The glam-factor of my blog went up a few notches when these got posted, ay? I have been a fan of Douglas Friedman for some time now but when I saw these images I was really enamored. His images are so rich, I love the palette on these shots. Here is a bio from his website.

Douglas Friedman was born and raised in New York City in 1972. He studied Anthropology and Documentary Film Making at Occidental College in Los Angeles. Post graduation, Douglas worked for a few years making movies in the film industry. After working on SE7EN, The Game, and Fight Club as assistant to director David Fincher; Douglas left Hollywood with his camera, a suitcase and a one way ticket to Indonesia. The next year and a half was spent traveling the world and photographing everything he came across; from sherpas at the foot of Mt. Everest to sharks 100 feet below the Sulawesi Sea; and the architectural vernacular of each port of call along the way.

He returned to NYC in the late 90’s to begin a serious study of photographic technique and theory. His fascination with architecture and design found its way into his work and shortly thereafter, Douglas was shooting stories for Wallpaper, Domino and Elle Décor magazines.

Over the next few years, Douglas began exploring his interest in fashion and portraiture and established himself shooting highly stylized environmental portraits for publications like Harper’s Bazaar, InStyle, and Vanity Fair among others.

Douglas has had two exhibits of his fine art photography. The first, a collection of boldly graphic images featuring the architecture and landscapes of the rural Midwest and the urban Far East was sponsored by Missoni. The second, a colorful series of abstract portraits of burlesque dancers in New York City was underwritten by fashion design duo Ruffian. Douglas is currently working on his next show which explores portraiture that is heavily informed by the subjects’ situation.

Douglas is a bold-faced name for more than just his photography. As a darling of the young international social set who gravitate towards the worlds of fashion and art, he frequently finds himself on the other side of the lens as well. His charisma and charm are as infamous as his movie-star looks and his signature 70’s moustache. He’s often written about by the same publications for which he shoots.

Douglas currently divides his time between Los Angeles and New York.

New York: Using frost, foam, food, glitter, viscous liquids and molten metal, German artist Luka Fineisen presents ambitious sculptural works that explore moments of becoming.  This exhibition is the premiere of Fineisen’s work in the US.  “Phase transitions” is the term used in thermodynamics to describe the shifts between solid, liquid and gaseous states of matter.  At a literal level, this is what Fineisen represents in her work – tipping points – the transitional moments when a substance changes from one condition to another.  While playing with formal sculptural concerns of modernism and pos-minimalisim, she explores movement and potential.  Luka Fineisen was born in Offenburg, Germany and educated at the Kunstakademie Dusseldorf.  She has exhibited in museums throughout Germany.  This is her first solo show in the US.  The show ends Saturday March 31st.

Hosfelt Gallery New York is located at 531 W 36th Street, between 10th and 11th avenues. Due to construction, 36th Street is accessible only from 10th Avenue. Hours are Wed-Sat 10-6. For more information, contact Celene Ryan at 212.563.5454 or celene@hosfeltgallery.com.

images top to bottom:Bubbles, 2010, plastics, various sizes from 3 to 16 inches tallFrosting (detail), 2012, coolant, humidifier, metal, wood, rubber, styrofoam, frost

Bloom – Borrowed Blog

March 14, 2012

I had to share this post from http://www.thisiscolossal.com                                                                                                                                    What a beautiful tribute those who traveled these halls. Love it, so pretty.

In 2003 a building housing the Massachusetts Mental Health Center (MMHC) was slated for demolition to make way for updated facilities. The closure was a time for reflection and remembrance as the MMHC had been in operation for over 9 decades and had touched countless thousands of patients and employees alike, and the pending demolition presented a unique problem. How does one memorialize a building impossibly rich with a history of both hope and sadness, and do it in a way that reflects not only the past but also the future? And could this memorial be open to the public, not as a speech, or series of informational plaques, but as an experience worthy of they building’s unique story?

