We’ve been eagerly anticipating the launch of & Other Stories in the US, a brand better known across Europe. Their recent billboard on the streets of New York points to a wider trend in retail design these days – the beautiful colors of the rainbow. Recently spotted by trend firm WSGN at Benetton’s Moscow concept store, the theme repeats thru-out Kvadrat’s new Tokyo showroom in both plexiglass and fabric.
108 eighth-grade students at REALM Charter School in Berkeley, CA took charge of their own library and designed X-Space. The activity was part of the school’s Studio H initiative, an in-school curriculum that encourages students to build socially-engaged projects. Yearning for a place to study, relax, and learn, the students conceived X-Space as a warm and welcoming place for discovering “X.” The library has specially designed X-shaped stackable “STAX” that were made with plywood and CNC technology. To help fund books, construction materials, lighting, fixtures and technology donate to Studio H’s Kickstarter until March 27.
Image via Project H
Artist Daniel Rozin creates fascinating interactive installations using sensors and motors that re-adjust a series of objects to reflect whatever is standing in front of them. The mirrors are different shapes, sizes, and colors assembled with a variety of materials including wooden pegs, plastic spokes, and pieces of trash to create unique patterns: one resembles a lovely basket weave, another made of wood cylinders appears reflective like an amalgam of shiny pennies. The secret to the mechanics is the hidden camera behind each composition that feeds what it sees in real-time to a computer, which translates the image into a video signal. Rozin’s custom designed software then instructs each motor to move the panel it controls accordingly, resulting in a mirror-image of the subject. This summer art lovers will have a chance to interact with the installations in person as part of the Digital Revolution exhibition at London’s Barbican.
Beginning March 29, the Peabody Essex Museum (PEM) in Salem, Massachusetts will present California Design, 1930-1965: Living in a Modern Way. More than 250 mid-century design artifacts, including furniture, textiles, fashion, and vehicles will immerse the viewer in the airy California style that Charles and Ray Eames, Richard Neutra, and RM Schindler made iconic. The progressive designs are contextualized with information that reflects on the period’s social, cultural, and creative consciousness. The goal of these designers, according to the exhibition’s curator Barron Bailly, was “to make everyday life beautiful and comfortable.” The groundbreaking exhibition organized by the LACMA is the first major study of modern California design, and PEM is its only stop on the East Coast. Catch it before it closes July 6.
Image via PEM
Bookshelf: What We’re Reading
Holly Becker and Leslie Shewring’s new book Decorate with Flowers offers practical advice on how to best select floral arrangements that compliment your home decor. Sharing tricks and fun ways to experiment with flowers, the book is a go-to source for the style-minded home entertainer. Our Time, a lovely thick monograph by Cat Garcia, chronicles creatives going about their daily lives — each image cloaking famed creators like Giles Deacon and Bella Freud in zen-like calm. In Golden Meaning: 55 Graphic Experiments, founders of GraphicDesign& Lucienne Roberts and Rebecca Wright share the responses of 55 creatives who they challenged to a mathematical design problem: Euclid’s golden ratio.
The 21st-century is the golden age of data visualization. This phenomenon is evidenced in everything from film plots to the world’s billionaires being mapped and dissected into glossy, digitally produced pictorial compositions. A new exhibition at the British Library, Beautiful Science, reflects back on how complex information was displayed before the onset of computers. Serving as a time capsule of factual representation, the show features drawings that represent topics from Crimean war deaths to ocean currents with the oldest diagrams dating back to the early 17th-century. Art in themselves, the detailed illustrations of yore shed light on the incredible ways information has been distilled by hand.
Reinterpreting Italian Craft
Fabrica, the illustrious Italian communications research center, recently opened Extra-Ordinary gallery, a collection of everyday objects that reinterpret Italian craft traditions. Employing traditional Italian materials like blown glass from Murano and marble from Canova, the minimal but luxurious items are all made by hand domestically. Paying tribute to daily rituals and life’s small pleasures, the collection features paperweights, bowls, vases, and wire baskets that epitomize the beauty of simplicity.