murmuration : a collection of starlings

this murmuration captured by sophie windsor clive takes my breath away.   what an amazing natural phenomena.   simply beautiful.
location : river shannon, ireland

halloween : spiders, critters and bugs

halloween for the babies in sycamore park and we decided the kids needed some bugs and critters next to our chili con carne and cocktails.

summer antiquing : hudson ny

born and raised in upstate new york, my favorite time of year back there is early june–  its the nostalgic combination of the lush green landscape, heavy warm summer air, rolling afternoon thunderstorms and long endless days.  this visit, we spent the day in Hudson checking in at regan and smith antiques and exploring the art, furniture, jewelry and textiles of warren street.  every shop is so well curated– below are a few favorite images and finds.

warren street . details, ornamentum gallery

swedish rag runners, birgit antiques . set of three milo baughman tables, neven moderne

necklace detail, ornamentum galleryneven moderne . mid century parisian bar stools, gris

stacks of bertoia benches, neven moderne . “inlay” . a curule stool, noonan antiques

mccobb table lamps, neven moderne . necklaces, ornamentum gallery . industrial work table, gris

mim design : inspiration for the day

this morning, cw forwarded me the link to mim design as their work reminded him of me.   so sweet and he is right on– from the land of oz, mim creates the most lovely interior environments and their commercial work has great whimsy and use of brand patterning.  love love love.

sunday dinner : strawberries + cream scones

the farmers market is over flowing with strawberries– they are completely gorgeous and delicious.   as my refrigerator is overflowing with berries, i have been craving strawberry shortcake like my mom used to make.  during the summer, she would serve it to us girls for dinner as a special treat.
tonight, i decided to try alice waters or as cw refers to her, pol pot’s recipe.  this reference comes from an anthony bourdain who likened her to the cambodian dictator,  “she’s pol pot in a muumuu. …. she used six cords of wood to cook one egg for lesley stahl.”  i saw that episode of 60 minutes and have to agree that was a completely ridiculous breakfast but i will say that alice water’s the art of simple food is a great cookbook and this dessert came out perfect. so alas back to the subject, the strawberries and cream scones with recipe below….

strawberry shortcake (6 servings) adapted from alice waters’ the art of simple food
ingredients :
strawberry component : 4 cups strawberries, hulled and sliced, 1/4 cup sugar
whipped cream: 1 cup heavy cream, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract, 1 tablespoon sugar, or to taste (i omit)
cream biscuits : 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, 1/4 teaspoon salt, 4 teaspoons sugar (optional), 2 teaspoons baking powder, 6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) cold butter, cut into small pieces, 3/4 cup heavy cream
powdered sugar (optional)
to make:

  • make strawberry component: in a medium bowl, combine the strawberries and sugar.
  • remove 1 cup of the strawberry mixture, and purée it in a blender or food processor. Return the purée to the rest of the strawberries; stir. Set aside at least 15 minutes.
  • make biscuits: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
  • in a large bowl, combine the flour, salt, sugar (if using) and baking powder.
  • cut the butter into the flour with a pastry blender or your fingertips. The pieces should be the size of small peas.
  • measure cream; set aside 1 tablespoon. add the remaining cream to the flour, and stir with a fork until the mixture just comes together. lightly knead the dough a few times in the bowl, turn it out onto a lightly floured board, and roll out about 3/4 inch thick.
  • cut six 2-inch circles or squares out of the dough. reroll the scraps, if necessary.
  • place the biscuits on a baking sheet lined with parchment, and brush the tops with the tablespoon of cream.
  • bake for 17 minutes or until golden and done.
  • make whipped cream: let cool and make whipped cream: In a standing mixer with the whisk attachment, whip together the cream, vanilla and sugar until it starts to form soft peaks.
  • serve: slice the cream biscuits in half. for each biscuit, spoon the strawberry mixture onto the bottom half, and add a dollop of whipped cream. Top with the other biscuit half, and dust it with powdered sugar.

