Visionaire 56 Solar : Let The Sun Shine

Visionaire 56 Solar

Visionaire 56 Solar has recently been published and this latest issue is like getting two books in one. Indoors, the board-bound book appears to be in a white embroidered slipcase with beautiful black and white photography and art. Expose it to the sun and the case, the embroidery and the images within the book transforms into color. Read more

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Artist Blaine Fontana Completes His 30 Limited Edition Nestkeepers.

above: 30 Limited Edition Nestkeeper Sculptures by artist Blaine Fontana

I’m a big fan of artist Blaine Fontana’s work. His installations, his mixed media, his paintings and now these wonderful limited edition Nestkeepers. Thirty little imp-like sculptures each carefully painted in styles varying from japonesque designs to graffiti, exemplifying Blaine’s vast styles and talents.

above: four profiles of the varied styles of Blaine Fontana’s Nestkeepers.

It was in his 2006 show, The Manifest Soup Transcripts of Four Corners, (at the now closed Lineage Gallery in Philadelphia) that featured the first 8 of the 30 nestkeepers and he has just now completed them all.

above: the first 8 nestkeepers as they appeared at Lineage Gallery in 2006

The nestkeepers were inspired by this earlier painting of Blaine’s:

Blaine sculpted the original prototype at which point fellow Otis Alum Daniel Garcia, then in the toy design department, applied his talents with the wax pen on the second casting and together they cast the finals.

above: the last 22 of the final 30 casts. The mold has since been destroyed.

The 30 nestkeepers are created from a solid silicon cast and then each 5″ tall form is hand painted and adorned with unique elements, like twigs, nests, flowers, butterflies and even spray can tops.

Please click on the images below to enlarge and see the 30 beautiful nestkeepers.

UPDATE: The $800.00 nestkeepers have long since sold out. But visit Blaine Fontana’s online store to see other original sculptures and art available for purchase.

Below are a few examples of the work of Blaine Fontana:

all images courtesy of the artist and society6

Blaine Fontana

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Weird and Wonderful Worldwide Web Wonders

Weird and Wonderful Worldwide Web Wondersabove: cool doorknobs, head handbags, lap pillow, taillight lamp and pig speakers

Weird and Wonderful: A few new funky finds from all over the world for you Read more

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The Muppets Take Paris. JC de Castelbajac’s Fall 2009 RTW Collection.

JC de Castelbajac’s Fall 2009 RTW Collection is loaded with Muppets. No, that’s not a derogatory term for models, I’m talking Kermit the Frog and Animal- both lovable muppets designed by the late Jim Henson. Whereas JC’s Spring 2009 collection was a collaboration with Disney® and featured lots of Mickey Mouse and other Disney character clothes, this fall collection is a collaboration with the Muppet Holding Company, LLC. Read more

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The New Hu Watch By Ross Lovegrove for Issey Miyake

Hu watch by ross lovegrove for issey miyake

“hu”… simply means human.
a clear and pure statement embodied in a timepiece for issey miyake. it truly is a creative bonding and all my life long feelings about watches as prosthetic extension of the body, the concept of anatomical contouring and the organics sculptural possibilities of materials that integrate into one single skin.
–Ross Lovegrove Read more

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More Rad Rugs From Mark Mothersbaugh

Last January I shared with you some of the rugs and art by DEVO founder Mark Mothersbaugh.

Since then he has a whole new slew of rugs for 2009. A large collection of sixty-six 4′ x 6′ rugs that feature his artwork as well as twelve smaller versions in limited editions, featured in a solo show this past summer at the NOWhere Limited Gallery .

“They’ll cover a hole on the floor; you can sweep things beneath them. You don’t have to feel reverential about the artwork. You can walk on it. You can do your prayers on it if that’s your predilection. And there are many ways to get rug burn on it.” – Mark Mothersbaugh, about his rugs.

Here are twenty-four from his 2009 collection. Each measures 4′ x 6′ and is available for $850.00 a piece and some are also available in the smaller size of 22″ x 34″ for $275.00. In each image are six different rugs:

See all sixty six rugs in his collection here.

The 12 rugs from the show are small. Each measures 22 x 34 inches, has a 1/4 border and includes a signed and titled rug tag:

above: The Sleepover rug

above: Shoes rug

above: Jihad Detecto

above: Hooded Imp rug

above: Hatching a Plot rug

above: Fingerbot And The Boy rug

above: Dive For Safety rug

above: Duo Worm rug

above: DEVO Rope rug

above: Robot Loses His Head rug

above: When He Fell Through The Trap rug

above: X-Ray Visionaire rug

Each is available for purchase here and costs $275.00 USD. Several are also available as 4′ x 6′ rugs, just ask the gallery.

