Date Archives June 2012

Yves Saint Laurent to become Saint Laurent Paris

Yves Saint Laurent logo

I read last night that Yves Saint Laurent was changing their name to Saint Laurent Paris under Hedi Slimane’s new creative vision. Seems like a bit of a weird choice, but I also like Hedi Slimane’s vibe, so I’m not sure what to make of the decision. There’s still a while until the change takes place, supposedly happening in Spring 2013 when Hedi’s first line hits stores. My biggest fear – What will happen to the beautiful YSL mark?

The Royal Institute of British Architects 2012 awards for excellence in architecture

RIBA International Award Winners

RIBA International Award Winners

RIBA International Award Winners

Last week, the Royal Institute of British Architects (that’s RIBA, the kind folks who own the architecture.com domain) announced the 2012 awards for excellence in architecture. To be eligible for the award, a nominated project must bear the fingerprints of a RIBA-member architect, and although these projects are all outside of Britain they are by RIBA members and are recognized as International award winners. The competition isn’t over for these buildings: the 12 projects have reached a kind of Star Search semifinals. Unlike the 59 Regional RIBA award winners that will go on to compete for the Stirling Prize, the 12 International award winners will now compete for the Lubetkin Prize. My picks are above and you can see all of them here.

Is it time to start a fantasy architecture league?

Night Skies, a time-lapse video by T-RECS

Night Skies, a time-lapse video by T-RECS

Night Skies, a time-lapse video by T-RECS

How cool would it be if your job was just to do time-lapse videos for a living? Well, the folks at T-RECS happen to do that very thing, specifically “HighRes Motion Control Timelaps Shots.” It sounds like it might be a fake job, but then you watch the video above and your mouth kinda’ drops open and you immediately hate them for having the coolest job on earth.

In the video you see several locations – Dante’s View, Death Valley, Yosemite and one shot in Plymouth, Indiana, to be specific. It’s incredible that they’re able to get such amazing shots. You can see in the top image how the stars just smear and streak, and it’s even better to see it in motion with the music playing along. The T-RECS crew are even rad enough to give a tutorial on how to make your own star trails in After Effects. Pretty legit.

Epic photos of nature by Tim Navis

Epic photos of nature by TIm Navis

Epic photos of nature by TIm Navis

Epic photos of nature by TIm Navis

Tim Navis is a Los Angeles based photographer who’s got a wonderful eye for the world. I can’t remember how I came across his work, but I was looking through my Flickr and realized I followed him. He’s able to capture such vibrancy in the world, all the incredible energy that’s out there. When you browse through his Flickr stream I swear he travels the world non-stop. He also takes some really stunning portraits, which you can view over on his site.

Andrea Wan imagines improbable architecture, anatomy.

Paintings by Andrea Wan

Painting by Andrea Wan

Paintings by Andrea Wan

These are paintings by Vancouver/Berlin based artist Andrea Wan has many recurring themes in her work, but what stands out to me are the blocky fragments of architecture. Andrea studied illustration in Denmark, which seems to come across in her illustrations. The way she characterizes the houses and the color palettes she chooses are really wonderful to take in. You can read interviews with Andrea here here and here, where she talks about the differences between illustration and photography.

‘Shadow’ – A New Track by Wild Nothing

Wild Nothing by Shawn Brackbill

Wild Nothing’s Gemini was easily one of my favorite albums of 2010 so I was excited to read that on August 27th Jack Tatum will be releasing his follow-up album Nocturne. Recently signed to the UK-label Bella Union, Tatum’s new LP is being billed by them as a “window into Tatum’s ‘ideal world’ of pop music”. He describes it by saying “I don’t think it’s going to be a secret to anyone that I care about pop music, but it’s definitely more my sense of what pop music used to be or even what pop music would be in my ideal world.”

If Gemini was an album written in a bedroom, then Nocturne is a different beast all together. Pieced together as Jack perfected his craft on the road, the album is said to be filled with gentle harmonies, orchestrated synths and Tatum’s unique wandering voice. Certainly if the lead single Shadow is anything to go by then we’re definitely in for a treat. It’s a song which shows that over the last few years his sound has really matured yet none of the original charm from his first release seems to have been lost. I know for a fact that come August 27th I’m bound to be down at my local record store!

A wooden dome created for debate, designed by Bureau Detours

A dome built by Bureau Detours to debate public housing in Denmark

A dome built by Bureau Detours to debate public housing in Denmark

A dome built by Bureau Detours to debate public housing in Denmark

This dome, designed by Bureau Detours, was built in the Danish town of Alligne. The dome is a temporary space designed to host debates about the Danish public housing system, the same agency that commissioned the dome’s construction. Now that the dome is up, there is a movement to keep the dome permanently. If kept around, I’m not sure if the dome would age gracefully or not; maybe that’s beside the point. For now, the city has a pretty exciting place to debate what is perhaps not a very exciting subject. It’s funny to see such formal complexity finished with simple timber boards, but the effect of light filtering through the boards is quite nice.

A LEGO man boldly goes where few regular men have gone before

Lego man launched into space

Lego man launched into space

Earlier this year, two Toronto high school students, Mathew Ho and Asad Muhammad, launched a tiny LEGO man to the very edges of space itself. Thankfully the crafty duo strapped a camera to the balloon, allowing us to enjoy the LEGO man’s epic journey.

Near the apex of the journey, the familiar blue sky gives way to an inky black, just before the balloon bursts and Ho’s and Muhammad’s rig starts its descent. The video and equipment eventually were recovered after falling back down to Earth.

An astrophysicist at the University of Toronto, Michael Reid, said what Ho and Muhammad were able to achieve is extraordinary.

“There are people that are doing it, but I haven’t seen many examples of 17-year-old kids doing it,” Reid said. “It’s a pretty impressive accomplishment.”

Space Suit of the Week

Life Magazine Scott Carpenter

Life Magazine Scott Carpenter

Astronaut Gregory Manchess

Astronaut Gregory Manchess

I recently ran across these charming photographs of Mercury Astronaut Scott Carpenter and his beautiful American family that were published in Life magazine in 1962. I was particularly keen on the second photograph of little Candy Carpenter, with her Prince Valiant haircut, as she spoke with her father in the capsule after he successfully landed. Candy’s eyes are so focused and full of life.

The eyes in Gregory Manchess’ portrait of Scott Carpenter are almost identical. The bright reflections bouncing off his helmet can’t obscure those same focused eyes. In his artist statement, Manchess reflects, “As a kid, I was always looking skyward, staring out into interstellar space from behind the atmospheric face mask of Earth. I feel a kinship with these explorers. Perhaps it’s the promise of all that discovery.” A kinship that is also seen in the eyes of Candy Carpenter.

‘Genesis’ by Grimes

Grimes, photo by John London

Canada always seems to be providing the US with tremendous stuff and I guess Claire Boucher AKA Grimes is another one of those exports. This is a girl after my own heart: A former McGill Russian lit student, she gave up on college to pursue music fully. Montreal seems to be burgeoning with creativity at all times and Genesis, one of the many standout tracks of her latest release, is a weird mutation of pop and 80s ambient. The lyrics are delightfully abstract; “My heart will never feel / Will never see / Will never know.” It can seem trite but when its washed in with overdubs and synths, hell, it’s a beautiful assertion of limitations both physical and self-imposed.