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Thursday, 28 February 2013

Arty-tecture - Pecha Kucha

Last wednesday I went to a Pecha Kucha evening organised by the NLA (New London Architecture) and Squire and Partners at 06 Chad's Place near Kings Cross.  

The idea behind "Pecha Kucha" came from Klien Dytham Architects ten years ago in Tokyo, where each speaker would have 20 slides and 20 seconds per slide, to discuss a topic of their choice.  I've been to a few of these events before, they are great because you are always thinking, and if you get a bit bored by a speaker, you are onto the next one in no time!  Also good for learning new things, and meeting some more designers.

This event was specifically aimed at Art and Architecture, and the interaction between both, and at what stage should one begin working with an artist (answer: as soon as to the start of the architectural process as possible).

It was absolutely fascinating and absorbing.  Artists and Architects who worked on project ranging from the London 2012 Olympics through to the Angel Building and the Room for London (that boat on top of the Southbank Centre), they gave us an insight into how rewarding and exciting it can be, to work with an artist.

Personally, I've always pushed for collaborating with local artists when I see fit.  I feel, especially in  interiors, that this creates a strong sense of location for the user, and ownership over the space.  So not like some totally obscure designer has just landed a project in their laps!

Anyhow, it was very enlightening.  I'm really looking forward to the next one.

Sunday, 10 February 2013

Paula Rego

I happened upon Ms. Rego’s new exhibition at Marlborough Fine Art on Friday morning.

I’ve not had much opportunity to see much of her work up close, so it was a bit of a treat, although not a necessarily pleasant one!

Her work deals with “the beautiful grotesque” according to her, and there was definitely a strong combination of the both in this show.  I get the feeling she is trying to expose a level of the true nature of  humanity, as she hyper-accentuates ugliness in the characters she portrays.

Really interestingly, she showed the maquettes that she uses to set up for the pastels. 

I especially liked the hand coloured etchings (only £18,000 each…).

The show runs until the 1st of March.

David Breuer-Weil - Project 4

On Thursday night this week, I popped along to see David Breuer-Weil’s solo exhibition in the Waterloo vault’s on Leake Street.

Dark and dank, the venue provided a truly atmospheric backdrop for the pieces.  Creating the collection was a huge undertaking by Breuer-Weil’s.  It was great to see not only the finished pieces, but the sketches and videos of the artist at work.

The series spoke of humanity, philosophy and politics, as well as diaspora.  A masterful painter, the colours he used resonated as some sort of memory, being muddied and not clear.  The sculptures were dramatic and aggressive.

It’s running until the 24th of March, and sponsored by artnet.

Wednesday, 6 February 2013

Scratch the Surface

So I went to Surface Design show last night, and apart from being a great opportunity to catch up with some old work mates over a couple of pints, I picked up a few good new products, which I'm pretty keen to use.

Firstly, Caesar Ceramiche's dry fix tiles.  Put down on raised flooring, and ready to walk on immediately, a great solution for retailers and commercial office spaces.  And it looks good. No grout! And it doesn't budge.  Call Ben @ Caesar for more info.

Clayworks have these gorgeous plasters, in natural colours which have a really lovely patina.  It's great to be able to specify a new product, although this one has won a lot of awards already, so I've missed it before!  Eco Friendly, manufactured in the UK.... a great product to spec.

And last but not least, these stunning tiles by Japanese Designer Tokujin Yoshioka, supplied by Vicalvi Contract . "Rain Mosaics". So so lovely.  I am lucky I stopped in here, on my way out.  They have their permanent showroom at the Business Design Centre... so if you missed the show, you could always stop by.  They had some really stunning decorative tiles. 

Other than that, there wasn't too much going on that really jumped out at me.  I heard a rumour that Surfaceform are about to produce some really exciting plaster products soon though.. watch this space.