Beatbox » Zebulon Chalks It Up

December 11, 2012

quirky plays on words, killer hand-lettering,
and a raw, cave-painting depiction of mankind

This past Sunday was a bittersweet coming together as our neighborhood celebrated ten years of Zebulon with one final night of music and friends. As I looked around the room at the early crowd – kids scampering about on the stage up front and their parents hanging back by the bar – I got to thinking: what would all of us have done without this place? Over the past decade it has served as a community hub for many of us: we watched World Cups and elections here: screaming and celebrating, we met our soul mates here (I met mine) and celebrated weddings (including my own), bid farewell to friends, welcomed new ones, chimed in new lives (including little Henri’s)…

Of all the great things Zebulon gave us, one of my favorites were Guillaume’s daily posters, done in chalk on the vertical board by the outer door, visualizing the music that was to come that night. These daily sketches used quirky plays on words, killer hand-lettering, and a raw, cave-painting depiction of mankind. Fortunately, the images were carefully photographed and collected for us to admire on their Facebook page. I’ve compiled some of my favorites from the past years here. All the best to Guillaume & Jef’s next adventures: thank you for welcoming so many of us into your world.

i ♥ art » Sagebrush Gulch

November 21, 2012

Sam Trioli Sagebrush Gulch
Sam Trioli Sagebrush GulchSam Trioli Sagebrush GulchSam Trioli Sagebrush Gulch

I stumbled upon Brooklyn artist Sam Trioli while scouting the interwebs last week and subsequently fell in love with his entire body of work. These vibrant pieces from his Sagebrush Gulch exhibit definitely struck a chord: perhaps in part for the nostalgic tangent that it led me on as I pulled out my Color-Aid paper and had a little impromptu art-school cut and paste sesh. Sagebrush Gulch was on display in Miami last spring as part of site95’s exhibition series and includes a few dozen paperworks as well as a large-scale outdoor mural and sculpture. Be sure to check out Sam’s portfolio here, and, if you’re in the Boston area you can view his latest series, Brumaire, at Howard Yezerski Gallery up until December 22nd. Definitely an artist to watch!

Exclusive Q&A » DEERDANA

October 23, 2012

Clockwise from top left: DEERDANA Pablo, Kanye, Harry, and Yves tees

DEERDANA’s minimalist portrait tees have been on our fashion radar for some time.  But when Jay-Z broke out their Basquiat for his now-famous subway ride to Brooklyn a couple weeks ago, we knew the NYC brand had hit the tipping point. Featuring a mötley crüe of iconic characters hand-scrawled onto classic white cotton tees, DEERDANA takes a wardrobe staple and gives it the tastemaker treatment. They also have their finger firmly on the pulse. From Rick Ross to Frida Kahlo to Maggie Smith’s Countess on “Downton Abbey,” their subjects transcend pop- and sub-cultures, and can best be qualified as, quite simply, cool.

We caught up with founders Dana Veraldi and Kevin Tekinel to learn a little more about the line, including what their actual criteria is when emblazoning those tees:

What’s the criteria for showing up on a DEERDANA limited edition tee?

Sometimes we think about the selection as people we’d like to have dinner with. Martin Scorcese, Frida, Basquiat, Bieber singing…can you imagine a better dinner party?

RSVP us please! So who creates the images?
Where do the visuals come from?

I draw them with Kevin – we work together. We source from a number of different places. Some are more well known images, like the drawing of John Ford which from a Richard Avedon photograph.

Are most of your tees commissioned via collaborations (ie the kickass new Opening Ceremony line) or of your own choice?

None of our shirts are really “commissioned.” All of the shirts we do with outside people are true collaborations. From OC to Sean Sullivan to Miguel we go through a process of talking about ideas, going through images to draw from and then a number of drafts that we both are happy with. Most of our tees are our own line, but we love our collaborations!

Do you have to get the subjects’ approval or do you just go for it?

We go for it! Everyone has been very supportive, they should be flattering to the subject. We try to get them to the subject if possible.

Can you give us a heads up on a few portrait subjects we’ll be seeing soon?

New faces include Choupette Lagerfeld (Ed: Karl Lagerfeld’s beloved cat with 21,000 Twitter followers and counting), David Lynch, Hitchcock and Raf Simons.

Can’t wait! The line is so fresh and your cast of characters delight and inspire. All the best DEERDANA!

Kawaii! » Haute Honey Pot

October 16, 2012

Jaime Hayon's Baccarat Zoo Bears

“Receptacle or Art Toy, every character exudes its optimistic narrative strength, full of magic and imagination.” Jaime Hayon

Jaime Hayon is on the fast track to completely winning over my heart. First there was his Green Chicken, with its childish, nonsensical spirit, and now, in collaboration with French glassworks legend, Baccarat, Hayon has created these spectacular crystal and porcelain vessels for a collection simply titled: Baccarat Zoo. Their tongue-in-cheek opulence is right on the money (a hefty wad of money).

I’ve got my heart set on the bears above: which is going to put Henri’s college fund back a few notches, but I’m sure he won’t mind as he wistfully stares at the cubs: perched faaaaar out of curious baby’s reach. If you’re more of a duck or monkey person then you’re in luck: the collection includes a few of those critters as well. Sorry. No giraffes.

I ♥ Art » Desert Treasures

July 20, 2012

Alma Allen Sculptures

I rarely pine for a work of art. I must sheepishly confess that you’re more likely to find me daydreaming of a big leather bag than a painting. Not to say that I don’t ♥ art: Matisse, Brancusi, Ernst, Morris Louis, and so on… I just… I don’t need to own them the way I need to own a Reed Krakoff Boxer bag. You know.

But Alma Allen? I’ve been jonesing for this Joshua Tree-based artist’s delicate little sculptures: thinking about which I would own if I could, the precious spot on my desk where it would live, how would it feel in the palm of my hand, how I probably wouldn’t be able to stop at just one…

The stone, bronze, and wood works by Allen have the sumptuous, lusty curves of a Maillol but also a precious quality, evoking the nostalgia of long-forgotten curios. And yet, they’re not relics of the past. They are a modern celebration of the earth: a blast of nature’s colors and resources. Marble, alabaster, malachite, serpentine: we sometimes forget that this is what Earth is really made of.

Allen’s current show, titled Function/Dysfunction, will be travelling to Tokyo in November, where it will run from November 14-26. Be sure to check out the artist’s site for a broader selection of past and current works, for images of Allen’s furniture collection, and for the wonderfully written blog! You can purchase Allen’s work through the website – but pieces are also available at Commune Design, Tortoise, Heath Ceramics, Totokaelo, and The Future Perfect.

Welcome Home » Glazed Over

July 13, 2012

B. Fiess Utilitarian Wares

Store your herbs (or herb) in these lovely pots by Minnesota-based ceramicist Ben Fiess. When this artist isn’t busy tending goats and raising barns he’s making some exquisitely colored ceramic jars and decorative pieces. His Utilitarian Wares are available at a select few boutiques across the country – and abroad: IKO IKO, Le Rocketship, Ship & Shape, LEIF, Third Drawer Down, and Gretel Home. Each jar has four parts: base, lid, strainer, and cap. With a touch of humor, a rubber band holds the whole contraption together.

Fashion Scout » Dust Off That Sewing Machine!

July 6, 2012

Pocho Textile in CobaltWonder World Textile in JoyPon Pocho Textile in Wabi
Waltz Textile in BayerFuwari Fuwari First Textile in WateienWaltz Textile in Czemy
Fuccra Rakuen Textile in MallorcaPocho Textile in KomachiFuccra Rakuen Textile in Isabi
first: Pocho Textile in Cobalt, Wonder World Textile in Joy, and Pon Pocho Textile in Wabi second: Waltz Textile in Bayer, Fuwari Fuwari First Textile in Wateien, and Waltz Textile in Czemy third: Fuccra Rakuen Textile in Mallorca, Pocho Textile in Komachi, and Fuccra Rakuen Textile in Isabi

Ah the endless possibilities that a gorgeous bolt of fabric holds. And the gleeful vibe from these prints by artist Naomi Ito for her textile line entitled Nani Iro make you want to scamper right over to the sewing machine and get started! From kerchief squares to a bold tank for this sweltering heat – where to begin? Purchase the textiles from the artist’s web shop or from several other online shops like this one.

Shutterbug » Sign Language(less)

February 21, 2011

Grun Schwarz by Josef SchulzBlau Orange by Josef SchulzGelb Weiss by Josef Schulz
Blau Weiss by Josef Schulz
Gelb #1 by Josef SchulzSchwarz Rot Weiss by Josef Schulz

Yes, typography is all that and a bag of chips, and we have a long-standing love affair with signage old and new—but what happens when you wipe the slate (or in this case the photo) clean of the ABCs? German photographer Josef Schulz tackled just that experiment with his Sign Out series: a mini-survey of American billboards sans text. The result is both uncanny and liberating, and invites us to rethink the blank canvas of the commercial landscape.

A student of Bernd and Hilla Becher, Schulz shares their love of contemporary industrial scenes. He also has a penchant for building up meaning by grouping similarly-themed images. His other projects include a collection of brightly colored walls and a series of French strip mall panoramas.

Found @ Etsy » Cuddle Up with the Cosmos

January 31, 2011

Stellarquilts Phobos V2

Stellarquilts Phobos V2 Quilt

I’ve always been a lover of quilts – watching my mother create exquisite ones as a child, starting my own collection once I moved to New York City and discovered the East Village Flea and the wonders of eBay, standing awestruck before each Gee’s Bend quilt during the Guggenheim exhibition a few years back… The diversity of the genre – from the pure white and meticulous piqûre de Marseilles to the bright, appliqué styles of Hawaii – the history of quilts is rich with local tales and oozes the patient expertise of endless cultures’ womenfolk.

Needless to say, I get weak in the knees when coming across a quilter with a new style or story to tell. Jimmy Mcbride aka Stellarquilts is definitely a fresh voice at the quilting bee – using galactic imagery as his textile inspirations. My favorite from his current Etsy collection is, bar none, the Phobos V2 quilt (above) – a quilted replica of one of Mar’s moons. The quilts range from a modest $1,000 to $12,000+ so start pinching pennies for your very own piece of art to cuddle up in.

Big Screen » Love Kills Demons

January 13, 2011

Artist Chris Rubino in his studio

How does an artist move forward without forsaking his past? Take something he’s already made and give it new meaning? Over the course of one year, filmmaker Jim Helton documented New York-based artist Chris Rubino as he explored these paradigms and new direction in his work.

The final 12-part short film, “Love Kills Demons,” is a sweeping tribute to art, romance and inspiration. We’ve played it a dozen times! Peering behind the artist’s studio doors, we watch Rubino’s screenprinting, painting and drawing come to life. We see his old posters snipped and screened anew. We wander with him through Lo’s Williamsburg ‘hood, spying unexpected beauty and scribbling little love notes.

First-rate cinematography and deft editing take Rubino’s colorful work to lush new levels. Add to that the otherworldly sounds of Big Blood’s accompaniment… and this short film series is a downright feast for the senses! Watch “Love Kills Demons” in its entirety here.

I ♥ Art » A Russian Fairytale (made in London)

January 12, 2011

Karolin Schnoor - Sketchbook Excerpt
Karolin Schnoor for AMMO MagazineKarolin Schnoor for Amelia's Anthology of Illustration

Although Karolin Schnoor’s roots are in Berlin and her home base is London, we can’t help but notice (and love) the very Slavic vibe behind her illustrations, paintings, and sketches. Each stippled, crosshatched, and patterned image is chock-full of magical creatures and characters. Reminiscent of Russian embroidery, they have a folkloric depth that constantly teases the imagination with memories of childhood fairtytales. The artist has done commercial work for a litany of clients including some great publications (Worn Journal, Huck, AMMO, Unser) and her paper goods are available in a smattering of online and brick & mortar shops around the globe (Stitches & Daughters, Frank Works, Etsy, Poketo).

Karolin Schnoor
Karolin SchnoorKarolin Schnoor

Gift Guide » Top Ten Handmade Finds @ Etsy

December 2, 2010

Beau Champing Alfabeto Print
The Pin Pals Pine Tree Hair BarretteEtco White Gold Paper Mini BowlMudpuppy Baby Head Vase/Planter
Flying Star Toys Molehill MouseNonfiction Tees' Minerals Geology TeeMacha Jewelry Karis Gold Ring
Less and More Crafting Cindy Wooden Desk OrganizerIng00te's Dad and Me Felted SlippersPeace4You Upcycled Paul 2023 Messenger Bag
top: Beau Champing Alfabeto Print
first row: The Pin Pals Pine Barrettes, Etco Paper Bowl, and Mudpuppy Baby Head Vase
second row: Flying Star Toys Molehill Mouse, Nonfiction’s Minerals Tee, and Macha Karis Ring
third row: Less and More Crafting Cindy Organizer, Ing00te's Dad and Me Felted Slippers, and Peace4You Upcycled Paul 2023 Messenger Bag

Etsy has to be one of the coolest places for gift giving — simply because most of the offerings on the site are handcrafted and one-of-a-kind. But, with this endless trove of offerings, a bushy-eyed shopper can quickly get dissuaded by too much good stuff! So, just in time for the holidays: our top ten suggested Etsy gifts (check out last year’s Etsy guide) for all the people on your list! We’ve tried to offer up a good cross-section of what the crafty marketplace has to offer: ceramics and housewares, clothes and accessories, sewn plushes and things for the little ones, and of course, art and prints! If you’re looking to take a deeper dive, be sure to explore Etsy’s numerous browsing tools here!

1Beau Champing Alfabeto Print$75

Beau Champing Alfabeto PrintWhether for bilingual baby or just the foyer, this slick, limited edition (175 copies) xylene transfer print by Beauchamping adds a humorous wink to any room. Don’t worry, there’s an aglo version too!

2The Pin Pals Pine Tree Hair Barrette$12

The Pin Pals Pine Tree Hair BarretteCan’t forget to stuff the stockings! After the big gifts have been drooled over, it’s fun to dig into your stocking and find glee in the small stuff. The selection of cross stitched barrettes, buttons, and brooches in The Pin Pal’s store are a great place to start. Ahem! Lo wants these wintery evergreens please…

3Etco White Gold Paper Mini Bowl$10

Etco White Gold Paper Mini BowlWe’re loving the delicate and precious look of these bitty gilded papier-mâché bowls from Etco’s store. What’s more, they’re eco-friendly: made with recycled paper. Choose gold, bronze, or silver inner sheen with a black, white, or brown outer gloss. A perfect place to store a trinket or jewel…

4Mudpuppy Baby Head Vase/Planter$40

Mudpuppy Baby Head Vase/PlanterFor the slightly off-kilter green thumb on your list, these hilarious baby head vases (which also work as planters) from Mudpuppy are a top-notch gift! We also love the way they look with the tillandsia air plants (which you can also buy at Mudpuppy’s shop). A one-stop solution!

5Flying Star Toys Molehill Mouse$60

Flying Star Toys Molehill MouseOooh! These cute-cute-cute molehill mousies from Flying Star Toys are great for kids of any age! Despite their patchworkishness (?) these plushes are still super elegant. The store has a constantly rotating collection of critters so check back often!

6Nonfiction Minerals Tee$18

Nonfiction Minerals TeeFor the t-shirt aficionado or science geek on Santa’s list, the selection at Nonfiction Tees is a perfect fit. We’re digging the very bling Minerals design – can you name all the gemstones? The store offers up a ton of other great options like the Carbon Cycle Tee and the Dinosaur Evolution Tee!

7Macha Jewelry Karis Gold Ring$510

Macha Jewelry Karis Gold RingMove over sugar-plums! This Karis ring over at Macha Jewelry’s shop has been the sole vision dancing through my head. I just love the combination of the 9k gold cathedral setting and silver rock… YZ? Are you there? There are lots of other great rings at the shop too — perfect for the holiday engagement!

8Less and More Crafting Cindy Wooden Desk Organizer$57

Less and More Crafting Cindy Wooden Desk OrganizerThis minimalist wooden organizer would be a welcome addition to my OCD home! There are so many great ways to use these desk accessories from Less and More: pens and pencils, thread bobbins, makeup organizer, minimalist vase… Chose from a variety of sizes and finishes.

9Ing00te's Dad and Me Felted Slippers$125

Ing00te's Dad and Me Felted SlippersMatching Dad and Me felted slippers? How precious would these look in those keepsake holiday photos of you and your little one cuddled up reading The Polar Express by the fireplace? Ing00te’s shop has a gobs of stunning slippers to choose from: a must-peruse!

10Peace4You Upcycled Paul 2023 Messenger Bag$300

Peace4You Upcycled Paul 2023 Messenger BagFor the rugged guy on your list, snag this Upcycled Messenger Bag — made from bits and pieces of an italian duffle, a leather jacket, some 60-year-old linen, a school bag and a vintage Navy kit bag. The bags in Peace4You’s shop have just the right classy meets couldn’t-care-less fashion sensibility.

I ♥ art » Sticky Business

November 17, 2010

While the Americans are still cranking out duct-tape wallets, the Slovenians have gone above and beyond. (Tape wallets? That’s sooo ’90s Janeane Garofolo at a Pavement show.) En lieu of spray-paint, the ten-person ORTO collective relies on neon-toned industrial tape — the material best known for fixing disasters — taping over the city’s dull streets with scream-worthy graphics. It’s both a snarky inside joke on the disastrous state of our cities (uh, they need some repair) and an inversion of masking tape’s previous use in street art — to nail down stencils and mark outlines. It’s also damn fun — and that’s probably why this new form of street art has been popping up everywhere.

Tape Art pays homage in equal measure to stripey-high-art-painters like Jules de Ballincourt and grungy, old-school tape street artists like Mark Jenkins (Who I got to hang out with back in 2006). But they’re not just doing this to show off. “Our sticky art is eco,” they write in their cheeky manifesto. “It is not only easy to apply, but easy to remove. Simple and fun!” Well, the results are anything but simple. Forget lame outline drawings. They can make geometric patterns as intricate as those on the walls of mosques; they can mimic the sweeping curves of spraypaint graffiti with the hard lines of tape.

In this time-lapse video, see two of the collective’s artists, Fejzo & Luka Ursic, show how its done. When they’re not rolling and unrolling themselves in the sticky stuff, they’re taking over a Maribor pedestrian tunnel (just beneath Titova Street), covering three blank panels with their weird visions. (And playing over the accordion-toting street musician with “Crazy Yes” — a track from Turin’s DID.) Watch them make in tape a giant man baby, a mean dog, and a tiny city. But this isn’t just cartoonish: they take up exacto blades and rulers to achieve the subtle curves of a mountainous Japanese landscape, complete with bending waterfall. It’s gorgeous, subtle, sparse. About as far from a tape wallet as you could get.

Fashion Scout » Lines Lab

November 12, 2010

We’re smitten with the Sombra Umbrella (concept illustration above), designed for the Museu Berardo. Lines Lab created a beautifully intricate pattern based on the Museum’s logo and then laser-cut it over white Tyvek®.

On a jaunt to the Far East this summer, Lo’s List discovered Line’s Lab. Based in Macau, China, Line’s Lab is a multi-disciplinary design hub innovating fashion, products, furniture and events. Founders Clara Brito and Manuel CS arrived from their native Portugal in 2006. With its Portuguese heritage and access to textiles and production houses in mainland China, Macau seemed like the perfect place to establish their biz. “China is evolving so quickly and creatively,” Brito gushed at her studio. “To witness that and be a part of it is really inspiring.”

Brito’s fashion apparel and accessories for Line’s Lab have already been picked up by several international stockists and have also been embraced in Macau, where she has outfitted the Conservatório de Macau band with costumes and The Venetian’s Cirque de Soleil troupe with premiere ensembles. The company has created a host of cool products — from modular outdoor benches to shadow lighting — but Lo’s List is pining for the fashy stuff! We love the SAR Umbrella, celebrating the duality of Macau and its sister city Hong Kong, both Special Administration Regions (SAR) of China. The umbrellas’ vibrant coloring and cityscape mashups will keep passersby looking up even as the rain comes down.

Shutterbug » Color-Splattered Memories

October 11, 2010

Sebastiaan Bremer’s Schoener Goetterfunken series
top: "Atop Faith's Lofty Summit" (Auf des Glaubens Sonnenberge)
bottom left: "A Friend, Proven in Death" (Einen Freund, Geprueft im Tod)
bottom right: "In the Universal Time Machine" (In deer Grossen Weltenuhr)

These new works by Sebastiaan Bremer are a tinted and tender reflection of the artist’s personal history, full of the vague layered euphorium that tends to surround family holidays of years gone by. Bremer’s personal photographic archives have long been the source material of his mixed media work but this latest, polka-dotted series has a clearer optimism and sense of celebration than earlier collections (like this one and this one).

If you’re living large in São Paulo, Brazil, be sure to catch Bremer’s Invasões Holandesas show at Galeria Leme from now until October 30th.

Sebastiaan Bremer’s Schoener Goetterfunken series
top: "To Virtue's Steep Hill" (Zu der Tugend Steilem Huegel)
bottom left: "Joyful, as His Suns are Flying" (Froh, Wie Seine Sonnen Fliegen)
bottom right: "Run, Brothers, Run Your Race" (Laufet, Brueder, Eure Bahn)

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