If you didn’t see his stunning rugs for Walteria Living in 2008, see them all here.

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The 8 Electrolux Designlab Finalists Show Us The Future

For Electrolux Design Lab’s seventh edition, Electrolux invited undergraduate and graduate industrial design students to send in their home appliance ideas for the next 90 years, in honor of the Electrolux 90-year anniversary. The brief was to create thoughtfully-designed products that will shape how people prepare and store food, wash clothes, and do dishes over the next nine decades. This year over 900 entries were submitted from students in more 50 countries.

The top eight finalists have been announced and here they are, in random order:

1. Cocoon by Rickard Hederstierna, Lund Institute of Technology, Sweden

Intelligent food to save the planet
“Cocoon” is a sustainable response to the world’s growing population and its desire to consume meat and fish. Similar to heating popcorn in a microwave, Cocoon prepares genetically engineered and prepackaged meat and fish dishes by heating muscle cells identified by radio frequency identification (RFID) signals.The signals detect the specific dish and then suggest the required cooking time. This process uses science to create food, lifting a burden on the planet by reducing the need for further intensive farming and fishing. The negative effects of this process, including the mass transportation of food around the world, clearing of land and distortion of ecosystems, are then negated.

2. Le Petit Prince by Martin Miklica, Brno University of Technology, Czech Republic

One small step for robots, one giant leap for humankind
“Le Petit Prince” is a robotic greenhouse designed to facilitate the future exploration and population of Mars. Le Petit Prince takes care of a plant it carries inside its glass case, which is mounted on top of its four-legged pod. In search of nutrients to care for the plant, the robot is programmed to intuitively learn the optimal method for this process. It also reports its movements and progress to its fellow greenhouse robots via wireless communication so that they can learn from each other.

3. Moléculaire by Nico Kläber, Köln International School of Design, Germany

Print and eat your food
Nico Kläber takes the marriage of science and cooking to a new level with “Moléculaire”, the 3D molecular food printer. Moléculaire is influenced by chefs that scientifically and painstakingly experiment with food and food states to surprise and provoke fresh ideas in cooking. Kläber recognizes that this approach, as it currently exists, requires great skill, time and knowledge. The Moléculaire simplifies the process and acts as a computer numerical control (CNC) food printer for both professional and domestic kitchens. It autonomously prepares basic and otherwise difficult to create two and three dimensional parts of meals. It works with a layer by layer printing process using small particles from diverse ingredients. This provides simplicity, accuracy, repeatability and, of course, great tasting food!

4. Naturewash by Zhenpeng Li,Zhejiang University, China

Washing in the great outdoors
“Naturewash” is a waterless washing machine that uses negative ions to wash nano-coated fabrics. Horizontal in shape, the washing machine has three touch screen settings: clean clothes, grass scent and flower scent. A user can lie or sit on Naturewash to clean or refresh the clothes they are wearing. For a more thorough clean, clothes can be placed flat on the washer.

5. Renew by Louis Filosa, Purdue University, USA

Steam cleaning coming to a wall near you
“Renew” is a smart steamer that refreshes and cleans clothes. With two steam blades, Renew “blasts” garments clean. An infrared scanner and radio frequency identification (RFID) gather information about a garment from specifically designed clothing tags. Renew is safe to use and disables the steamer if an unidentified object is detected, such as a hand. An OLED touch screen allows the user to interact with Renew and learn about their clothing. At 25% the size of a current washing machine,Renew conserves space and is made of recycled aluminum and glass.

6. Teleport Fridge by Dulyawat Wongnawa, Chulalongkorn University, Thailand

Beam me up… Scottish ham
Dulyawat Wongnawa envisions a time when the technologies found in science fiction become reality, specifically teleportation. His concept, “Teleport Fridge”, teleports food, eliminating the time and distance a person has to travel to buy fresh groceries or products from a store or farm. Using touch-screen technology as the interface for the teleportation process, the Teleport Fridge simply teleports food to compartments in its refrigeration and freezer units.

7. Water Catcher by Penghao Shan, Zhejiang Sci-tech University, China

Flying in the rain
Penghao Shan has created a product that addresses water shortage. His solution is “Water Catcher”, a flying rain catcher and water purifier. This automated device dispatches small flying balls in the air to catch raindrops. After the raindrops are collected, the balls return to a homing tray that purifies the water for drinking. Once purified, the balls take the drinking water directly to a person to be drunk. The homing tray also reads fingerprints to determine what additives should be added to the water to ensure the drinker optimizes their health.

