WAIF - Technicolor Melodrama

The Cool Girl Cape Town Jewelry Brand At the Top of Our Wish List

Called Waif, the line is a labor of love by former ad woman and self-taught jewelry designer Gisele Human, who we've been assiduously following on Instagram, waiting for news of a new collection to drop. We got our wish this week when Human unveiled her Technicolor Melodrama collection, in which many pieces mix Human's signature metals with stones like malachite, sodalite, and Dalmatian jasper.
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A Master of the Instagram Still-Life in Her (Perfectly Styled) Natural Habitat

Since the launch of her ceramic accessories line ARC Objects in 2014, the interaction of space and ideas through the black box of process has been a framework for Daniela Jacobs, whose work you might be familiar with from the thoughtfully rendered still-lifes that populate her Instagram. Which would be appropriate, considering how crucial a part Instagram has played in catapulting Jacobs to fame.
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This New Italian Studio Makes Textiles Inspired by Modern Art

Studio Testo, founded last year in Milan by two Italian art directors and visual researchers, makes work that's easily accessible and understood — cushions, wall textiles, upholstery fabrics, and pouches that are pretty and on-trend, what with their overlapping collages of line and organic shape. But take a deep dive into the two women's Tumblr or Instagram, and you'll see an incredibly wide and varied set of influences that have been synthesized into their current aesthetic.
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Ria Leigh’s Pottery Is Part Ancient, Part Avant-Garde

So much of the neo-ceramics movement over the past few years has focused on the medium's graphic aspects — how to slab-build the most intricate geometric shapes, or how to apply the most avant-garde patterning — that it's sometimes easy to forget just how primordial and organic a process creating pottery really is. Ria Leigh, a Seattle-based ceramicist who also works in textiles and painting, somehow makes work that easily straddles the two aesthetics.
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Structure Systems by Heino Engel “In recent weeks we’ve been trying to really run with it, and failing a lot; we’ve been making larger structures, hollow geometric frameworks about 16” tall, and out of 12 of them 8 have broken during the making process or as they’re drying. The book has been teaching us new concepts like skew, rotate, twist, and we’re trying to apply that to our structures. The structures also reference Martin Puryear’s work – he’s made hollow structures that are rounded and look a bit like boats.”

Los Angeles Ceramicist Ben Medansky

Anyone familiar with the work of Los Angeles ceramicist Ben Medansky would be surprised to learn that, when he was a student at the Art Institute of Chicago, his work was actually colorful, spanning the full spectrum of glaze hues. But after he graduated and went to work for a succession of other artists — among them the Haas brothers, who hired him to set up and run their in-house ceramics shop, and Peter Shire, for whom he spent a sweaty summer splatter-painting dishware — he decided he needed to find his own signature style, so he abandoned color entirely upon setting up his own studio in 2012 and started by focusing exclusively on form. The strong, graphic shapes he’s been creating since, all in earthy orange stoneware peeking out from under a speckled-white glaze, have become instantly recognizable in the contemporary ceramics scene.
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Vernacular architecture: In a small way, Jaklitsch practices his own sort of vernacular architecture with the Marc Jacobs shops, most of which have been inserted into existing structures. He takes pains to make each store location-specific and to honor the site's original intent, whether it's an old tobacco warehouse in Savannah, Georgia, a shop in strip-mall-happy Los Angeles, or a renovation inside Paris's Palais de Royale.

Stephan Jaklitsch, architect

In the world of retail, there is a tendency towards sameness, a familiarity designed to lull shoppers into a complacent state in which they might begin to feel it’s okay to spend a lot of money. A Zara, anywhere in the world, is immediately identifiable by its gold-toned lighting and rows of shoes lined up haphazardly underneath the clothes; a Marni boutique leaves its mark with swooping stainless-steel rails and elliptical cutouts in the ceilings. As a brand, Marc Jacobs has never been about uniformity, though — this is a fashion designer, after all, who’s gone from the most infamous collection of grunge in history to the luxurious heights of Louis Vuitton — so why should his stores? “There are certain iconic elements that are repeated,” admits Stephan Jaklitsch, the New York–based architect who’s been responsible for Jacobs's bricks-and-mortar for more than 10 years, “but in general, each store relates to its own specific building type, to the city’s specific urban condition, and to the architecture of the individual space. Although they’re identifiably connected, every one of them has a particular feel.”
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Perhaps the most poetic piece in the series is the music box, which plays classical music while twirling a potato around on a pedestal. “It highlights the hidden beauty of the potato, something people never consider," she says. "When it sprouts they’re thinking, ‘Oh it’s rotten, we have to throw it away.’ But I saw so many different amazing forms.”

Everyday Growing by Juliette Warmenhoven

Juliette Warmenhoven grew up in Holland’s so-called bulb district, near Haarlem, in a small village called Hillegom. Her father is a flower farmer. If it all sounds very quaint, it might have been 20 years ago — but then tulip production went the way of the meat industry thanks to globalization, and farming became a race to create the maximum amount of homogenous bulbs in the shortest amount of time. “My father feels farming is like working in a factory now,” says the Arnhem-based designer. Just as shrink-wrapped steak has been divorced from the killing of the cow, plants are more about the perfection of the end product than the actual growing process. “I believe that when you explain that process to people, they get more feeling out of it,” she says. For Everyday Growing, her graduation project at Arnhem’s ArtEZ school, she built a series of small monuments to plants’ humble — and often imperfect — origins.
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