Thursday, April 30, 2009

Building bright

The New York Times ran this story on changing the light bulbs in the chandeliers in Grand Central Station. I greatly appreciate the fact that they did and I feel guilty that I have not gotten Compact Fluorescents in at Little Building in the new chandelier...this weekend I promise.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Building function

I am in between ideas right now. End of the year stuff plus working on two papers. I did come across a designer I knew nothing about and thought I would share. Margarete Schutte-Lihotzky was the first female Austrian architect and is credited with designing what we now term a "built-in"kitchen. Named the "Frankfurt Kitchen" it was one of the first spaces to connect functionality with design and was declared the Housewife's Laboratory.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

building longevity

Hints of re-thinking design popped up in a Metropolis article this month. Writer Julie Taraska interviewed hotelier Rabih Hage about his establishment Rough Luxe. A high-end London hotel that has all the ear marks of "too too" ie the name... But Hage says some interesting things about consuming verses experience and finally Luxury..."is about being genuine with the provenance of things"

Monday, April 27, 2009

re-building a chairs self esteem....

This chairs were shown in Milan last week, made by Fredrik Farg of Sweden they evidently are salvaged chairs that got new dresses for their birthday. I love the impulse of this project. The beginnings of the chairs for LBC are from a feeling I got in the thrift stores around here and that there are millions of chairs in the world why make more...sorry Furniture Fairs of the world but at least some people are thinking this way and making things elegant.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Form building....

I came upon the work of Stacie Andrews last weekend as she was preparing her work space for all things ART here in Starkville. Stacie's modest work illustrates the Mississppi tradition of clarity in ceramics and adds a little Victorian lady humor with her form. I bought a beautiful bowl that now stands next to the Shearwater vase and a Japanese factory piece.

Friday, April 24, 2009

blank building

I knew that one of the most exciting things to come out of the Milan design week would be the interiors work of Maison Martin Margiela. I am not a clothes horse but every image of one of these shops has made me re-think the retail experience. I have been watching for good images of his installation in Milan and I could of course count on Yatzer to bring us the best! Inversion on top on inversion...that's how to build a body of work.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Home Building

We are thrilled to announce that not one but two of our buildings will be on the Dwell Home Tour during Brooklyn Design Week. Alot of people have seen the outside of 21st Street and Bond Street but not many have seen the terrific insides now occupied by super talented home owners. If you have the time take a look! May 9, 2008-12-5 -get tickets and catalog at 38 Water Street.

Recession Chic

I clipped these images because they could be used for some very refined DIY. The chair is from Jayson Home And Garden and is upholstered in "vintage" grain sack fabric. The shopping buckets I found awhile ago but comparable ones where Bloesem's site this morning. I have a lot of Coffee bags from LBC-got to think of a project with them!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

building noodles

Max Lamb is part of the Ambra Medda stable in the Craft/Punk show this month. This chair made out of packing peanuts...uncut is a new way to stabilize a seat and its biodegradable.....

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Building Intervention

While dreaming of Beijing, I came upon the very young MAD architecture studio. This small project that they completed really intrigued me. A Hutong is a historic building type in China and while many want to preserve the neighborhoods the lack of bathrooms makes life in these neighborhoods less than ideal. What Mad proposed was ultra modern interventions that serve the functional aspect of the problem and are so radical it enables the neighborhood to move into the 21st century and not be caught in the mess of nostalgic gentrification.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Building Edits

I am really taken with the edited clarity of studio Stokkeaustad. The Oslo studio maintains a strong commitment to crafting modernist form.. If you think about it these two pieces owe a lot to Charlotte Perriand's work. And these two young men are so talented that she would have helped them in every way.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Building Legs

This is a more provocative image than I am used to but I was of course attracted to the chairs but this image was shot by Annie Leibovitz and one does not crop a Leibovitz photograph. The chairs are Wangechi Mutu's "Thrones" a beautiful extension of her college work. Ah nice to see her extending her family........

