One place I don’t think I’d have considered going to without having it recommended to me is the Chihuly Garden and Glass gallery, right at the base of the Space Needle in Seattle. I’d heard a couple of mentions of it here at work, and also from people in the Seattle area. Although not as focused (I suppose) as the Chihuly museum in Tacoma (were Dale Chihuly is from), it is still a stunning showcase of his design and work.
Much of the time I like to visit museums rather than galleries – I always find the former to be more engaging and the latter to usually be aesthetically pleasing more than anything else. (On occasion I am wrong!) While there’s a little interpretive info in the Chihuly Garden & Glass gallery, mostly you are there to walk among the stunning pieces and to be dazzled. I audibly gasped at many of the pieces. Inside the gallery, bold colours & shapes along with dramatic lighting create an intense experience.
Those sea-creature-esque bowls in one of the last rooms before the garden were possibly my favourite thing. So delicate and rich with pigment. The way they were displayed around the edge of the room like some sort of coral reef was gorgeous. Of course, there were many beautiful and seemingly impossible pieces inside – on the way out, these pieces in the walkway above floated, but I don’t know how the weight was supported!
It is hard to believe how someone could dream these things up, let alone make them! Out in the courtyard/cafe, they have glass blowing demonstrations that gives you an idea of the difficulty and time involved. (It seems like quite a bit! But fascinating to watch.)
I also enjoyed seeing these pieces, design ideas/sketches for glass art from Chihuly:
The more external pieces are equally as stunning in daylight, rather than the spotlights of the gallery. The way every piece is integrated into structures or to the gardens is masterful, and it’s so refreshing to see art presented in this way. I haven’t ever before been so impressed by presentation of installations like this, nor by glass art itself.
I highly recommend a visit if you are ever in Seattle. I had a ticket as part of my Seattle CityPass, and you can also buy combined tickets with the Space Needle, which makes sense given the proximity! Find out about visiting here.
I’m not interested in sending you all out to stuff that is just a big joke, so here’s some for real cool stuff to check out.
Let’s ease into it with this balloon cat. How delightful and static-y.
Now, I know this might seem really pranky, but it’s for real and amazing. Look at the skill.
I’ve just signed up for a bike sharing program here, so I will have to really remember my helmet wherever I go. Gotta say things would be easier with this awesome design. Fold down helmet! Please.
I’m a huge fan of dogs. I’m a huge fan of rescue dogs. So I’m always a huge fan of tactics to help find rescue dogs forever homes, like this wonderful photobooth initiative. Such sweeties.
I know this was released very close to April Fool’s, but Google’s Pacman layover of maps is a super fun thing! I love it when Google make the fun things, whenever it is.
Morbid but beautiful, ‘Memento Mori‘ is a book that documents sacred sites around the world where human skeletons are displayed. The ways that cultures do this the world over is fascinating.
Have you seen those ‘Shot on iPhone 6’ advertisements around? They’re lining the walls of my subway station right now. So I’m kinda in love with this parody of it, “Also Shot On iPhone 6“.
A quick snippet about how sriracha hot sauce is made! I like the sort of hypnotic factory footage. Mmm, bottles of hot.
Not sure how the drone fared with fireworks attached to it, but the results are gorgeous.
The concept and execution of these movie director portraits is incredible! I’d for real hang this David Lynch one.
I know I don’t have the patience for art. I know because I look at incredible stuff like this and figure I’d have a hissy fit 10 minutes in. But look how pretty and detailed! I’m thankful there’s patient artistic people out there. Make sure to click through for the time lapses.
I need one of these for my desk at work. Or at least I need to figure out how I can make one.
Digital dozen – 12 ways to distract yourself with shiny internet things this hump day.
I think if I were to get married, this would be 100% the wedding ring I want. Yep. Adulting!! (via)
Though I’m not a fan of their coffee (it’s my last resort when there’s nothing else coffee..) I do love this Tumblr of Starbucks sleeves sketched on to transform them into awesome portraits.
This design is fantastic!! My keyring’s pretty slim these days but if I had more, I’d be into this.
These tiny creations are so delicate and wonderful. I don’t think I could ever have the patience for them.
