Artist: Patrick Dougherty

Artist Work: Patrick Dougherty

These “weed trees” by Patrick Dougherty  are just a few of the amazing art works produced over his many years as a “stick artist”.  His work has graced various outdoor and indoor spaces since 1988 when the artist first started creating these massive tree sculptures.  I love all things nest-like and these fit right into this unique category, the good news is that we can all enjoy the works of Patrick this summer when he begins a massive instillation at the Brooklyn Botanical gardens starting August 1st, 2010.

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Apartment Becomes Art Space

I spent most of my free time in the last month cleaning up a long-neglected apartment in south Tel Aviv with a group of fellow artists. We patched the many craters in the crumbling walls, hauled away mountains of trash left by past tenants, painted everything white, and built a dividing wall in the kitchen.

Salame 97 Before

before

after

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Interior design inspiration – Claire Basler

I have to admit it. Lately I’ve been in a rut. I haven’t found anything I loved while looking at my favorite design sites, perusing my preferred shelter magazines on the stands or even going to my chosen home stores. It just felt like everything I’ve been looking at is the same and I’m bored with it. I’m not all that interested in mid-century modern. It doesn’t suit my house and it’s ridiculously expensive in Israel. So I stopped looking at it all. And I lost a bit of myself. I stopped writing. And I missed it.

Then I went to get my hair cut and in my girlfriend’s salon were three new shelter magazines – Elle Decor (US), Elle Decoration (UK) and House and Garden (UK). The first and last were meh – but the Elle Decoration, well… I just couldn’t put it down. Especially because of an article on the French artist Claire Basler. Her home is her studio and the artwork was so amazing, as was the space. I just wanted to transport myself there.  I loved it so much I finally felt compelled to write again and show her work to all of you.

I’m not one who goes gaga over artists – but there’s something about Claire’s work. It has such – would it be silly to say ethereal quality? Because that’s the word that comes to mind when I see her work.

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The Power of a Painting

What is the one decorative piece in your home that makes you smile every time you see it? Maybe it’s a luxurious cashmere throw an extra-special person gave you, or a status-symbol object emblazoned with your favorite logo. Or maybe it’s that thrift store chair you picked up for a song and gave it a cover-worthy makeover.  For me, it’s this painting:

Ashley Saer painting

C. Flower 2, Ashley Saer

When we moved into our house in August 2006, one of the first things I did while painting over all those pink walls was paint the oddly shaped hallway/pod a fun blue (Enchantment by Behr, by the way) to break up the expanse of white walls all around. We hung a few things that would fit on the narrow walls that made up the space, but the wider wall at the end of the hallway remained blank until later that fall. Because whatever would eventually occupy that space had to be special.

I first saw the painting, C. Flower 2 by Arkansas artist Ashley Saer, on the invitation to an upcoming fall show at interior designer Tobi Fairley’s shop-gallery combo, now known as Tobi Fairley Gallery. As soon as the colorful card came across my desk, I was transfixed by the trio of bouquet oil paintings that decorated it, but particularly this one—the textural, abstract blooms, the varied background hues of my favorite color…and the vase. Especially the vase, because it was virtually the same color as the walls. Clearly all of these things indicated that this was meant to be. Having worked with Saer in the past, I’d long-admired her work, and this was the perfect piece to start a collection with.

The night of the show, I was so happy to see that “sold” sticker next to my new painting, which couldn’t come home with me yet, as it was still not entirely dry. But I was able to pick it up a couple of days later, and I was so excited to finally get it home and see how it looked in what is now officially known as the pod gallery. And as you can see, it is perfect, as if it were commissioned just for that spot.  And any time I look at it, I’m immediately cheered up by the brilliant color scheme and the beautifully textured blooms. Of every piece in our small but pretty great collection of art by Arkansas artists, I know this will always be my favorite.

New store concept: New people, San Francisco

New People Store Floor, art by Yuichi Yokoyama

My recent visit to SanFrancisco introduced me to an interesting venue designed by Japanese designer Seiji Horibuchi.  New People  is not just a store, it’s a mini mall in the heart of Japan Town that is filled with the finest in Japanese conceptual art.  The four floors of wondrous finds took seven years to actualize.  The most interesting thing about the place is that it is not just a shopping experience, there is a cafe, art gallery, movie theater and a store all in one space.  The space is a reflection of modern Japanese culture.

New People Entrance

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Street scapes: San Francisco

The Mission district in the city of  San Francisco, California is chock full of street art.  So much so that I could not resist taking these photos if not for the pattern then for the colors, wow, such wonderful combinations abound.  This “Eyes of Buddah” garage door is just a hoot.  I am seriously in love with this idea. 

Most of the art is painted boldly on the front of the buildings and some of it is done in narrow alleyways.  Anyway you slice it, this stuff is simply amazing.

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ksut – chic coverups

Photo courtesy of designer

My friend suggested I go visit KSUT in Carmei Yosef, 35km (22mi) south-east of Tel-Aviv – a beautiful spot in the Judean foothills.  She thought I’d love the textile studio. And she was right.

Edit Kaplan Friedberg is unique among many designers and people. She is charming, amicable and modest. However her creations are outstanding. Fabric sculpture that you can wear if you are brave enough, if not display it in your home. Continue reading

Fabric Tales by Noa Eshkol

A new exhibition of large tapestries entitled “Sipurei Badim” (a play on the Hebrew words: fabrics tell stories meaning Fairy Tales) by the extraordinary multidisciplinary Israeli artist (and dancer):  Noa Eshkol opened at the Tefen Industrial Park.

Fortunately I happened to be in the north (of Israel) before the opening date. So I could take my time snapping away without anyone in the way. My only time constraint was my husband’s eagerness to go to the Car Collection next door. But who knows maybe he’ll do a guest post one day. Continue reading

Tchochkes road show: Who is David Pelbam?

Rabbi Painting by Artist David Pelbam

Two weeks ago I happened upon the painting shown above at my local thrift shop.  When I first saw it I chuckled because the town where I live is not overly Jewish and as a matter of fact there are two prominent churches quit near each other in the town center.  I put it aside and did not think twice, but when I paid a visit to the thrift shop yesterday the painting had been shoved into A dark corner and had been reduced from $20.00 to $10.00 and so I purchased it.   I originally bought it for the frame but after a bit of research I found that I had an authentic work of art done by a local Rhode Island painter by the name of David Pelbam sometime between 1950-1960.

There is not much information available about this artist but apparently he was born in 1932 and was best known for painting portraits of dock workers, ship captains and rabbis, go figure.

If anyone knows anything about the artist or the rabbi featured above I would love to know more.  For the time being he is hanging in my living room.

Shadow Play – Happy 2010!

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

I can’t believe it’s 2010! It seems like a fictional number to me. But it is 2010, and a new year has started.

So, to start the new year with inspiration, light and beauty I decided to review a particularly inspiring artist – Adam Frank. Frank is an internationally known artist and designer who works with light and shadows. For someone who loves photography, this idea is very interesting to me and the mere concept of working with light and shadow as materials for artwork and design is fascinating.

Aside from his captivating installations which can be viewed on his website, Mr Frank has 2 main products for sale: Lumen and Reveal.

Lumen is a series of oil lamp shadow projectors made of acid etched stainless steel. I really loved these.

When they burn, the shadows flicker and move organically on the wall.

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