The sun set on us as we wandered into Plaza Rio de Janeiro in the La Roma area of Mexico City… and as we looked away from the grandiose replica of David in the park, suddenly these stunning nearly life sized oil paintings of horses were staring at us through the glow of Arróniz Arte Contemporáneo. Turns out it is the work of Mexican painter Omar Rodriguez-Graham - most breathtaking in the solo show “Variaciones Sobre un Tema” which opened yesterday, are these two HUGE oil on cotton canvas pieces he did in 2009. They measure 300cm x 250cm (10’x8’). The woman in the gallery was telling us about how his work used to be far more grotesque and somber, and in 2009 he started these horse paintings… you can see more in his portfolio. Most fascinating really is how real they look from afar, and how abstract they seem close up… see my favorites on the next page!
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While here in Mexico City for 2 nights with Kahlua, staying in La Roma at Hotel Brick… with snippets of free time, we’ve wandered and eaten our way through La Roma, Polanco, and La Condessa, and today i took a little walk hunting for cute design/art to check out… pardon the cell phone pics, but i thought i was just taking a little stroll!
Irresistible yet eerie, here is a peek at Carlos Bonil’s Restos that i came across at Galeria OMR’s el 52. They are skulls and skeletons made from plastic… in medical looking plastic containers… they are made of things like plastic forks! Totally mesmerizingly odd, see the pics on the next page to see what i mean!
Armed with her camera, Justine checked out the Kinetica Art Fair for us, and found some inspiring and fun art pieces i’m loving! Here’s what she had to say about it…
The highlight of the 2011 Kinetica Art Fair for me was Alex Posada’s ‘The Particle’, which had me mesmerized. A spectacle of light and sound, a seemingly simple wire frame studded with lights came to life. Posada writes of his piece “Experimenting with colour, sound and movement, the continuous rotation, speed and light create visual effects that define the spatial structure of the object.” The exhibit has a further layer of complexity, the regulatory mechanism of the design is based on the haphazard decision-making manner, forming new models. This means that the structures cannot be anticipated, but instead evolve through continual iterations involving the viewer. You simply must check out more pics and videos on the next page!
Armed with her camera, Justine checked out the Kinetica Art Fair for us, and found some inspiring and fun art pieces i’m loving! Here’s what she had to say about it…
I discovered the work of Dianne Harris at the 2011 Kinetica Art Fair, where her Neon works Caduceus, E=MConsciousness2 and Eternally Yours were featured. Dianne’s work “aims to heighten and advance human potentiality and question the self-imposed limitations that serve to confine the very nature of our ideas, thoughts and being” and perfectly captured Kinetica Art Fair’s theme of Body, Brain and Consciousness. See more pictures on the next page!
Justine went to check out the Birmingham Interiors 2011 show ~ and brought back some awesome pics ~ here’s her first post!
Earlier this week, I wandered up to Birmingham for Interiors 2011. One of my favorite stands at the show was a showcase by the students at Birmingham City University. Their four trend pavilions set out four unique student interpretations of Global Color Mix Trends for Autumn/Winter 2011/12 and titled ‘Afrika’, ‘Curve’, ‘Botanic’ and ‘Fable’. Take a peek at lots more pics on the next page!
André Balazs Properties have always had gorgeously unique light bulbs… Chateau Marmont has a playful Pan (god of fertility, unbridled male sexuality and carnal desire to name a few) in a bulb… The Mercer has its signature M… it’s about time that The Standard Hotel’s had theirs as well! Announced last night, and literally flying off their digital and physical shelves, the KAWS Light Bulb Set for the Standard are a limited, but non-numbered edition of 1,000 sets that contain 3 bulbs each, of one bulb in each color: red, purple and green. While a few blocks away, i popped over to check out the new display of them in The Standard New York Shop window… as well as unboxing them and playing with them up close! The glow just draws you in, and the X’s are so signature KAWS. Ready to take a peek at it all up close? See the many pics on the next page!
