There comes a point in each girl's live where she has to decide whether she wants to be cool or whether she wants to be nice. Now, of course, it's clear that I don't do ultimatums, so I chose both (I think it's pretty cool to be nice), but over at Flipboard, they mostly think I'm pretty cool as they've made me a 'Cool Curator'!
Flipboard is a cool and nice app for your iPad that turns all of your social media and rss feeds into a very pretty-looking 'magazine'. I use it all the time and am also a big fan of their featured streams, as it helps me find new artists and blogs.
So head on over to Flipboard.com or the iTunes app store and download Flipboard. Once you've decided that this app is indeed pretty nice, check out the tab 'Cool Curators' and voilà! You can read this blog in a cool magazine-like fashion!
Enjoy and a big thank you to Mia from Flipboard for choosing me! I am so so very honored!
Links: Flipboard.com | Flipboard iTunes App Store
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Tomi Ungerer is a French illustrator born in Strasbourg, who did most of his work while living in New York (I think he's back in Strasbourg now, not sure). In 2007, the Tomi Ungerer Museum in Strasbourg was opened in honor of this living legend and we decided the pay the museum a visit.
The museum is not very large, but it's an absolutely gorgeous building. Light, white, and with a fun little sculpture garden out front. The works inside were carefully displayed and the accompanying texts were concise and informative. The exhibition on display was called Tomi Ungerer, a Multifaceted Artist, and boy, what an apt title that was.
0) BOOKS, TOYS, AND THE THREE ROBBERS
The ground floor of the museum was dedicated to Ungerer's toy collection and children's books drawings. I loved that the museum showed both the inspiration behind his works, his sketchbooks and the sketches that led up to the final works and published books. I don't believe I've ever owned one of his books as a kid, but his style definitely rang a bell and reminded me of some of the books my dad grew up reading (and passing onto us). Colorful, witty, but with an edge. On this floor, we also saw a selection of tv cartoons that Ungerer made, my favorite being the 'Three Robbers'. LOVE those sound effects.
1) SHARP SATIRE, BUTTS, AND BEANS
The first floor (or second, if you're American) showed some of Ungerer's more commercial and controversial work. Among the brilliantly executed anti-Vietnam war posters and Bonduelle vegetable commercials, we also saw a series of 'erotic' jewelry he designed and a series of designs for playground buildings and public bathrooms (my favorite being a square building with a giant butt on top it).
-1) FROGS AND THE DARK SIDE
It was in the basement (where else?) that we began to understand the true meaning behind the 'multifaceted' aspect of Ungerer's work as we encountered a warning that the images we were about to see weren't suitable for a younger audience. A series of sketchbooks on SM prostitutes, another series of frogs having sex with not only each other but with objects and plants ('the joy of frogs', the series was called - it really was kind of funny) and an entire room full of mangled Barbie dolls being molested by animals and other crazy creatures. Multifaceted, yes, definitely. Personally, if I were a children's book author still alive and publishing, I would have left my molested Barbie dolls hidden in the back of that closet, but perhaps I'm being too prudish. I'm not against some good erotic art every now and then (and the frogs were hilarious), but I suppose the violence of it kind of threw me off after seeing the children's book drawings. That, or I'm clearly still not over the trauma of that one time when the neighborhood bully burnt the face off my favorite Barbie doll.
All in all though, the exhibition and museum were very inspiring! I absolutely loved Ungerer's children's books drawings, the movies, and the whole presentation. I really feel I've learned more about the artist, his inspirations, and the way he works. The museum was a pleasant space to spend some time in, also because people were hanging out everywhere with their sketchbook in hand. Even the guard upstairs was doing a little sketch whilst keeping an eye on us. If you're in Strasbourg, and you're not familiar with Ungerer's work, I'd recommend going, but yeah... keep your little ones out of the crazy Barbie-room, hehe.
Links: Tomi Ungerer's website | Tomi Ungerer Museum
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Anyways, this weekend ABC Treehouse is hosting a special event with Wallpaper editor Henrietta Thompson, who also happens to be the author of the book Remake It: Home and upcoming book Remake It: Clothes. Her lecture and book signing are a part of the Urban Art & Craft festival hosted in ABC Treehouse, where they've planned a weekend-filling program of fun DIY events.
Oh, and one more thing to prove ABC Treehouse is freaking awesome: they give weekly beginner yoga classes. There. Their awesomeness is not to be messed with.
