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.

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.

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 | March 23

Designer Paw Poulsen turns celebrities such as Bill Gates and Elton John into typefaces. [BV]

In the room where Mailer and Talese and Capote got drunk, about a dozen people — mostly women — vie to become the next editor of The Paris Review. (via Arts and Letters Daily) [BV]

Observed | March 22

Fancy furniture out of garbage. [MPL]

Phew! Robots won‘t steal our jobs, yet. [MPL]

Observed | March 20

Secret symbols in paintings. [MPL]

Space station outta control. And falling. [MPL]

Observed | March 19

We are all “curators” now. Is it simply a vain attempt to sprinkle fairy dust over something quite ordinary? [BV]

How do you boycott a building? Our Jessica Helfand has a suggestion. [BV]

Observed | March 16

The Sydney Opera House is one of the most iconic images from down under. A new book reports on the resourcefulness and ingenuity of the resident arts companies, rock musicians, and chefs influencing the building’s evolution. [BV]

What are you doing this weekend? The future of leisure. [BV]

Observed | March 15

The dying electric guitar: What the decline of Gibson and Fender tells us about music. [MPL]

Machines are getting better at literary analysis. [MPL]

Observed | March 14

Women designers on Instagram: From architects to color specialists, Curbed has selected 30 accounts to follow. [BV]

The MIT 24-hour challenge: Honor a design legend with a gift to the MIT press. [BV]

Rare and familiar colors. [MPL]

Observed | March 13

The rise of ‘cynical’ packaging? [JH]

A coffee lid pub crawl. [JH]

New Mexico’s chile pepper design claims the 2017 license plate crown. (via James I. Bowie) [BV]

Observed | March 12

What single image represents the entire human race? The story behind the image on the “human” entry on Wikipedia. [BV]

Rizzoli‘s book on the life and work of midcentury children‘s book creator Miroslav Sasek. [MPL]

Observed | March 09

Science as a visual pursuit. [JH]

Observed | March 08

The Danish Design Center recently surveyed 800 Danish companies and nearly 75 percent said that the use of design in their company has a positive impact on their bottom line. [JH]

Overlooked obituaries of famous women. [JH]

Observed | March 06

The best things found between the pages of old books. [BV]

Observed | March 05

When successful design is not beautiful. [JH]

In Singapore: Fortune, Time, and Wallpaper jointly host a conference on design and business. [JH]

In Sydney: crime storytelling expert Peter Doyle tells the story of a mysterious serial attacker in his new mini-documentary, Slasher Patrol. [JH]

Observed | March 02

Frank Lloyd Wright is not God: Moving into an American architectural masterpiece is not for the fainthearted. [BV]

October 18, 1973: Sotheby‘s auction. The moment “when the art world collapsed.” [BV]

Observed | February 28

Two years after “the Great Instagram Logo Freakout,” it turns out that everything is fine. (via James I. Bowie) [BV]

Jobs | March 24