It’s that time of year when folks start to guess about who might be awarded this year’s Pritzker Prize, the annual that “honors a living architect whose built work demonstrates a combination of those qualities of talent, vision, and commitment, which has produced consistent and significant contributions to humanity and the built environment through the art of architecture.” I’m not going to make a guess this year, mostly because I don’t want to be wrong for the third year in a row, but partly because the recents laureates have not be very well known and it’s quite possible that the committee will one-up themselves this year and I’ll have no idea who the laureate is.
I first found Fawns while I was busy looking for something else, and it has since proved to be a lesson for me on managing my expectations. Ironically, I had impatiently been waiting for The Fourth Dimension to be released, the collection of short films from different directors curated by Harmony Korine of which Fawns is the last. The longer I waited the taller my expectations on what Korine would deliver grew to mountain heights. To my surprise, when it was released I was disappointed with most of it, until Jan Kwiecinski’s 30-minute adventure Fawns blew me away.
Picking a winner for The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle Re-Covered Books contest was a difficult challenge. The story is incredibly unusual which is certainly a part of the book’s charm. If you’re unfamiliar with the plot, here’s a quick synopsis.
In a Tokyo suburb a young man named Toru Okada searches for his wife’s missing cat. Soon he finds himself looking for his wife as well in a netherworld that lies beneath the placid surface of Tokyo. As these searches intersect, Okada encounters a bizarre group of allies and antagonists: a psychic prostitute; a malevolent yet mediagenic politician; a cheerfully morbid sixteen-year-old-girl; and an aging war veteran who has been permanently changed by the hideous things he witnessed during Japan’s forgotten campaign in Manchuria.
So you can see why this might be the toughest book we’ve ever taken on. We had a number of really beautiful entries and I couldn’t be more happy with the high quality of work that was entered. But there had to be one winner, and I chose this beautiful cover by Sam Kittinger.
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.
I first came across New Friends weavings at the Sight Unseen Pop Up shop during New York Design Week back in 2011. There was a small white weaving that appeared to be dripping the words NEW FRIENDS on the wall, and I gasped and was instantaneously smitten. I didn’t realize that it was the first ever showing of Alexandra Segeti and Kelly Rakowski’s work, but their dual city weavings (NYC and Philadelphia respectively) have gone on to continuous gasp-worthy notoriety ever since.
I don’t know much about him but I recently came across the music of Keaton Henson, a UK musician who’s sad and dark music is extremely beautiful. The song above, “You Don’t Know How Lucky You Are,” comes from his 2012 album Dear, and has to be one of my favorites from the album. It’s sensitive, it’s intense and it’s filled with guitar driven reverb. It’s also worth mentioning that he’s a pretty great fine artist, which you can see below and by clicking here.
Don’t be fooled by the deceptively simple exterior of this library building in Saint Denis, France. Don’t even be fooled by the word library. This is the Saint Denis Archives Building. It was designed by Antonini + Darmon Architectes to function as hard drive– a reference to the most popular form of storage since the shelf. Even though the architects don’t mean to take this metaphor literally, there are moments where it becomes conspicuous. For instance there is a giant turntable on the ground floor that allows bookmobiles and shuttles to be more efficiently packed away inside the building. In plan, it makes a giant circle that briefly makes the plan look like the innards of a computer.
Anti-Bullying Day, from Wikipedia:
Anti-Bullying Day (a.k.a. Pink Shirt Day) is a day celebrated during the last Wednesday of the month February in Canada, which originally started as a protest against a bullying incident at a Nova Scotia high school (Central Kings Rural High School). On this day, participants wear pink to symbolize a stand against bullying.
That’s the subject of today’s wallpaper from Vancouver based illustrator and designer Tom Froese. Tom wanted to create a piece that supported Anti-Bullying Day in an interesting and beautiful way and I think this wallpaper does the perfectly. If you look up images around the day you’ll see a lot of horrible fonts and cheesy, 90’s looking slogans, which definitely isn’t the best way to get this important message across.
What’s Tom done so well is elevated the day into something beautiful and refined. In my own opinion I think he’s made the day rather cool. It’s not a bunch of parents in ill fitting t-shirts, it’s stylish men and women in crisp pink button-ups. It’s also worth noting how lovely all the textures are on this piece, they really sell it. A huge thanks to Tom for bringing Anti-Bullying Day to my attention and for creating something so perfect to celebrate it.
Be sure to check back every Wednesday for a new wallpaper!