japanese art, design and culture

Posts from — October 2007

Furniture from Urban Outfitters

MY ONGOING SOFA SEARCH has led me to an unexpected place; urban outfitters. I’m not sure how I ended up there but it probably had something to do with UO’s affluent older sister, Anthropologie because I have an uncontrolled fetish when it comes to their furniture! Anyway, I was surprised to find some very stylish AND affordable sofas.

sofa1.jpg sofa2.jpg
Antoinette Fainting Sofa ($550)
I love the rounded back, as well as the color. This sofa pushes all the right buttons (pun intended! ;-))

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Mid-Century Sofa ($480)
The reason I like this sofa is because the mid-century inspired frame, paired with an ocerall contemporary sleekness, allows it to be mixed with any style of room.

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Mid-Century Coffee Table ($175)
Although emmiting slight aromas of IKEA, I still like it! I would pair it with the Antoinette Sofa at the top!

October 31, 2007   Comments Off

Entwined Wood by Vivaterra

I WROTE ABOUT ECO-CONCIOUS Vivaterra in a previous post but I just recently discovered this collection of entwined wood furniture that is made from reclaimed roots and trunks of trees. Because of that, no piece is the same! The table ($479)  is a little spooky for my taste but I’m can envision the coat hanger ($259)  in my room.



October 30, 2007   Comments Off

Noteworthy Happenings


10/31/07 – 11/4/07 : 100% Design
100% DESIGN IS AN international exhibit of contemporary interior design. Since its founding in London in 1995, it has grown from a small tent on Kings Road to one of the most influential forums for design, attracting in excess of 75,000 people. If you are in the area I would highly recommend a visit. If not, no worries. I will be posting many pictures next week!

10:00am – 9:00pm | Meiji Jingu Gaien | 2,000 yen

October 29, 2007   1 Comment

Creative Director Simon Wooller

YESTERDAY’S POST ABOUT Saatchi & Saatchi‘s Creative Director Simon Wooler sparked my curiosity. I did a little research, one thing lead to another, and I found these fun series of works that were actually nominated for a 2007 Scandinavian Advertising Award.

The advertisement was for Sprite Zero and these fun and creative folding adds work cleverly with the advertisement’s catch phrase, “NO SUGAR, NO BULL ***T.” Click on the left icon to see what the entire page looks like and then click on the right icon to reveal what it looks like after the fold:

       BEFORE                                             AFTER

1beforehtefold.jpg                        1afterthefold.jpg

       BEFORE                                           AFTER

3beforethefold.jpg                        3afterthefold.jpg

        BEFORE                                          AFTER

4beforetheclose.jpg                        4afterthefold.jpg

October 26, 2007   1 Comment

WWF Paper Towel Dispenser

The design for this paper towel dispenser is nothing short of genius. The cutout of negative space is shaped as South America and the dispenser is filled with green-colored towels. A very telling design that illustrates how we are depleting the country’s resources.


The mastermind behind the project was Simon Wooller from Denmark-based Saatchi & Saatchi, for their client, the World Wildlife Foundation.
(via: i believe in adv)

October 25, 2007   Comments Off

NY Botanical Gardens Shop

The New York Botanical Gardens recently opened an online shop with a strong emphasis on eco-friendly and organic products that range from body lotion to children’s toys and even home decor.

I found some particularly intriguing garden furniture that is accompanied by good and bad aspects. The good: beautiful organic designs that will sooth your spirit and mind. The bad: astronomically ridiculous prices that will shatter your wallet and financial future. Ok, maybe I’m being a bit dramatic but I really don’t see any reason why style has to come with such a price tag.

Water Hyacinth Loveseat ($3,800)
This 2-people loveseat is handcrafted out of water hyacinths, an invasive free floating aquatic plant.
Spoon Liana Vine Chaise ($2,200)
Another eco-friendly chair made from an invasive plant, the liana vine. I love how the randomness of the vines created this curvy shape!

Agua Lounge Chair and Ottoman ($2,200)
Imported from Brazil this chair deviates from the above two as it is crafted out of aluminum and PVC (Polyvinyl chloride) straps.

All these products can be found HERE!

October 24, 2007   Comments Off

Noteworthy Happenings

KYOTO, Japan

10/24/07 – 11/7/07 - Gelatin Silver Session
I wanted to tell everyone about this fantastic show that is opening this week. It’s actually on ongoing project and the last component is happening now! 16 established Japanese photographers decided to get together and do shows/talks/workshops to commemorate the silver gelatin print, a photography process that is quickly being replaced by digitalization. My friend’s father is one of the photographers featured in the show! Unfortunatly the workshops and talks have all concluded but you can still catch the last show!

12:30pm – 8:00pm | ArtZone | FREE


October 22, 2007   Comments Off

Terrariums by Paula Hayes

In my Boesky post earlier this week I briefly mentioned the artist Paula Hayes because one of her terrariums appeared in Boesky’s apartment. Although significantly AFT (after-the-fact), I decided to dedicate a post to these beautiful botanical containers.




These terrariums made a huge splash in the blogosphere in late 2006. You pretty much had every blogger raving about them. And rightly so…they are quite exquisite. However, if you are thinking about how one would be perfect for your room I would suggest going out, buying a glass container, and attempting a DIY project because one of these little ecosystems will cost you $10,000 a pop.

*DIY: a tipster writes, “make sure to place a layer of charcoal at the bottom of the container to prevent bacteria from growing.” Sounds like a good idea.

UPDATE (Oct 19 2008): There are some great tutorials HERE. For materials, there is a comprehensive list of affordable options HERE.

UPDATE (Nov 30 2010): Paula Hayes currently has a few of her terrariums on display at the MoMA! in an exhibition titled “Nocturne of the Limax maximus.” The show runs through Feb 28, 2011.

October 18, 2007   Comments Off

Moma Finds

I received the new 2007 Fall catalog from the Moma Store in the mail last week. It’s been busy so I finally got a chance to browse through it. I’ve never been a huge fan of the ultra-modern but here are a few juicy finds that I couldn’t resist posting!



Adjustable Hook ($40) by Klaus Goebbels, Isabel Hamm, 2006

Use the downward position to hang single items such as a hat, coat, or umbrella. If you need to compare multiple outfits simply reposition upwards for an extended hanger!

Carafe with Lid ($50) by Cecilie Manz, 2006

A slight deviation from her collection of pendant lamps (with traces of similar influences), Danish designer Cecilie Manz created this gorgeously simple carafe that I would love to use as a water pitcher at the dinner table!

Bread Box ($85) by Ben Cox, Bill Holding, 2007

UK designers Ben Cox and Bill Holding (from design studio Morph) created this adorable bread box. I’m not sure what it is with me and bread boxes…. I just think they’re fantastic. Especially this one!

Rnd_Time Clock ($225) by Rnd_Lab, 2005

This unique clock from Italian design studio Rnd_Lab allows you the freedom to position the hour block however you like. When you’re on vacation go ahead and rearrange the clock as abstract as you can!

October 17, 2007   Comments Off

DIY: dental mirrors in the kitchen

I was browsing the the New York Times’ T Magazine when I came across this intriguing picture of a kitchen designed by Kentucky-born architect Paul Rudolph. Actually the entire New York apartment was designed by him but this was the one photo I felt like posting.


Rudolph used dental mirrors to create numbers across the kitchen cabinets. To be honest, I’m not sure how this would look in real life but I thought it was an interesting idea that would give a kitchen that much-needed edge. It guess it doesn’t have to be numbers either. You could create text. That would be dazzling!

October 16, 2007   Comments Off