the lesser-known Jim Henson films, the evil Skeksis are just scary (yet regal) enough to make a perfect subject for a geeky fine art painting. This wonderful creation was made by Leontine Greenberg.

9. Andy Dick

Gallery 1988 doesn’t limit its shows to cult movies. Their “Is This Thing On” show revolved around artist-interpretations of famous comedians. As far as fine art goes, none of the paintings were nearly as upscale as this rendition of Andy Dick as a sad clown by Chet Zar.

10. Prince Holds the Katamari On His Shoulders

Flickr user Everfalling created this cool bronze sculpture for one of his classes at the Academy of Art University in San Francisco. It’s a seamless blending of the classic myth of Atlas and the delightfully non sequitur game of Katamari.

11. Ascension of the Kenny

This iconic portrait of Kenny was Beau Stanton’s contribution to the South Park 15th Anniversary Art Exhibition in at the Opera Gallery in New York. Laughing Squid’s Scott Beale has more great photos of the show for those interested.

12. Link

Perhaps one of the more underappreciated classic artistic creations are the gorgeous stained glass masterpieces that adorn the ancient chapels of Europe. In the geek renaissance, these artworks are getting the attention they deserve, thanks to stained glass artists like Lynda Macrae of The Glass House in Canada. Here you can see her beautiful version of the Link from Zelda recreated in stained glass, as designed by Kelli Nelson and photographed by Flickr user SevenCubed.

13. The Scream

To be fair, the last two on this list are not at all like the others. Instead of involving geek-subjects portrayed in fine art, they instead offer a classic fine art reimagined using geeky media.

This first piece shows Bernard Pras, who recreated Edvard Munch‘s classic painting, “The Scream,” through the use of electrical wiring, transistor circuit boards and a variety of recycled junk (including a Scream movie mask).

14. Oreo Cameos

These gorgeous and classical cameos are sculpted from the cream of Oreo cookies by artist Judith G. Klausner. I don’t think I’ve ever wanted to eat art so badly.

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Pop Culture
An AI Program Wrote Harry Potter Fan Fiction—and the Results Are Hilarious
Andreas Rentz/Getty Images
Andreas Rentz/Getty Images

“The castle ground snarled with a wave of magically magnified wind.”

So begins the 13th chapter of the latest Harry Potter installment, a text called Harry Potter and the Portrait of What Looked Like a Large Pile of Ash. OK, so it’s not a J.K. Rowling original—it was written by artificial intelligence. As The Verge explains, the computer-science whizzes at Botnik Studios created this three-page work of fan fiction after training an algorithm on the text of all seven Harry Potter books.

The short chapter was made with the help of a predictive text algorithm designed to churn out phrases similar in style and content to what you’d find in one of the Harry Potter novels it "read." The story isn’t totally nonsensical, though. Twenty human editors chose which AI-generated suggestions to put into the chapter, wrangling the predictive text into a linear(ish) tale.

While magnified wind doesn’t seem so crazy for the Harry Potter universe, the text immediately takes a turn for the absurd after that first sentence. Ron starts doing a “frenzied tap dance,” and then he eats Hermione’s family. And that’s just on the first page. Harry and his friends spy on Death Eaters and tussle with Voldemort—all very spot-on Rowling plot points—but then Harry dips Hermione in hot sauce, and “several long pumpkins” fall out of Professor McGonagall.

Some parts are far more simplistic than Rowling would write them, but aren’t exactly wrong with regards to the Harry Potter universe. Like: “Magic: it was something Harry Potter thought was very good.” Indeed he does!

It ends with another bit of prose that’s not exactly Rowling’s style, but it’s certainly an accurate analysis of the main current that runs throughout all the Harry Potter books. It reads: “‘I’m Harry Potter,’ Harry began yelling. ‘The dark arts better be worried, oh boy!’”

Harry Potter isn’t the only work of fiction that Jamie Brew—a former head writer for ClickHole and the creator of Botnik’s predictive keyboard—and other Botnik writers have turned their attention to. Botnik has previously created AI-generated scripts for TV shows like The X-Files and Scrubs, among other ridiculous machine-written parodies.

To delve into all the magical fiction that Botnik users have dreamed up, follow the studio on Twitter.

[h/t The Verge]

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entertainment
Netflix's Most-Binged Shows of 2017, Ranked
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Netflix might know your TV habits better than you do. Recently, the entertainment company's normally tight-lipped number-crunchers looked at user data collected between November 1, 2016 and November 1, 2017 to see which series people were powering through and which ones they were digesting more slowly. By analyzing members’ average daily viewing habits, they were able to determine which programs were more likely to be “binged” (or watched for more than two hours per day) and which were more often “savored” (or watched for less than two hours per day) by viewers.

They found that the highest number of Netflix bingers glutted themselves on the true crime parody American Vandal, followed by the Brazilian sci-fi series 3%, and the drama-mystery 13 Reasons Why. Other shows that had viewers glued to the couch in 2017 included Anne with an E, the Canadian series based on L. M. Montgomery's 1908 novel Anne of Green Gables, and the live-action Archie comics-inspired Riverdale.

In contrast, TV shows that viewers enjoyed more slowly included the Emmy-winning drama The Crown, followed by Big Mouth, Neo Yokio, A Series of Unfortunate Events, GLOW, Friends from College, and Ozark.

There's a dark side to this data, though: While the company isn't around to judge your sweatpants and the chip crumbs stuck to your couch, Netflix is privy to even your most embarrassing viewing habits. The company recently used this info to publicly call out a small group of users who turned their binges into full-fledged benders:

Oh, and if you're the one person in Antarctica binging Shameless, the streaming giant just outed you, too.

Netflix broke down their full findings in the infographic below and, Big Brother vibes aside, the data is pretty fascinating. It even includes survey data on which shows prompted viewers to “Netflix cheat” on their significant others and which shows were enjoyed by the entire family.

Netflix infographic "The Year in Bingeing"
Netflix

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