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Bet You Can’T Do This With Blu-ray: Awesome Cassette Tape Portraits

by Lambert Varias

Artist iri5’s “Ghost in the Machine” is a series of portraits that connect music with visual art by making use of old cassette tapes as medium. When I first saw Neatorama‘s post about the project I thought it was just a cheap trick. But after taking a closer look at the portraits, the simplicity and accuracy of the portraits changed my mind: I am now officially blown away.

Here’s Hendrix on tape:


Joy Division’s Ian Curtis gets a more elaborate treatment:


And here’s the immortal Bob Dylan:


I want to try and recreate the Dylan portrait, but I know I’ll only end up making black clouds. Check out “Ghost in the Machine” as well as iri5’s other series on Flickr.

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Comments (33):

  1. warren says:

    wow…several times ago, I have so many cassettes…never think to do like this! amazing..its very creatif job..

  2. thepods says:

    That’s really inspired me…thanks

  3. topher says:

    pretty cool, i like this a lot, great idea gotta get some cassettes now :D

  4. technabob says:

    Here’s another great creative use for old cassette tapes…


  5. Noah says:

    Well, it doesn’t matter whether or not you could do it with blu-ray since these aren’t video cassettes. You’re dumb.

    • lambert v. says:

      So…you’re saying we can’t use blu-ray for audio? Doesn’t matter if it’s audio or video; they’re both data, and Blu-ray is a form of data storage. You’re dumb.

    • Deathpiggy says:

      I agree. It would have been better to say:

      “Bet you can’t do this with an mp3.”

      Even if you can listen to audio with a blue ray (I don’t know if you can or not because I don’t have blue ray), most people think of movies when they hear the name. mp3 would have a more immediate connection in a reader’s mind.

      • andrew says:


    • Lys says:

      Taking things to exacts is silly. You’re all silly. Go buy some cake. It’s good for you, except not really.

  6. Russell says:

    Noah, you’re missing the point entirely. You really aren’t all that bright, are you?

  7. Vega says:

    This is genius. im totally inspired by this ingenuity. just another way to create outside the box

  8. While the images are impressive, the medium is awesome! Very creative.

  9. gumbo says:

    Noah you should stop being such a pillock and see that something is creative and clever (cleverer than you at least).

  10. gumbo says:

    Dear Mark D,

    Before you correct people check your facts. Cleverer is acceptable English. You can check this for yourself at:


    • joe says:

      Not to be anal or anything but I followed your link and thus discovered that ”cleverer” is infact ABSOLUTELY BEYOND REASONABLE DOUBT not a word, so I must ask why you went through the triuble of posting the link?

  11. wareagle says:

    Hell yeah, the one of Hendrix is amazing.

  12. Chuck Norris says:

    Dear Noah and Gumbo,
    I will be dishing out some supreme ass-kicking to the both of you, for being such useless slabs of human waste.

    Your Truly,
    C.R. Norris

    P.S. Prepare for the PAIN b*tch!

  13. gumbo says:

    Dear Chuck,

    It would be an honour to have my lilly white ass kicked by you.

    Best wishes


  14. xyzzyx says:

    with blu-ray you could probably create a kind of laser-etched holographic image on one (or multiple) CDs…or you could break them up to make a mosaic…but i digress. very clever idea, though the images themselves are rather basic copies (viz. http://chicinparis.files.wordpress.com/2008/11/bob-dylan.jpg, http://transylvania3.com/Portals/0/Blog/Files/3/5/ian_curtis.jpg)

  15. Brian Gomez says:

    totally original work of art. keep it up!

  16. Tabitha says:

    i just love your creativity which is original

  17. Jean Spitzer says:

    I think the Hendrix portrait is amazing.

  18. Spencer says:

    Amazing – well thought of and executed. My best mate in school always did wierd stuff like this – now he’s the richest living contemporary artist in the world i think (Damian Hirst) – i used to borrow his crutches for the sport lesson to get out of basketball class. These portraits are great with a nice wooly texture to the hair.. pacience was needed for the jacket which usese flat sequence of parallel tape.. I would get nervous trying to do that.

  19. Ivo says:

    This is simply amazing… retro and cool ! Neverendings story, thanks for showing us these pics.

  20. Filipyev says:

    Jimmi Hendrix is the greate. But at first I decided, that this is a picture of Bob Marley :)

  21. Skateboard teaching apparatus! Place your foot on our grip tape guidelines that show you exactly how to perform 5 flip tricks. (Ollie-PopShuvit-KickFlip-HeelFlip-VarialFlip)

  22. amused says:

    The artwork is superb but the 25 posts i just read underneath were even better…oh how i am amused.

    “I’m all in favor of keeping dangerous weapons out of the hands of fools. Let’s start with typewriters.” (Frank Lloyd Wright 1867-1959}

  23. ANON says:

    i just came

  24. Arron davies says:

    this is so sweet i love bringing in real things into my designs. all you seen is a camera.

  25. José says:


    This shows that Art is about creativity and not about the medium.

    Have fun,


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