To answer that question artist Anna Schuleit was commissioned to do the impossible. After an initial tour of the facility she was struck not with what she saw but with what she didn’t see: the presence of life and color. While historically a place of healing, the drab interior, worn hallways, and dull paint needed a respectful infusion of hope. With a limited budget and only three months of planning Schuleit and an enormous team of volunteers executed a massive public art installation called Bloom. The concept was simple but absolutely immense in scale. Nearly 28,000 potted flowers would fill almost every square foot of the MMHC including corridors, stairwells, offices and even a swimming pool, all of it brought to life with a sea of blooms. The public was then invited for a limited 4-day viewing as a time for needed reflection and rebirth.

Perhaps no single installation or piece of art seen on Colossal has touched me more deeply than Bloom. After learning about it for the first time a few weeks ago I decided to reach out to Anna and ask if she might be willing to share some photos and information about the genesis and execution of such an incredible installation.

Please visit www.thisiscolossal.com for the original post, an interview with the artist and more images.

High Contrast

March 8, 2012

I think the mix of white slip covers and the dark table is such a pretty look.  The depth of color cuts the sweetness of all the white and adds a graphic punch, it goes from romantic to modern with the addition of the table.  There is still a softness and ease – even the dark painting  has a moody romantic edge, but the clean lines and simple solid covers on the upholstery make for a well-edited space that for me has the perfect balance of sharp-modern and soft-easy.

Get the look with this chair from Lee Industries.  American made upholstery from a decades old manufacturer in North Carolina, Lee uses kiln dried wood, 8 way hand tied springs and guarantees their frames.  Most of their furniture ships in 4 to 6 weeks and slip covers are offered on many of their pieces.  This is the perfect table if you want to recreate the look in the image above.  The ‘Tapered Round Dining Table’ from Kravet (item number WD5/54RD) is 54D x 30H shown in Charcoal, Light Distress, Inlaid Plank Top, Ogee Edge… Additional Sizes Available, for a price Kravet will make just about any size!  I love the quality of the construction, and finish on these tables, I have sold several lately and have not been disappointed yet.

Yes, Lee makes several dining height benches, settees and sofas that would look great pulled up to the Kravet table.  And just incase you’re looking to pull off the entire room, OLY offers paintings with the same moody style take a look at the one I just found on their website…

Vintage flair and colorful layering would describe this chic apartment, it also happens to describe my friend Veronica Klaus who created this colorful and chic space (the photo was taken by Marcia from tablehopper.com). When I saw this image I was immediately smitten… It could be a Elle Decor cover!  I love the repurposed books and salvaged chair – with beautiful needlework – and the bright vintage rug.  And yeah everybody loves a little animal print and this zebra, paired with the florals is spot on.

I’ve been smitten with Veronica and her singing voice for many (many) years and it just so happens that she is gearing up to record her next album, Something Cool and she could use some help actually… CDs are expensive and she’s started a kickstart campaign to help get it made.  I understand “Something Cool” will try to capture many of her live performance “greatest hits” so it will no doubt be great.  Check out this link for more information on Veronica and help support her next musical effort.

V… I’m thinking zebra and floral mix might make album art?!


Bright Lights Big City

February 23, 2012

My good friend Peter Teague took this photo of New York from 7 World Trade Center.  What a beautiful image of the city that never sleeps!  The night tonight is clear and crisp, the stars are out after a bright sunny day today.  I’m heading down to New York this weekend  and look forward to slipping into that grove for a few days.  Who knows maybe I’ll get my hair cut and try on lots of shoes, and maybe I’ll go up to the museums and the park and stay up town for a show… and for sure I’ll be spending hours in ABC Carpet and Home.  Check back soon for NYC updates!

Yes please!  I think this is a promotional image for 1 Madison.  the newish apartment building that is having difficulty getting occupancy.  Don’t know if it’s financing or what but I will tell you the building is BEAUTIFUL.  Certainly a favorite in recent years – as is the Gehry building at 8 spruce – One Madison is a thin black needle of a building with glass boxes cantilevered off one side.   

