Book Cover Design: When, And Why, It Matters

Book Cover Design: When, And Why, It Matters

 

My good friend, Nick Belperio, who single-handedly turned me back into a reader, recently told me that book jacket design is one of his obsessions.

  • Until he brought it up, I had never given it much thought. Perhaps because most of my reading centers around biographies and business-related topics.
  • I can’t say I have ever bought – or even necessarily judged – a book by its cover.
  • But Nick’s passion and knowledge of the subject prompted me to dig deeper. After all, you must investigate when a knowledgeable friend tells you: “Some of the most creative and gorgeous package design is in books. It’s migrated there from album covers and movie posters which used to be the most creative and visually innovative.”

Nick’s favorite designers include Peter Mendelsund, Rodrigo Corral, and Chip Kidd – all superstars of the book design world.

  • In checking out their websites and stories, I can understand why this might become an obsession.
  • My questions for Nick and my fellow readers: how does the jacket design influence your decision to buy a book and secondly, how does it influence the reading experience?

See below for my 5 key takeaways after digging deeper into this subject.

Read More >

Share this post on:

Anyone Else Obsessed By $10,000 Intelligent Japanese Toilets?

Anyone Else Obsessed By $10,000 Intelligent Japanese Toilets?

 

Ever since I was in Japan, I’ve become obsessed by the latest in Toto toilets – and with this new one, the days of toilet paper are numbered!

In Kyoto, the very first topic our guide talked to us about was Japanese toilet customs and etiquette. We were prepped on what to expect from our toilets e.g. lids automatically open when you enter the bathroom and it plays music because Japanese ladies do not like to hear themselves pee.

Now, however, Toto has introduced the Neorest 750H (which won Best of Bath Gold Award in the U.S.).

The tech customization of this TOTO Neorest 750H toilet is impressive:

  • Intuitive sensor operation with auto open/close for lid
  • Auto flush
  • Integrated personal cleansing system with warm, aerated water and warm air dryer
  • Heated seat
  • In-bowl catalytic deodorizer
  • Energy- and water-saving features (only 1 gal. per flush)
  • And there is absolutely no need for toilet paper ever again (unless there is a blackout!)
  • LISTEN UP P&G: Disruption in the toilet paper aisle is imminent!
Read More >

Share this post on:

One More Reason to Love Bushwick: Amazing Street Art Murals

One More Reason to Love Bushwick: Amazing Street Art Murals

 

  • This past weekend’s trip to Bushwick for brunch at Carthage Must Be Destroyed also yielded a quick update on all the cool large scale street art murals in the neighborhood. I haven’t been out there in a while so not sure which are new (if any).
  • But, new or not, they are fabulous and definitely worth a trip. Almost any street you amble down will be awash in murals. And in reviewing my photos, I am clearly a fan of Kremen Art. He appears to specialize in wild animals – monkeys (above) as well as tigers and ostriches!
  • Streets I know we definitely hit up included Bogart near Ten Eyck and Meserole at Waterbury.
  • We could not make out the names of some of the artists. Should anybody reading this have correct names for attribution – let me know, I will definitely add.

See below for more photos and video.

Read More >

Share this post on:

Top Five Art Shows To See In Chelsea Now

Top Five Art Shows To See In Chelsea Now

 

Galleries are closed for Memorial Day Weekend but these shows are all up through June, some even July. If you’re going to be in NYC, check them out – they’re absolutely stellar!

Raymond Pettibon
David Zwirner Gallery
519 West 19th Street (Garage Space)
Til June 24

This is one of my favorite artists and one of my favorite galleries. I especially love the garage space where this show is installed. The space also served as the studio for Pettibon to create much of this work.

Pettibon’s work embraces a wide spectrum of American high/low culture. His influences include the SoCal punk-rock scene of the late 1970s/80s and the DIY aesthetic of album covers, comics, concert flyers, and fanzines of the movement.

Read on below for additional shows as well as photos of the work.

