Landscape

Rick Poynor
Exposure: American Hermit by Alec Soth
Alone in the great outdoors


Rick Poynor
Exposure: The Colossi of Memnon by Francis Bedford
Mysterious emanations from the desert



John Thackara
Food As A Commons
People go hungry not because of a shortage of production, but because the food available is too expensive, or they lack the land to grow it on. In California, the prototype of a combined social, political and technical solution has been launched which promises to unlock the food system crisis.


Alexandra Lange
Mariana Griswold Van Rensselaer, Freelancer
One of the incidental pleasures of Judith Major’s new book on pioneering architecture critic Mariana Griswold Van Rensselaer is the glimpse it gives into the life of a cultural journalist at the turn of the past century.


Alexandra Lange
A World of Paste and Paper
Today's obsession with digital renderings sparked two exhibitions that suggest a handmade, but far from quaint, corrective.


Rick Poynor
David Maisel and the Apocalyptic Sublime
David Maisel’s photographs are visions of the Earth as we have never seen it full of beauty and terror.



Observed
Change of State
"Change of State" — a site specific projection on the facade of the New Museum during Ideas City Festival, Saturday, May 4th, 2013.


Alexandra Lange
Portlandia + Timelessness
No better place to consider what looks timeless now than downtown Portland.



Observed
Flickr Collection of the Week: Signs of Pittsburgh
Bright cursive hope and rust-covered despair, sigils of titans and corner store shingles, the quick and the decaying done for, encomiums to vanished glory and the name of an immortal beer-and-a-shot bar.


Alexandra Lange
Patterns of Houston
How do you critique the urbanism of Houston? Look for patterns.


Rob Walker
What Are You Looking At?
The maps of the future will tell you what to look at. Sometimes, you should look elsewhere.


Rob Walker
13 Striking Landscape Fictions
Thirteen “landscape fictions,” photographs of the natural world — made distinctly unnatural.


Alexandra Lange
Hiking the Museum
Ennead Architects’ new Natural History Museum of Utah works to make natural history seem like the ongoing process of discovery that it is, layering geology and topography, paleontology and interactivity.


Rob Walker
Observational Instruments, Observed
Peeping at the Venue project's delightful gear, and Google's Seussian Trekker


Alexandra Lange
The Well-Tempered Environment
Water features, old trees, food trucks. Three elements of the architecture of outdoor civic life in North Texas.


Alexandra Lange
Decorating Brutalism: The Interiors of Kevin Roche
How do you decorate a brutalist building? For architect Kevin Roche, the answer was brown, mirrors, and trees.


Alexandra Lange
Lessons from the High Line
How can the High Line become a new paradigm, and not a dead end?



Barbara Flanagan
The Dissing of Summer Lawns
How one Californian was forced (and inspired) to exchange sod for low-water plants.


Alexandra Lange
Jane Austen, Landscape Architect
Trapped by a ha-ha: bad romance and good landscapes in Mansfield Park.


Alexandra Lange
Jane Austen, Architect?
Why is Austen next to Ballard on the Designers & Books lists?


Alexandra Lange
Muddying the Waters
Explore New York's watery edges with the graduating class at D-Crit.



Julie Lasky
DesigNYC, Round 2
Report on second round of pro bono design initiatives fostered by DesigNYC.



Jason Orton
Tinder Boxes




Hal Clifford, and Jason Houston
Stone River: The Passion of Jon Piasecki
Landscape architect Jon Piasecki, talks about nature, the woods, and a recent multi-year stone works project in New York State — Stone River



William Drenttel, and Jon Piasecki
The Stonework of Jon Piasecki
"Stone construction is one of the most enduring traces of human activity. Any effort to quarry, cut and stack it is one that requires a powerful incentive, extensive planning and specialized skill." The Stone River project of Jon Piasecki.



Justin Partyka
The East Anglians
Image from photographer Justin Partyka's series, The East Anglians, about the decline of rural culture in the UK.



