Posts from May 2021

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May 5, 2021

I came across the work of John Zabawa this morning, and instantly fell for his simple, playful shapes and bold colour waves. The L.A. based artist/graphic designer’s work is reminiscent of the bright cutouts Matisse made in his last decade. Jean Arp is an influence, too. Negative space –– the Japanese aesthetic principle of ma –– is central to Zabawa’s approach. “I love thinking of negative space as a tool when composing. I experience blank canvas fear all the time; approaching a new painting is always an exciting, scary feeling, and thinking about negative space in this way is very freeing.”

pretty as punch

May 5, 2021

Is it rattan, cane, wicker? No matter, I love this chair. It’s a Southern version of a throne. This wallpaper, designed by Lulie Wallace (great name) is lovely, too. The whole aesthetic is what a Southern belle might describe as “darling.” Too darling for some, perhaps, but not for me.

Around and around

May 4, 2021

Facade decoration of a house in Kano, Northern Nigeria from PAUL OLIVER‘s book Dwellings: the house across the world.

A beautiful Gee’s Bend Quilt.

Hats at the Kentucky Derby, 1945.

Ornamental bells by ceramic artist, AYAME BULLOCK.

The colour rich zig zags of LARRY ZOX.

Designer INDIA MAHDAVI‘s jelly pea sofa.

A whitewashed home by Egyptian architect, HASSAN FATHY.

she persisted

May 4, 2021

Here is how Parisian potter, Marion Graux describes the many steps to making a bowl. Draw a bowl. Choose a clay. Prepare the clay. Weigh the clay. Turn the bowl. Allow to dry. Spin the bowl. Sign. Allow to dry. Cook the cookie at 980 degrees. Turn off after about 48 hours. Choose a glaze. Prepare the glaze bath. Glaze. Allow to dry. Clean the glaze drips. Cook at 1240° C. Turn off after about 48 hours. Her bowls –– earth pink, amber, blue and grey –– are beautiful. As are her ultra fine plates. They’re expensive, roughly $70 per plate, but that’s 18 steps. 18 steps over ten days or so. And chances are, for every ten plates she makes, there are at least two casualties. The ones that warp or crack. Potters are a persistent lot. We have to be. I used to watch my studio mate, Katherine return to her wheel day after day, one failed bowl after another, a smile on her face. She sent me a perfect Cappuccino cup today. Persistence pays off. I made two large platters last month, and both cracked in the second firing. I can’t say that I’m not deflated. But we have no choice but to begin again. To roll out a fresh slab. Smooth out the bubbles. Wrap it well. Be patient. Cross our fingers. And our toes. This one is a winner.

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