Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Fantastic posts about Orhan Pamuk, PO Ultvedt and other inspiration

I haven't been very well and Christmas is a very busy period for us (everyone has their birthday in December or beginning of January - as well as the different strands of our family living in different countries), but I've felt kinda sad about not having had the energy to post.

Unfortunately this just seems to be continuing, but when I read this wonderful post about Orhan Pamuk (also see this earlier post) and this fantastic post about PO Ultvedt on Anita Elgerot's blog I just felt like I had to share! (Swedish only I'm afraid, but the imagery is also absolutely inspiring.) Also read her here on Svenska Konstnärer (Swedish Artists), search Anita Elgerot here on Magasin 1 for some of her articles or view her work for example on anitaelgerot.com.


If you're in / visiting Stockholm (or even if you're not) make sure to check New York Stories bookstore's blog for author signings, new deliveries and what else is going on (found via this post on Absurdity. Also see my previous post about Independent Bookstores.)

Friday, December 01, 2006

World Aids Day

HIV and Aids is one of the greatest challenges we're facing today.

Despite all advances that's been made in finding drugs to fight the onset of Aids, and the global political consensus that the world need to act the Aids epidemic is in fact getting worse.

Here in the West information and awareness of the danger of HIV and AIDS among the younger generation is faltering (resulting in higher number of younger people infected), and in the developing world children and adults - sometimes several generations of families - are getting infected and dying unnecessarily.

Here are some links to learn more/take action - please do what you can

UNAIDS The Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS
World Aids Day Get informed/get involved
WAD.se World Aids Day Sweden
RED Make a difference as a consumer
Staying Alive MTV's Global HIV and AIDS initiative for young people
The Independent Today's Independent is dedicated to the fight against HIV/AIDS. Go online for information or if in the UK/Ireland buy a copy as part of the proceeds goes to charity

Even if it's not economically viable for you to donate inform! And now thanks to projects like the high-profile RED campaign, as a consumer you can make a difference through the purchases you make for yourself, friends/family and your business/at your work place.

Make sure to make a difference - not just today, but every day of the year

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Gil Scott-Heron at the Village Gate, New York 1976

For some fantastic live tracks from Gil Scott-Heron playing the Village Gate in New York in 1976 click here to go to a great post by Absurdity where you can download them for a limited period.

Trying to keep posting to no more then one a day this was just too good not to add straight away!

The tracks will only be up for a few days - I haven't come across this recording anywhere else - but if you like what you're hearing get on to Amazon/your local record shop and give back by buying some of Gil Scott-Heron's music.

Ord & Text at STREET this weekend

This weekend Ord & Text (Word & Text) - a weekend of author presentations, exhibitions, films, music, readings, book signings and the chance to buy works from small publishers, magazines, fanzines, authors and poets - is taking place at STREET in Stockholm.

As I've written before I very annoyingly missed the last offering so am very excited about (hopefully) being able to go this weekend!

For the full program - which includes a "children's' hour", workshop for teens, reading corner, the party Ord & Öl (Word & Beer) as well as everything mentioned above and more! - click here (in Swedish only I'm afraid), for a list of and links to exhibitors click here and for directions to get there click here. Opening hours are Saturday 18th and Sunday 19th 11am - 6pm (for party click here).

Saturday, November 11, 2006

More from the London Artist's Book Fair



Today I thought I'd profile Mike Nicholson, another favourite from this and previous years' bookfairs.
He has "a particular interest in language, and the powerful potential of narratives inside sequential combinations of text and image" - something that's clearly conveyed in all his work.
(For example his love of reading inspired the bookmarks below.)
I've found his work captivating, thought-provoking and intriguing from day one - besides the fact that he's also always fantastically nice and does not mind discussing and explaining his work for whatever long.



To learn more or for where his work can be seen next email.
You can also click here, here and here for some more information of his work/background and exhibitions/commissions. For general information about book art this has very good sources.

"Since 1999 I have self-published my own (written and illustrated) material, exhibiting and selling at variety of 'artist's book' fairs, events and outlets. My ongoing Ensixteen Editions imprint has produced 20 titles to date and I have also been invited to lecture and write on my experiences in this elastic, increasingly evident field. The work has been purchased by private and public collections, cited in paper and online publications and featured in exhibitions in the UK, Australia, USA and elsewhere."


Friday, November 10, 2006

US Midterm Elections

Yes great the democrates got both houses (please get some answers and hold people responsible) - but what the election was more then anything to me was new heights of despicable, ludicrous campaigning.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

ALPHABET: an exhibition of hand-drawn lettering and experimental typography

ALPHABET: AN EXHIBITION OF HAND-DRAWN LETTERING AND EXPERIMENTAL TYPOGRAPHY.

