Flowerpower: ERDEM x HM

Normally I'm not into floral wear, although I cannot get enough of flowers in nature, in art and in print design. For some reason I just don't feel comfortable in florals myself. They end up stuck in the back of the closet, every time I try.

Now, I love it when great marketing design is so seductive and persuasive, that it makes me want something I don't usually wan't, so badly! I find this brain process fascinating. The thing is, of course, that you don't need to obey every impulse - you can actually just sit back and enjoy the ride.

The freshly launched web campaign for Erdem x HM is SO beautiful. I've idled an hour away in front of the screen, exploring every detail, and now I just want to swoon in a meadow full of spring flowers, dressed in Edwardian/Pre-Raphaelite/boho/country lady style and sport an androgynous haircut. And, believe me, that is a bit of a steep step for me, stylewise (I would really like the backpack from the men's collection though).

Get flowered yourself by the stunning web design (use your mouse scroll button to explore the site), or, at least see the crazily lavish Baz Luhrman film.

(all images are screenshots from www.hm.com and from the Baz Luhrman film)


Lydia Kasumi Shirreff: Paper engineer

London based paper artist Lydia Kasumi Shirreff calls herself a 'paper engineer', and the complex geometrics of her work, makes that title quite appropriate. And when art and engineering meet, interesting things often happen! 

She does all kinds of abstract, fun and surreal backdrops or mini set designs for commercial photo shoots or editorial illustrations for a long list of very prestigious magazines and clients. In an interview from last year - read it right here - she tells us, when asked why she works in paper, that she just started out as a young designer/sculptor needing a cheap, available and flexible material. And then I suppose she must have stuck with the paper, and has become an absolute virtuoso.

See the magic she works - more links and info after the images.

These cubist, abstract works are just stunning! 

Some of her work is more explosively colorful - and these are just a few examples, visit her website (which I linked to in the beginning of the text), and explore. What I find fun personally, being so fond of paperwork myself, is trying to figure out some of her processes. Not so easy, and very, very impressive, no matter how she has done it.

She has done a lot of figurative set ups for various fashion and lifestyle clients, sometimes so neatly done, that they fool the eye at first (a bit in the style of the amazing German artist Thomas Demand)  but more often like these, where the feel of the paper makes it all pop-arty and candy like. 

On her website she does this great thing - she has a couple of 'behind the scenes' photos, showing her equally impressive work in the photo studio. When you see the shot I will show here, below, it looks almost like a surreal construction made in some 3D rendering program.....

But then check out the next image - and note how the roll of duct tape indicates the size of the small, hanging paper sculptures.

Nice work, indeed, and I love how she shares some of the meticulous preparations for such a single shot. How she works, can also be seen in this little video I found, where she explains a project she made for the eye wear brand Cubitts.

All images: copyright Lydia Kasumi Shireff


The National

I have recently discovered that I really like The National, the band from New York, that is - and after I saw the way they present their new album, 'Sleep Well Beast', which came out a few weeks ago, I have decided to become a fan, and take it from there...

They had none other than Pentagram design a whole corporate branding package, slightly as a bit of a joke, I guess. But it's so super elegant! Read a lot more about it here.

But enjoy a couple of samples here, and - of course - check out the album, it sounds great. 

I really love the use of the two intense shades of blue, with just a touch of red here and there, and the grainy monochrome photos. But some of it HAS to be an absolute corporate-identity-joke, I mean, a stapler...? A tape-dispenser (and even tape)...? That's so funny.

But actually my interest in The National started last year, at Copenhagen Contemporary this really great (but temporary, sadly) art venue here in Cph.

Last year they had the Icelandic video artist Ragnar Kjartansson's project 'A Lot of Sorrow' on the programme, a film about a rather unusual performance: In 2013, at MoMA in  New York, the band played their song 'Sorrow' non stop for six hours in front of an audience. Ragnar Kjartansson - who came up with the idea - also filmed this epic display of patience and endurance.

And at CC they showed an edited version of the performance (and also had a few full length screenings), and I guess we walked into some part in the later half, where the band is in a state of exhausted deep, deep concentration and commitment to the song. It had a mesmerizing, weird effect, that repetition - and though the song is simple, gloomy and not very long, it somehow really grows on you. Grows into you, almost.

It is really worth checking out this fascinating project, if it is shown anywhere near you.


Here is a little film about it from Louisiana Channel

There is a full length but audio only version on YouTube.