Month: January 2012

William Morris: Story, Memory, Myth at Two Temple Place

Housed in an extraordinary late Victorian mansion built by William Waldorf Aster, on the Embankment, Two Temple Place is a museum that has only recently been open to the public for exhibitions. From October, and sadly until this weekend, the house played host to a free exhibition on the artist William Morris. The inaugural exhibition, showcasing tapestries, pattern tests and printed tiles, describes how Morris was inspired by poetry, myth and folklore. From Chaucer to Arthurian legends and Greek myths, Morris and many of the Pre-Raphaelites- Edward Burne-Jones included- featured these tales and poems in their work. For myself, it was not so much the tapestries in the exhibition that were interesting, but much more, the hand painted and block printed patterns; some showing the designs in progress with panels half sketched/ half coloured. The building itself provided an extremely apt setting, and as much a reason to see the architecture as to see the exhibition. This seemed readily accepted and utilised by the museum, who provide doubled-sided A4 sheets of information on the architect …

Union Jacks by Blacksheep for Jamie Oliver

London-based design agency Blacksheep have recently completed this British-inspired pizza and flatbread restaurant for celebrity chef Jamie Oliver. Located in the Lego building by Renzo Piano in Central St Giles, the restaurant has a nostalgic vintage feeling, almost like that of an old American diner. Visitors can watch the chefs at work on vintage television sets, whilst beralware-inspired plates have a cheeky message when turned over, stating “stop looking at my bottom”. A large neon sign is balanced atop a cinema style menu board that reads the wood-fired pizzas and toppings, created both by Jamie Oliver and US ‘pizza master’ Chris Bianco. Thought has gone down to every last detail, including objects collected by Jamie on his travels and knitted 1970’s style tea cosies on the cafe tables outside.  Images: Dezeen

A New Discovery.. CO|TE

Meet my latest discovery, design duo Tomaso Anfossi and Francesco Ferrari who make up the new Italian label CO|TE. Think Celine with a mixture of it’s high street equivalent COS. Below are images for their SS12 Collection, which features defined volumes and materials; shirts with feather collars and leather tailoring with accents of orange. Anfossi and Ferrari trained at the formidable Instituto Marangoni in Milan, and site fellow Italian designers as inspiration, particularly Gianni Versace and Miuccia Prada. The woman they design for is certainly one with a fashionable curiosity, “who love to experiment without being ordinary” and one who appreciates the kind of quality only the Italians know how to do best.  Images: CO|TE

House N by Sou Fujimoto Architects

Photographer Iwan Baan has captured this beautifully airy house in Oita, Japan by Sou Fujimoto Architects. Built in 2008, the punctured walls and ceilings create an open living space for a couple and their dog. The house is divided into a series of layers, creating a semi-public indoor garden as well as a more private covered interior space in the centre of the structure.  Images: Dezeen

A Room for London by David Kohn and Fiona Banner

A Room for London by David Kohn and Fiona Banner

var linkwithin_site_id = 519459; Perched on the roof of Queen Elizabeth Hall on the Southbank, A Room for London is an installation by David Kohn Architects and artist Fiona Banner. A design competition was set up by Living Architecture and Artangel, in collaboration with the Southbank Centre to create a temporary room on the hall for two people to spend a unique night on top of a London architectural landmark. As the architects describe; “The proposal is for a boat, perched on the Queen Elizabeth Hall roof, that will appear to have come to rest there, grounded, perhaps, from the retreating waters of the Thames below. The idea evolved from narratives of travel and displacement in literature, in particular Joseph Conrad’s novella ‘Heart of Darkness,’ a story that begins beside the River Thames. The boat takes its name, ‘Roi des Belges’ from the steamboat that Conrad himself captained on the Congo. Visitors to the boat will be invited to create their own narrative by recording their experience on board”. This private, domestic space is anchored …

Style Crush… Lea Seydoux

The enigmatic French model and actress Lea Seydoux, recognisable as ‘that girl’ from Midnight In Paris, is slowly coming into our radar. You may also be familiar with her from the Prada Candy perfume campaign. Or perhaps on the back pages of Vogue UK in this month’s style file. In any case, it’s worth keeping an eye out for her in 2012, even if she does favour Scandinavian Acne jeans over her native A.P.C.