Here’s a sneak peek at the show opening tomorrow at the newest Gallery 1988: Venice! (Bittersweet that SF is closing, but awesome to have one on the westside!) “Multiplayer” opens tomorrow night and is filled with video game inspired art! I can’t wait to see what else is unveiled tomorrow night! Take a look at a few of the pieces on the next page… but be warned, you’ll be overcome with a nostalgic desire to go play tetris and zelda and more though!
Illustrator, Eli Neugeboren facebooked me about his latest project, and it is just that perfect combination of adorably creepy and beautiful! He says on his blog, “Fashion Monster was a project conceived with photographer Dustin Cohen to combine his photographs and my “monster” illustrations. We set out to create a noir feel, knowing that the monsters would upend that with their absurd placement and bright colors. Shot on location around lower Manhattan at the beginning of Fall, the light was great and the team Dustin put together created wonderful images for me to work with.” The fashion is Edelweiss by Sarah, model is Mirielle from APM Models, hair & makeup by Angelique Velez, styling by Matthew Simonelli, ahoto assistant/stunt driver is Andrew Hanenberg, photo assistant is Winfield Foster, and producers, Kids With Candy, Casey Levine & Monique Perreault.
There’s something so incredibly fun about the whole series, and will make you peer around buildings and over your shoulder as you saunter through New York… i’d love to see an animated version of this look book! See more on the next page!
WOW. Sometimes emails come in, sound too good to be true, then you click a link, and your jaw just drops. You can barely call Maximo Riera’s Octopus Chair, a chair. It’s more like an Octopus THRONE. This chair is first of a The Animal Chairs collection, consisting of more than 15 different pieces. A true art piece, it has evolved from sketches to 3D renders to CNC’d blocks which were assembled, glued, sanded, and painted by hand. A truly impressive artistic take on where the chair meets nature… one can only imagine what it must feel like to sit in such a throne! Or as Riera says “The Octopus Chair therefore becomes a powerful intersection of complex human design integrated with nature’s splendor.” Wow. You really must see more pictures of it (and the making of) on the next page.
I love paintings on wood… these pieces from Anthony Lister’s solo exhibition FIERCE are lovely! From the press release: “Opening Friday, January 14, THIS los angeles and Monster Children magazine host Fierce, a solo exhibition featuring original works by Australian graffiti and street artist Anthony Lister. Fierce debuted this past December during Art Basel at a pop-up gallery space in Miami’s Wynwood Arts District. The exhibition will make a special one-night appearance in Los Angeles at THIS los angeles in Highland Park, and works on view include 11 wood panels, five large canvases and more than two-dozen masks.” The opening reception takes place on January 14, 7-10 p.m. at THIS los angeles, 5906 N. Figueroa St., Los Angeles, CA 90042.
Remember his window painting at the Standard NY Store? See a few more of his pieces on the next page… wonder woman cracks me up…
The process and creative imagery that is produced along the path to great products are often quite a work of art… It’s so inspiring to see Mercedes-Benz embracing the process by formalizing sculptures in their process of exploration and discovery. There’s something almost magical when seeing the design process itself shared through these sculptural experiments, especially when they share the sketches and organic inspiration that leads them there. Works of art being displayed along side concept cars and current cars fill you with curiosity and open ended inspiration of what the future may hold. Mercedes Aesthetics No. 2 just debuted at Detroit Auto Show.
I love this quote from Mercedes Head of Design, Gorden Wagener, “Inspiration is the pre-condition for the calm, coherent yet passionately emotional design of our cars. In the interior sculpture Aesthetics No. 2 we have allowed creative fantasy to develop freely without constraints.” Regarding sculpture details, “On a scale of 1.5 to 1 the sculpture measures 18.3 x 6 x 8.5 feet. The finely wrought frame painted in alubeam Liquid Metal is light and strong; the white seating landscapes look like ivory.” Take a look at the inspiration behind and the design process that went into it… as well as the very cool final sculpture!
