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Week of January 26, 2015

A weekly Saturday recap to share with you our favorite links, discoveries, exhibitions, and more from the past seven days. This week: Sorting the best of the rest from January's design fairs, getting a crash course in great product photography, and hailing the almighty power of pink (not to mention colored gradients, as seen in Bryce Wilner's puzzle — yes that's a puzzle — above).

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Week of January 12, 2015

A weekly Saturday recap to share with you our favorite links, discoveries, exhibitions, and more from the past seven days. This week was all about material experiments: ping-pong paddles in Plexi or wood, a yoga-ball holder built from inflated concrete and pigment, and furniture made from the remnants of an imaginary construction site.

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Eyebodega’s Vase Series

If we had a nickel for every time we heard a designer or artist express the desire to work across scales, disciplines, or dimensions, we could probably buy one of these. But earlier this week was the first time we’d heard this zeitgeisty little zinger: “It’s exciting to be producing things we can share with people, as opposed to just clicking a ‘share’ button.” While most graphic design studios dabble in physicality by way of books and other printed ephemera, the young New York duo Eyebodega — to whose co-principal Rob Chabebe said quote can be attributed — have been using 3-D printing to quite literally turn their Pinterest-ready digital illustrations into objects you can have and hold.

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Week of December 15, 2014

A weekly Saturday recap to share with you our favorite links, discoveries, exhibitions, and more from the past seven days. This week: new jewelry based on Superstudio sketches from the '70s, a new BDDW housewares line based in the middle of nowhere, and a tropical photoshoot by Studiopepe that basically makes us want to jump on a plane immediately and fly south.

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SU x PAOM for The Standard Shop

Last week in Miami, you could go home with art in just about any form — not just on a canvas (Art Basel) but in the form of a vase or a table (Design Miami), a pool toy (Grey Area x FriendsWithYou), a champagne bottle (Ruinart x Georgia Russel), or, if you happened by the shop at The Standard Spa, beach gear courtesy of yours truly. For this year's Miami fair, Sight Unseen teamed up with Print All Over Me to curate a line of warm-weather clothing and accessories sold exclusively at the Standard, featuring prints by Paul Wackers, Ellen Van Dusen of Dusen Dusen, Peter Judson, Rachel Domm, Caitlin Foster, Marta Veludo, Eunice Luk, Branden Collins, and Rafael de Cardenas (who designed the shop's interior a few years back).

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Color Palette, From PIN–UP #17

When PIN–UP editor Felix Burrichter asked me to put together a product-driven color story for the magazine's new fall issue, which just came out last week, I said yes without hesitation — then secretly panicked later. It turns out that defining yourself by a single hue can be strangely intimidating. After thinking about it for ages, I resolved not to think at all, resorting to an idea that's been kicking around Sight Unseen's Pinterest feed for months now: electric blue, reimagined for the magazine as the more whimsical-sounding "peacock." I rounded up 14 of our favorite examples, which PIN–UP contributor Fausto Fantinuoli turned into the gorgeous illustration pictured above, along with the selections of Ambra Medda (dolphin), Tauba Auerbach (vermillion), and Paloma Powers (blush). Burrichter was kind enough to let us share the full story, which you can view after the jump.

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Sight Unseen Turns Five!

When we first launched Sight Unseen — on this very day back in 2009 — we intended it to be an online magazine in which we would publish, a couple of times per week, long, meticulously reported stories about the lives, processes, and inspirations behind our favorite design and art objects. We still do just that, five years later. But we're proud to say that we've also done so much more: We've become a place for creatives to scout new talents on a daily basis, we've become a linchpin for the blossoming American design scene, we've opened an online shop, we've published a book, and we've founded one of New York design week's biggest offsite events. This year, we have plans to curate multiple pop-ups, to launch a long-overdue redesign of our site, to start a major retail collaboration with a visionary company, and to make our OFFSITE show even bigger and better. But perhaps the greatest joy of our 5-year tenure has been the amazing and fruitful relationships we've formed with our peers — all of the people who create, love, photograph, and write about design every day right along with us. These people clearly feel the same about us, seeing as when we invited them to help us celebrate by making us a birthday card, we were overwhelmed by not only the quantity of responses but also by the thoughtfulness that went into each piece. Check out some of the wonderful people who responded after the jump!

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2014, Part I

This week we announced the 2014 American Design Hot List, Sight Unseen's unapologetically subjective annual editorial award for the 25 names to know now in American design. We're devoting an entire week to interviews with this year's honorees — get to know the first five Hot List designers after the jump.

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Thomas Albdorf, Photographer

Still-life photography has been a staple form of expression for photographers since the invention of the camera. And with the rise in popularity of sites like Tumblr and Pinterest, there's been a noticeable influx of images on the Internet that follow certain preconceived notions of what a contemporary still life ought to consist of: a clean image with a pale colored backdrop, some kind of sliced fruit, maybe some bubble wrap, etc. Enter Thomas Albdorf, the Austrian artist who crossed over into the world of photography after a career in graphic design and art direction. Albdorf shoots with a 35mm camera that results in a grittiness that is refreshing in this digital age, and his background as a designer is clearly evident in his calculated and well-balanced photographs. His still lifes — constructed from mundane objects or littered building materials — are full of texture, pattern, and intrigue.

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Inka Järvinen, Graphic Designer and Printmaker

Finnish graphic artist and designer Inka Järvinen began her career with a degree in fashion from Helsinki University of Art and Design in 2005. But after graduating, she quickly discovered she preferred designing in two dimensions to three. So what do you do when you hold a diploma in something that doesn't suit your true passion? You follow those dreams back to school and get yourself a second degree! Armed with a BA in graphic design, Järvinen went on to co-found Tsto, a design agency whose hotshot clients include Artek, Levi's, and Nokia, and she continues to work on solo projects in her spare time. We especially love her graphic prints, controlled yet unpredictable. They're clean, and perfectly executed by someone that clearly understands the principles of balance, line, and pattern. We've excerpted some of our favorites after the jump.

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Sigrid Calon, Visual Artist

For some reason, this is the week we finally put our money where our mouth is: First we took home one of Fort Standard's beautiful, mint-colored standing bowls, and then, on a whim last Wednesday, we picked up a risograph by Dutch visual artist Sigrid Calon, who we've had on our radar for quite some time. The hardest thing about buying Calon's work is narrowing down your options to just one — each print, which is based on the Tilburg artist's interpretation of an embroidery grid, is beautifully layered, using eight gradated colors, dots, and lines to achieve endless variations. Which one would you choose? See more after the jump.

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Marine Duroselle, graphic designer

For the young, French graphic designer and Royal College of Arts grad Marine Duroselle, a relationship to pattern and shape is both instinctive and intuitive, owing in large part to the vast array of objects she was exposed to as a child. Growing up in Peru, her mother an anthropologist specializing in pre-Colombian textiles, Duroselle was continually surrounded by rich fabrics, threads and other types of South American crafts; a period of post-adolescence spent living in New York, on an exchange program at the School of Visual Arts, only further emphasized her interest in textiles and color.

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