When I close my eyes and dream of outdoor furniture, I see visions of Loll’s cheery Vang Chairs, or whiling away the hours in their rocking Racer Chair , or napping in the shade on a 405 Chaise. Loll’s furniture has a strong architectural presence while remaining friendly and homey. See more after the jump.
Emma Löfström is a Swedish illustrator and artist whose work is eerie, narrative and has an otherworldly depth. Each of her pieces has this air of mystery behind it with subjects ranging from nature to magic to surrealistic creatures. Some of her works seem like a storybook which I for one would be enamored to get my hands on.
Alejandro Cardenas, based in NYC, creates watercolor and guache works in which stark, flat figurative elements blend seamlessly with abstract flourishes and branches of washed out color. Set amidst a deep black background, this work stands out well. Too often, water based media is used as a generator of quaint atmosphere; whimsical drawings that take up very little space on paper or canvas. Cardenas’ work, conversely, is bold and fully composed where others may have defaulted into paltry understatement.
Jan Dunning manages to transform the rudimentary device of the pinhole camera and create strange and wondrous scenes with them. I love the idea of these expansive macrocosmos unfolding from the microcosm of a single point of light…kind of baffling! I remember using a pinhole in one of my first beginning photography classes and the most I got from the lens-less, shutter-less coffee can cam was blurry black and white blobs at best.
Søren Løkke Juul aka Indians released his debut album, Somewhere Else on 4AD this past January and I was lucky enough to catch him perform earlier this month at New York’s Mercury Lounge.
With the help of two additional musicians, Heather Woods Broderick and Laurel Simmons, the songs sounded extra lush. The added harmonies and a slowly grooving crowd were just what I needed to get lost in his hypnotic voice and electronic soundscapes. Check out the video for I Am Haunted and see why the Village Voice calls him, “Denmark’s Bon Iver“.
We’ve all seen the “Before and After Photoshop” versions of photographs, displaying the ways in which various media distort our perception of ideal beauty. But what would these images look like in other countries? With her series Before & After,Esther Honig, a radio journalist based out of Kansas City, asked just that. With the help of Fiverr, a website for freelancers, she got in touch with artists from forty different countries; emailing each a self-portrait, she wrote, “Hi, my name is Esther Honig. Make me look beautiful.” When they did not understand the assignment, she simply told them to make her look like the most popular fashion models.
When artists from twenty-seven countries replied, she was astonished with the results. Some edits were so dramatic that she yelped aloud; others, like the image from Morocco, in which she was given a hijab, stole her breath. Some cultures favor a bare face where others apply makeup. Perhaps the most shocking aspect of the work is the overwhelming presence of Western feminine ideals: pale white skin, pink cheeks, a dainty nose, and wide eyes contoured with trimmed brows.
In the end, the series expresses the extend to which often oppressive beauty ideals are meaningless; where a woman is declared beautiful in one culture, she might be plain in another. Yet for all women, regardless of ethnicity and background, the pressure to be beautiful remains, propagated by the whims of the contemporary media. Writes Honig, “Photoshop allows us to achieve our unobtainable standards of beauty, but when we compare those standards on a global scale, achieving the ideal remains all the more illusive.” (via Buzzfeed)