An annual favorite NYC design event is now behind us for the year, but you can bet I’ll be featuring many of the most spectacular pieces of art furniture from The Salon Art + Design in these pages in the coming weeks. Let’s kick off with a unique chair from Berlin-based, Bauhaus educated, multi-disciplinary designer Hannes Grebin, who has created upholstered seating inspired by questioning traditional domestic decor. Applying the principals of Cubism to design, Grebin masterfully deconstructs the traditional shapes and detailing of a ‘Dad’s Chair’ into simplified geometric shapes and interlocking planes. Presenting The Cozy Chair!
The Bauhaus, an art and design school founded in Germany in 1919, trained it students to work with industrial producers to manufacture affordable household objects that exemplified efficient design. Bauhaus designers found inspiration in pure geometric forms, and American designers quickly adopted this aesthetic, radically paring objects down to basic shapes that were easy to fabricate mechanically.
The stacked cylinders of this Table Lamp (1935) evoke the moving cogs of machinery and exemplify the simplified beauty of industrial, everyday modernism.
Photographed the Metropolitan Museum of Art in NYC.
As we continue to creep as slowly as possible towards the day when Americans will either vote to dodge the world’s biggest bullet and move forward with progress, or just blow up the fucking world, it’s almost comforting to indulge the feelings of impending doom with the seductive, atmospheric dirge that is Deaf Radio’s “Anytime” — a song so good, it almost hurts.
Hailing from Athens, Greece, Deaf Radio (seriously, what a great name) serve up four all-killer-no-filler minutes of lush, woozy minor chord gloom with a tune that’s favorably reminiscent of Bauhaus — all menacing and alluring simultaneously — as well as one of my absolute favorite obscure bands from California, Starflyer 59 (if you are as fond of that band’s 1999 album, Everybody Makes Mistakes as I am, you probably have little stiffy right now). Visually, “Anytime” is a hallucinatory fever dream of enigmatic and captivating random images that tease and taunt. Personally, I want to know what is up with that sink full of Goldfish. “Anytime” is the first single from Deaf Radio’s upcoming album Alarm, which is due this winter, so keep your ears open for that action, because I bet it’s just insane. Like Deaf Radio on the FaceBook at This Link. Enjoy!
László Moholy-Nagy (b. 1895, Borsód, Austria-Hungary; d. 1946, Chicago) believed in the potential of art as a vehicle for social transformation, working hand in hand with technology for the betterment of humanity. A restless innovator, Moholy-Nagy experimented with a wide variety of mediums, moving fluidly between the fine and applied arts in pursuit of his quest to illuminate the interrelatedness of life, art, and technology. An artist, educator, and writer who defied categorization, he expressed his theories in numerous influential writings that continue to inspire artists and designers today. Continue reading Moholy-Nagy: Future Present at the Guggenheim NY
I find that, more often than seems to make sense, a very melancholy, gloom-tinged song can also be simultaneously uplifting. Maybe that only works if you are already a happy person at your core. I don’t pretend to have any answers regarding such philosophical matters; I speak only for myself. This week’s Video Clip — which is called “Away” by an American band called Publicist UK — fully embraces a super dark and foreboding vibe, and yet it also feels exhilarating: kind of what you might experience if you sensed the unavoidable approach of a bad break up with a person you loved, and yet knew in your heart was a total asshole. Because, with the pain there would also come an overwhelming sense of relief that could not be denied. Now that is a situation I can definitely speak directly to. But we are not talking about me.
On “Away”, vocalist Zachary Lipez explores what might happen if Scott Walker listened to Lloyd Cole’s “Perfect Skin” about a hundred million billion times and then decided to cover a lost Bauhaus song. Yes, it is that great. The song shifts aurally from tranquil to super heavy around the 3-minute mark without ever losing focus on the melody, while finely-nuanced drumming by Dave Witte (who also drums for Burnt By The Sun) serves the song while showcasing his exceptional percussive talents. Win win!
Visually, the clip opts for impressionism over realism, transitioning between grainy, black and white stills, stop motion, and action snippets, interspersing a fun recurring op-art effect of rapidly pulsating concentric red and black targets, all of which create dynamic visual engagement. I like it.
“Away” comes from Publicist UK’s debut album, Forgive Yourself, which you can digitally pre-order right now via Bandcamp and physically own on or after its release date of August 21st. Relapse Records is handling distribution. Enjoy!