Wallpaper editor Henrietta Thompson + Urban Art & Craft Festival 2011
Henrietta Thompson, former design editor of Wallpaper – now editor-at-large, has held senior editing roles at TANK, Blueprint, Dazed & Confused, Winkreative and Phaidon. Passionate about democratic design and the potential for the creative industries to create real change, Henrietta writes regularly about architecture, design and technology for publications including the Guardian, Dwell and Business Life. Henrietta has commissioned and curated several exhibitions both in the UK and abroad, and is the author of five books, most recently Remake It: Home, published by Thames & Hudson. She is currently writing a sequel, Remake It: Clothes.
Mrs Thompson will be given a talk on The New Remakers at the ABC Treehouse this Saturday July 2nd from 14:00 - 15:00. Followed by a book signing at ABC Amsterdam from 15:30 - 16:30.
The New Remakers
Designers have been rummaging in skips for materials and inspiration for as long as there have been skips to rummage in. Today, driven by the dual need to save money as well as the planet, they are rummaging more than ever before, and on a worldwide scale to produce some truly inspiring work. This talk will give an introduction to how the professionals approach upcycling, including a history of the best, most relevant and most exciting and enduring upcycling ideas we've seen to date, what's going on now, where and how, as well as an introduction to four major new trends for the future.
DIY stands for Do It Yourself, and AMS*DIY stands for the Amsterdam handmade happening with a double dose of attitude. It stands for opting out of mass-production, creating your own style, styling your own life.
AMS*DIY - the 2011 Urban Art & Craft Festival
At AMS*DIY, artists will be creating, demonstrating, and helping you DIY your life: there'll be art for sale, workshops where you can make your own art, and fun for young people too. More information and workshop reservations on their website or on Facebook.
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Rachèl Louise - Living in Holland
So no, this is not just a self-promotion matter (because, why yes, I did design that EP cover art, thankyouverymuch). Rachèl Louise is an amazing singer/songwriter from Utrecht who, I'm sure, will become huge any day now. Raised by an American mom and Dutch dad (both successful professional musicians as it happens), this young beauty has a distinct voice, great humor, and insightful autobiographical lyrics. The only thing I do NOT like about her first EP 'Living in Holland' is that it's only got 5 songs on it. I'm a fan.
Links: Website | Buy the EP here | or on iTunes
Rocky and Balls - We like cake and beards and stuff Some of you may know them from their very popular YouTube Channel: Rocky and Balls. This enigmatic duo, Sophie Madeleine (who's music I ADORE!!! with three exclamation points) and Hannah-Rei, write and sing hilariously silly songs about Jessica Fletcher (she's gonna get ya!), online love-affairs, and yes, beards. Although both of their personal projects are a little more serious (and awesome), this album is just too funny to pass up on. These silly songs get stuck in your head and before you know it, you're singing along to 'The Breakup Song'.
Links: Website | Buy the album here
What have you been listening to this week? Anything noteworthy? Let me know!
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It's in Dutch, but I'll try and translate it into English sometime soon as Julie Anne is one of the most awesome and creative people out there and her businesses (yes, she started more than one) are truly inspirational!
A big thank you to Marta from Etsy for allowing me to become a guest blogger for Dutch Handmade! Comment »
Of course I waited until April 4th to look up what the deal actually was, missing another awesome pop up store (yes, I have missed a couple before, and those were right on my street). Fortunately, the JOJO project, is much more than a pop up store and the project really grabbed my attention. So, let me tell you about it.
PART SHOE, PART BANDAGEMatthieu and Christoph are two friends from Brussels and they sell shoes. Well, of course they don't just sell shoes. The shoes, based on a simple trainer they came across on heir travels through South America, are part shoe and part bandage, as they say on their website. Concerned with the overwhelming amount of issues our world is facing right now, Chris and Matt wanted to create a product that would be good and do good. Fix things, like a bandage, even if it's just on a small scale.
HOW DOES IT WORK?Matt and Chris responsibly produced a light canvas shoe that you can buy. They've got all different kinds of colors, all with the distinctive 'bandage' laces. When purchasing your pair, you can pick one of two NGOs JOJO partnered up with to receive your donation. Would you like your money to go towards planting a tree in Dosso, Niger, or would you like to contribute to building water pumps in Sierra Leone? After purchasing your shoe (and feeling pretty darn good about yourself), you can then go online and check in to see how the project you supported is doing. Consequently, you will feel even better about yourself.