Happy Birthday Chairs and Buildings

This week marked the one year anniversary of Chairs and Buildings. Thank you all for reading these ideas and giving me encouragement to put concepts out there. C&B was started as a sketchbook for myself to record progress on the design work that I do as well as Coggan+ Crawford's body of work. It also has serves as a way for me to begin ideas for classroom topics and a series of written work that I am working on. It has begun to serve as a soup box for the role design should take in the future regardless of the economy. I hope that it has served as a reprieve from the consumer based blogs in that thinking and making design is just as valid as buying design. In the mean time in one year, a lot of work has been produced, a lot of books have been read by myself and Madeline, a small cafe has opened, a bathroom got finished, friends have started to send me chair after chair, my embroidery has gotten better, Mississippi remains a new love as Brooklyn is a dear friend and Beijing has replaced Paris as my next adventure. SO stay tuned more to come...and let me hear what you think-thanks again Annie

Saturday, April 18, 2009

New form

A tiny picture in tomorrows NYT's design issue caught my eye and it is this wonderfully strange "loverschair"by Nacho Carbonell. His work will be shown at the Design/Miami/Basel show Craft Punk. It sounds like an amazing collection of work curated by Ambra Medda. The charge for the exhibit is to show work that is low tech illustrating a method of working when designers are young and at the beginning of their career? I would like to put forth that it might be a way of working that even old people embrace......

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Power Building

The architectural community was thrilled that Peter Zumthor has won the all important Pritzker Prize for Architecture. Zumthor was a teacher of mine at SCI-Arc in the eighties and he taught me how very hard simplicity actual is......

Monday, April 13, 2009

Building peace

When Robert and Mary Ann were here they introduced us to the very wonderful architectural work of Chinese artist Ai Wei Wei . These peaceful places are often in a urban Beijing neighborhood. But control, calm and rigor lead the way.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Building a force

Allison Arieff almost got to some interesting ideas in her New York Times article Designing Through a Depression this week. The comments are worth reading through including one gentlemen's coining of the "Great Collapse" to describe the crisis. I wonder though is there some weaving of ideas with Arieff's assertion that designers need to give back and the wildly popular DIY movement. I still think that there is a NEW way to be a designer that has yet to be articulated.......More to come.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Building white

I had to share this knock out image of Japanese architect Ryui Nakamura's work. The description says that this is a dining room in a wedding hall. The beginning of a wonderful story, I say. I found this perusing grijs.

Pretty Building

So 305 got some sprucing up this winter, new roof on the porch, taking care of a fragile ceiling on the porch, new coat of paint every where. A new guest bath-with mostly reused elements. Tiles are left over from Little Building project, the counter top is a lab top from the university, cabinet made from remnants around here, lights from a impulse buy in NYC years ago. And I finally put to use my compulsive mirror buying habit. Ah, now on to more furniture work this spring. Happy Holidays!

Friday, April 10, 2009

Building Gymnastics

Mr. Pommer has e-mailed to add to the collection of work involving a 'chair tumble". This is from artist Karen Ryan and this piece is entitled "In the Woods". See for more work

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Building Cities Always

We had a whirl wind visit with our beloved friends,teachers and comrades
Mary Ann Ray and Robert Mangurian. They came to the architecture school to speak about their work in China and a book they have finished on such work. Available at Amazon it has all the beautiful analysis and seeing that they bring to every spot in the world they land.

Monday, April 6, 2009

The image of chairs......

I was really taken with this very beautiful image by photographer Mandy Lamb. Found in The blog of Lena Corwin, in her series of books Lines and Shapes-all entities are involved in very provocative image making and collecting......

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Building Movement

I came across this piece on the sculpture Nick Cave and I am truly inspired. A former dancer he has fused movement into sculpture that defy category....Read the Times article and just enjoy the various videos available on the web

Building surface 2

I found this via emmas blog and its executed by another bright young dutch designer-see Baurke Knottnerus's other work, really inspiring. This is a great take on the Versailles mirrors in antebellum parlors...

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Building surface

I have this image in a folder for awhile. It is a restaurant in Milan called Home-Made. I really like this idea of giant photos as a wallpaper. When your in Milan check it out.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Building Company

We are starting on a New England project this spring, the renovation of a very small house. I was starting to gather ideas and since the only direction is "a place for a small family to be together and cook and eat" I thought of this book. John Pawson's Living and Eating. Part cook book part, part design book, its really makes you want to stir up some Tagiatelle alla Carbonara......Yes, this is a good place to start a project.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Designing well

I came across a great quote by the formidable Hella Jongerius in a NYT's article this week- "Its my way of being sustainable," she explained, "If you create products that have real meaning for people ,they're likely to last longer because they'll want to keep them." Also see a nice article on Natalie Chanin's journal about the quandary we are in as designers in a low consume culture. Follow both these women's lead-do beautiful work....that means something.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Building questions

I am not sure I get this work. Precarious as a design strategy...well I am just old I guess. But bright orange tables, multicolored legs on everything-I can hang with that-See