Category Archives: design

roadway rests. 3.2

The enclosure at Hadramout on Atlantic, seen in the previous post, has already been improved with a marquee.


Tagged ,

Roadway restaurants three

They’re changing and regularizing already. A few more from earlier in the month, starting with Atlantic Avenue Middle Eastern classics:

These two from different ends of my extended neighborhood: Red Hook and Gowanus.

Jaunty blue umbrellas at President and Court, and a rather more raucous use of the same blue at Smith and Sackett.


Tagged ,

New header image, Dec 2011

I borrowed those beautiful cabbages from a handsome local food blog called Figs, Bay & Wine which is even slower to update than I have been. (Dear FB&W proprietor, I love your pictures, but if you don’t want me to use this clip, just let me know.)

Equinox marble

In the unseasonably lovely weather of last Saturday my friend Z took me up to the Berkshires to look at hunks of marble. He needs some for a restoration project. We visited one professional stone guy where we saw lots of nice marbles & granites, and saw a slab cut by the giant eight foot saw running on a truss; and then another guy, Craig Moskowitz, the cattle king (prince? baron? regular guy?) of Sheffield Mass, who’s got hunks of marble all over his property; it’s basically a big knob of marble, the remnant of a once-significant quarry. We saw the marble that came out of Kimba Wood’s house and the blocks back in the woods that Zac Posen had wanted to buy, but only if the moss was properly preserved. But none of these quite matched the color and grain of the existing stone.

Then we went hiking, up a spectacular set of falls (Race Brook on the Mt. Everett Reservation, for anyone in that area) flowing mightily while slabs of ice still hung on the rock walls. And after that we nosed around, using Google Maps’ directions, satellite photo, and old-fashioned road map, trying to find the source of the original marble in South Dover, New York. The quarry’s flooded now, but there are some fat pieces lying around and with patience and South Carolina charm Z got leads on how maybe, just maybe, he could buy what he needs. It was wild to see these fridge-sized chunks just on the side of a little dead-end road (Quarry Road, a good hint) and to put Z’s chunk of sample on it and see the perfect match. “That’s our stone,” Z said.

(This post was delayed because I was hoping for some pictures from Z. Alas, none so far.)

For those super secret spy instructions

that have to be chewed & swallowed after you read them: message toast.

Particularly effective for missions involving marmalade.

Oh: Coming attractions updated.

Last chance — Calder Jewelry at the Metropolitan

This delicious little exhibition closes Sunday, March 1. The rings, pins, necklaces, and uncategorizable breastplate-collars are full of the economy and wit and the organic forms-in-motion of Alexander Calder’s Circus and his stabiles and mobiles. He uses brass and steel and precious metals, but also broken plates and fragments of a red car reflector, whatever his transformative imagination can work on. He makes jokes and puns, working initials into bunny-profiles. And since they were almost all made for friends and relatives, many for his beloved wife Louisa, often very quickly (his grandson, Sandy Rower, says that if the Calders were going out for dinner, he might go off to his workshop in the morning and, by evening, return with a new ring or brooch for Louisa to wear), they have a striking directness and intimacy. Also, of course, because they are objects made for the body: with something like Jealous Husband you imagine how it would be with its curves enwrapping and its spikes defending you.

Jealous Husband, c. 1940, from the Newman Collection

Jealous Husband, c. 1940, from the Newman Collection

Plus they’re really cool, swoopy and modern and tribal and beautifully crafted. If you have a chance, go see them. The show is just three rooms, tucked back in the Modern galleries, and it will delight and refresh you.

Township Typography

Township Typography | Super Duper Industries | Shane Durrant | +27 83 460 3015.

Hand-painted shop signs from South Africa.  Check out the fab lettering on Onas Hair Beauty.

New header.

My new header photo shows the Red Hook waterfront in the snow, looking west and north. You can see the Statue of Liberty and the warehouses at the base of Van Brunt Street. It’s a detail of a photo by photographer Matthew Furman, who should let me know if he wants me to take it down — nice shot, Matthew. EDIT: Matt says it’s okay — thanks!

Commentary — GEMS concert Sept. 27, evening: NY Polyphony, Grenser Trio, Ex Umbris

Three rousing sets! I’m so glad I got myself into midtown on this foggy, surprisingly warm evening. I could so easily have missed a super concert.

After a year in business the Times Center still strikes me as oddly designed. It’s meant to serve for any kind of event, I guess, not specifically for concerts, and the architecture doesn’t provide any helpful acoustics, so they are supplied by electronics – Grant said there are a hundred microphones in the ceiling. However, the techs have gotten better at controlling the sound, and it sounded round, specific, and generally natural to me; only once or twice, for a second, did I have the distracting sense that the music was coming from someplace other than the performers on stage. The front wall, behind the shallow stage, is also now completely glass, and you look across a courtyard with birch trees through another glass wall, all the way to the Eighth Avenue entrance to the building. (I’m sure I’d have remembered that from last year, perhaps it was still covered for construction.) It was a little strange to see the occasional late worker coming in and out, and the lights of traffic on the avenue; a friend who had been to the afternoon show (which I heard was great, especially East of the River’s set) commented that from where she’d been sitting, the action in the shop visible on the south side of the courtyard had been rather distracting. I still don’t get why, with all the space devoted to flights of stairs in the hall’s entrance, no proper box office was built, and folding tables have to be brought in, giving an amateur and provisional air to an otherwise slick interior.

The concert opened Continue reading