Photographers James and Karla Murray spent ten years documenting New York City’s ever-evolving storefronts, and recently published their decade-long project into the popular book, Store Front: The Disappearing Face of New York. Of the project, the photographers say, “STORE FRONT provides an irreplaceable window to the rich cultural experience of New York City as seen through its neighborhood shops.”
The strength of the series is found in it’s wide-lens, capturing a time when opening a small business in New York was actually a viable option, and comparing that to the gentrified and corporatized Manhattan of today. This can be seen in vivid and stark contrast in photos like the Delightful Coffee Shop in Harlem being replaced by a ubiquitous Dunkin’ Donuts (above). Many of storefronts shows lost clients due to the ever-increasing rent, business which remain empty today, which has a depressing, darkening effect on the people who still remain in the community. James Murray says of the idea behind the series, “until you place them side-by-side and really look at the two photos, you cannot get the true sense of loss experienced by the neighborhood.”
After 30 years of war and Taliban-rule, pop culture has returned to Afghanistan. Afghan Star – a Pop Idol-style TV series – is searching the country for the next generation of music stars. Over 2000 people are auditioning and even three women have come forward to try their luck. The organizers, Tolo TV, believe with this programme they can ‘move people from guns to music’.
Bold colors, playful typography, and iconic illustrations are the key ingredients that make the work of New York and Sydney based design duo Craig And Karl stand out from a sea of repetitious designers.
Mary Jordan’s Water Tank Project brings to the New York skyline a beautiful and pertinent reminder that water is, in most respects, sacred. The project has brought glorious eye candy into the periphery, yet its first and foremost mission is to spread awareness regarding the dire water situation the majority of this world experiences.
The backstory to the effort reads like a movie: filmmaker Mary Jordan was working on a documentary in Ethiopia back in 2007. Three months in she became deathly ill from accidentally ingesting contaminated water. Nursed back to health by the women of the village she was living in, Jordan survived and was urged by these women to thank them through working to increase awareness on the water crisis within their country and the world.
One day, while back in New York, Jordan gazed up at a water tower and had an epiphany: “They’re like these little temples that hold water,” she thought, and realized the inherent symbolism of the structure itself, and the potential power to communicate that it held. Thus, the Water Tank Project was born. Jordan founded Word Above The Street, with the intent of utilizing the city’s water-related infrastructure to showcase water-related art and increase awareness.
The project gained an impressive level of momentum as artists Jeff Koons, Maya Lin, Andy Goldsworthy, Jeppe Hein, John Baldessari, and many, many others have signed up to produce graphic wraps for the over 100 water towers included in the project. With the tag line: Art Above NYC, Water Above All, Jordan is doing a remarkable job at fulfilling her promise, and getting you to think about your relationship with water and what effects the conservation of water can mean to those in countries less fortunate than ours.
While these images might look like strange and surreal landscapes, they are actually macro images of different creatures. Armenian photographer Suren Manvelyan’s series Animal Eyes captures an extreme viewpoint that gives the average eye an otherworldly feel. The crackles, vibrant colors, and individual hairs are all visual in these beautiful photos. This isn’t the first time we’ve seen Manvelyan’s handiwork – he’s also shown the human eye in incredible detail.
Manvelyan is not just a photographer, but also holds a PhD in theoretical physics. In these images he combines technology, science, and art to show us something that’s unexpectedly familiar. We see brilliant blue pools, red rings, and crystallized whites; the close proximity makes this work appears as places to go hiking rather than something like a parrot’s eyes. (Via Featureshoot)
Sometimes the Internet works in funny ways. Case in point is the photography of Maria Friberg, whose series “Still Lives” was shot between 2003-2007 and is just now getting viral attention online. The Swedish artist likes to reflect Man’s relationship to nature and so maybe the public is drawn to her images as subconscious reminders that we all need to do our part in order to help our planet. Especially since we’re only getting closer and closer to point of no return. (via)
Savoir Adore’s Paul Hammer and Deidre Muro performing at the Echo in Los Angeles on August 7, 2013.
I was able to catch one of my favorite Brooklyn-based bands, Savoir Adore playing their first ever headlining show at the Echo in LA last week. Dressed in all white and sounding as blissed out as ever, the band performed both old and new songs to the intimate sing-a-long crowd. Stand out songs included, “Dreamers” and “Imagination”that are both on their recently re-released second full length album, “Our Nature” on Nettwerk Records after releasing it last year with a successful Kickstarter campaign which of course I supported.
The band recently premiered their new video, “Regalia” with our friends over at Buzzbands.LA and are about to perform their biggest hometown show to date next month at the Music Hall of Williamsburg on Sep. 21st. You can also check them out at DC9 in Washington DC on Sep. 24th, at Philadelphia’s Boot & Saddle on Sep. 25th, and at Great Scott in Boston on Sep. 29th. Check out the video for “Regalia” and make sure to catch them next month on the East Coast!