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

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.

Hulton Archive/Getty Images
Art Lovers in England, Rejoice: France's Famous Bayeux Tapestry is Coming to the UK
Hulton Archive/Getty Images
Hulton Archive/Getty Images

One of France’s most prized national treasures, the Bayeux Tapestry, is officially heading to England for exhibition. The loan will mark the first time the fragile 11th century work has left France in nearly 1000 years, according to The Washington Post.

French president Emmanuel Macron announced news of the loan in mid-January, viewed by some as a gesture to smooth post-Brexit relations with Britain, ABC reports. The tapestry depicts the Norman Conquest of England in 1066, a historically important event replete with guts and glory.

Stretching for 210 feet, the Bayeux Tapestry’s nine embroidered panels tell the tale of Harold, Earl of Wessex, who swore an oath to support the right of William, Duke of Normandy, to the English throne once King Edward (a.k.a. Edward the Confessor) died without an heir. But after Edward's funeral at Westminster Abbey, Harold breaks his oath to William so he could be crowned king instead. Believing he was the rightful ruler, William—today remembered as William the Conqueror—decides to wage war and ultimately defeats Harold at the Battle of Hastings.

The historical narrative has endured for centuries, but the tapestry's provenance has been lost to time. Experts think that the artwork may have been created in England, shortly after the Battle of Hastings, although it’s unclear who designed and embroidered the scenes. Its original owner, Bishop Odo of Bayeux, the half-brother of William the Conqueror, may have commissioned the Bayeux Tapestry. He became Earl of Kent after the Battle of Hastings, and this new title would have afforded him access to skilled artisans, The Guardian explains.

The Bayeux Tapestry is currently on display in the town of Bayeux in Normandy. It likely won’t leave France until 2020, after conservators ensure that it’s safe to move the artwork. According to The Telegraph, the tapestry might be be displayed at the British Museum in 2022.

[h/t The Washington Post]

Photo composite, Mental Floss. Car, ticket, Simon Laprise. Background, iStock.
This Snow Sculpture of a Car Was So Convincing Cops Tried to Write It a Ticket
Photo composite, Mental Floss. Car, ticket, Simon Laprise. Background, iStock.
Photo composite, Mental Floss. Car, ticket, Simon Laprise. Background, iStock.

Winter is a frustrating time to be on the road, but one artist in Montreal has found a way to make the best of it. As CBS affiliate WGCL-TV reports, his snow sculpture of a DeLorean DMC-12 was so convincing that even the police were fooled.

Simon Laprise of L.S.D Laprise Simon Designs assembled the prank car using snow outside his home in Montreal. He positioned it so it appeared to be parked along the side of the road, and with the weather Montreal has been having lately, a car buried under snow wasn’t an unusual sight.

A police officer spotted the car and was prepared to write it a ticket before noticing it wasn’t what it seemed. He called in backup to confirm that the car wasn’t a car at all.

Instead of getting mad, the officers shared a good laugh over it. “You made our night hahahahaha :)" they wrote on a fake ticket left on the snow sculpture.

The masterpiece was plowed over the next morning, but you can appreciate Laprise’s handiwork in the photos below.

Snow sculpture.

Snow sculpture of car.

Snow sculpture of car.

Note written in French.

[h/t WGCL-TV]

All images courtesy of Simon Laprise.


More from mental floss studios