So a favorite pastime of mine is just clicking on anything of interest on friends of friends Facebook pages.  It’s my version of Pintrest I guess, liking things enough to recycle them, occasionally I post them here. Well just the other day I sorta hit the “beautiful picture” jackpot.  Don’t ask me how I got to his page but Francesco Mugnai from Florence Italy blogs… and boy does he find some beautiful images.  I clicked through almost all of his pictures (and there were a lot) one more beautiful than the last.  Here is a tiny sampling of some of the images I found so beautiful.  Enjoy.

Here’s a link to his Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/blogoffrancescomugnai

Suzanne Kasler for Lee Jofa

February 12, 2012

Atlanta-based interior designer Suzanne Kasler has translated her classic, yet modern aesthetic into a debut fabric collection for Lee Jofa.

Her extensive collection of new and vintage textiles from all over the world inspired Kasler to reinterpret her unique finds. The exclusive collection, which consists of archival designs in prints, jacquards and embroideries, features rich and exotic suzanis, stylized paisleys, naïve l’indiennes, rustic crewels and lush floral designs.

Complementing her signature decorative designs are an offering of stone washed linen textures and crisp silk taffetas in an extensive range of colors reflecting Kasler’s distinctive approach of mixing subtle neutrals with fresh color. Lee Jofa is pleased to present her inaugural collection which is embodied in the sophisticated and stylish interiors she envisions for her clients.

When I saw this beautiful printed fabric from Suzanne, I flashed on this work (above) by Damien Hirst.  They are quite different in style but the color palette is strikingly similar.  Which brings me to a point I’d like to make:  ART does NOT have to match your SOFA.   While I would like the way this modern art would wake up the traditional aesthetic of the room above, I would probably choose not to specify this particular piece because it matches.  Buy art because it speaks to you, because it’s beautiful, because you like the message, the artist, or the colors… BUT don’t buy it because it matches your interior, because it doesn’t have to.  In fact it will stand out more if it doesn’t and that’s a good thing.

Some text taken from: DesignWire

Someone over at Desire to Inspire has a crush on David Prince, and I may be crushing on his work too.  Just look at the richness of his work.  beautifully lit, and cropped perfectly his work seens to have a special quality… vintage for sure , but there’s something more. Here is what the Dersire to Inspire folks had to say:

True love ….. again. We’ve featured photographer David Prince‘s work before. We’ve simpered and praised, declared his work the best, sworn our undying love … then forgotten him and moved on to other photographer crushes. What was I thinking! New work since our last foray into Prince’s portfolio. Love the boho, easy elegance that is creeping into the shots. The earthiness, the softer light, the exploration of the imperfect. The man’s a genius. Mea culpa. I should not have strayed.

The Secret of Sand

January 23, 2012

Beauty in every grain, remarkable photographs reveal the hidden charms of ordinary sand.  Viewed at a magnification of over 250 times real life, tiny grains of sand are shown to be delicate, colourful structures as unique as snowflakes.  When seen well beyond the limits of human eyesight, the miniature particles are exposed as fragments of crystals, spiral fragments of shells and crumbs of volcanic rock.

Professor Gary Greenberg who has a PhD in biomedical research from University College London said: ‘It is incredible to think when you are walking on the beach you are standing on these tiny treasures.

Magnified:The grains are shown to be delicate, colourful structures each as unique as a snowflake.Magnified:The grains are shown to be delicate, colourful structures each as unique as a snowflake.

Colourful: The miniature particles are exposed as fragments of crystals, spiral fragments of shells and crumbs of volcanic rock.

Colourful: The miniature particles are exposed as fragments of crystals, spiral fragments of shells and crumbs of volcanic rock.  Sand is tiny fragments of rock that have been worn away over thousands of years.  Contrary to popular belief, sand is made as rocks crash and break in rivers and streams on their way to the sea, rather than the ebb and flow of the tides.  Deposits left by breaking rocks in the sea turns to silt and is much lighter so is dispersed over a much wider area out to sea, rather than on the shore line.  Some of the rock is soluble, but other bits remain and as they are slowly rubbed down over time they get smaller and smaller until they become what we know as sand.

‘Every time I look through my microscope I am fascinated by the complexity and individuality created by a combination of nature and the repeated tumbling of the surf on a beach.’

