Wednesday, May 30, 2007

The disappointment of Merope

Recently I let go of one of the plots of land on Aglaia, and took a remote hillside plot in the rural island of Merope. Or so I thought. The plot was a good deal, and the landlord Lottie Lamond seemed very nice. When I first put up Cloud House, on the hill that looked exactly like the original setting of the house, she warned me not to exceed 20 meters of height, in order to preserve the landscape, and I thought cool, maybe this island will be a bit more protected. Of course I return the next day and I have a neighbor, who has a built a tree house, but a HUGE tree house that is totally blocking my view. Thankfully he was there and we kind of agreed that he would scale down the treehouse. Then a few days later I arrive and all hell has broken loose.
Almost all the plots are taken, built up with pathetic reproductions of faux colonial houses that block entrance to visitiors (hate that) and genererally ugliness rules the land. In just a week Merope went from rural beauty to trailer trash, making the quiet suburbia of Aglaia seem like heaven. Still when I get a moment I'll try out a brief idea on Merope but I think later on, it is back to suburbia for me.

Friday, May 25, 2007

For Isabella

Ever since I heard about Isabella Blow's sad departure, I've been wondering if I should blog this, or if it would seem like I was cashing in or something. In any case, I'm not. I met Isabella in 2001 when I was living in New York and had just done a small Visionaire/ Dior Homme project for Hedi Slimane's Paris book. I guess it was a fashion moment or something, and at a party somebody introduced me to Isabella and we chatted and she started talking about the exhibition of her hats that she was preparing and she asked about my work and we exchanged contacts and party talk. Later on that week she called me up and asked "why don't you design my exhibition?". The show was going to be called "When Isabella met Phillip" and was her collection o Phillip Treacy hats or course. She was coming back to NY a month later so we agreed that I would show her a proposal. My idea was fairly simple: create a closed display box for the hats, a sort of containing a labyrinth of about 80cm high, clad with mirrors and lights on the inside, and display the hats in this interior mirrorspace. this box would be hanged from the ceiling at about eye level so people could enter it with their heads, walk around and look at the hats. From the outside it would look like the people visiting the show were all wearing a giant hat. Isabella was impressed, found it "very modern" and thought it fabulous. Promptly she sent it to Phillip Treacy and the Design Museums's then director Alice Rawsthorn, but from then on things went kind of wrong. Mr Treacy found the project too futuristic or something, and Mrs Rawsthorn sent me an email which for some reason I received a year later(it arrived on a old laptop that my assistant checked mail on, boring story). The project was never realized, Isabella was always enthusiastic and was generous introducing me to people as she always did with everybody, always promoting fresh ideas, and always on the lookout for new. I never included this small project on the website because I always thought that one day she would get a chance for another show and we could use it. I guess it too late, and when I look at the quick sketches I did for the project it looks less like an audience wearing a giant hat and more like a funeral procession...

Thursday, May 24, 2007

If you're in xxxxxxxxx tonight

... Barcelona tonight: Check out the projection of Hotel Blue Wave at the Col·legi d’Aparellador s i Arquitectes Tècnics, presented as part of the LOOP festival.

...Thessaloniki tonight. The exhibition "Beholders of other places" curated by Maria Tsantsanoglou, part oft he larger Heterotopias theme of the Thessaloniki Biennial opens tonight, at Moni Lazariston. I'm showing models and videos from "First Land, Second Life".

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Northern Lights

Was just up in Thessaloniki to install for the biennial, and here's some highlights (more on the biennial soon)on the way up the clouds were strangely phallic
we drove by an abandoned UFO,and arrived to see the magnifcent OTE tower by Takis Zenetos Dimitriadis

one of the coolest buildings in Greece, with a rotating cafeand very nicely facetted concrete underbellyamazing exterior staircase
and fantastic views of the city. Each rotation takes about 1h30 so with a long drink you see the whole town (from a safe distance).Next to the Zenetos building another weird Mirror SpaceFrame type of thing, that I have no idea who designed. Any thoughts?

detail shot

and another interesting and slightly sci-fi facade from downtown
inside the State Museum, a very nice chair, part of the Alexander Iolas collection
the very 60's officer's club. Then on the way back, a stop at the Tembi riverand a cute 50's church

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Some Swiss Styles

The "I'm a weird faux-metobolistic thing you never expected to see on this street"
and I look good from the side too
The "I'm a Bank but I want to be cool too"

The "I'm just a cheap hotel with flags and I'm pretenting to be international"
The "I could be in Dubai too"
and the "I'm not an interesting building but I have cool shop windows on the ground floor".

Monday, May 14, 2007

Tokyo Tops

It seems there's always something interesting on top of Tokyo buildingsa wacky, cracked sphere
some classic Brutalism always does it for me
umm, a dog that wants to go uo to a Venus de Milo?
this billboard in Roppongi looked brilliantly white in the dusty pink sunset
a corporate flying saucer cafeteria?
quarter circles make for a pretty postmodern skyline in Ginza
and French watches of course.
Billboards in Tokyo are almost always buildings themselves.

Friday, May 11, 2007

Another Day in Tokyo

a quick stop for just 1 second at the Margiela store

a Shin Takamatsu - looking building inEbisu,
but I dont know if it isA Flower building a wall with a tree A hole
Typical Tokyo in ShinjukuAngelo and Mai having a 2:22 moment
the view from Roppongi Hills Mori Tower

The Sea of Rice outside tokyo Angelo sleeping on the bullet train to Tsukuba,
Japans' largest research center
and later on lost in a sea of Salarymen
late night taxi outside a striped building in Shibuya