I’m constantly amazed at how creative people can be when given a restricted set of materials to use to create something. Design Within Reach have a ‘champagne chair’ contest each year, and these are this year’s winners. Super!
Air safety is no joke.. but these are pretty funny, c’mon.
Pixar artists turns R-rated movies into kid’s book illustrations. GOLDEN.
While we’re in the Disney realm.. here’s some lovely Baymax cosplaying as other Disney characters. The best.
Rain-activated sidewalk art! Of course someone in Seattle made this.
New wave rock stars as Marvel heroes was built for my brain.
Old to new – discarded books carved into art.
Toronto’s currently hosting Douglas Coupland‘s exhibition, shown already to great response in Vancouver, at the Royal Ontario Museum (ROM)* and the Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art (MOCCA). From the exhibition website: Douglas Coupland: everywhere is anywhere is anything is everything includes over 100 works. The exhibition is divided into six themes, four of which are on display at the Royal Ontario Museum (ROM), and two at the Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art (MOCCA).
Everything about the work on display at both venues is so wonderfully vibrant, engaging and visually rich! That is something I just can’t get over, and I’m reminded by browsing the photos I took. Coupland’s quirky way of interacting with and understanding the world is really at the forefront of all of the pieces, and there’s quite a bit of variety. Here’s a few general shots (you can see all my #couplandTO exhibition photos here):
Although there’s much more, I think my favourite pieces at the ROM are the couple following. The slogans are so eye-catching and equal parts ridiculous and insightful. “I miss my pre-internet brain” for sure. And the largest installation piece (at a guess) is the Brain. It’s a carefully constructed mass of objects that Coupland’s been collecting over the years. As the concept and action of collecting is fascinating to me, as well as the idea of ephemera and object history, this is delightful!
Over at MOCCA there’s a little more of a Canadiana feel to the pieces on display. What I especially loved was the idea of representation of regional ‘personalities’ with all the cabinets, the idea of suburbia/conformity vs future structures/collaboration, and also the mixing of introduced cultures into Canadian society. And as I absolutely love the Group of 7 art styles, I was really interested in Coupland’s take on that toward the end of the exhibit, especially Harris’ pieces. A truly eclectic gathering of art and objects that all works incredibly well together, and as a companion to the exhibition at the ROM.
I highly recommend checking out both of the exhibitions, because they truly complement each other. The ROM piece runs until April 26th, and the MOCCA piece until April 19th. Enjoy!
* Full disclosure: I work at the ROM but I am in no way associated with the exhibition beyond that, and I would’ve come to see it anyhow because I’m a super nerd.
Greetings, and welcome to your mid-week round of links and fun distractions.
Here’s a little frog riding a beetle, because what could be better? “Hey guys, look at me!”
Dogs are awesome – obviously – and this 5 minute video gives a great picture of how awesome they are with smelling. It’s amazing seeing the breakdown of biology of how smelling for dogs work. For instance, I had no idea dogs breathe in through their nostrils, but out through small slits on the sides of their nose! Whaaaa!
This app, Pivot, looks pretty awesome. An augmented reality sort of thing, where you can be in a place and see the comparison to how it looked through historical photos. So cool! More info is on their Kickstarter.
Local Toronto artist Daniel Rotsztain is visiting every branch of the Toronto Public Library and drawing them – you can see all the sketches here! I think this is my fave so far:
While it’s a bit hyperbolic and silly and US-centric (tis a Buzzfeed production after all), it’s still interesting to see countries compared by their actual sizes and how much different they look when represented not on the Mercator map projection.
Embroidering scenes as she travels, textile artist Teresa Lim creates beautiful keepsakes. I wish I had the skills to try something like this, they’re like little fabric postcards.
I love the patterns created by this artist pouring paint! Super trippy and colourful. I’d love to have something like that hanging in my apartment.
“Better Book Store Sections” has me crying with laughter. Especially “meals you intend to make but never will”. Yeah.
I said dogs are awesome up there – I have a specific love for pups, but I think all animals are amazing. Check out this tricksy praying mantis that makes itself look like an orchid! Next level shit.
I want this. I want many of them, so I can put all the things in them all over my apartment and my desk at work!
Okay, more awesome animals. Because it’s amazing how much fun these squirrels are having. I mean, really.