Prof Greenberg, who searches through thousands of tiny rocks with acupuncture needles to find and arrange the most perfect specimens, then uses a painstaking technique to create his images.  He has spent five years searching the globe for remarkable sand grains like these to photograph.  Gary’s pictures are available from his website sandgrains.com and his book ‘a grain of sand’ which is available on Amazon.

Incredible: To think we are walking on 'these tiny treasures'

Source: DAILY MAIL REPORTER

Vintage Vixens

January 20, 2012

Models in the Window, picture by Ormond Gigli , New York 1960

Would you believe these were all a facebook grab?!  A friend of a friend… Who knew?  I love the lines and the silhouettes of women’s fashion from the 40’s and 50’s.  Clean and straightforward but dramatic and so full of opulence and luxe.  the glamour of it all just cuts through me for some reason.  I wanted to write more about why this is so fascinating to me but I’m still not sure why… Maybe these women remind me of my mother from when I was young?  Perhaps it’s simply the well designed clothes and well designed shots, stylized and chic… not sure just love it… hope you enjoy.

Fiona Campbell-Walter wearing a duchesse satin ball gown by Cristobal Balenciaga.Photo by Frances McLaughlin-Gill at Château de Versailles for Vogue 1952
Model wearing a Christian Dior evening dress/ Photo by Erwin Blumenfeld, New York, VOGUE US, 1949
Stella Oakes wearing Balenciaga – photo Henry Clarke 1951
Sunny Harnett wearing this classic gray flannell by Harvey Berin, picture by Irving Penn for Vogue 1952


Get To Know – Jill Malek

December 21, 2011

Jill Malek specializes in print and pattern design for invitations, customized stationery, book layouts and web sites. In 2008, she expanded her love of printed matter to wallpaper design.

By enhancing spaces with rich textures, she has applied her experience acquired from graphic design to the art direction of interior spaces. Since creating her wallpaper patterns, her designs have subsequently appeared as wall decals, on yoga mats, and on kitchen appliance surfaces.

Her custom commissions, both locally and abroad, include work for The Rockwell Group, Vosges Haute Chocolate, MTV Networks, Foley and Corinna, Charles Chang-Lima, Bochic, Box Studios and LG Hausys. Her wallpaper has appeared in many high-profile locales, such as the new Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas Hotel and Resort Casino, the Jones New York Shoowoo stores, the Google offices in Los Angeles, the Ritz Carlton Restaurant in Boston, and the new Wieden + Kennedy offices in Minnesota. She lives and works in New York with her husband Vram and her son, Luca…both ongoing sources of inspiration.

http://www.jillmalek.com/

Hong Kong Hustle

November 28, 2011

…is what we did that today in spades. After an early morning coffee and a trek to the top of Victoria Peak, we went shopping for linens, ceramics, and furniture.  a brief lunch by the pool at the Four Seasons and we were back to shopping this time for clothes – I love Shanghitang – and finally foot massages and pedicures.  Thats my kind of hustle!  Exhausted, I could do it all again tomorrow.  One of the better websites/blogs I have found since being here is hongkonghustle.com.  Young and current it has something for anyone intrested in design, food, nightlife and the whats what in Hong Kong.  Even if you’re not planning on visiting Hong Kong anytime soon, it’s an interesting read with lots of pretty pictures and who knows you might just end up ahead of the curve on the next big trend.

Secret Garden

November 26, 2011

Love these butterflies with wide-spread wings and beetles with long feelers arranged in a circle with legs next to each other  forming brooches, pendants, rings and bangles. They also occur individually, as an ear stud sitting on the tip of the ear, or as a pin, nonchalantly crawling on the lapel.  All of these are the works of Nikolay Sardamov.  

The insects are their own silhouettes: silver shadows, sometimes gilded or blackened. They sit in symmetric ornaments which grow into three-dimensional constructions and resemble flowers in bloom. The beetles and butterflies turn into petals. and they are breathtaking. And the secret of the garden? Its flowers can spread their wings and fly away.

