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These Discarded Objects Are Actually Carefully Crafted Wooden Sculptures

Although you might think that you're simply looking at discarded objects, what you're actually seeing are carefully carved and painted wood sculptures by artist Tom Pfannerstill. His series is titled From the Street, and it features trompe-l'il depictions of tattered everyday objects. The incredible craftsmanship and attention to detail means that these works appear as the items they claim to be; Pfannerstill replicated their labels with awe-inspiring precision. So, things like Starbucks cups, a baseball cap, and an animal cookie box fool us into thinking that they were stepped on and ultimately forgotten.

On the back of each piece, Pfannerstill writes a description of where and when he found its original counterpart; he sees this as a way to catalog where he's been. And, finding these things not only marks his movements, but shows the journey of the object as well. The Starbucks cup started out as a pristine, near-perfect clone to millions of others. Over time, however, its sparkling surfaces were smudged with dirt and grit. “Each wears a record of its own particular history, has become unique,” the artist explains. “It is this difference, this particular story of this particular object that I attempt to capture.”

Tom Pfannerstill website
via [Booooooom]

Sara Barnes

Sara Barnes is a Staff Editor at My Modern Met, Manager of My Modern Met Store, and co-host of the My Modern Met Top Artist Podcast. As an illustrator and writer living in Seattle, she chronicles illustration, embroidery, and beyond through her blog Brown Paper Bag and Instagram @brwnpaperbag. She wrote a book about embroidery artist Sarah K. Benning titled 'Embroidered Life' that was published by Chronicle Books in 2019. Sara is a graduate of the Maryland Institute College of Art. She earned her BFA in Illustration in 2008 and MFA in Illustration Practice in 2013.
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