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Art at Large: 11 Record-Holding Paintings, Drawings, Photos and Sculptures

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Ever wonder what the world's biggest photograph looks like? How about the largest knitted pink bunny? Wonder no more, flossers; here are 11 bizarre and/or massive works of art, each of which holds a current world record.

1. Largest photograph, taken with the world's largest pinhole camera

The Great Picture features a 32'x111' panoramic view in black-and-white negative of El Toro Marine Corps air station. To take the photograph, an entire jet hangar was converted into the world's largest pinhole camera. It took 80 volunteers five hours to develop in a custom vinyl tray the size of an Olympic swimming pool.

2. Biggest marble mosaic

For the 40th anniversary of Oman's Sultan Qaboos bin Said's accession, a mosaic of his likeness was produced to celebrate. At 5.3 meters wide and 8.3 meters tall, the piece contains 128,274 individual marble tiles in 90 different natural shades, all of which were sourced from the mountains and sea beds of Oman.

3. Longest paint-by-number

To kick off World Wetlands Day 2010, 2041 people got together at Hong Kong Wetland Park and painted "Birds and Wetlands," a continuous 959.35-meter by 1.2 meter painting of marshy landscapes, to strengthen wetland ecology awareness.

4. Largest knitted sculpture

If you're ever hanging out in the Artesina, Piemont, Italy, area and feel compelled to take a stroll through the hills, make sure you keep your eyes open for the 200-foot-long knitted bunny lying on the roadside. His name is Hase, and he's made of 2200 pounds of baby-pink wool.

5. Largest animated mobile device mosaic

Blinkendroid app developers broke the previous record for building an animated mosaic using mobile devices with only 72 phones. Watch the record-making in action:

Unhappy with the lower-than-expected turnout, Blinkendroid is organizing an event to break their own record next February in Barcelona. If you'll be in the neighborhood and own an Android device, you can check out the details here.

6. Longest drawing by an individual

Fourteen-year-old P. Nivedha used only crayons, markers, and colored pencils to create her 382.63 m (1,255 ft., 4 in.) record-holding work, which depicts various aspects of nature conservation.

7. Largest underwater painting

At a modest 8.61 ft2, this is the smallest "largest" item on the list, but that doesn't mean it was the easiest to execute. Alexander Belozor, the preeminent underwater painter in the Ukraine, where that's a thing, dove to the floor of the Red Sea off the coast of Hurghada, Egypt, and reportedly painted the piece in just 40 minutes—the amount of time allowed by his oxygen tank.

8. Largest scrap-metal sculpture

Geese in Flight is a permanent installation on North Dakota's Enchanted Highway. It stands 110 feet tall, weights 157,659 pounds, and took four years and the help of hundreds of volunteers to complete. The auto paint used to seal the metal cost more than $9,000.

9. Largest sushi mosaic

What do 8,374 pieces of sushi smell like? (Don't answer that.) We do know they look like this when you assemble them into the world's largest sushi mosaic—a process that took more than six hours to complete, minus preparation time. The project, celebrating the 10,000,000th Norwegian salmon to enter Japan, required 120 kilos of rice and 65 kilos of fish.

(Skip to 0:35, unless you like to watch people stand around not making a sushi mosaic.)

10. Tallest ice sculpture

If you've got 2,000 friends, 15 days, a few hundred tons of ice, and more than a few colored LEDs on hand, you might consider trying to break the record for tallest ice sculpture set at the 2010 Harbin Ice & Snow Festival in China. Dreaming Castle was 53 feet, 2.58 inches tall at the top of the tallest spire, and at night looks like something straight out of a Disney movie, thanks to the (uncounted) thousands of lights embedded in the ice.

11. Largest sky drawing

Technically, this record is for the largest sky drawing by a jet aircraft display team, but that's a little cumbersome. The title goes to the Saudi Hawks for their "emblem move," a synchronized effort that produces a smoke drawing of the Royal Saudi emblem of four palms and a pair of crossed swords, measuring 56,909,105 square feet when complete. If you're thinking it's a little simplistic, you're right; the record is for largest sky drawing, not most intricate.

For 11-11-11, we'll be posting twenty-four '11 lists' throughout the day. Check back 11 minutes after every hour for the latest installment, or see them all here.

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Courtesy Chronicle Books
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Design
Inside This Pop-Up Book Are a Planetarium, a Speaker, a Decoder Ring, and More
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Courtesy Chronicle Books

Designer Kelli Anderson's new book is for more than just reading. This Book Is a Planetarium is really a collection of paper gadgets. With each thick, card stock page you turn, another surprise pops out.

"This book concisely explains—and actively demonstrates with six functional pop-up paper contraptions—the science at play in our everyday world," the book's back cover explains. It turns out, there's a whole lot you can do with a few pieces of paper and a little bit of imagination.

A book is open to reveal a spiralgraph inside.
Courtesy Chronicle Books

There's the eponymous planetarium, a paper dome that you can use with your cell phone's flashlight to project constellations onto the ceiling. There's a conical speaker, which you can use to amplify a smaller music player. There's a spiralgraph you can use to make geometric designs. There's a basic cipher you can use to encode and decode secret messages, and on its reverse side, a calendar. There's a stringed musical instrument you can play on. All are miniature, functional machines that can expand your perceptions of what a simple piece of paper can become.

The cover of This Book Is a Planetarium
Courtesy Chronicle Books
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Noriyuki Saitoh
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Art
Japanese Artist Crafts Intricate Insects Using Bamboo
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Noriyuki Saitoh

Not everyone finds insects beautiful. Some people think of them as scary, disturbing, or downright disgusting. But when Japanese artist Noriyuki Saitoh looks at a discarded cicada shell or a feeding praying mantis, he sees inspiration for his next creation.

Saitoh’s sculptures, spotted over at Colossal, are crafted by hand from bamboo. He uses the natural material to make some incredibly lifelike pieces. In one example, three wasps perch on a piece of honeycomb. In another, two mating dragonflies create a heart shape with their abdomens.

The figures he creates aren’t meant to be exact replicas of real insects. Rather, Saitoh starts his process with a list of dimensions and allows room for creativity when fine-tuning the appearances. The sense of movement and level of detail he puts into each sculpture is what makes them look so convincing.

You can browse the artist’s work on his website or follow him on social media for more stunning samples from his portfolio.

Bamboo insect.

Bamboo insect.

Bamboo insect.

Bamboo insect.

Bamboo insect.

Bamboo insect.

[h/t Colossal]

All images courtesy of Noriyuki Saitoh.

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