Vivianna Torun Bülow-Hübe (born December 4, 1927 in Malmö – died July 3, 2004 in Copenhagen), often known simply as Torun, was one of Sweden’s most important 20th century silversmiths and a master jeweler. She is the first female silversmith to have become internationally famous.  Among her most important works are the watch “Vivianna,” the bracelet “Mobius,” and the earrings and necklaces “Dew Drop.”  Throughout her career, Torun worked in Sweden, France, Germany and Indonesia.

In 1948, saying that she didn’t want to design jewelry for the wives of wealthy men to keep locked up in private, Torun began making what she called “anti-status jewelry” out of twisted silver wire embellished with crystals and stones. In 1959, she designed the Mobius necklace, which included a lead crystal drop to be draped over the shoulder of the wearer. It was described by Barbara Cartlidge, author of the reference book Twentieth Century Jewelry, as a “milestone in the history of modern jewelry.” In 1962, Torun designed a stainless steel bangle-style wristwatch for an exhibition at the Musée des Arts Décoratifs in Paris.   It later became the first wristwatch to be produced by the world-renowned Danish silver company Georg Jensen.

In 1960, Torun was awarded a gold medal at the 1960 Milan Triennale and also won the American Lunning Prize for design, given annually to innovative Scandinavian designers in their thirties. She then met, for the first time, Danish silversmith Georg Jensen, for whom she began designing exclusively in 1969.

Torun is the designer behind some of the most famous Georg Jensen jewelry designs, including ‘Mobius’, ‘The Vivianna / Open Watch’, ‘Beans’, Forget me knot’ and ‘Hidden Heart’. She is the second most famous Georg Jensen designer, behind Jensen himself. In 1992 she was awarded the Prince Eugen medal by King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden for outstanding artistic achievement.  Also in 1992, the Georg Jensen form held an exhibition honouring 25 years of its association with Torun, 45 years of her work with silver and her 65th birthday. In the same year, theMusee des Arts Decoratifs in the Louvre held a 45-year retrospective of Torun’s work.

Torun’s jewelry was inspired by natural shapes such as flowers, leaves, swirls and the flow of water. It is described as sober, minimalist and simple. Torun has been praised for her ability to shape solid materials into seemingly flexible forms, so that metal flows like water around the wearer’s neck and shoulders.  She did not use valuable stones, preferring instead pebbles, granite, rock crystal, moonstone and quartz.

Torun’s jewelry has been worn by celebrities including Billie Holiday, Ingrid Bergman, and Brigitte Bardot, and her customers included Pablo Picasso and Duke Ellington.  Her work can be seen in the Museum of Modern Art in New York City, the Swedish National Museum in Stockholm, the Musee des Arts Decoratifs in Montreal, the Louvre in Paris, the Worshipful Company of Goldsmiths in London, and in the Pinakothek der Moderne in Munich.


OLY art

November 11, 2011

Oly design studio has been a favorite resource for me for many years.  I love a mix of antique, modern and natural organic element in furnishings and Oly delivers.  These beautiful images work perfectly with the old gold tables, the organic lighting fixtures and unique furniture from Oly.  you also can’t go wrong with their finishes… all of them are so good you can almost choose with your eyes closed.

Would you believe I’ve just taken on a client who has recently purchased a prairie style home?  The house offers a large livingroom with a good-sized fireplace and plenty of room for seating.  The plan is to honor the lines and vibe of the house without creating a museum to the distinct style.  We will definitely take liberties, and pull in other styles including perhaps Deco, Arts and Crafts, Asian, and modern.  Pieces will present themselves with time, right now I’m more focused on color palette.  I want to use the strong earthy palette of craftsman pottery in the space and balance their strong presence with light neutrals – that will “pretty it up” – and a mix of different wood types.   Furniture will be clean lined and for the most part straight lined, although we may throw in a curved sofa.  Some things I pulled  after our first meeting included these…

Mona Lisa Remixed

September 20, 2011

Leonardo da Vinci’s classic distilled, reduced & remixed down into 140 exact circular characters of colour. A work about the illusion of familiarity, inspired by Seurat & sitting too close to the TV. Makes little sense close up. Makes every sense from the other side of the room.  I got mine… I think this is so cool.  Reminiscent of Damien Hirst’s work – see below – the concept of taking a well know masterpiece and reworking it into a contemporary piece is great I think and for 44 pounds ($70.00) this piece will look amazing in my bedroom against the chocolate-brown grass cloth wallpaper walls.  Available from www.someprints.com it is being labeled as the Mona Lisa for the Twitter generation.  A stunning & vividly coloured Giclee print (unframed). Professional high quality 600pdi print on 190gsm matt white paper. Signed & dated on the back in pencil. Rolled up, wrapped in tissue & posted in a sturdy cardboard tube… and free shipping!

