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Egg bombs, witches and gnarly goblins: Stevie Gee directs Cancer Bats' new video

List4 Work / Animation Jun Seo Hahm’s animated characters straddle the terrifying line of cute and icky

In French there’s the term ‘jolie laide’, or pretty-ugly, to describe a unconventional hottie whose attractiveness hinges on a crooked nose or a scraggle of teeth. In Japan the phenomenon of kimo-kawaii (cute-gross) illustration has ballooned in popularity in recent years, with even Sanrio, the creator of kitsch queen Hello Kitty, getting in on the creepy character game (see Kirimi-chan, an anthropomorphic salmon steak). There’s something about human nature that means this intersection between sweet and weird, sexy and repulsive, really gets under our skin. And it’s at this oh-so-freaky juncture that the work of animator Jun Seo Hahm sits, waiting to lick your hand affectionately – or bite off all your digits.

List2 Work / Animation Peter Tomaszewicz’s CGI animation riffs on Brutalist architecture and chemistry

“Many Brutalist buildings have the sense of something dark, sometimes negative in meaning,” says London-based motion graphics designer Peter Tomaszewicz as he chats to It’s Nice That about his new animation States of Matter. “I wanted to distort Brutalism in such way that it would provide a feel of a dystopian, imaginary scenery but to add in more humour and playfulness.”

Cesar-pelizer-animation-itsnicethat-lis Work / Animation César Pelizer animates your daydreams at work in Looking for Something

“The idea came a long time ago when I was about 18 years old and living in Argentina,” explains illustrator and animator César Pelizer of his latest personal venture, Looking For Something. “I was working in a boring part-time desk job and I would do anything to look busy even though I had my eyes half closed for a good part of the day.”

List-new Work / Animation Nikita Diakur’s chaotic animations are a gross study in dynamic computer simulation

Warning: do not watch the above video if you’re sensitive, hungover or a bit stressed. The work of Russian-born, Mainz-based filmmaker Nikita Diakur might just break you. As part of a hotshot team of animators, Nikita has created Ugly, a film project inspired by stories mined from the internet, each filled with bizarre characters, high-octane urban environments and terrifyingly unpredictable physics.

List2 Work / Animation Paul Cabon confronts the inevitability of going bald via a surreal animated short

“Being a bald man sucks,” says French animator Paul Cabon in the intro to his animated film The Bald Future. “Knowing you’ll become one is worse.” A surreal and charming exploration of the inescapable combination of genes and time, the film takes you from Paul’s initial realisation of his eggheaded fate during a family meal consisting of entirely bald relatives, to outlandish fantasies of his thick-maned alter ego – a life that Paul will never lead. “I knew going bald was not such a serious problem,” Paul tells It’s Nice That, “yet it was really hard to get some distance and feel ok about it. I realised it could be interesting comedy material because of that – there was some tension behind it.”

Studio-creme-animation-itsnicethat-list-alt Work / Animation Studio Creme's 3D scanned campaign film for Heresy is inspired by "mysticism and folklore"

We’ve seen our fair share of lookbooks and campaigns in our time. However, we’ve yet to see one that is completely fabricated in a fantasy 3D world, with models wearing the actual clothes 3D scanned and incorporated in that world. However, this is exactly what London-based Studio Creme has created for clothing brand Heresy’s S/S 2018 campaign.

Wongping-art-itsnicethat-list Work / Art A closer look at Wong Ping’s sexually explicit animations

When it comes to the work of Hong Kong-born and based artist Wong Ping nothing is quite what it seems. Using the light-hearted facade of animation, Wong penetrates deep into the bitter heart of the society he sees around him. From politics to sexual repression, for Wong it seems, too far is never far enough.

Yishuwang-photography-itsnicethat-19list Work / Photography Yishu Wang's wonderfully disorientating photography

Yishu Wang’s photography is bound to make you stop, look, look again and finally admit that you have no clue what’s going on. From overview shots of hundreds of uniformed men dressed in red suits to Orwellian CCTV structures, Yishu’s portfolio is wonderfully disorientating. Based in Wuzhen, a scenic town near Shanghai, Yishu has worked as a top photojournalist in Chinese media for the past 15 years. His job has offered Yishu endless opportunities to travel extensively across China from large metropolises to remote villages, documenting what he sees as he goes. “Many viewers have told me that my photography is similar to literature in that the images seem to have plots. But when I was taking the photos, I wasn’t thinking about narratives. I was just relaxed and receptive to any scenario that came my way,” Yishu tells It’s Nice That.

Kwes-songsformidi-graphicdesign-itsnicethat-list Work / Graphic Design A chat with Kwes and his three-year-old niece Midi on the record sleeve they've made together

For Warp signing Kwes’ latest EP, Songs For Midi, the musician, songwriter and record producer has created an electronic ode to his family. Midi is Kwes’ three-year-old niece, and the six-song EP began just as she was born, building songs from their interactions, the sounds of her toys and his cousins old toys too. It was only apt then that Midi, and the whole family really, had a creative hand in its artwork too.

Mollygoddard-patty-publication-itsnicethat-list Work / Publication Tim Walker and Molly Goddard team up on a new book

Photographer Tim Walker and designer Molly Goddard have announced the release of a new book, Patty. Styled by Molly’s sister Alice Goddard, the book is packed with pieces from Molly’s archive stretching back to her 2012 BA collection.

Hinds Regulars / Friday Mixtape Friday Mixtape: a collection of bangers from Spanish band Hinds

This week’s Friday Mixtape comes from the always smiling Madrid-based group, Hinds! With a reputation for the most joyfully infectious live shows, Carlotta, Ana, Ade and Amber’s mixtape is a collection of indie focused bangers, with a few Spanish hits thrown in for good measure.

Listvansnew Work / Illustration A return to the satirical surrealism of illustrator Alex Gamsu Jenkins

Since we last spoke to illustrator Alex Gamsu Jenkins two years ago, his work has ramped up a gear. Yes, the Camberwell grad still renders satire in grainy newsprint-like scenes. And Lordy, his work is still pretty gory. But the scale of his pieces has expanded to create more involved, more surreal narratives where the gag isn’t always obvious at first sight. You feel compelled to give his gruesome scenes a second take.

Pouya-ahmadi-publication-itsnicethat-list Work / Publication Pouya Ahmadi’s publication Amalgam is “a somewhat contradictory situation”

Amalgam is an ad-hoc transdisciplinary journal that explores the intersection of type, language and the visual arts: a perfect combination of subjects for anyone who, like us, obsesses over design and typography. With a graphically bold cover and equally intriguing name, Amalgam is the latest project from Swiss graphic designer Pouya Ahmadi.

Seungwhankim-illustration-itsnicethat-08 Work / Illustration Seungwhan Kim's sweet illustrations delve into inner emotions

Over in Seoul illustrator Seungwhan Kim sweetly illustrates the “paradoxical situations that we face in everyday life,” he tells It’s Nice That. Both a little strange but also relatable, Seungwhan’s illustration style picks up on life’s double-sided contradictions implying them in his work. He does this by noticing and drawing inner emotions, “jealousy, inferiority and dissatisfaction” for instance, as the illustrator finds “behaviours and situations associated with such emotions intriguing”.

Listgen_image_01 Work / Graphic Design Wolff Olins on the tech-fuelled future of the humancentric rebrand

As many companies rebrand in a way that increasingly seems generic and homogenous, the way we consider branding needs to change, argues Chris Moody, chief design officer at brand consultancy Wolff Olins. Chris suggests that we have come to a pivot point where virtual reality, augmented reality and voice-activation are changing the way we define brand presence. A brand identity must now be an ‘intelligent identity’, that uses responsive assets, new platforms and technologies to create a conversation on a human level, and at scale.