Read More >

Share this post on:

Want Your Business To Be Cool? Get A Commissioned Piece Of Street Art

Want Your Business To Be Cool? Get A Commissioned Piece Of Street Art

 

  • Got a look at the new mural by Fumero at the soon-to-be-opened Black Tap on Ludlow Street. Perfect collaboration. For those of you not familiar with Black Tap, they are famous (or infamous) for their outrageous and totally instagram-worthy $15 milkshakes (see photos here).
  • Another major mural started this week at the corner of Allen and Rivington Streets. It’s by LA-based kaNO kid Studio. His clients include Cartoon Network, Warner Brothers and Hasbro.
  • The kaNO project is sponsored by the new owners of the Allen Street Hotel in partnership with LISA (Little Italy Street Art) Project.
  • Two other recent examples include the Shepard Fairey mural at Daniel Humm’s new fast casual place, Made Nice, in NYC and the fabulous ESPO mural inside the La Colombe flagship cafe and roastery in Philadelphia’s Fishtown district.
  • And one final note on street art and its place in the world. This week a Jean-Michel Basquiat piece sold at auction for $110 Million – the highest price ever paid for an American artist. And the highest price ever for a work of art made after 1980.

See pics below of Fumero for Black Tap, the Allen Street Hotel/ kaNO kid mural, Shepard Fairey for Made Nice and the outstanding ESPO piece.

Read More >

Share this post on:

Trend Alert: Gold Shoes and Stone-Washed Denim Are A Thing Now

Trend Alert: Gold Shoes and Stone-Washed Denim Are A Thing Now

 

Based on my rule of “see it three times” and it might just be a trend, I have to report that gold shoes (sneakers, boots, heels) and stone-washed denim (not necessarily worn together) are all the rage in NYC. Am not a big fan of either of these looks but have been spying them everywhere: The Lower East Side, La Guardia airport and even Ludlow House.

Here are some additional examples:

See Pics below.

Read More >

Share this post on:

Rei Kawakubo at The Met: A Knockout Show, Inspiring and Beautiful

Rei Kawakubo at The Met: A Knockout Show, Inspiring and Beautiful

 

Saw this show on opening day and have been thinking about it non-stop. This is one of my favorite designers – altho I don’t wear (and can’t afford) her clothes. However, there were many people at the opening paying homage by wearing her outfits.

Some were even attempting to do clandestine fashion shoots – and were quickly shut down.

For my eye, this exhibition is superior to the McQueen show although my fashion-savvy friends don’t agree. I do concede that it won’t be as popular as the McQueen show – it’s way too strange.

For those of you not familiar with Rei Kawakubo, she’s known for her avant-garde designs and her ability to challenge conventional notions of beauty, good taste, and fashionability.

  • The thematic show features 140 examples from the early 1980s to her most recent collection, many with heads and wigs created and styled by Julien d’Ys.
  • The galleries illustrate the designer’s revolutionary experiments in “in-betweenness” —the space between boundaries.
  • Objects are organized into nine aesthetic expressions of interstitiality: Absence/Presence, Design/Not Design, Fashion/Anti-Fashion, Model/Multiple, Then/Now, High/Low, Self/Other, Object/Subject, and Clothes/Not Clothes.

The show runs through September 4th.

See photos below.

Read More >

Share this post on:

FRIEZE Was Major: A Flock Of DiCaprios, Epic Sales, Massive Flooding

FRIEZE Was Major: A Flock Of DiCaprios, Epic Sales, Massive Flooding

 

This year’s Frieze Art Fair was more of a crazy happening than I’ve experienced before. First, there was a torrential downpour of biblical proportions – 3 inches of rain over a couple of hours. Workers securing the fair tents caught everyone’s attention as did the rain buckets scattered around the booths protecting $100K works of art.

  • But my favorite art piece was created by Dora Budor. She recruited three Leo DiCaprio-lookalikes to roam the fair impersonating some of his most memorable characters: Jordan Belfort (The Wolf of Wall Street), Hugh Glass (The Revenant) and Frank Abagnale Jr. (Catch Me If You Can).
  • Budor’s performance piece, a commission for the fair’s Frieze Projects sector, is titled MANICOMIO!, which translated from Italian means “Madhouse!” according to Artnews.
  • I encountered “Catch Me If You Can” Leo first and thought it strange that a military officer was attending Frieze and being so smirky about it. Then I ran into the “Reverent”. I did not see “The Wolf Of Wall Street” in person.
  • Here’s what the artist told Artnews about the project: “I wanted to create the opportunity for unsuspecting visitors at the fair to experience a disjointed reality—believing that the actor Leonardo DiCaprio might be there, but seeing him, impossibly, many years younger and as characters he has played. He comes every year so that’s part of the idea: he becomes the fourth actor, as himself. It’s like the rings of Saturn, where all Leos orbit the central idea of the eternal Leo.”

Just love this concept!!

Read on below for my top 10 Frieze galleries and artists.

Read More >

Share this post on: