Ralph Pucci: The Art of the Mannequin
On View at Museum of Arts and DesignBy: - Feb 27th, 2015
On view from March 31 to August 30, 2015, Ralph Pucci: The Art of the Mannequin is the first museum exhibition to explore the work of renowned New York-based designer Ralph Pucci, widely regarded for his innovative approach to the familiar form of the mannequin. The Museum of Arts and Design is located at Columbus Circle in New York City.
Encountering Louis Comfort Tiffany in the Berkshires
Exquisite Windows of St. Stephen's Church in PittsfieldBy: - Aug 05th, 2014
Louis Comfort Tiffany's windows adorn Pittsfield's St. Stephen's Episcopal Church at Park Square. With the exception of the sanctuary windows, the stained glass windows were commissioned either from the Tiffany Glass Company of New York or Mary Tillinghast, who had been a pupil and partner of the master of American glass John La Farge. All were created and installed in the late 1890s.
Sochi 2014 Olympics Look of the Games
A Too Busy Patchwork Quilt of Ethnic ImageryBy: - Feb 07th, 2014
The venues at Sochi look great, but like a too sweet holiday dessert, the Sochi Winter Olympics "Look" seems to try too hard to please everyone by the way it visually frames the 2014 Winter Games. Similar to Vancouver's 2010 everything including the kitchen sink approach to branding and graphic identity, Sochi's "look" works better. Too visually and perhaps ethnically layered, the " patchwork quilt" looks best on athletes' bibs and venue interiors. Perhaps, it has something to do with the Russian Character?
Body & Soul at Museum of Arts and Design
A Dialogue with Curator Wendy Tarlow KaplanBy: - Sep 07th, 2013
The Museum of Arts and Design in New York City through March 2 is exhibiting Body & Soul: New International Ceramics. The medium has been used by artists to express a wide range of charged social issues including identity, sexuality, bullying, abuse, violence, rebellion and despair. Recently we discussed the project with Wendy Tarlow Kaplan who co curated the exhibition with Martin S. Kaplan and Laurent de Verneuil.
2013 National Design Awards Announced
Cooper-Hewitt Museum Honors Design AchievementBy: - May 17th, 2013
The National Design Awards program celebrates design as a vital humanistic tool in shaping the world, and seeks to increase national awareness of design by educating the public and promoting excellence, innovation, and lasting achievement. This year's award-winners are from a variety of design disciplines.
The Genius of Everyday Things At MIT
Practical Simplicity Married to Functional EleganceBy: - May 03rd, 2013
Hidden Heroes is a design exhibition that includes cases of objects, patent drawings, movies and advertising posters. Showcasing the importance of elegant design of seemingly simple but highly useful objects, this array of 36 classic items embodies ideals of modernism that are both relevant and popular. Here function literally follows form. In basic terms, this is the underlying story of the marriage of creativity, industry and invention.
Brian Jewett’s Unique Baskets
Warp and WoofBy: - Apr 20th, 2013
This past winter Brian Jewett worked on several new basket designs using plastic ties. Before shipping them to Snyderman-Works Gallery in Philadelphia he sent images to friends and collectors. He created an earlier version of the designs as a chandelier above our dining room table.
NYC Phone Booth Competition Missed Call
Free Design Work Is Just Crowdsourcing for StartupsBy: - Mar 17th, 2013
It is unfair that public artists, designers and architects do free work to get commissions. With some fanfare, several interesting hip judges and techno startups as point entities, another Competition has taken place with little to win for all of the effort that was put forth. Taken seriously, the results from a competition to replace the antiquated and often out of order call boxes would be an imaginative series of solutions. But instead it was only a minor creative conversation. And words are cheap. Here design is shown in fits and starts and undetermined consequences.
Tasty Gourmet Food Trucks
Though Around for Long Time, A Strong New Design TrendBy: - Dec 26th, 2012
Starting in the 19th Century as Chuck Wagons on cattle drives, then becoming convenient lunch wagons in urban centers and a childhood memory as ice cream trucks, the growing and refined gastronomical convoy of Gourmet Food Trucks are now a provocative piece of the urban fabric. Their design and placement have many moving parts and add color, vitality and new sophisticated tastes to our lives.
The Unaesthetic American Cell Tower
Ma Bell's Children Are PhilistinesBy: - Nov 25th, 2012
For the past decade and a half, the various American phone service entities have "created" rather inelegant cell towers to expand the best service to their customers. This has been a rather lazy engineering experience. Certainly enlisting designers and sculptors to the task would have brought better results. However, some European phone companies have brought flair and a public beauty.
Liminal Objects at Harvard's Design School
A Conference to Discuss the Object in Spatial ContextBy: - Oct 25th, 2012
Approaching design from differing points of view, Liminal Objects initiated a conference series at Harvard University’s Graduate School of Design about design that aims to identify pressing issues within the field by exploring the designed object’s role in diverse spatial practices. Designers, academics, critics and curators looked objectively at the designed object.
Furniture with Soul At Gallery NAGA
Referencing the Book Furniture with Soul by David SavageBy: - Jun 01st, 2012
This exquisite exhibit is a continuation of Gallery NAGA's exploration of the most innovative studio furniture. The show is an assemblage of an all-star cast of furnituremakers from throughout the US and across the Atlantic. Seventeen outstanding examples from the pantheon of master furnituremakers creates a compelling visual and tactile experience to savor.
The Emotion of Design
Why Does the Best Design Viscerally Connect To Us?By: - Apr 26th, 2012
Why do we "like" even "love" certain objects? And others we do not? Is it somehow in our DNA? How did Apple (Steven Jobs) connect so well with our wants despite what our needs are? Our objects of desire strike emotional chords. It isn't just about aesthetics, but certainly that is a major aspect of what the resonance of desire and ownership are. Designers wrestle constantly with an element's functional form. Getting it just right has less to do with science than art. This is true of a structure, object or fashion statement.
Isamu Noguchi, Poetic Sculptor/Designer
Erasing The Line Between Form and FunctionBy: - Feb 26th, 2012
The line between what is art and what is design is a wonderful area of connected delight. The late Isamu Noguchi was one of the greatest practitioners of this hybrid form usually as creative functional sculpture. His elegant furniture and furnishings are still in production and cherished today. His minimalist abstract sculpture are still strong statements of his eloquent visual language. Noguchi erased the line between form and function.
Eva Zeisel, Ceramic Designer Dies At 105
A Playful Search For BeautyBy: - Dec 31st, 2011
Eva Zeisel, one of the most influential industrial designers of the 20th Century who created beautifully lyrical yet practical tableware and ceramics, has died at the amazing age of 105. Zeisel estimated that she had designed 100,000 pieces of tableware. Many of her elegant curving organic pieces often appeared to have human qualities, particularly in the way they tended to hug and nestle. These playful, simple designs first produced in the 1940s are still popular.
From Train Tracks to A Public Art Walk
Newburyport's Triumphant Clipper City Rail TrailBy: - Dec 17th, 2011
After 11 years of planning, meetings, grantsmanship, engineering oversight and curating public art, Geordie Vining established the Clipper City Rail Trail on the west side of the City of Newburyport, MA. He took an unused Boston & Maine railroad right of way and created a walking, jogging and biking pathway that was enhanced by public art. The result is a true pride of place.
The Eames Iconic Plywood Leg Splint
A Breakthrough Design Leading To New FurnitureBy: - Dec 10th, 2011
At the beginning of WWII, the United States War Department was in a dilemma. They needed a more modular, lightweight way of splinting wounded personnel. They turned to the creative Venice Beach based designers, Charles and Ray Eames, to help solve the problem. The Eameses had been working on molding plywood for the previous few years. Having accessible the Navy's facilities, their design team was able to develop a molded plywood splint. Sculptural and elegant, it is now a design icon.
Josef Hoffmann: Wiener WerkstÃ¤tte Designer
Influential Designer With No Moral CompassBy: - Nov 29th, 2011
Josef Hoffmann was one of the major designers of the first half of the 20th Century. His work across architecture, interiors, furniture and household objects was of great technical and aesthetic beauty. Also, he lived a long time. Unfortunately, his design skill did not always correspond to his moral integrity. Somehow, he was confused at the end of his life as to why he was not honored for his creative contributions. Perhaps, it was the fact that his last major work was for the wrong client.
Powered By Free Design
UK Pylon Competition Sought New DesignBy: - Nov 29th, 2011
Called Britain's "industrial soldiers," they have marched across hills and valleys carrying the UK's 400,000-volt power lines. Now the British government and National Grid are ending the 84-year-old design of the electricity pylon. A competition was held to find a more attractive 21st-century alternative to carry power across hundreds of miles of British countryside. On paper, the idea sounds great, the winning design is elegant, but once again the design community is being undervalued and having demanded from it free work.
Boston MFA Embraces Contemporary Decorative Arts, Craft and Design As Major Commitment
New Curator and New Dedicated Gallery SpaceBy: - Oct 29th, 2011
The Boston MFA has made a serious commttment to contemporary decorative arts. This has been a cumulative effort by Director Malcolm Rogers over the last decade and half. With the opening of the Linde Family Contemporary Art Wing in October, there was the opening of the first dedicated gallery to contemporary decorative art, the Farago Gallery. To curate this gallery and to integrate contemporary decorative arts, craft and design with the rest of contemporary visual art, the museum hired Emily Zilber as the first contemporary decorative arts curator. And this isn't all.
John Eric Byers at Gallery NAGA
Furniture, Carved Paintings and Production PrototypesBy: - Oct 27th, 2011
In a new and much awaited show at Gallery NAGA, Studio Furniture master John Eric Byers is exploring different directions and colors for his elegant and very precise work. Though often simple in form, the sometimes textured pieces are sophisticated objects of desire.
The Elegant Apple
Steve Jobs’ Design LegacyBy: - Oct 08th, 2011
Much has been written about Steve Jobs since his death at 56 on Wednesday October 5. But little has been stated about his major contribution to late 20th Century and early 21st Century design. Not only was Jobs a software and business systems innovator and entrepreneur, but his eye for beauty translated into elegance and inspirational design fostered the development of a series of revolutionary product designs that have influenced the world.
The Elegant Sculptured Door Knocker
Minimalist Functional DesignBy: - Jun 07th, 2011
Since 1988, the doorbell has not worked at my carriage house. After most of a terrible winter that saw new delivery people and first time visitors stand outside ringing the silent bell while getting cold and wet, I decided to find an appropriate door knocker. As a designer and appreciator of great design, I wanted the most beautiful damn door knocker that could be found. I think that I came close.
MIT Names New Media Lab Director
Joichi Ito, 44, College Drop-out And EntrepeneurBy: - Apr 26th, 2011
With the appointment of Joichi Ito as the new Media Lab director, MIT has broken academic rules and appointed a megatalented entrepreneurial individual to lead the prestigious digital think tank and creative cauldron. However, with no academic credentials, what is the higher education institutional message that this appointment is making?
The Divine Comedy at Harvard
Olafur Elliasson. Ai Weiwei and Tomas Saraceno ExhibitBy: - Apr 17th, 2011
The Harvard University Graduate School of Design and the Harvard Art Museums are presenting a three-part exhibition that addresses the "converging domains of contemporary art and design practice." Entitled The Divine Comedy, this exhibition is comprised of major installations by internationally acclaimed artists Olafur Eliasson, TomÃ¡s Saraceno, and Ai Weiwei. Though the premise of the exhibition may be academic and pretentious, the quality of the work speaks to beauty and truth.
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