Tag Archive | Bauhaus

Eye On Design: Bauhaus Table Lamp

Bauhaus Table Lamp
All Photos By Gail

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.

Bauhaus Table Lamp

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.

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Video Clip of The Week: Deaf Radio, “Anytime”



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!

Deaf Radio Anytime

Moholy-Nagy: Future Present at the Guggenheim NY

Moholy-Nagy Three Globes
All Photos By Gail. All Text By The Guggenheim Museum

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.

Moholy-Nagy 4 Pictures

Moholy-Nagy Plastic Form

Walter Gropius invited him to join the faculty at the Bauhaus school of art and design, where Moholy-Nagy taught in Weimar and Dessau in the 1920s. In 1937, he was appointed to head the New Bauhaus in Chicago; he later opened his own School of Design there (subsequently renamed the Institute of Design), which today is part of the Illinois Institute of Technology.

Moholy-Nagy

Moholy-NagyAmong Moholy-Nagy’s radical innovations were his experiments with camera-less photographs (which he dubbed photograms); his unconventional use of industrial materials in painting and sculpture; experiments with light, transparency, space, and motion across mediums; and his work at the forefront of abstraction, as he strove to reshape the role of the artist in the modern world. Moholy-Nagy: Future Present features paintings, sculptures, collages, drawings, prints, films, photograms, photographs, photomontages, projections, documentation, and examples of graphic, advertising, and stage design drawn from public and private collections across Europe and the United States.

Manifesto

Room of The Present

On display in the museum’s High Gallery is Room of the Present (Raum der Gegenwart), a contemporary fabrication of an exhibition space conceived of by Moholy-Nagy in 1930, but not realized in his lifetime.

Room of The Present

Light Prop for an Electric Stage
Light Prop for an Electric Stage

On view for the first time in the United States, the large-scale work contains photographic reproductions and design replicas as well as his kinetic Light Prop for an Electric Stage (Lichtrequisit einer elektrischen Bühne, 1930; recreated 2006). Room of the Present illustrates Moholy-Nagy’s belief in the power of images and the significance of the various means with which to view and disseminate them — a highly relevant paradigm in today’s constantly shifting and evolving technological world.

Room of The Present

Interior Elevation

This is a massive retrospective with lots to see and learn about the genius of László Moholy-Nagy. Here are a few more photos from this must-see show!

Three Pictures Black Backgrounds

Two Pictures

Ad From London Underground
Ad For The London Underground Circa 1936 – 37

Moholy-Nagy

Moholy-Nagy Pins Detail
Detail from Above Work

Moholy-Nagy

László Moholy-Nagy is a central figure in the history of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum. In 1929, Solomon R. Guggenheim and his advisor, German-born artist Hilla Rebay, began collecting his paintings, works on paper, and sculpture in depth for the Guggenheim’s growing collection of nonobjective art. His work held a special place at the Museum of Non-Objective Painting — the forerunner of the Guggenheim Museum — where a memorial exhibition was presented shortly after his untimely death in 1946.

Moholy-Nagy

Moholy-Nagy: Future Present Runs Through September 7th, 2016 at the Guggenheim Museum, Located at 1071 Fifth Ave at 89th Street, NYC.

Moholy Nagy Gift Shop

Video Clip of The Week: Publicist UK, “Away”



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!

Publicist UK Band Photo
Publicist UK Band Photo By Scott Colby

Video Clip of The Week: Wray, “Relative”



I’ll tell you, what I like right away about this highly atmospheric video from Birmingham, Alabama’s Wray is the simple setting: just the band playing against a projection screening in a big, empty warehouse lit only by strobes and a few scattered light effects. I feel like I’m watching them perform at my own private rave!

The sound that this trio captures for the single “Relative” is the pure essence of ’80s arty post punk ala Wire Train and Bauhaus. I don’t think that there is higher praise to be given than that type of comparison at this time when mediocrity is feted and style is celebrated of substance every step of the way. Perhaps a bit of of the credit for Wray’s awesomeness is owed to engineer Daniel Farris (Man Or Astro-man?, St. Vincent, Polyphonic Spree, Verbena) but he certainly couldn’t add such a glorious sheen on top of a sound that wasn’t brilliant to begin with.

Catch Wray playing live during the CMJ Music Festival at New York City’s Lit Lounge on October 22nd! Enjoy!

Wray Band
Wray is David Brown, Blake Wimberly and David Swatzell

Video Clip of The Week: Destruction Unit, “The Holy Ghost”



Well now. There isn’t much I don’t love about this simultaneously frightening and compelling, and all-together intriguingly atmospheric video for “The Holy Ghost” from Destruction Unit. I mean, you’ve got your deep and apparent influences from the likes heavy aural gloom masters Killing Joke and Bauhaus (check and check) and the drummer — who, by the way, is a total badass on the kit — gets serious bonus points for wearing a Brian Jonestown Massacre T-Shirt. I love this band! “Holy Ghost” is the brand new single from Destruction Unit’s latest CD, Deep Trip, on Sacred Bones Records. The band is currently on tour in Europe. Enjoy!


Destruction Unit Deep Trip Cover Art

Video Clip of the Week: The Garden, “What We Are”


For this weeks’ Video Clip, we have an amazing discovery with The Garden, a garage rock duo with both punk and goth leanings made up of 19-year-old identical twin hotties Wyatt and Fletcher Shears. You know that I am way past the stage where I am swayed by a pretty face, but these guys have so much more going for them than the model-quality good looks that won them an Yves Saint Laurent ad campaign without them even trying. Most importantly, their music does not suck! With just bass (Wyatt) and drums (Fletcher), they manage to conjure the dark recesses of Bauhaus Meets Iggy Pop, and who could find fault wit that? Answer: no one.

These guys have quite a musical pedigree as well, being the spawn of OC Punk royalty, namely Steven Shears, drummer for long-running group Shattered Faith, an Orange County fixture since 1978! Punk Rock! Schooled on the aggressive sounds of bands like Saccharine Trust, The Minutemen and Killing Joke, The Garden still remember to “Do the Song,” as I like to say.

The above clip for “What We Are” is comprised of a montage of graphics and still shots from the Saint Laurent campaign – nice! The Garden’s debut album, The Life And Times Of A Paperclip was released on July 23rd and can be purchased for download at This Link.

See an alternate version of the video below. Enjoy!