Artist: Damien Hirst


A friend of mine turned me on to a new style blog that is very well done and interesting. The Style Saloniste moto is: Celebrating and analyzing interior design, style, new books, fabulous people, bold world travel, creativity and inspiration, and they deliver.  Here is a small (edited version) of the full blog post…

With paint-brushes, patience, style, skill, wit and passion, San Francisco decorative artist Michael Dute conjures up exotic worlds on the walls of his Berlin apartment.

“I wake up and I’m in China or Pompeii or eighteenth-century France,” said Dute, who now lives in Berlin. He specialises in interiors inspired by 18th-century European architecture, Chinoiserie, and invented decor.
During the week, Michael Dute paints luscious murals and glamorous rococo-inspired decorative wall panels for interior designers and private clients all over the map. But after-hours he paints only for his own pleasure.  Come for a visit, and see the rare beauty and technical mastery as he paints an embellished other-world. It’s a work in progress. I’d say two more years…

Two years ago, Michael Dute airlifted himself to Berlin—to be inspired, to see art, to feel the energy of the city. Then, restless artist, he got to work on his house.  “I painted the walls in the tradition of 18th-century European artists who created highly detailed imaginary seascapes and landscapes with panoramas of people and temples and trees,” said Dute. “I’m willing to put in years of effort to make these paintings exceptional and timeless. This way of working is very fulfilling. I never tire of these paintings. There’s always a detail, a color, or scene or an implied interaction that captures my attention.”

Painting for hours a day, and often for weekends at a stretch, Dute executes his murals, ceilings and painted woodwork in the minutest detail, down to the frothy waves on lively seascapes, the belts and ornamentation on Chinese robes.

“My vision is to suggest the residence of an 18th-century French or Italian philosopher/scientist who was crazy for the idea of China or Paris ,” said Dute. “He had never actually been to China or France or the Veneto. But he’d seen paintings and porcelains. They were the inspiration.” — Michael Dute

“In my painting and subject matter, I am always inspired by French artists like Fragonard and Boucher who painted exuberant, exotic scenes and landscapes based on their romantic views of idyllic life in the countryside, and in China,” Dute said. “Like Boucher, I love to depict leisure scenes, but I’m a pragmatic artist, so I also put my people to work weaving silk, fishing, harvesting, washing clothes in the river, dyeing silk, rowing a boat. This gives the paintings more energy and movement and gives them some bite. They’re dynamic, not too sweet.”  — Michael Dute

Click over to the Style Saloniste to read the entire post and others.  

Good decorating usually includes good art, it finishes a space and art also says a lot about the person that chose it…it’s personal.  Paintings can move us, photographs haunt us, feelings are typically involved when it comes to choosing and enjoying art.  For me artwork is a little like having people in the house, each piece has a personality, it reminds me of a certain time place or person and the artist is always there too.

When chosing art, please keep in mind that it has to speak to you, it doesn’t have to match the sofa but it should be the right scale for the wall or wherever you are planning on putting it.  If you fall in love with a tiny painting like the one above from Lisa Daria, hang it in a small grouping with other paintings or find a small wall ( between two doors perhaps ) where the size feels right.  Good art does not have to be expensive, but remember when buying that someone created that art, they spent time and energy to bring that piece to life.  So, if you have to… save towards each piece, or buy one at a time and slowly build a collection.  Art is so worth it.

Lisa Daria sells a painting a day on her blog.  She is amazingly talented and I wouldn’t mind owning one or many pieces of her work.  Please check her out by clicking here.

 

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