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Mason Parker

11 Absolutely Eye-catching Chandeliers

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Mason Parker

My 108-year-old house has the original ceiling lights, although they were wired for electricity sometime in the 1930s (they were originally gas lamps). They need to be replaced, but I'm having a hard time finding anything charming enough to take their place -at least that's appropriate and in my price range. If I weren't so budget-conscious and picky, I'd have a world of creative lighting options. Let's take a look at what's out there in chandeliers.

1. Globes

Lighting sculptor Benoit Vieubled calls this work Monde à l’endroit, Monde à l’envers. That loosely translates to "World Right Side Up, World Upside Down." The chandelier is made of 15 world globes of various colors. It certainly is pretty, and these illuminated globes make one realize what can be done with beautiful objects that take up too much room sitting on a shelf or table: Hang them from the ceiling!

2. Drums

This light fixture made of drums was built by Matt Ludwig for the restaurant JJ's Red Hots. The name of the former restaurant at the location was The Drum, so the chandelier was conceived to honor the building's heritage. You can see pictures of the building process at the restaurant's blog

3. Bicycle Chains

Artist Carolina Fontoura Alzaga loves to take castoff materials and make something beautiful. Her Connect series is a line of chandeliers made from old bicycle chains, which resemble chain mail and diffuse the light in a variety of ways. No two chandeliers are exactly alike! You can see some that are available for sale at Etsy. Watch a video of Facaro at work making them. 

4. Champagne Corks

The Celebration Chandelier by Alkesh Parmar is made of corks reclaimed from champagne bars. The corks were hollowed out and fitted with LEDs to make a custom fixture for use in bars, restaurants, or even homes. The look is both antique and modern.

5. Beer Bottles

Now here's a chandelier that tells the world something about you -your favorite beer(s)! No, they aren't commissioned. The company Barlite sells rack lights of different sizes and configurations into which you insert your own empty bottles. You can say each chandelier is custom-made, and they can be changed as your tastes and inventory changes. Just be sure that the bottles are completely dry before you hang them upside down!

6. Teacups

This is a lovely way to make use of fine china teacups that don't match the rest of your set, while keeping them out of harm's way. This chandelier would be perfect in a large casual dining room or a restaurant. We don't know who built it, but it was spotted in the clothing store Nice Things in Valencia, Spain, by blogger Chris of La Petite Nymphéa

7. Books

Lucy Norman created the chandelier called Light Reading from discarded books! The large circles are made from folding each page of a book. This is actually a lampshade that can be used to cover existing light fixtures -perfect for a library or reading room.

8. Glass Art

While many themed chandeliers are made from found objects or recycled materials, there are many lighting artists who create original designs from conventional materials. Glass artist Robert Kaindl fashions his chandeliers in glass for large rooms and public places. In all colors.

9. Stained Glass Octopus

This awesome stained glass octopus chandelier was made by Mason Parker of Mason’s Creations. Each of the tentacles is detachable, and the entire octopus is four feet across. You can adjust the lighting by illuminating just the center, just the tentacles, or all of it together. The octopus is a one-of-a-kind handmade work of art, but it's been sold. Parker says he will make another, but considering the craft involved, that may take some time! See more pictures at Mason's Creations.

10. Nintendo Zappers

Our own Erin McCarthy told us about a one-of-a-kind chandelier made from Nintendo zappers, the accessory used in the game Duck Hunt. Who would have this many gaming guns? JJGames, which is where the light fixture hangs.

11. Gummi Bear Candelier

This chandelier called the Candelier is made from approximately 15,000 Gummi bears! No, they won't go stale or melt, because they are tough yet realistic acrylic Gummi bears, strung together by hand. The sweet treat is available from Jellio. Watch the process of making one in this video. It's also available in a smaller size called the Mini Candelier, with 3,000 bears.

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Art
Artist Makes Colorful Prints From 1990s VHS Tapes

A collection of old VHS tapes offers endless crafting possibilities. You can use them to make bird houses, shelving units, or, if you’re London-based artist Dieter Ashton, screen prints from the physical tape itself.

As Co.Design reports, the recent London College of Communication graduate was originally intrigued by the art on the cover of old VHS and cassette tapes. He planned to digitally edit them as part of a new art project, but later realized that working with the ribbons of tape inside was much more interesting.

To make a print, Ashton unravels the film from cassettes and VHS tapes collected from his parents' home. He lets the strips fall randomly then presses them into tight, tangled arrangements with the screen. The piece is then brought to life with vibrant patterns and colors.

Ashton has started playing with ways to incorporate themes and motifs from the films he's repurposing into his artwork. If the movie behind one of his creations isn’t immediately obvious, you can always refer to its title. His pieces are named after movies like Backdraft, Under Siege, and that direct-to-video Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen classic Passport to Paris.

Screen print made from an old VHS tape.

Screen print made from an old VHS tape.

Screen print made from an old VHS tape.

Screen print made from an old VHS tape.

Screen print made from an old VHS tape.

Screen print made from an old VHS tape.

[h/t Co.Design]

All images courtesy of Dieter Ashton

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photography
This Is What Flowers Look Like When Photographed With an X-Ray Machine
Original image
Dr. Dain L. Tasker, “Peruvian Daffodil” (1938)

Many plant photographers choose to showcase the vibrant colors and physical details of exotic flora. For his work with flowers, Dr. Dain L. Tasker took a more bare-bones approach. The radiologist’s ghostly floral images were recorded using only an X-ray machine, according to Hyperallergic.

Tasker snapped his pictures of botanical life while he was working at Los Angeles’s Wilshire Hospital in the 1930s. He had minimal experience photographing landscapes and portraits in his spare time, but it wasn’t until he saw an X-ray of an amaryllis, taken by a colleague, that he felt inspired to swap his camera for the medical tool. He took black-and-white radiographs of everything from roses and daffodils to eucalypti and holly berries. The otherworldly artwork was featured in magazines and art shows during Tasker’s lifetime.

Selections from Tasker's body of work have been seen around the world, including as part of the Floral Studies exhibition at the Joseph Bellows Gallery in San Diego in 2016. Prints of his work are also available for purchase from the Stinehour Wemyss Editions and Howard Greenberg Gallery.

Dr. Dain L. Tasker, “Philodendron” (1938)
Dr. Dain L. Tasker, “Philodendron” (1938)

X-ray image of a rose.
Dr. Dain L. Tasker, “A Rose” (1936)

All images courtesy of Joseph Bellows Gallery.

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