TALK TO THE SHOE?JOJO isn't just about making you feel good about yourself, though. What drew me into their project (besides the cute shoes), is their understanding of the concern most people of our generation have for the global issues at stake, and turning this (passive) awareness into a tangible, wearable, positive message for each consumer to convey. We're such an individualistic generation and society, focused on expressing ourselves and our values through what we purchase - why not actually turn these abstract values into doing good?
I think however pragmatic, Chris and Matt understand the way our spoiled happy little generation thinks and I really hope their bandages will turn out to help fix some of the problems our world will have to face sooner or later.
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Ah who am I kidding? I AM SO EXCITED, I've been dancing around the kitchen all evening (yes, all evening - did you know lasagna takes for-ever to make?)!
I AM ETSY'S TWITTER ARTIST FOR THE MONTH OF MARCH!!! EEK!
You can read Matt's interview with me about social media and the challenges young designers face nowadays + you can download the exclusive and free desktop background I created for your PC, Mac, iPad, iPhone, whatever over on the freaking awesome Etsy blog!
Thank you Matt and everyone at Etsy for this amazing opportunity. I am so happy, I think I could die now. Well, you know. Almost. Up next: a mention in the Donald Duck.
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STROLL, ZOOM, AND COLLECTGoogle has decided to team up with some of the world most renowned art museums to create a new experience of the museums and its collection online. The project is threefold. First, you'll be able to take a digital stroll through the museum and its interactive platforms through street view technology. Secondly, you'll be able to check out some of the museum's featured artworks online and zoom into the paintings. The high definition scans allow you to really get superclose and see tons of detail otherwise difficult to see. And thirdly, you can browse over 1000+ artworks and build your own personalised collection.
SO WHAT'S SO GREAT ABOUT THIS?What's not great about it, I would ask. Hundreds of millions of internet users will now for the first time have access to a huge and growing database of high quality and detailed art works from art history. Many of whom would never actually see most of the art works in person. I read an article today in one of our national news papers that bitched about the project, saying it ripped the works out of context and was not in line with the artists' intentions. First of all, I think this is a very silly statement to make, given that most artists who lived before the 18th century probably never intended their (religious? private? commissioned?) pieces to be in a 'museum' (especially not the whitewashed modern museums of today) - yet we regard the museum environment as something close to sacred. We cannot just assume we know the artists' intentions. What were Van Gogh intentions? He probably wanted to create good art, make a living, become famous perhaps (the latter two of which never happened during his lifetime)? Such detailed reproductions didn't exist during his lifetime, and it's safe to assume that Van Gogh had not anticipated his work being reproduced digitally, let alone shared via 64-bit servers, over broadband internet connections to LCD screens in hundreds of millions of homes.
NO WORKS OF ART WERE HURTThe second complaint I've heard about the Google Art Project is that putting the work online removes an essential, physical component from the experience. This is true. I will be the first one to argue that seeing a beautiful work of art in a museum with your own eyes is a million times more magical than it is seeing it online. I don't think anyone actually thinks the two experiences are equal, or you would wonder why so many people go stand in line for hours to see the Sixtine Chapel in person while there are plenty of beautiful reproductions for sale in the gift shop outside (that won't hurt your neck). And yes, some people will just buy the reproduction and just have pizza instead, but they were probably more hungry than curious to begin with.
And you know... having been an art history student, pouring over poorly printed reproductions (or worse, b/w copies of poorly printed reproductions), I cannot see Google's Art Project than anything but a blessing. Not everyone can travel anywhere in the world to see the amazing detail that went into a Memling painting. Or the broad, emotional brushstrokes and layers of paint that Van Gogh stacked onto his paintings. But Google's Art Project gives you a BIT (or byte) of that. I would even say that the quality of the scans is so high that I wouldn't be surprised if many an art historian will come to use this professionally. In fact, should you want to move this close to paintings in the museum, you would probably kindly be asked to leave premises. And, well, that's a whole lot more than we had before. Despite all that, visiting a website will never replace a museum visit and the participating museums know this as well. Fear not, even the copyrights have been properly dealt with. No works of art were hurt in the production of the website. Oh, and did I mention the site provides tons of information on each piece of art? Oh yeah, it does. As I said... what's NOT to love?
Link: Google Art Project
Anyways. I will stop this rant right here and focus on playing online curator. La la la... Ciao!
WIN!PS: DON'T FORGET > There's still time to enter the Rad and Hungry Giveaway!
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