Sunday, November 29, 2009

kwik-e-mart, for real.

via grievous bodily charm

i've never been much of a fan of the simpsons, but i have watched it occasionally. that doesn't deter me from liking this whole idea, though! 7/11 has opened up 11 real kwik-e-marts in the u.s. as part of a promotion. hilarious, and really thorough! more photos at the link above.

also, [edit.] i thought i was finished, but then i saw this house. the ross street house by robert mills architects in melbourne, australia... i'm not sure what it is about australia, but for all i've seen so far, australian contemporary architecture is practically tops.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

aqua tower, chicago.

urban architecture close to home! studio gang architects have just completed the aqua tower in chicago, il. it's slated for a hotel, commercial and retail space, and residential space. i'm going to have to seek this one out the next time i'm in the city; i'm always so excited to see the new towers they're building, but usually i only see the posterboards and the in-prog cranes, i-beams, and slabs of concrete. so excited to get a good look at this one -- it's a real beauty. a new, 21st century, bright addition to the city. and i mean, come on, who doesn't love a high-rise building that peta awards a "proggy" award to?

and speaking of chicago... and architecture... the green + wired smart home at the chicago museum of science and industry is still on exhibit, at the very least through january 10. i went to see it in 2008, though for 2009 they redesigned with a baby nursery, earth-friendly landscaping, new furniture, and more. i'm not sure what their plan is for that baby, but i hope they can keep that exhibit going for a while. it's such a fantastic idea to have a functioning home built right into the center of the museum.

Monday, November 16, 2009

el mac & retna

spectacular street artists coming your way! just discovered this guy, the mac, who has on a collaborative show at the robert berman gallery in los angeles with retna. the show is probably due to close soon -- it's been extended, and i'm super late finding out about it, obviously. i'm super interested in figural art -- it's always what i've been drawn to when i'm creating. there's something about really well-done images of people that can really move other people. there's a connection to be made -- el mac kind of has a combination of magazine glossies and guys like the one above -- some are just pretty faces, but some make you take a second. regardless, any of these i'd be delighted to run across on the street! :)

Monday, November 9, 2009

bauhaus: workshops for modernity.

moma opened its doors to its latest exhibition, bauhaus: workshops for modernity, open through january 25, 2010. i might just have to scrape up $250 for a plane ticket and go see this. according to the blurb on the exhibition website, the show "brings together over 400 works by some 100 teachers and students of the bauhaus that reflect the extraordinarily broad range of of the school's output..."

sounds good to me!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

unmistaken child.

released earlier this year, unmistaken child follows the four year quest of buddhist monk tenzin zopa to find the child who is the reincarnation of his master, geshe lama konchong. since tenzin zopa has been a follower of lama konchong for 21 years -- since he was 7 years old, the dalai lama charges him with the responsibility of finding this child. the film is directed by nati baratz, and was released just earlier this year. i laughed and cried, and enjoyed every minute. definitely, definitely worth a look.

Friday, November 6, 2009

florentijn hofman.

via florentijn hofman

i've (sort of) rediscovered florentijn hofman, a dutch contemporary artist who devotes himself to installations that are often quite large in scale and probably intense to behold in person. i first found him (though not knowing who he was) when i found a few photos of
rubber duck (2009) which is a traveling -- and giant -- rubber duck that floats on water. it has traveled to and from several continents now, its latest stop being osaka, japan. it started out in amsterdam, and has also visited other parts of europe, and brazil.

the above installation is from his solo show "dushi" at the hague where he changes the dimensions of familiar stuffed animals and gives the idea an entirely new feeling.

i think this guy is super fantastic. i love how he plays with everyday things and concepts -- rubber ducks, delivery vans, and coats of paint on buildings. but when he sculpts something, either throwing it out of scale or distorting it, he adds a sense of "how comfortable am i with this?" to it. it's like if i went to reach for my cell phone and it was the size of a couch. or if my house was wrapped in purple cellophane, how would i feel about that? would it still be my house? would it cease to be a house, and in turn become something else? a candy, perhaps? or a present?

there's a bit of jeff koons' balloon animals crossed with a marc jacobs handbag in his inflated
3 caniches (2008). there's a huge nod to christo and jean-claude's wrapped reichstag-era in his blue beukelsblauw (2004-06) and campaign for orange (2006). it might lean a little bit TOO much toward these other contemporary tops. but i still like hofman.

and by the way, christo and jean-claude, if you ever get that arkansas river project, i will BE THERE. it's been in the works for too long. too long.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

this video is amazing!

i don't usually get swept up with viral videos. but i saw/heard this one and i just had to share it. it's really impressive! this ricardo autobahn fellow made a song out of movie clips, which is more amazing than most video montages (which i love in and of themselves) but this actually has a beat! and rhymes! and there's a lot of bill murray!

Monday, November 2, 2009

liu bolin.

liu bolin! my latest find. can check out a bunch more of his work here, and a short profile with exhibition history here. the photograph above is entitled graffiti, 2008. his latest work is in a similar fashion: he paints chinese citizens to blend in with their backgrounds. he's only recently been exhibited outside of china, and i only learned about him yesterday. but i got a big kick out of it! and he's worth keeping an eye on. i think it's a cool take on raw photography in this era of digital photographic manipulation and retouching. additionally, he sculpts. and it doesn't take a genius to detect direct chinese political tones in much of it. one such sculpture i like is his bronze burning man 3, 2007, depicting a burning chairman mao statue. i don't think he could have been more clear. worth a look. :)