Saturday, July 31, 2010

In The Navy (Suite)

I'm awaiting the arrival of 2 sofas, a wing back chair, ottomans and a small hill of cushions I've ordered in yummy coordinated Warwick fabrics; a bold combination of navy blue geometric patterned and floral. Bold because I'm usually the safe cream dream girl.

Am considering the decor to revolve around them.
A flirtation with dark blue walls leaves me thinking the sofas might disappear into them, but an accent colour like the lime green below might make all the difference. The black and white stripe adds a French je ne sais quoi, non?

Blue pattern on pattern. Like. Like very much.

Okay these might be grey walls and not blue, but the patterned sofa truly stands out especially when paired with white accents. The tasteful artwork is always a necessity, but the dead stuffed owl just lifts the whole scheme, doesn't it?

Blue gloss lion heads certainly suggest "I'm an exciting individual with good taste".

All photos from White & Wander blog, except for pattern on pattern photo from ChiChi & Luxe blog

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Louise Bourgeois

Artist Louise Bourgeois died May 31, 2010

I was lucky enough to catch a showing of her 'greatest hits' at the Tate Modern three years ago in London where her most well known works
- symbol-heavy fused sexual organs sculptures and soft-sculpture of human forms -
as well as her larger scale 'Cells'
- mostly cage-like constructions of environments which represent her childhood -
and a few of her earlier drawings were on display.

The Tate Modern is also permanent home to her famous spider sculpture 'Maman' at the entrance.

Besides her obvious monumental influence on contemporary art-making, the thing I admire most of her life is how she journeyed the long distance; Louise Bourgeois only gained fame for her work in her 70s and worked prolifically right up to her death.

Read a brief but informative summary of her life by the Guardian here. Read about the inspiration of her work in this New York Times article here, and see her most well known works in the slideshow.

I came across these photos of the studio of printmaker Judith Solodkin who worked closely with Louise Bourgeois, amongst other illustrious artists. These are her some of her later print works in progress.

The above trio of works are embroidered and sewn works from 'Ode A L'Oubil'.

Photos from the New York Social Diary

Monday, July 26, 2010

Country Monkey, City Monkey

Usually I make a face like a two-year old threatened with cabbage when I hear the words "Country" and "Style" used consecutively. Tragic images of 'quaint' from the 80s haunt me, the kind with rustic (read:new with bad faux paint job) signs that say "Home is Where the Heart Is", wooden barnyard animal attached. And a putrid floral pattern or nineteen thrown in to complete the look.
* Yech *

Then I stumble upon this beauty by designer John Loecke and his partner, and my Country world is rocked. This 1840 Federal-style converted schoolhouse they've christened "Monkey House" is located in New York's Catskills (wherrzzat?).

Comments on inspiration from the article in Country Living, written by Sara Bliss:
"The overall design was meant to harken to the classic interiors found in the English country house of a century ago--rooms filled with antiques, sculptural furniture pieces, and botanical patterns and prints on the walls. John and Jason reinterpreted the look, however, by introducing some decidedly offbeat pieces, including silver scallop sconces, giraffe print pillows, and a tropical-inspired chandelier."

On the use of patterns according to John:
"The trick to combining many patterns in a room is to choose a common color scheme. A variety of bold patterns won't clash when linked by a limited palette." To avoid overwhelming the space, John advises using no more than two large-scale prints and keeping other patterns geometric."

Photos are by Lucas Allen, article by Sara Bliss

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Is Happy

6 weeks ago on the 3rd of June my life changed.
I gave birth to a little boy
And now I'm both hopeful and happy

View of baby's room

A mobile made by Grandma

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Discover Your Inner Radha

In an Asia Society interview with author Amitav Ghosh, he urges us all to "discover our inner-Radha". He probably meant something more ephemeral, but I choose to seek out my inner Radha in the form of Ruth St. Denis.
Watch the full video of the interview here, but be warned, it's long!

A ground-breaking choreographer, dancer, founding mother of a significant genre of dance, and generally gutsy woman (don't we love those?), she had a penchant for Asian cultures and took inspiration for her dance pieces from the religious stories and folk tales of the region with a distinct affinity for goddesses.
She also translated traditional Asian dress with gusto and blinged it up (totally in love with those stunning headpieces!) for the stage.
These photos, like the especially captivating one above, are of her in costume for the piece entitled 'Radha'.

Read a concise write-up about St Denis here

Above, in costume for The Nautch Girl.

Above, in Gift of Eternal Life.
All photos, from the brilliant New York Public Library catalogue, can be purchased online.