Thursday, July 29, 2010
LS, my shoe sculpture buddy sent me this link to Atalanta Weller. I am speechless. Yes I want. Urgh. Language gone.
We popped by the one store in New York that carries her stuff to see them in person but alas there was only one pair left. We will have to check it out when the new collection comes in.
What I really love is what she did for Barbie's 50th birthday. I should have had them for mine. Barbie is fierce! I want to be her.
Anyhoo, the blogger Style Bubble went to Atalanta's studio and got some nice pics of her process. And got to try on these cool shoes. (Thanks LS)
Wednesday, July 28, 2010
Hmmmm. I wonder if the economy is starting to turn around. I remember a time in New York when you needed to either dress fashionably or be famous in order to be treated well by store clerks at the higher end stores; the downtown Barney’s excluded, they were always nice.
Then the faltering economy of the Bush 1 years forced shops to treat what few customers they had left a bit more politely. I do remember being spoken to at Bergdorf’s. Unheard of! Even though we had 8 years of peace and prosperity during the Clinton years, the nastiness did not return. Maybe peace and prosperity makes people happy. But the best treatment I had when shopping was during the Bush 2 years, with the economy flailing out of control. Too bad I couldn’t afford anything anymore. (and if there are readers who don't know me, please know that I am not shallow enough to judge a presidency on my ability to buy things I do not need.)
Yesterday I made visit number 3 to a new shop on Great Jones called The Future Perfect (I know, dumb name). And on visit number 3 the same shopkeeper/sales lady treated me with the same disdain as she did the other 2 times. Maybe it’s because I didn’t look hip enough, or because I have a few wrinkles (ok a lot) or because I picked up a number of objects and said “Oh I have that” or “I got these in Paris”
or “NK just found these on-line and bought a set”. The biggest insult had to have been saying that “I got these coffee mugs at the MoMa design store”.
I went in yesterday to see if they had a glass pitcher (ya know for cucumber water-ceramic isn’t working) or to see if there was anything new. Same shitty attitude.
Later that evening as I was recycling magazines, I ran across a New York mag on “Design Liberation” from May 11, 2009 that I hadn’t read yet (slipped through the cracks). Decided to flip through before discarding. Lo and behold there was a piece on The Future Perfect. Couldn’t wait to see what they said cuz now I am gunnin’ for ‘em.
I quote: “ David Alhadeff’s Williamsburg store The Future Perfect is one of the city’s design bellwethers, a cheerleader for innovation and craftsmanship, and the place where many New Yorkers first saw Scrapile by Carlos Salgado, or Jaime Hayon, or Jason Miller.”
Design bellwether? Really? Maybe for Williamsburg. 3 of the items that I have which they are also selling I found in museum design stores. Ok, one of the stores was in Paris but so what? Who cares?
Anything that can be purchased from a museum store won't be exactly unique. Many many many people probably own these things. (remember I am not the one trying to say that I am oh-so original here).
I believe NK found the Lovegrove&Repucci dishes on The Daily What.
Then the article takes us around the owner's apartment where I see he has the same Phillip Starck chair that you can get at Barney’s. Or a ton of other places.
And gee, we even have the same Modernica daybed.
We bought ours 13 years ago. Not to undermine my surroundings and objects but I am not in the business of trying to find what is the most innovative.
I am sure that Mr. Alhadeff is a very nice man. And I don't have the impression that, in his home, he is trying to be preciously one-of-a-kind. He just has a nasty shopkeeper on Great Jones who seems to think she is in a rarefied environment . Anyhoo, I guess the economy must be doing better if you can afford to be disdainful toward potential customers
Oh and trust me, if she had been nicer, I would have raved about the store and told everyone to go there. They do have some things you won’t see very often including this taxidermy rat lamp.
Tuesday, July 27, 2010
More fanTAStic architecture that happens to be sculpture that also happens to be a pair of shoes. (from United Nude)
I am interested in the form of a functional item and wonder why so many items seem to be designed by people who have no interest in form.
But I suppose it all has to do with who is designing the object. The person who designed my weed whacker doesn't appear to have had much use for form but it does function fairly well. I would be happier, though, if it were more ergonomically designed to fit my body and to move with it. It would be much more fun to sashay all over the lawn than to look like I am searching for coins.
These shoes are designed by Rem D. Koolhaas (yes, a nephew of THE architect and an architect himself) and the ecologically minded Galahad Clark (of THE Clark shoe company) Please to enjoy them all.
Please note that the shoe on the left is called the "Eamz" as the heel is the same as an Eames chair leg.
And this one I love because it reminds me of Bizarro World from the Superman comics.
An update on the "Mobius" shoe. The staff at the Bond Street store said that the leather upper is much softer so the shoe should no longer tear the bloody hell out of your feet.
Friday, July 23, 2010
I know that Zaha Hadid isn't loved by everyone but I do find this building thrilling. The small scale model looks like a book having been left out in the rain.
go to design boom for more.
And for those who missed her Chanel in Central Park building/installation go here to NY mag for the article.
also here for another article on the Chanel piece.
Wednesday, July 21, 2010
(thanks daily what)
I am grateful for my President for many reasons and one of them is simply because he is a Democrat. Without a Dem in office every so often, our environment would be 100% in the toilet. Isn't it funny how instantly corporations and businesses go green the second a Dem is elected? (and less funny, just how quickly these corporations drop the caring facade as soon as a republican gets into office)
So of course I am suspicious when the words "green" and "sustainable" and "local" are suddenly abundant in advertising. Regardless, some of these places must be sincere. That's the fortunate fallout of the environmentally correct zeitgeist. There will be some that are sincere. I would like to think that this is one.
More on this gorgeous place here.
