Wide World of Web

Raw and Wild - Alison Johnson

This week on the Wide World of Web:

Yeah, pretty much everyone I know (or would care to know) would love a secret passage bookshelf.

I am not usually all that excited about end of the year lists, but this one: 50 Wonderful Things From the Year in Pop Culture, is indeed wonderful.

This interview with Lois Lowry is #35 and it made me cry, a lot. “She realized that day that she could talk to kids or she could talk to adults, but not to both: ‘And so I chose the kids.’ ”

After years of listening to his stand-up, I finally saw Mike Birbiglia’s  Sleepwalk with Me – I was pleasantly surprised to see it also stars Lauren Ambrose, it is both hilarious and touching.

Small people or big world?

Cheers to all the crunchy moms!

Every month I don’t know how the photos could get any better and then they do.

Film locations revisited.

How to build a Rainbow Igloo.

Along those same lines: Ice palaces and larger-than-life animals at The Snow World Festival.

Netflix always suggests the Ballet Documentaries to me (I do love them) and First Position is the best one I have ever seen. Among others, it stars Michaela DePrince, a Sierra Leone war orphan turned dancer, battling racism in the ballet world.


Painting by Allison Johnson buy it here – there is lots more awesome work on her website.

Categories: Art, Cool Hunting, Design, Photography | Comments Off

Maximalism Fantasy

It’s that time of year again – Christmas time in LA.  White twinkle lights festoon the palm trees, candy canes hide in the bird of paradise ground cover. It looks odd.

So, I look at the Bergdorf Goodman windows in New York and sigh. Christmas is a cold weather holiday, and they do winter with more elegance than anyone else.

This year the windows are an art deco extravaganza. They are decadent, and beautiful, and festive.

I love how the perspective shifts to top view in this one.

This truly is maximalism at its best.

Bravo and congratulations to the design team. You have outdone yourselves.

Head Designer: David Hoey

all images from the Bergdorf Goodman Blog – check out the behind the scenes video and interview with David Hoey they have posted.

Categories: Cool Hunting, Design | Comments Off

5,000 Plates

My favorite part of “The Holiday Season” is sharing food with people you don’t get to see very often. Extended family, your downstairs neighbors, those people who work in the next office… During December our inhibitions are lowered enough that anyone is up for a Christmas cookie or a leftover turkey sandwich…

With all those people coming over for all that eating and drinking, it is also the time of year to pull out all the extra plates. I have been very blessed with dishes. As the only granddaughter of a woman who liked to entertain I have more than my share of dish sets, and I also have several “orphan” plates. Sometimes plates have just magically appeared in the cupboard, don’t know where, or when or why, but there they are. Sometimes it is the last plate from a set, all it’s mates are broken. Regardless I, like many people, own several plates that don’t match anything else, and so they don’t get used.

The folks at Mooz also had some extra plates and noticed that their friends did too. They solicited orphan plate donations, and constructed this Christmas tree in the Belgian city of Hasselt. They only used white plates and tea cups, either solid white or with blue or gold accents.

The hope is that it will foster a sense of fellowship in a couple of ways. First, there is some community buy-in, because they used local recycled plates, but there is also that idea of sharing food over the Christmas season. From the project description:

“with any luck, [the tree] will regularly bring inhabitants, visitors and shopkeepers together over the Christmas period over a drink or a friendly chat!”

They call it ‘Taste Tree’ and is is over 9 meters tall – I think it is pretty fabulous.

I can’t find information on how it was constructed (it must weigh a ton), but I love how it glows from within at night.

Not only is this tree a decoration constructed from recycled materials, but after it comes down on January 6th the porcelain will be broken and the pieces used in a mosaic.

all images from Design Boom

by designers Inge Vanluyd and Stefan Vanbergen of Mooz

Categories: Art, Cool Hunting, Design, Wanderlust | Comments Off

Morning Glory

So this looks pretty awesome.

It’s a lighting fixture that looks like the love child of a gramophone and a jungle vine.

Designer Aviad Petel designed it specifically for a boutique hotel in Tel Aviv. It provides light for the staircase as well as the landings and is over 12 meters tall.

I love how it looks kind of old-timey, and a bit futuristic at the same time – like the way the year 2000 was envisioned in 1900.

via DesignBoom


Interior designer: Michael Azulay
Textile designer: Orit Barzelai
Designer: Avi Saina
Designer: Oren Berry

Categories: Art, Design | Comments Off

Pulsing, Breathing Light

I keep thinking that if this were flipped the other way around it would be an awesome Christmas tree.



I could watch them open and close all day.

This is the work of South Korean artist U-Ram Choe.