2001-a-space-odyssesy-film-itsnicethat-list Features / Film "Something bold, something pure" – the 50-year long legacy of 2001: A Space Odyssey

When 2001: A Space Odyssey premiered on 10 May 1968 – 50 years ago today – it somehow captured the imagination of its viewers: an audience who was yet to experience footage of the moon landing over a year later. Packed full of lengthy sequences and free from dialogue or even sound, its imagery, directed by Stanley Kubrick, is tranquil to the point of being static at times. This combined with its understandably puzzling ending meant the film received mixed reviews from critics upon its release. Despite this, it quickly garnered a ferocious cult following and became the highest grossing film of that year: the only Kubrick motion picture to hold this status.

01-list-img-template-margins-2-up Work / Publication Nataal’s debut print magazine captures the creative energy of Africa and its diaspora

“This is a magazine for anyone who wants to engage with, be inspired by or learn about the abundant energy coming from visual arts, fashion and cultural communities inspired by the spirit of Africa,” says Helen Jennings, the editorial director of Nataal. Established as a digital platform in 2015 and growing to include exhibitions and now its debut print magazine, the Afrocentric showcase champions the artists who are shaping new global narratives around the continent, via fashion shoots, long-form writing and visual essays.

Buffalo_replacement Work / Publication Buffalo Zine are back with issue 7 and it’s a fashion fiesta

Independent print might be thriving, but there are fewer magazines we look forward to more than the eternally shapeshifting Buffalo Zine. With every issue comes a complete redesign, the magazine bowing deferentiently to the theme that dictates it’s format. With past issues masquerading as shopping catalogues, home and interiors magazines and tabloid newspapers, nothing is quite what it seems.

Scamp-publication-itsnicethat-3list Work / Publication Scamp magazine is a must-have item for any “art and fashion shiterati” (NSFW)

In the late 1950s, a Playboy-aspirant magazine was established that delved deep into life’s big enigmas like “A Short History of Undress” and “How to Make it Big in Café Society”. Despite its undeniable contribution to literary culture, the publication was sadly discontinued shortly after its launch. The magazine’s influence, however, lives on in the form of the brilliantly hilarious and wonderfully tacky modern-day Scamp, which has just seen the release of its second issue. Run by Oskar Oprey, Jam Steward and John William, Scamp is a must-have item for any “art and fashion shiterati”.

Studiodumbar-graphicdesign-itsnicethat-1list Work / Graphic Design Studio Dumbar on its dynamic identity for youth foundation Jeugdfonds

The legendary Rotterdam-based Studio Dumbar is known for some of the most iconic identities since its establishment in 1977. Its creative team has designed some of the Holland’s most recognisable visual identities, including rebrands for the Dutch railway systems, the Dutch government, Mauritshuis Royal Picture Gallery and the budget airline Transavia. The studio can now add another impressive project to its list of achievements: the dynamic and vibrant work for children’s cultural institutions Jeugdsportfonds – Youth Sport Foundation – and Jeugdcultuurfonds – Youth Culture Foundation.

List4 Work / Animation Jun Seo Hahm’s animated characters straddle the terrifying line of cute and icky

In French there’s the term ‘jolie laide’, or pretty-ugly, to describe a unconventional hottie whose attractiveness hinges on a crooked nose or a scraggle of teeth. In Japan the phenomenon of kimo-kawaii (cute-gross) illustration has ballooned in popularity in recent years, with even Sanrio, the creator of kitsch queen Hello Kitty, getting in on the creepy character game (see Kirimi-chan, an anthropomorphic salmon steak). There’s something about human nature that means this intersection between sweet and weird, sexy and repulsive, really gets under our skin. And it’s at this oh-so-freaky juncture that the work of animator Jun Seo Hahm sits, waiting to lick your hand affectionately – or bite off all your digits.

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