8. Bifoliate by Toma Brundzaite, Vilnius Academy of Art, Lithuania

Washing dishes is double the fun
Putting away clean dishes from the dishwasher is often a tedious job. That’s why Toma Brundzaite has designed “Bifoliate”, a space-saving, wall-mounted double dishwasher that allows the user to put dirty dishes in one compartment and use the other as a shelf for clean dishes. The dishwasher uses ultrasonic wave technology to clean, making it more efficient and eco-friendly than today’s dishwashers.

Below is a 4:40 minute video about the finalists:

The eight finalists will compete for the Electrolux Design Lab 2009 first prize of 5,000 Euro and a six-month paid internship at one of the Electrolux global design centers. The second prize is 3,000 Euro and third prize 2,000 Euro.

A jury of internationally-recognized designers will judge the entries and select a winner. The jury includes Nipa Doshi, furniture designer and co-founder of Doshi Levien design studio, David Fisher, Design Director of internationally renowned product design consultancy Seymourpowell, Marisol Manso Cortina, Manager of the Color Design Group at Nissan Design Europe, and Henrik Otto, Senior Vice President of Global Design at Electrolux.

The winner will be announced at the London Design Festival next month.

About Electrolux Design Lab:

Established in 2003, Electrolux Design Lab is an annual, global design competition open to undergraduate and graduate industrial design students who are invited to present innovative ideas for household appliances of the future. The competition has had different themes and culminates in a new city every year at an international press event.

All information and images from Electrolux. For more information visit

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Stunning & Sexy Silver C-Prints By Guido Argentini

above: Sandy Silver Cover, 1995

Photographer’s Limited Editions is offering photographer Guido Argentini’s stunning and sexy silver series c-prints (say that ten times fast) from his collectible book and series, SILVEREYE. The six available images shown below are limited to 3 editions each, measure a large 47″ x 47″ and cost approximately $9,000.00 USD a piece.

above: Sandy Silver Laying Down, 1995

above: Sandy Silver Butt, 1995

above: Sandy Silver Prayer 2, 1995

above: Giulia Silver 4, 2006

above: Sandy Silver Heart-Shaped, 1995

Buy any of the limited edition C-prints shown above here.

About the photographer:

Born in Florence, Italy Guido Argentini studied Medicine for three years at the university of Florence before turning to photography as a career. At 23 he decided to turn his passion into a profession and started to shoot fashion and beauty. Since 1990 he has lived in the USA, in Los Angeles.

His work has been published by some of the leading magazines in the world such as “Marie Claire”, “Men’sHealth”, “Panorama”, “Playboy”, “Vogue”, “Max”, “Maxim” and many others.

In 2003, Guido Argentini’s first book, shown above,“SILVEREYE”, presented an exquisite series of studio and landscape nudes. That work was a reflection of the artist’s great personal passion for sculpture and dance.

above: Publisher Te Neues created several lovely calendars for 205 from the SILVEREYE series.

In his second book, “PRIVATE ROOMS”, 2005, Mr. Argentini offers an entirely different type of personal journey, one where eroticism and beauty are clearly inseparable. Within these pages, we are invited to take a glimpse into a unique ‘feminine universe’.

This second book is the result of ten years of photographs, all taken in the intimacy of closed rooms, ancient villas, modern apartments, many hotels, from the most elegant five-star locations enriched with luxurious velvets and four-posted beds to the most squalid insignificant hourly-rate motels furnished with cheap plastic chairs and worn-out wallpaper. A universe where all these rooms become the theaters of the artist’s self-directed voyeuristic fantasies.

His latest book, “REFLECTIONS” was published in 2007. A vast collection of photographs of women looking at themselves in mirrors: a sort of unconscious research about the woman who studies herself, falls in love, and gets lost in her own image.

Check out or purchase several of Guido Argentini’s Books and Calendars

Guido Argentini‘s site

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Sneak Peek Of The 2009 Metropolitan Home Showtime House

Please note, this post has been altered since its original posting on August 25th, at to the request of Metropolitan Home Magazine. Some of the images and text have since been replaced or removed.

14 renowned designers will transform two New York penthouses into the ultimate multimedia showhouse with rooms inspired by Showtime’s 6 Original Series; Californication, Dexter, Nurse Jackie, The Tudors, United States of Tara and Weeds.

It will be hard to top last year’s Dexter House, but here’s a first look at some of the sketches and intended designs for the 2009 Showtime House.

