Photoshopping The Past Into The Present

by on June 3, 2015
 

   Russian artist Alexey Kondakov is turning his Photoshop skills into art history.

   The young Rus cleverly crafts snippets of the world’s most classic paintings into everyday settings.

   But this isn’t your average, cut and paste kind of thing. Kondkov’s compositions are evocative re-tellings of the original art.  His clever juxtapositions re-cast the ethereal characters of museum galleries into beleaguered and bewildered passengers on a grimy public transportation. His lords become weary bar patrons while the fair maidens of days gone by look out from behind dirty glass windows instead of their usual gilt frames.

   Like the great masters of oil paintings before him, Kondakov pays special attention to the light. With careful calculation of the chiaroscuro, Kondakov seamlessly blends the old with the new. The old artwork is subtly altered with the relevant light beams from their new settings. Likewise, shadows of the artistic additions are sketched in to render the entire scene in oddly realistic 3D.

   Kondakov’s series is part of a recent movement to pull classical art out of its traditional museum setting and back out into the real world, and he has titled it appropriately as ‘Art History In Contemporary Life.’ But where the Outings Project and Etienne Lavie re-paint classical art into the actual physical world, Kondakov’s work is all digital. His penchant for sharing it via social media rather than a traditional website further lends layers to this emerging genre that twists and twines the art of old with the conventions of the present.

Holbein's royal Ambassador's find sanctuary in a place where everyone hopefully knows their actual names.

Holbein’s royal Ambassador’s find sanctuary in a place where everyone hopefully knows their actual names.

Via This Is Colossal.

This pensive maiden has fled her museum for a late night coffee and kebab.

This pensive maiden has fled her museum for a late night coffee and kebab.