I love when beautifully packaged delicious liqueurs come with nicely illustrated stories around their necks… like the Art in The Age of Mechanical Reproduction SNAP ~ a ginger snap spirit, from the makers of ROOT. Previously i showed you ROOT as well as a sample of Snap in a glass jar we tasted… since the production bottles were not yet ready… This time you can see the finished product! Popping the cork on this bottle, it smells like gingerbread houses wafting out, perfect for this wintry holiday season… the mix of blackstrap molasses, cloves, brown sugar, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, rooibos tea and vanilla is just irresistible! Perfect for getting creative with cocktails playing with everything from apple cider to toasty fireside drinks. The story was so cute (and educational!) had to share the booklet details with you… lovely illustrations… check it all out on the next page!
TIME/LIFE: Science/Library - A Revolution in a Quiet Room… WOW. Mixing Dan Funderburgh’s signature detailed style with the scientific retro slant of TIME/LIFE… all in gorgeous Vallery in Barcelona. WIsh i could be there! And wishing i could get that microscope wallpaper you see above! Also the jellyfish and other bio organism vinyl stickers on the walls look stunning as well! See more pictures i found over at Funderburgh’s flickr feed after pouring over the Fox Is Black’s post… as well as some from the Vallery, which even has prints for sale!
Save the date! Jan 15th. Gallery 1988 : Venice (Grand Opening!) presents MULTIPLAYER: Limited Edition Posters Inspired By Video Games! And curated by the super awesome OMG Posters. As they say - “Opening January 15th at their new Venice gallery, Multiplayer will feature over 30 limited edition prints based on classic video games. You can see most of the artists on the list below, but there will also be a surprise or two.” Can’t wait!
Mmmmm, you know i adore a good unexpected juxtaposition… like these fun paintings by Kelly Reemsten! Headless/footless women in lovely party frocks holding simple tools… like bolt cutters, axes, gardening shears, chainsaws, crowbars… and wearing dish gloves and oven mits… simple every day things! They also have great names like ‘The load I Carry’, ‘Heavy Handed’, ‘Axe’, ‘B & E’, ‘Prowler’, ‘Leverage’, ‘Character Assassination’, etc. Awesome, right? And these are all large oil paintings ranging from 20’x20’ to 44’x44’. How fun would it be to have the perfect one hanging conspicuously in that perfect entry way… Is it any surprise that she started in Fashion Design and Painting? See more on Kelly Reemsten, and see some of my absolute favorites on the next page!
Love these french ads for Martell XO that i ran into on I Believe in Adv. Such a fun concept to show that it’s “The same pleasure since 1715”, having the more modern day scene reflect the world in the painting from the 1700s! I supposed the question is did they take it too far? or not far enough? Part of my wishes in the paintings, there would be a painting of an even OLDER time with the same scenario inside… or that the dresses and suites were matching in color… though that might just be because of the girl in the pink dress matching… and a guy in a red suit might be a bit much! See the second ad, as well as close ups of the paintings on the next page!
On fun collaborations, last week Kiehl’s and Jeff Koons teamed up to launch the annual Holiday Creme de Corps: A Wonderland of Merry in NYC, and Anna went to go check it out for us. Highlight? Besides Koons in person? CRACK PIE BITES! Who knew they did these in mini form? Also, Cake Truffles - with sprinkles? Momofuku catered the event, and the food looks lovely (lots of pics on the next page!) So take a look at the world of pop art meets skin care meets deliciousness that descended up on NYC that night, see the festivities (and the adorable retro americana decor!) on the next page!
Mesmerizing isn’t it? The most amazing things come through from the CIA - just discovered this in my email from their newsletter! The beauty and simplicity of these gifs are sucking me in tonight. So so beautiful, and Richard Wilkinson basically captures his work flow in photoshop - saving them into high res animated gifs you can view on his blog! It’s as if you’re watching the image paint itself… yes, it’s nearly 3am, and you’ll see why i’ve gone quiet the last few days as i’ve been obsessively working on the giveaways and gift guides launching this week… but for now… aren’t these incredible? These beautiful illustrations were for a 5 page spread for The Telegraph Magazine’s ‘Luxury’ supplement. See a few more of my favorites and a peek at the spread on the next page…
Freshly launched, an adorable series of prints ~ Amanda Visell’s Posters for Girls… while my natural inclination towards things too girl focused is that it’s reverse sexist against boys… (and really, i’m just not that girly pink kind of girl)… i do find myself wanting to gift these prints to a bunch of my friends who are new moms with adorable baby girls. Seriously, what girl doesn’t need the poster of the knight? To grow up remembering the importance of having the ability of self-saving (also dragon-friend-making is key!) - granted whether/when you USE that ability is a whole other lesson. I look at the maverick one, and i just think of poor goose. and iceman… but she is looking pretty bad ass with the parachute and aviators. And the captain is pretty cute too ~ though, the wild bigfoot beast frightens me a tiny bit, but the trees are so happy! See them all on the next page!
