March 29, 2010

Objetsmart Travel - Natural Hats

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Park Sanssouci, Potsdam, Germany, January 2010

There's something about palaces that make me stop and gawk. While I love grand cathedrals and marvel at the wonders of the world, I've always been fascinated by the lavish in the mundane, the Hollywood production value of the home. Ancient bathrooms and marble-laden ballrooms with perfect vistas of parks? Bring it on! Indeed it is fascinating to wonder how many bad political decisions have been made from such places of residences and how one building's architecture can provide enlightenment or influence madness. Mainly, I constantly wonder how it took so long to get indoor plumbing...

So it makes sense that whenever I have a chance to visit a big house, from Hearst Castle to Versailles, I'm all for an afternoon of wander.

When Erin and I decided to go to Berlin for New Year's, I knew she wanted to visit art galleries. And I knew I wanted to visit Sanssouci, the German answer to Versailles. So on a freezing weekday, we took the express train out to Potsdam and found ourselves trekking through the cold and snow to the castle for a tour. There were but a handful of us. I was relieved actually - the problem with my interest in castles is that it is common - and hence, usually loaded with annoying tourists. But the cold kept most away and I was delighted to have the park as our domain.

As we approached the gift shop to buy our tickets, I noticed that all the ornate statues outside were styled. They were literally wearing their winter costume. Someone had obviously spent some time making sure that the snow didn't cover their faces. Or was there a treatment on them so that the snow didn't stick? I wondered - and I still do - perhaps someone else can answer the question. But I quite liked that even in the harshest of conditions, the statues outside Sanssouci remained in character and with accessories. They were objetsmarts! That is they were - until they would melt - thus rendering them back to their native form - until the next season...

March 22, 2010

Objetsmart Edible - SFMOMA edition

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Blue Bottle Desserts, SFMOMA, Winter 2010

1 Jeff Koons hot chocolate & 1 Luc Tuymans parfait

The best objetsmarts are one-time only use. Blue Bottle Coffee, the notorious purveyors of bespoke caffeination, have created a series of desserts inspired by the SFMOMA's contemporary art collection. Sweets inspired by art...truly inventive.

To my delight, I've tasted Piet Mondrian cake, devoured a Katharina Fritsch poodle ice cream sandwich, snacked on Andy Warhol cracker jacks and now, have reveled in the combination of a Jeff Koons' white hot chocolate with marshmallows accompanied by a Luc Tuymans vanilla parfait...

What will be next? If only they had a Charles Ray tree, then I would happily indulge in some chocolate bark...

 

February 09, 2010

Le Ballon Rouge Redux

In past years, remixing or re-editing my favorite film of all-time, Albert Lamorisse's "Le Ballon Rouge" would have been heresy. It is perhaps one of the most beloved pieces of art in my life and has been since I was a child, when my mother used to screen a 16 millimeter print on our living room wall.

But the times are a changin' and sometimes it's interesting to see others re-interpret source material. Enjoy this edit of the film with a Jose Gonzalez soundtrack. Not until I watched this, did I realize how important the original score of the film was in setting the playful tone that permeates the work. By changing the score, the pace of the film alters and the initial moment of Pascal's discovery of the red balloon becomes even more monumental.

What do you think about this re-edit?