Karrie Jacobs
A Thousand Points on Light: Part I
Debate between lighting designer Leni Schwendinger and Dark-Sky advocate Susan Harder about proper illumination of urban, suburban and rural environments.



Jason Orton
Going Coastal
Photo of Holliwell Point, Essex County, England by Jason Orton.



Observed | August 31

Swiss Style Now provides a current view of the graphic design scene in Switzerland from the last five years and features more than 120 works from different generations of Swiss designers. [MB]

In Brisbane, Australia: Social Buttons is a permanent interactive typographic installation facilitating social interaction for older affordable housing tenants. [JH]

Humanitarian interventions lead a long list of fascinating and futuristic design ideas at the London Design Museum. [JH]

More design festivals: in Shanghai and Detroit. [JH]


Observed | August 30

License plate redesign fail in Oklahoma: their state bird—the scissor-tailed flycatcher—has a symbolic role in Native American culture, but here, looks more like the Twitter logo. [JH]

It’s the start of design festival season: in London, Istanbul—and Anchorage! [JH]

Relatives of late president Dwight D. Eisenhower think that Frank Gehry’s proposed memorial design is too extravagant. A design stalemate between a family, the US House Appropriations Committee, and now—Congress. [JH]

Tactical urbanism: coming soon to a city near you. [MB]

Proving that they are brave as well as brilliant, who better than the Italians to redesign, um, cow poop? [JH]


Observed | August 29

3D printed garments at the U of Hertfordshire + a dress literally worth its weight in salt. [JH]

British artist Sarah Crake looks at the intersection of the biological and the bibliographic, excavating (and visualizing) the bacteria on a 1735 copy of Ovid’s Metamorphoses. [JH]

In Greenville, designers are linked directly with manufacturers and suppliers in real time, in what General Electric calls a “digital thread.” This means they can collaborate in ways that have changed the work process while making it more likely that problems or defects are spotted sooner. [JH]

"Sitting up: a brief history of chairs", by Witold Rybczynski. [MB]

"Stanford Business School will offer a two-week class in 2017 co-taught by media personality Tyra Banks focused on “building and protecting a personal brand.” [MB]

"I decided that that was where I wanted to be: this is modern, this is new, this is everything.” Jane Thompson, the writer and design theorist who brought modernism to American shopping, has died at 89. [MB]


Observed | August 26

Two conferences on design and health: the Transform Conference, at the Mayo Clinic and this October at Cornell, a symposium on Hospitality, Health and Design. [JH]

New museum explores the relationship of possession to loss, the madness inherent in love, and the undeniable importance of the individual’s voice in recording and interpreting history and its sweep. [JH]

Design first. Act later. [JH]

Smart design in The Hague leads to an actual conviction. Maybe design can save the world after all? [JH]


Observed | August 25

Great discoveries in the annals of UI: boosting empathy through Botox? (Yes, you read that right.) [JH]

In Washington, Federal agencies are starting to use design thinking to creatively address mission objectives and improve processes. (Not sure whether this is a good thing.) [JH]

Open to any resident of one of the 16 UNESCO “Cities of Design”a design competition focused on eliminating homelessness. [JH]

Design as a synonym for feelings? Forbes India says so. [JH]

The Rational Dress Society introduces Jumpsuit, an ungendered, multi-use monogarment for everyday wear. [MB]

Sci-fi typography obsessives, look no further! [JH]


Observed | August 24

177 film critics from around the world pick the 100 greatest films of the 21st century (so far). [MB]

Collage is cool again. (Was it ever not?) A new book from Thames and Hudson tells us why. [JH]

The amazing Anne Trubek on handwriting, and why it matters. [JH]

Susan Gardner started "gluing things" to the front of her Cobble Hill home as a therapeutic exercise after 9/11. Fifteen years later, it’s a Brooklyn landmark. [MB]

Boston’s Museum of Science announces a design competition launched by the U.S. Department of Defense. [JH]



Jobs | August 31