The Muse: Californication

The series revolves around Hank Moody, played by David Duchovny, as a charming but lascivious writer and novelist plagued with personal demons. He blames his years-long case of writer’s block on a variety of reasons, ranging from the hedonism of Los Angeles, to his on-again, off-again relationship with his girlfriend Karen. Hank constantly deals with the fallout of his lack of will to say “no” to drugs, sex and alcohol, while trying to show his family that he can be a good, caring person. (source: wikipedia)

studioMDA’s Californication Master Bedroom:

Here, architect Markus Dochantschi of studioMDA has conjured up a master bedroom worthy of a five-star hotel suite in which Hank can indulge his vices while feeling incredibly pampered. “This room is all about the bed, which we designed as a playful escape for Hank to exhibit his cavalier behavior,” says Dochantschi. “From the bed, Hank can look out over Hollywood while in return Hollywood is stealing a look at him.”

The Muse: Dexter:

Dexter, played by Michael C. Hall, is a forensic blood spatter analyst for the Miami-Metro Police Department, but in his own time Dexter is a serial killer. He was taught by his adoptive father, Harry, only to kill those “who deserve it”; mainly, other killers who have escaped the traditional legal system or were never suspected in the first place. (source: wikipedia)

Aiello’s Dexter Foyer/Gallery, Living Room, Dining Room, Kitchen and Terrace:

Whether Dexter is passing through the foyer, hanging out in the living room with the kids, or thoughtfully sharpening a knife in the kitchen, Marie Aiello has designed a space to accommodate the many sides of Dexter. “I want my space to speak to Dexter’s conflict and inner torment but be rendered in not so obvious ways. Each room is sophisticated and seductive but not too pretty,” says Aiello. “As with Dexter, there is a superficial sense of serenity to them all, but look closely, and you’ll see that the beautiful pieces, surfaces and forms in each space are made from things that are actually fractured, broken or even a little creepy.”

The Muse: Nurse Jackie

The series stars Edie Falco as title character Jackie Peyton, a “flawed” emergency room nurse at All Saints’ Hospital in New York City. For Jackie, a functioning drug-addict , “Every day is a high wire act of juggling patients, doctors, fellow nurses and her own indiscretions. ( source: wikipedia)

Coleman & Sanchez’s Nurse Jackie Bedroom:

Christopher Coleman and fashion designer Angel Sanchez have designed a bedroom escape where Jackie can breathe, relax, and pop a few pills in private before nodding off to dreamland. “Jackie’s bedroom plays to the show with its use of reflective, hard-edge industrial medical equipment and a color palette of white with touches of hospital blue,” says Sanchez. “However, the room has a sense of refuge about it with its stress-freeing massage table and witty pill-patterned wallpaper.”

The Muse: The Tudors

The Tudors is a historical fiction television series starring Jonathan Rhys Meyers. The series is based upon the reign of English monarch Henry VIII, and is named after the Tudor dynasty. (source: wikipedia)

Lissoni Associati’s Tudors Dining Room and Garden Terrace:

The luxe life is the only thing Henry the VIII knows so Italy’s Piero Lissoni and Nicoletta Canesi, co-founders of Lissoni Associati, have created a dining room and outdoor garden terrace to put him in his royal element. “Dining chairs and terrace pillows feature portraits of Henry’s six wives so that should keep his mind occupied,” says Nicoletta Canesi. If not, Henry can turn his thoughts inward with ego-driven décor like a Swarovski crystal covered bust and walls fancifully scripted with the king’s most memorable sayings.

The Muse: United States of Tara

Tara Gregson, played by Toni Collette, is a wife and mother with dissociative identity disorder (DID). After deciding to take a break from her medication to discover the real cause of her disorder, her alternate personalties re-emerge: wild and flirty teenager T; old-fashioned housewife Alice; and male, loud, beer-drinking Vietnam vet Buck. Tara is supported by her calm and level-headed husband Max, her somewhat troubled teenage daughter Kate and quirky, good-hearted gay son Marshall. Her sister, Charmaine, is not so supportive, often expressing her doubt about the validity of Tara’s disorder. The show is set in Overland Park, Kansas. (source: wikipedia)

Gardner’s United States of Tara Duplex Apartment:

Upstairs, downstairs—wherever Tara and her alters want to go, French native Francine Gardner is ready for them with a duplex apartment as intriguing as Tara herself. An intimate living room stretches out along the first floor and a spacious dining area and rec room above. “The first floor also has a side room that’s Tara’s ‘cocoon’—a nurturing and soothing space where she can rest, let go of inner demons and release stress,” says Gardner. Thought-provoking sculpture links each space to Tara’s multi-faceted mind.