There are some fascinating design shifts happening at Mercedes-Benz ~ from the design studio in Sindelfingen to Como to Tokyo to Carlsbad, the message was clear - the hunt is on for “Perfect Aesthetics” and in doing so, they are aggressively pushing their designs to be more fresh, young, emotional, and sexy ~ phrases like “enjoyment of innovation” + “inspire our customers” + “sensuality and joy” + “importance of perception” kept recurring in addition to talk of the future and fascination and playfulness. It was most definitely a buzzwordfest, but the excitement and passion of the design teams was impossible to ignore. There was an inescapable giddiness throughout the week around where the future may take us, and a need to think far beyond their more traditional production vehicles. Steffen Kohl’s gung ho push from the design side to gain the freedom to explore the insane ideas are guaranteed to frighten corporate types a bit. It’s inspiring to see his team indulge in the ideas designers dream about as students ~ you know, that awesomely idealistic time when you believe absolutely anything is possible?
A big part of this is the fight to create more artistic explorations through sculpture to push abstract concepts. The idea of art being key to Mercedes-Benz design strategies as well as a beautiful way to tease designs earlier in the year is intriguing. And i love these form studies of Oliver Samson, Thomas Stopka,Yves Renaud, and Sylvain Wehnert from Karim Habib’s team. Exploring lightweight forms to play with strength, perspective, and transparency, the results resemble polygons, honeycombs (all sharing one central perspective point), string art, and woven chaos. See them all on the next page!
HAPPY 5th ANNIVERSARY!!! To our incredible friends at the Thinkspace Gallery! Over the years, they have become one of my favorite LA galleries, launching so many artists i’ve fallen for! And on that note ~ you can take a peek at all of the pieces in the show online if you can’t make the opening tonight! My favorites from Audrey Kawasaki, Brian Viveros, and Camilla D’Errico are all on the next page! Take a peek! They are STUNNING! (And sadly sold already!)
Art inspiration ~ loving these pieces by young self-taught Russian artist Lora Zombie! Beautiful inky watercolors ~ my favorites are the animal related ones ~ see my picks on the next page! And check out her DeviantArt and prints at Eyes On Walls.
Dog lamps! And Doggie portraits! Justine just sent some awesome pics over of “A Shoe Is A Dog’s Best Friend” with assemblage dog lamps by James Plumb and photos of his dogs by Bruce Weber… as spotted in some London Selfridges windows! So bizarre, yet cute, this window is a must see! Check out some of the details on the next page…
p.s. find some awesome design details while running around? Feel like sharing them with the NOTCOT community? Drop us a line!
An amazing and important art show occured in NYC this weekend ~ RE:FORM SCHOOL, a REDU Project! And luckily, while i couldn’t make it, Anna of Sub-Studio was willing to go check it out for us!!! And WOW! So many incredible pieces! With three floors of art, over 150 artists participating, and a mind blowing weekend of events… looks like it was quite the show ~ and brought together by the folks behind the incredible Manifest Equality and Manifest Hope. How do they describe it? “RE:FORM SCHOOL is a high profile group art exhibition, event series and public awareness campaign taking place in New York City, that brings together the creative community in a call for the reform of the American Public Education System.” Now… on to some of the many incredible pieces… see the next page!
I love the way porcelain and wood come together… this is Pour Celain by gregorysung for CRISTINA GRAJALES GALLERIES, new york, at london’s MOET HENNESSY pavilion of art and design in berkley square in london. The seats are produced by Korean ceramic masters ~ and the legs by Italian artisans… fused together they are this beautiful stool! See more images on the next page! The underside is just stunning!