      • wishbone chair : fresh squeezed colors

        designed in 1949, the iconic wishbone chair has been in uninterrupted production since 1950.  now to celebrate the chair’s 60th birthday, carl hansen & son has introduced the chair in a beautiful array of spring colors.  the citrus seat color palette is calm and zingy all at once– so refreshing.

        via cw and me

        barragan + rothko : color + solitude

        recently, i’ve been looking at the work of luis barragan (1902-1988) and i am completely into his extraordinary sense for color which he executed in massive, saturated architectural planes.   considered the most important mexican architect of the 20th century, he uses color and light to define spaces that are both minimal and spiritual.   barragan once said, only in intimate communion with solitude may man find himself. solitude is good company and my architecture is not for those who fear or shun it.  his work and his belief’s are reminiscent of the work of the abstract expressionist, mark rothko.   also active in the mid 1900s, rothko’s color field paintings evoke a similar spiritual feeling.  i have experienced standing in front of many of rothko’s life-size canvases and would now love to visit some of barragans. simply stunning …..

        barragan, barragan house, tacubaya, mexico city, 1940-43.
        mark rothko, untitled, c.1950-52, tate modern london.
        barragan, chapel in tlalpan, mexico city, 1954-60.
        mark rothko, orange and yellow, 1956.
        barragan, cuadra san cristobal, los clubes,  mexico city, 1954-60.
        mark rothko,  white center, 1950.  private collection.
        barragan, galvez house, chimalistac, mexico city, 1955.
        mark rothko, untitled, 1953, national gallery of art.
        barragan, gilardi house, chapultec, mexico city, 1975.
        mark rothko,  earth and green, 1955.

        no longer emotionally detached

        i have been the worst.  so for all you readers out there who check in with me and for cw, i vow to be a better blogger.    to get back in the game, a quick post linking to the most humerous blog of the moment, unhappy hipsters– mocking the trend toward emotionally detached models in architectural photography, unhappy hipsters give a voice to these upwardly mobile yet marginalized dwell“ers.

        caption left : He tried to focus on the novel, and not how much his bedroom reminded him of a plywood coffin. [photo: dwell magazine, november 2009]
        caption right : Not on the grass, Sweetie. Never. On. The. Grass. See how much fun Daddy is having? [photo: jack thompson, dwell, october 2009]

        dining with frogs

        the ever talented hella jongerius‘ table grenouille for galerie kreo in paris depicts a life size human or mythical size frog dipped in blue enamel.  i dont think i would appreciate dining with the frog everyday but i appreciate her whimsy.  the combination of the frog and the simple table form reminded me of droog’s “godogan” table– a minimal walnut plank table that has a been hand carved to illustrate an indonesian fairy tale about a frog that turns into a prince. the amazingly intricate design which is hand crafted in indonesia is continued across the table top as a laser etching.  pretty amazing, right?
        grenouille table, 2009. limited edition of 8 pieces + 2 A.P. + 2 prototypes. photos from galerie kreo, paris

        godogan table, 2006 by niels van eijk & miriam van der lubbe, edited by droog. photos from hedge gallery, san francisco

        richard wright : turner prize 2009

        the 2009 winner of the prestigous turner prize is glaslow based artist, richard wright.  having seen his work, i am drawn to the intensity and subtle nature of his installations.  wall painting is the core of his practice and while some might dismiss his works as purely decorative, his interest in the ephemeral and site specificity is what makes his art so amazing.  for the turner prize, wright created a gold fresco at the tate modern which will be painted over at the end of the month.  inspired by his childhood memories of trips to the tate– from a distance, one sees abstract designs but upon closer inspection, there are shapes that suggest angels, sunbursts and clouds recalling the turner landscapes and blake watercolors that can be seen elsewhere in the gallery, it will soon be a memory.  “I am interested in the fragility of the moment of engagement in heightening that moment,” wright said. to see a work knowing that it will not last, “emphasises that moment of its existence”.
        untitled, 2009. gold fresco, tate modern london
        untitled [detail], 2008. photo: gagosian gallery, london/new york, the modern institute/toby webster ltd, glasgow, and BQ, berlin

        untitled, 2007. black gouache on ceiling and walls at 26 london street, edinburgh. photo: ruth clark
        untitled 2007. photo: gagosian gallery, london/new york, the modern institute/toby webster ltd, glasgow, and BQ, berlin
        untitled, 2005. red gouache and enamel painting at the gagosian gallery, new york. photograph: katie collins/PA