Posts from September 2022

wabi sabi

September 30, 2022

Wonky shapes, rough edges, smudged glazes –– I love to see all three in ceramics. Unless they’re my own. We’re so much less accepting of such things in our own work. Which is why I am so full of admiration when I see them in someone else’s. Around the smudge is acceptance. Beyond the rough edge is freedom. That’s what I see as much as the vessel itself. Brenda Holzke‘s work is wonky and crude and raw, and I love it. “My goal is to lose control,” says Holzke. “The intention is to communicate through my heart and not my head.”

fabric flowers

September 30, 2022

They’re so lifelike and intricate, that at a glance, you might think Laurence Aguerre’s flowers are real. Crafted from textiles, wire, beads and thread, her floral sculptures are delicate and alive. I can’t imagine how much thought and focus goes into each one. Grouped together, they look like wildflowers that just sprang from the earth. And I love the contrast of the dainty flower with its hard, concrete base. They have a magical quality, to be honest. Much like the blooms that inspired them.


September 30, 2022

I don’t know if you ever used a spirograph kit as a kid, but these thread drawings by Tel Aviv artist, Sharon Etgar remind me of the drawings I used to make with mine. Of course, Etgar’s are made with thread, which makes them much more intricate and textured. Her designs range from loose and abstract to playful patterns, and some are more densely sewn than others. I find them beautiful, messy and intense.

rain dance

September 27, 2022

We’ve had a fair bit of rain lately, and I’ve been caught in more than one downpour. No umbrella or rain mac can protect you from a deluge. You may as well just dance in it. I came across this photograph by Austrian born photographer, Wolf Suschitzky and it captured the feeling of Fall and racing through a rain storm; a sudden darkening of the sky and giant puddles too large to leap across. “My approach is to ‘find’ photographs… to observe things, not arrange them,” said Suschitzky.

à la main

September 27, 2022

Inspired by domestic handicrafts –– quilting, embroidery, needlework, china painting, and sewing –– Sea’s latest ready-to-wear collection pays homage to the hand. “During the pandemic,” says Sea’s co-designer, Monica Paolini “we studied craft and what women did when they were at home. I just kept looking at Etsy and hand-work and different ways that women occupied their time, like crochet or needlepoint. It’s so touching and [something] I’m personally super-attracted to. I always want [our designs] to be like little treasures and to bring optimism and happiness to people.” From the quilted pieces to the hand-crocheted details, there isn’t a single look I’m not drawn to. And if I was as taking something home, it would be this dress; cutouts and puffed sleeves –– what’s not to love?

to the max

September 22, 2022

Good golly –– isn’t this such a joyful house? It belongs to lampshade designer, Rosi de Ruig and her family, and between the bold paint colours, (that green!) whimsical wallpapers and mismatched textiles, it’s just the kind of playful interior design I love to see in the world. It reminds me that maximalism is alive and kicking. All the colourful crockery, art and mix of modern and antique lighting bring such humour and originality to the kitchen. And the guest loo, with its vintage Sicilian tiles and bright pink basin skirt is wonderfully chic and over the top. Who has basin skirts anymore? Have a mosey around. It’s so much fun.

communal swim

September 21, 2022

Straining a muscle last week was an immobilizing sign that I had too much on my plate. My plate runneth over, in fact. On reflection, it’s clear that all the waters had merged, so to speak –– mine, my husband’s, my children’s, my friend’s –– and I was unable to distinguish between their lanes and my own. It was one giant pool, and there I was throwing out buoys in every direction even though everyone can swim. And if they can’t swim, they’re learning to. As parents, we incapacitate and undermine our children when we attempt to salve and solve their every issue. Marriage, or any other significant relationship, is no different. We think it comes from a place of love –– and feel undervalued when our efforts go unrecognized –– when in fact it is a need to control our own anxiety around what they’re dealing with and what it brings up in us that’s driving our efforts. It’s very human, and not very helpful. And this is when I know I need to step away from the pool, or the plate, or whatever metaphor we’re going with, and gain some perspective. Eventually I return to myself, find a lane, and swim on.

sunny side up

September 21, 2022

I met a lady in the pool bleachers yesterday with a fried egg tattooed to her upper arm. It was a stick and poke with tiny lines to emphasize the wrinkles in the egg white. Turns out, she really likes fried eggs and that was reason enough to get one tattooed to her body. “All my friends with tattoos told me not to over think it, and that if I searched for something meaningful, I’d never get one.” Teen tattoos are brilliant (most of the time) because of this very reason. You likely didn’t think about it too much. A Sanskrit symbol, a shooting star, your grandmother’s middle name. If you’ve reached middle age with no tattoo, anything you get will likely be loaded with meaning. At least, you’ll want it to be. It’s why I don’t have one. Because I’ve thought about it too much. Which is why I loved Joyce’s tattoo. “There’s no significance, it was just for fun.” Chances are, she’ll love it for as long as she loves fried eggs. Forever. (arrow through the heart)

bon voyage

September 20, 2022

It’s been a long time since I looked through a kaleidoscope, but Philip Taaffe’s paintings have a similar effect on the eye. With a rich pictorial language infused with symbols and motifs drawn from cultures all over the world, Taaffe’s multi media paintings are a visual feast. Think psychedelic patterns, high wattage colours, and dynamic compositions. “I want a very generous experience [for the viewer of my work]. I want to give the viewer a lot and I want the viewer to feel transported and to feel that I am delivering something from this journey I’ve been on. I want them to feel that,” he says. Here, the lizards look like they’re dancing on a marble effect dance floor and this floral motif (below) looks like a choir of tulips, dahlias and dandelions. His paintings definitely take us somewhere else; to India, to Japan, to the moon.

mid century weave

September 20, 2022

Ann-Mari Forsberg‘s beautiful tapestries are a mix of wool and linen in colours as joyful as the flowers that inspired her. There is a looseness to her patterns, and a sense of whimsy that I am very much drawn to. I know we’re two seasons away from crocus season, but it’s this tapestry that really caught my eye. It’s such a simple and bold design; as eye catching today, as it would have been in 1945.

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