(and we shan't talk about the carbon footprint of the plane trip because i can't afford to go there anyway) hee!
Tuesday, July 20, 2010
No, this isn’t a continuation of the Gwathmey@Astor rant (I do promise to quit that one day). This is a continuation of 7/14’s rant regarding the laziness of Sunday’s (7/11/10) NYT real estate writer who, when writing about Noho, failed to explore the area above Great Jones St.
Now here is an article that justifiably limits the scope of discussion to the 3 blocks of Lafayette just north of Houston. The writer, Christopher Gray, had a specific reason to limit his perimeters. It was an historic piece specifically about those 3 blocks.
This is the exact same swath that C.J. Hughes wrote about last Sunday. Mr./Ms. Hughes didn’t have any such reason to restrict the boundaries.
While Mr. Gray does mention two restaurants: Bite and Pinche Taqueria, he does so to emphasize some of the particular challenges that greeted developers. Both are housed in a lilliputian triangular building that gives the taco place 12 feet of working space and the sandwich restaurant is “barely 5 feet wide where the cook stands, and about 18 inches at the tip”. Those dimensions make the restaurants worthy of comment.
Curiously, these are the only 2 restaurants featured photographically in last Sunday’s article.
Coincidence? Or as I suspect, the photos were left over from the earlier article.
OK, now I'm done ranting.
(thanks to DS for pointing out the Gray article. And BTW, DS and family used to live in the Gwathmey/Astor building while they were renovating their West Village home. Please know that because some of the finest people have lived in that crazy building does not mean that they themselves are not crazy. They are wonderful)
Monday, July 19, 2010
Friday, July 16, 2010
Thursday, July 15, 2010
Wednesday, July 14, 2010
(t-shirt courtesy of artist Lauren Bergman. go here for her "little bitches" t-shirts and BUY HER ART)
When in the city, I spend most of my time within a 4-block radius of my apartment. I know that that is the case for most New Yorkers who usually only venture farther because they have a job to go to.
This undoubtedly contributes to my becoming a bit of a crank about my neighborhood: Noho. (please note I am not the sort of crank who refuses any sort of development or progress in the ‘hood. Just the type who likes to rant about anything that strikes me as stupid)
Regarding the Sunday Times real estate article on Noho, I have decided that the writer is, oh, about 12. The article is truly lazy. He/She rarely strayed past a 2 block radius, spending most of the time between Bleecker St.and Bond St and never too far from Lafayette. Ok, so the writer might be a 19-year-old intern who is really anxious to get back to his/her pad/bar in Williamsburg. The photo essay is even worse.
First of all, who would use this as the opening photo of a slide show that is supposedly meant to make the area look appealing? And for anyone familiar with the neighborhood, do you think that the intersection of Bleecker at Mott St. is the most representative image?
Uh yeah, that sure is the best shot you can find of the neighborhood. Then, of the 10 photos, 9 are from between Bond St. and Bleecker. I guess if the photographer had become more adventurous, then the writer would have had to walk as well. For the 10th pic, the photographer became really brave and ventured one full block north to Great Jones Street. Wow!
The article is titled "Living In: Noho". The title alone allows one to explore more than the obligatory mentions of the expensive new condos on Bond St. Not only do the photos refuse to stroll farther north than Great Jones, the writer mentions a few scant businesses outside of his/her radius of comfort. One is Joe’s Pub. Uh anyone? Anyone? Anyone want to point out that the building that houses the bar also houses The Public Theater? I know we are talking real estate here but when applicable, cultural and artistic endeavors in a neighborhood also contribute to the definition of the neighborhood’s charm.
A little more, not even a whole lot more, investigation would have made the article richer. I can’t believe that Noho Star is the restaurant chosen to represent the ‘hood. There’s Il Buco, 5 Points, a little concept restaurant called “Smile”, and hell, there’s even Indochine. Eep, but the writer would have had to venture a little further in or up.
The slideshow wastes 2 pics on our poor man’s Flatiron Building, which has 2 fast-ish food restaurants. It’s all just so lazy.
Besides the lack of The Public mention, we also have the Bleecker St. Theater where NK and I have seen, Sarah Silverman and Mike Birbiglia. Go here for more. We still have Blue Man Group but am pretty hesitant to label that “culture”. I think The Public Theater would have been mention enough.
But the best part of the article is that the writer speaks to the photographer, Stan Reis (ya know THE Stan Reis) about his real estate investment. Maybe longtime resident (and neighborhood advocate) Chuck Close wasn’t available for comment. Or Sheryl Crow. Or Patrick Demarchelier . Or any of the people from the estate of Robert Rauschenberg who are planning to use his former residence on Great Jones and Lafayette for his foundation. Maybe they weren’t considered as witty as Stan.
And finally why shoot real estate like this:
When you can have this:
Friday, July 9, 2010
Last weekend I got to check out the OXO cherry-pitter. AM brought hers so we could do a little product testing. I mentioned in a previous post that I thought it was a good-looking tool but perhaps a little over-done (overdesigned?). Did we really need the little glass encasement that aimed the pit more directly into the bowl? I thought the addition was put there simply to set it apart from other pitter choices. People should just learn to aim better.
We gave that one to my 13-year-old niece, GW. AM used the other (the one without the glass encasement) in the cherry-pitting race. They both worked as well as one another, both quick and efficient but it soon became obvious that the OXO was the far superior tool. Not only did it direct the pits squarely into the bowl, it did the same with the flying cherry juice. My poor ugly grey pitter sprayed deep red cherry juice all over my beloved white kitchen. Looks like I will be headed to Broadway Panhandler soon. Hee!
Praise the miracle sponge. It is truly magic.
Go ahead, have another cherry...