Brintons Blokwerk

I am very happy to announce my new collection for Brintons: Blokwerk. This is the first of a series of posts to talk about how a collection is born. I have loved Di Stijl for a lifetime, movements that sweep from Architecture, to furniture, to graphic design and painting. They have as much to do with sociology, innovative production techniques, politics and original thought, as much as they have to do with art.

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“The secret of art is to improve on nature, the secret of design is to improve on industry.”

-Voltaire

love organizational systems. Take a look at these paintings by Theo Van Doesburg, a designer I am obsessed by. Beautifully organized, a hybrid of art and graphic design. Oddly not as well known as he is influential.  For me he was big influence as a starting point.

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composition-xxii-1922.jpg!Blog

 

the big steal

In the design world, ideas cross pollinate and that’s what moves design forward, occasionally I see an invisible line crossed. I saw these great watches from the company Uniform http://uniformwares.com/ featured in Design Milk. The company features great design. They looked familiar and I remembered the great Arne Jacobsen watch from the 1050′s. You be the judge. http://www.rosendahl-timepieces.com/Arne%20Jacobsen%20Wrist%20watches-3034.aspx?ProductID=Datasheet83

Steal from the greats but credit them!

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Blade!

I am really excited to announce my work will be included at Blade in Boston, started by my friend Paul English. It is going to be the coolest place in the world. Paul is an intellectually generous and visionary thinker. The architects are Act Two. I’m working with Ryan Decker http://www.actwoarch.com/ Also involved is the amazing One Mighty Roar http://onemightyroar.com/ These young people are the design future and I am thrilled to play a small part in that. I am obsessed with the idea of pattern becoming 3-D space and the invisible architecture of connections becoming a solid.

http://www.boston.com/business/technology/innoeco/2013/08/kayak_co-founder_paul_english.html

They chose my sexiest patterns….

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Isabella Blow in London

Just got back from London, saw many great things. At The Somerset House was a great show on Isabella Blow http://www.somersethouse.org.uk/visual-arts/isabella-blow-fashion-galore

Never being sure what a muse really did, the show blew me away. She discovered Alexander McQueen. Phillip Tracy and others and pulled together a new design sensibility that was uniquely London. Here’s what she had to say on McQueen; ”

“What attracted me to Alexander was how he takes ideas from the past and sabotages them to make them thoroughly new and in the context of today.”

In UK, design tradition is very strong, he and Vivian Westwood “sabotage” a sensibility without leaving a world of fine craft, fabric and cut. Sadly, her only success, if you can call it that, was on her her seventh suicide attempt, by drinking weed killer. As she said “everyone else got the deals, all I got was a dress….but what dresses they are.

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Carthamus Pink

Wear your love like heaven.

I was doing some research on my long lost love; carthamus pink. A Windsor Newton Gouache discontinued years ago. the dye derived from safflowers http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Safflower Discontinued not because of toxicity but because the color is highly fugitive, fading when exposed to light. Are great loves damned by the God’s to be fugitive?

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I was right that it’s a dye which is why it stains my fingers, but not on it’s toxicity. It’s an ancient natural due, one of the earliest known pigments derived from safflower. I’d thought it was an aniline synthetic dye http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aniline  considered to be toxic.

Carthamus acid is the natural dye used to make the lovely carthamus pink. The safflower gives her the beautiful warm pink undertone which is impossible to duplicate. She has an even more beautiful sister, Rose Carthmene, a beauty so mythological and fragile she can never come out during the daytime and can only be seem in fleeting glimpses in the evening. Songs have been written about her beauty. I’ve only seen her only once, many years ago and think about her all the time.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wear_Your_Love_Like_Heaven.

Color in sky, prussian blue

Scarlet fleece changes hue

Crimson ball sinks from view

Wear your love like heaven (Wear your love)

Lord, kiss me once more

Fill me with song

Allah, kiss me once more

That I may, that I may

Wear my love like heaven (Wear my love like)

Color sky, havana lake

Color sky, rose carmethene

Alizarin crimson

Wear your love like heaven (Wear your love like)

Lord, kiss me once more

Fill me with song

Allah, kiss me once more

That I may, that I may

Wear my love like heaven (Wear my love like)

Cannot believe what I see

All I have wished for will be

All our race proud and free

Wear your love like heaven (Wear your love like)

Wear your love like heaven (Wear your love like)

Wear your love like heaven (Wear your love)

Lord, kiss me once more

Fill me with song

Allah, kiss me once more

That I may, that I may

Wear my love like heaven (Wear my love like)

Wear my love like heaven (Wear my love)

Carmine

Carmine

 

LA Constructs The Future

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http://www.getty.edu/art/exhibitions/overdrive/

I am really loving LA.

I was just in LA debuting my collection for the new Korseal Digital Studio and I saw this show at The Getty. As an east coast designer it’s sometimes hard to make a statement without a nod to the past. Aren’t the hipsters really a victorian revival, a modern version of a romanticized past?

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What was fascinating to me is LA really has no past, their past is a yearning for tomorrow “the city of the future.” A utopian vision that has lured generations of people to CA in the post war years and designers and architects had to make that new life, a place to live and a person to be. It was refreshing and invigorating to be in a city that is making a new future. The design firms were filled with young people, the restaurants were great, the people are amazingly good looking (it is LA after all.) DOMA and Prop 8 were repealed while I was there and the whole town was in a state of celebration, as was I.

The show included Pierre Konig drawings and plans, one of my favorite post war architects. A great week.

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Washington post!

Thank you Katherine Salant and The Washington Post for this wonderful shout out!

“For a singularly bold statement, Rhode Island School of Design professor Oren Sherman’s digitally printed wallpaper is also intended as a feature wall, or, as he put it, “to be the star of the show.” The patterns are 52 inches wide and feature large areas of bold color in organic, floral shapes; the patterns can also be custom-colored. Sherman’s collection will be available in June.”

http://www.washingtonpost.com/realestate/to-transform-a-space-try-new-paint-or-wallpaper/2013/04/18/763bd388-9c8a-11e2-9bda-edd1a7fb557d_story_1.html

George Stavrinos

Today I am paying tribute to the great artist and fashion illustrator George Stavrinos. His work has been on my mind lately. He was at RISD just before my time. In my early days as an illustrator I would wait for the NY Times every Sunday to see his amazing full page artwork for Bergdorf Goodman. He brought back a drawing style from the golden age of illustration and a new narrative into fashion illustration. The look was exactly right for the mood of the late 1970′s  return to glamour. He left us too young but his beautiful work remains.