The Muse: Weeds

The plot revolves around a widowed housewife played by Mary-Louise Parker, from an affluent California suburb who becomes her neighborhood’s marijuana dealer to make ends meet. (source: wikipedia)

Biber’s Weeds Dining Room:

For true Weeds devotees, the dining room designed by architect James Biber takes its inspiration from one unholy Weeds episode. “The dining table is based on an unforgettable scene in which a stolen cross from the Majestic church is put to use as a lighting fixture in a hastily assembled grow house,” says Biber. Breaking bread and sipping wine will never be the same.

The captions under the design sketches were written by Carla Jordan. Images courtesy of Metropolitan Home and Showtime.

See more of Metroplitan Home’s 2009 Showtime House here.

The press release from Showtime:
New York, NY (August 2009) – How do you top the most original and popular showhome concept? Metropolitan Home, the definitive resource for modern design, and Showtime Networks, producer of award-winning TV series, are partnering for a second season of the ultimate multimedia showhouse, with double the space and twice as many designers.

Metropolitan Home’s Showtime House, powered by Time Warner Cable, will celebrate its second season with twin penthouses located in the luxurious Tribeca Summit building here. Top designers will transform 14,000 square feet of indoor and outdoor spaces into stunning masterpieces of design, with the Showtime original series as their inspirations. It will be open on weekends for public tours Sept. 12 – Oct. 18, and tickets will sell for $20 each, with all proceeds from the ticket sales benefiting the non-profit organization Housing Works.

“The partnership between Metropolitan Home and Showtime has been a major hit and we wanted to ensure that this second incarnation will be even more successful,” says Christie Boyle, Metropolitan Home’s VP of Brand Development, and the project’s co-creator with Larry Kieran, Director of Promotions and Partnerships for Showtime. “With twice as many designers and double the number of stunning design ideas, the second season of the showhome will be as original and surprising as the Showtime series themselves.” Metropolitan Home’s Showtime House won the silver 2008 Folio FAME Award for Best First-Time Event.

“Building on last year’s success, Showtime is incredibly excited to once again partner with Metropolitan Home for this one-of-a-kind experience,” says Len Fogge, Showtime Executive VP, Creative & Marketing. “The combination of the latest in innovative modern design and Showtime’s cutting-edge programming forms an organic environment where consumers can physically experience and explore the Showtime brand. The house allows visitors to get a deeper insight into the characters and storylines that solidify Showtime as the premiere destination for compelling programming.”

This year’s line-up of incredible design talent includes Marie Aiello, James Biber, Christopher Coleman and Angel Sanchez, Markus Dochantschi at Studio MDA, Susannah Drake, Francine Gardner, Holly Hunt and Joannah Kornak for Holly Hunt, Andrew Kotchen and Matthew Berman of Workshop/apd, Paul Latham, Piero Lissoni, Kara Mann, Richard Mishaan, and Surfacedesign. Each designer has been assigned a room and an inspiring Showtime series, such as Californication, Dexter, Nurse Jackie, The Tudors, United States of Tara, and Weeds. Interior designers from the Savannah College of Art & Design are also creating an innovative entryway for the showhome.

Today’s top brands will integrate their products within the house including premier sponsor Time Warner Cable and preferred partners AKO, Alessi, Benjamin Moore, Blanco, CaesarStone, Crystallized – Swarovski Elements, Elica, Flou, Kraftmaid, Miele, Molteni & C, Napoleon, and Swarovski Crystal Palace.

If you never saw last year’s Dexter House by Amy Lau and the SCAD items that went with it, check it out here.


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Move Over Ed Hardy, The Unstoppable Kate Spade Launches A Clothing Line

First there were handbags. Different, adorable, charming and whimsical. Then came shoes and sunglasses. Followed by stationery and tableware. Not long after came products for the home like photo frames, glassware, and more. Baby products were a natural addition and as if that weren’t enough, she began designing jewelry and released a fragrance as well as candles. And I’m not even including Jack Spade, the line and store, for men.

The Kate Spade Empire:

and now…

Now, Kate Spade launches a clothing collection. The line is what you’d except if you’re familiar with the designer. Sweet but sexy and slightly retro, cute but couture, precious and pricey. The pieces look like items Kate herself might wear. The model even has a look that resembles both Kate and her talented Creative Director and co-president of Kate Spade New York, Deborah Lloyd.

above left: Deborah Lloyd and right, Kate Spade

Here’s all the items in her clothing line at present, which just debuted August 11th. I especially love the outwear and jackets. Please click on the images to enlarge.

Tops & Sweaters:

Skirts & Dresses:

Outerwear & Jackets:

A better look at some of the separates:

You can purchase the above clothes, plus jewelry, shoes, accessories, and more here.

Watch out Ed Hardy, this woman is gaining on you. It may not be long now before we see Kate Spade Shiraz.

Expect Great Things at

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