All images from U-Ram Choe’s website


Categories: Art, Cool Hunting | 1 Comment

The Experience of Movement

My cousin had a trampoline when I was a kid, and I loved jumping for hours and hours. I could never do a full flip, but he could – and did, frequently.

My family lived in a town about 4 hours away from my cousin’s family, so jumping on the tramp was a holiday activity. I remember jumping until my feet felt frozen during several Thanksgivings.

 I think there were some “rules” about the tramp, but it was far enough away from the house that the adults didn’t bother to come out and yell at us very often, even if they could see that we had the whole neighborhood on it at once. 

It got pretty Lord of the Flies at times. I don’t personally remember crying, but I probably did. At this point, it all exists in a golden, hazy memory.

I keep thinking about those holidays, where the kids exist in a different plane than the adults. We were on parallel paths, only intersecting at the beginning and end of the day. Even at dinner time the kids eat first, at a separate table.

These awesome photos are of an installation called Fast Track, and is the work of Salto Architects. They wanted to create “intelligent infrastructure that is emotional and corresponds to the local context.”

This trampoline is 170 feet long. It looks amazing.

It is at the Archstoyanie Festival in Nikola-Lenivets, Russia – which looks like a creative festival in the forest, maybe a bit like Burning Man. See: guy in a tutu.


all images from Salto’s website by Nikita Šohov & Karli Luik

via Knstrct

Categories: Art, Cool Hunting | Comments Off

Wide World of Web

This week on the Wide World of Web:

for the discerning male Man of the World

a fairy-tale bridge

This cool company makes shoes from upcycled plastic bags The People’s Movement

Antonia is blogging again! and the people rejoiced!

Folded paper illustrations

Movie star by day, Nazi-fighter by night

Traveling to Peru with four kids under seven years old – and rockin’ it

Photorealistic pencil drawings

Sarah at Pink of Perfection is reading Little Women for the first time

This week was Diwali: the Festival of Lights

A little Thanksgiving tabletop inspiration


Painting by Lorella Paleni buy it here – there is lots more awesome work on her website.

Categories: Art, Cool Hunting | Comments Off

Stitching Lines

In the many hundreds (thousands??) of hours that I have spent in front of a sewing machine I have always been trying to make bits of fabric stick together. Sometimes the fabric is in a crazy configuration, sometimes it is just a hem. Most of the time, the fewer stitches, the better. Perhaps I could be classified as fabric-centric. For me, the thread is only a byproduct of the process.

Amanda McCavour uses her sewing machine in a completely different way. She draws with stitches on a fabric that dissolves in water. When the fabric is gone only the thread remains. She makes the drawing dense enough so that the stitching can hold together once the fabric base has disappeared.

She has made several installations, including a whole living room, but my favorite is called Scribble.

The color of thread gradates from orange to yellow to green.

She was inspired by spirograph drawings and cut paper snowflakes – the idea was to make a three dimensional scribble. Each one is so intricate – a little artwork in itself.

She did this particular work as part of her residency at Spark Box Studio.

Amanda McCavour at work

“Scribbles” with fabric base still intact

I love seeing old techniques applied in new ways.


artwork images from Amanda McCavour’s website

last two images from Spark Box Studio

Categories: Art, Design | 1 Comment

Half the Air in Cleveland

So this looks like lots of fun:

Work No. 965. Half the Air in a Given Space by Martin Creed at the Cleveland Museum of Art.

It is pretty much what it sounds like. The room is halfway filled with bright purple balloons and visitors are encouraged to walk around inside the room and “swim” in the balloons. Because the room is glass on three sides people outside can see the balloons move as people interact with them.

Kind of like how the smoke monster on Lost was invisible for the first season and you only saw the trees moving – but with purple balloons and laughter.

I think my favorite part is how the museum’s architecture make it possible for this fun, interactive display to directly juxtapose with the museum’s more traditional displays.

Martin Creed has been doing this kind of thing for almost 15 years, but I don’t think swimming in balloons is going to get old anytime soon.


all images from the Cleveland Museum of Art’s website

Categories: Art, Cool Hunting | 3 Comments

Wide World of Web

This week on the Wide World of Web:

London’s Hidden Architecture

A community creation BLOOM

The Rose Parade’s arty cousin

A Fairy swing for the little sprites in your life…

And while you are in the backyard, why nap in a hammock when you could sleep in a sphere

Globejotting in Burma (Myanmar) a country that just opened up to western tourists

Stay in a castle in Ireland

I have been loving reading this series of great love stories

Running out of things to watch on Netflix? Might I suggest

new from Ernesto Neto – previously on DF here


Painting by German artist, Brian Bixby “Nerine” buy it here – he has lots of awesome stuff on his website

Categories: Art, Cool Hunting | Comments Off