Date Archives August 2010

My Newfound Appreciation for Ed Ruscha

To be really honest I know basically nothing about Ed Ruscha, only that he’s a fancy artist who started painting in the late 50’s. In fact. I don’t know a lot about fine art or art history, it really hasn’t interested me very much up until the last few years. It’s not that I don’t have an appreciation, it’s just never clicked for me.

The other night I was watching the Marc Jacobs/Louis Vuitton documentary and Mr. Ruscha’s came up at one of his shows and I thought that I should take a second to look him up. As it turns out he has a pretty great website with large photos of his work dating back to 1958. It’s kind of surprising to see an artist of his age and caliber actually have a decent site. Most of the time it’s tiny images or some Flash bullshit.

Anyhow, just wanted to say that I like these paintings in particular. They’re simple but bold and the scale is pretty crazy too, most of these are like six feet wide. Be sure to visit his site and look through all his work.


Steffen Schrägle

Steffen Schrägle takes photos of stuff– stuff like Nissans or Mitsubishis. But when not making sleek images of cars, he focuses his lens on things like infrastructure and architecture. In the two images above, the results vary from looking similar to Iwan Baan to looking like something produced by the two children of the Auralab divorce: Luxigon and Laptop. These are good things! As you can probably tell from the lower image, Steffen sometimes employs elaborate post-production CGI to achieve the other-worldly effects apparent in his photos. He was recently recognized by the International Photography Awards for his architectural photography of bridges. He is a native of the Black Forest.


Awesome Photos of Vintage Interiors

I came across a bunch of old photos of interiors from the past and thought I should share this ramshackle collection. The images are rather random, a mixture of malls, metro stops and restaurants but they’re all rather over the top, sci-fi-esque and outright beautiful. I’m all for simplicity but there’s something about the over-the-top colors and mirrors and lighting that really give these some character. It might also be the way the photos were taken, but no matter what these are pretty fun to look at.

Check under the cut for more.

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French Book Covers

I’m sure I won’t be alone when I declare that I tend to judge a book by its cover. In most cases, a beautifully designed book cover will always win me over – sometimes blinding me to the shoddy content hidden within. With this in mind, it’s hardly surprising that I find the cheeky and erotic illustrated covers of French pulp fiction extremely enticing, and some of the best designs have been collected in one place: French Book Covers. Collated by an anonymous French bookseller, and envisioned as an “ideal virtual library”, the blog celebrates the saucy femme fatales, world-weary gangsters, surrealist imagery and strange oddities that have graced the covers of French books published predominantly in the post-World War II period. C’est super fantastique!

A huge thanks to Andrew for bringing the blog to my attention.


Wicked Portraits by Mark Summers

Mark Summers is a Canadian illustrator who’s work you’ve probably seen before (well, it looks familiar to me). He works primarily in scratchboard, which is “a technique where drawings are created using sharp knives and tools for etching into a thin layer of white China clay that is coated with black India ink”. Obviously there’s a little bit more going on in these pieces, a bit of Photoshop coloring perhaps, but man are they astounding. The details, the color, the lighting, the moods… everything is so perfect and beautiful. I love that their features are mutated as well, gives it a really unique character to each of these wicked individuals.


Lateral Architecture

I’m too busy to buy a bookshelf, so all my books live in sad stacks on the floor. But I’m not as busy as Mason White and Lola Shepard who exhibited the clever book storage above way back in 2007 as part of an exhibition “THICK2D”. Together, Mason and Lola founded Lateral Architecture, based in Toronto. “The prototypes,” like the one above, they explain “capitalize on the idea of material thickness through nesting, stacking, stitching, and excavating.” Lola and Mason also make up part of the research collective InfraNet Lab and individually teach. Mason is a senior editor of Archinect, and juror for the first edition of Bracket, a forthcoming collaboration between InfraNet and Archinect in the form of an almanac. When the almanac (complete with “astronomical and meteorological data”?) hits bookstores in October, you’ll have to take it home to your inferior book storage. On the bright side, you have over a month to try and make a bookshelf, yourself.


Moe Furuya’s Hand Fork and Hand Spoon

As soon as I saw Moe Furuya’s Hand Fork and Hand Spoon I giggled to myself because of what a clever and well done idea they are. My guess is that these would be marketed to children, but screw them, my 28 year old self wants these badly. I really like that there was no usability sacrificed in order to make them more hand like. I’m also glad that there are four tines on the fork, having any less is just wrong.

You can see more images and get more information (y’know, if you speak Japanese) by clicking here.

Found through Spoon & Tamago


Pepa Prieto

Spanish artist Pepa Prieto creates artworks that instantly bring a smile to my face. Although the subtext of her works can sometimes reveal a hint of menace and unease, her bright blocks of colour and intricate patterns display an almost child-like imagination – for the world that is visualised in her work is surely not part of our external reality. To this end, kaleidoscopic pyramids send whispered messages to the sky, adventurous archers traverse dreamscapes and strange old mountain-figures fill her compositions. She has designed various pieces for commercial clients and has exhibited her work internationally – no doubt spreading a magical sense of enchantment wherever she goes.