A periodic nod to object typologies both obscure and ubiquitous, featuring five of our favorite recent examples. Today the subject is dominoes, which no longer resemble those black and white, polka-dotted celluloid tiles of yore.
Here’s the thing about the ’80s: Some of us actually grew up in them. And for us, seeing a Tumblr full of art from that decade doesn’t so much trigger an Internet-age wet dream as a blast of straight-up nostalgia — for the kinds of things we remember hanging in our rich friends’ parents living rooms, or on the walls of our orthodontist, or in fancy department-store furniture displays. We’re not sure which of the two motivated designer Jason Kawood of Saskatchewan, Canada, to start said Tumblr back in 2011, but he’s been going strong with it ever since.
The young Amsterdam-based duo Odd Matter, whom we wrote about today in a separate post dedicated to their new work at Aram Gallery, have been busy bees lately. In addition to that project, the Dutch and Bulgarian designers recently launched a series called Node, which includes four highly expressive, sculptural lamps in copper and Jesmonite with forms designed to underscore their functions: Each one has an arm that users rotate to complete or break the lamp’s electrical circuit, turning its bulb on or off. Much cooler than a boring old switch.
Plenty of designers who work primarily in two dimensions translate their patterns and images to textiles, but Lucy Hardcastle’s oeuvre is particularly diverse — a former textile design student, she creates three-dimensional objects, sets, and artworks made of everything from paint to cement to Jell-O, plus videos and digital renderings that appear to be 3-D, and draws on those creations to make prints for clients like Nike and Alexander Wang.
People always ask where exactly we find our story subjects, and for the past two years, the most frequent answer has invariably been Instagram. And it’s true, in the case of Belgian-born graphic designer Stephanie Specht, we were fans of her @spechtstudio handle long before we ever knew who was behind it. But our interest was piqued even further in recent months after Specht got the imprimatur from two friends with an impeccable knack for collaborations: Sandeep Salter of McNally Jackson Picture Room, where Specht released an edition earlier this year, and Alex Proba, with whom Specht created a series of plant-inspired posters. When we reached out to find out a bit more about her for this story, we got a taste of why Specht is such an ideal partner-in-crime: well-spoken, crazy on top of a deadline, and whip-smart to boot — and did we mention how great her designs are? Here’s a quick crib sheet as to how Specht arrived on the scene.
A weekly Saturday recap to share with you our favorite links, discoveries, exhibitions, and more from the past seven days. This week: very on-trend iridescent flatware and terrazzo coasters, gorgeous oil-slick vases from a recent RISD grad, and the debut of the booksleeve (pictured above), an innovation we never realized we needed until now.
London-based Lottie Hughes graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in fine art only two years ago but she’s already on our radar, thanks to an exceedingly well-kept Tumblr. “My designs were initially a way for me to come up with compositions for my paintings but the more I learned, and the more confident I became with Photoshop, these have now become the main body of my work,” says the 24-year-old designer. Hughes primarily takes inspiration from artists like Camille Walala, Atelier Bingo, Trudy Benson, and Klaus Merkel, as well as from everyday life in London. “My designs are abstract versions of what I see on a day-to-day basis — colors clashing, angles of buildings interlocking, movement and light.”