I love how beautifully smart and simple these lights are. Created by the young Norwegian designer Kristine Five Melvær, they’re one of a number of lights which she has recently created. The ‘Liquid Light’ consists of a birch wood plate that holds a glass carafe and a brass socket for a candle. Once filled with water, the carafe acts as a lens for the candle and produces a wonderfully soft light.
Modern China is a country in flux. In recent years we’ve seen a large number of photographers explore the country’s changing landscape with images that document the socioeconomic impact of its emergence as a superpower. Shen Wei’s series ‘Chinese Sentiment’ is a refreshing change from these sorts of images. Instead of cliched pictures of towering skyscrapers and sprawling new cities, Wei’s photographs avoid a Western interpretation of the country and present a more human portrait of modern China.
Trevor Powers’ Youth Lagoon project is back with a new album called Wondrous Bughouse and “Mute” is our first taste of what that album holds in store. Filled with a barrage of sounds it flip-flops between warm textures and harsh clangs, but all the time it’s beautifully strung together by Powers unique voice. It’s a an uplifting song and one that is well worth checking out!
Wondrous Bughouse is released March 5th. You can purchase a copy online through Fat Possum Records and check here to see if Youth Lagoon is playing in a town near you.
“The Pub” is a wonderful short animation written and directed by Joseph Pierce. After picking up a slew of awards at the festival circuit it has finally made it’s way onto Vimeo and it was certainly worth the wait. Produced by Fifty Nine Productions, the film captures a day in the life of a barmaid who works at a murky North London pub.
Created using rotoscope animation, Pierce’s work has a wonderfully distinctive style to it. His characters warp and disform as they jitter on the screen and I feel that the technique works particularly well here. With every changing frame of animation we get to see these characters morph and jitter about as they occasionally reveal their suppressed emotions. It’s a great approach to the technique and it’s executed brilliantly here. “The Pub” is at times an unsettling watch but there’s beauty to be found in both its honesty and despair.
I love these dhurries made by the Swedish studio Oyyo. Handwoven by a community of craftspeople near India’s Jodhpur, the dhurries are made from 100% organic cotton and are the perfect balance of old tradition and contemporary style. Oyyo is a Swedish duo made up of Lina Zedig and Marcus Åhrén. Founded in Stockholm in Autumn of 2011 the studio work in nomadic ways, aiming to explore the convergence of cultures, design and fine craftsmanship.
At the end of last year the guys at Herman Miller put together a wonderful series of videos called Why Design. Each one features a designer from the company’s creative network and they all give a fantastic insight into the minds of some very talented people. My favorite of the eight is with Irving Harper who talks about how he likes to make paper sculptures. Harper finds that paper is a really versatile medium and he says that it’s really easy to work with. “All you have to do is sit down, cut paper out, and score it, bend it, and glue it.” he says. He makes it sound like it’s pretty easy but once you see what he creates you’ll quickly realize that it takes far more then simple cutting, scoring bending and gluing to make work this good.
If You’re Feeling Sinister will always be one of my favorite albums. Released in 1996, it wasn’t until college that I was finally introduced to it. Although unknown to me at the time, my introduction to the band couldn’t have been more aptly clichéd; a mixtape from a girl far hipper then me, the backdrop of an art-school, a heavy helping of introspection and countless trips on city buses. In truth, there was no way that this album wasn’t going to play an important role in my developmental years.
I got an email the other days from Nicolás Gomez telling me of a new project he’s started at LOLA Madrid called Bicycled. The aim of the project is to create new bicycles from old car scraps. I thought it was a really neat and novel idea so I thought I’d share it with you.
Nicolás tells me that the idea for the project came about from their experiences of being an advertising agency. He says that creating products that connect with people is what they do on a daily bases and for them, Bicycled is simply the perfect example of that. They are concerned about where the world is going now and the project is built from the belief that it’s always better to do then to say.
At Bicycled, bikes are handmade; created by bicycle shop owners. Chains are made from old transmission belts, indicator lights become reflective lights and car upholstery becomes seats and handlebars. Each bicycle is made out of real car parts so it means that no two bikes will ever be the same. Hopefully all this is just the beginning of the project and we’ll get to see more and more parts of old cars being used to become new and inventive bicycles.
As a cycle enthusiast I think it’s great to see a project as inventive as this. It’s terrific to see old cars becoming more a efficient, ecological and healthier means of transportation. You can check out the Bicycled website here and maybe even think about ordering yourself a new bike!