This exhibition - organized by Post Typography and Artscape - is still touring so stop by if you have the chance (we're hoping to see it in New York in 2007). For dates click here or email if you want to know if and when they're visiting your town.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Back from the London Artist's Book Fair

So I'm back from the Bookfair, which of course was fantastic as always.
Gathering my treasures together to photograph and scan and will hopefully have those and the photos I forced my husband to take of the fair itself (as I was to shy to) ready soon - hope it will all come out great (and on here in a few days)

I wanted to share a very nice hanging book art sculpture that I found on my return late at night browsing blogs - I was sure it was posted on fiftyRx3 but it's not so there we go...


"6 degrees"
"The structure holds the book together whilst also illustrating the theory (Six Degrees of Separation). No beginning, no end - everyone is connected in whatever direction the reader chooses. The text is of recorded conversations from a trip around the Circle Line, London, between 2-4pm, Friday 19th Nov. 1999"

Instead I thought I'd show some works from one of the most interesting exhibitors at the London Artist Book Fair (this and previous years) Mette-Sofie D. Ambeck. One of her works the Jante Law resonates with me especially (probably as a Swede) and it's my plan to own an edition one day. For now I have "The Process", describing the making of. Unfortunately I couldn't find any images of the book so only the poster is pictured below. (Click on titles above and below to take you to further descriptions or details of which collections houses the work).


"The Jante Law"
"'A Refugee Crosses the Tracks' (Aksel Sandemose, 1933) outlined ten commandments said to reveal how Danish identity is dogged by inferiority and inadequacy. This 'book' investigates and reassembles these commandments in both physical construction and applied design.
Accompanieing the book is the poster; 'the process' (2002), describing the making of the book."

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Don't miss London Artist's Bookfair this weekend!



On Friday, Saturday and Sunday the London Artist's Bookfair is taking place at the ICA in London - don't miss it!

I'm extremely excited about going (as maybe my previous posts shows) and hope to pick up some amazing pieces this year too - but more then anything I'm just looking forward to being inspired by the creativity that surely will be on show!

For you who have not visited before or are not really familiar with Artist Books or Book Art this is what to expect:

"Artist’s books encompass drawing, painting, print-making, craft, sculpture, photography and graphic design, and are used for sharing social comment, poetry, beauty, fun or mischief. Some have words – others don’t – and the subject matter ranges from serious literature and high art to personal passions and experience. Some are made by full time artists but many are from part-time enthusiasts."

"You will find conventional pages and handsome typography but also un-conventional intricately folded constructed shapes, computer generated graphics printed on a variety of materials from hand-made paper to plastic and metal and messages and slogans."

The hours are Fri Nov 3rd 12 noon - 7pm, Sat Nov 4th 11am - 7pm and Sun Nov 5th 11am - 5pm. Directions to get there here.

Monday, October 30, 2006

Independent Bookstores in Stockholm

One thing with Stockholm that I find kinda odd is that there are very few independent bookstores (whereas in my experience it's always absolutely packed in bookstores here, so people obviously read if you get my drift).

That's why I got so pleasantly surprised last year when Bokspindeln, an independent bookshop dedicated to children's literature (foreign as well as Swedish, in a wide range of different languages), opened up on Odengatan (by St Eriksplan) a few years ago.

A couple of doors down from Bokspindeln an English language bookshop called New York Stories opened up about a month ago. Doesn't it look exactly like the kind of place you could spend all day browsing!


Picture was taken before they actually opened up so not as stocked as now.

Very shamefully I still haven't visited it properly, but said a quick hi to the owner and have an idea of the store's direction - very exciting!

As far as I know they don't have a website, but for a look at what they're about see this and this post from Absurdity.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Don't miss The Hub playing London



One of my absolute favorite bands ever (and I think might actually be the best live act!) the Hub is playing in London tomorrow night (Friday 27th). Don't miss them!
The gig is at the Crypt in Camberwell (directions to get there here). It starts at 9.30-10pm, but get there for 8pm when the Crypt opens if you want to get in!

For the Hub's European Fall 2006 tour click here - or go to their website for their bio, to listen to their music or for further gigs in Europe / their native New York.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

The Battle of Ideas 2006

The Battle of Ideas is an annual festival of social, political, scientific, academic and cultural ideas.
This year it will take place at the Royal College of Art in London on (this) Saturday 28 and Sunday 29 of October.

As they put it themselves:

"Taking ideas seriously means they must be interrogated, argued for and fought over. The weekend makes virtues of free-thinking and lively exchanges of views. We aim:

· to showcase new arguments about the core issues of the day,
while avoiding getting bogged down in the minutiae of everyday policy

· to initiate open-ended discussions regardless of the demands for
immediate practical outcomes, which too frequently act as a brake
on innovative thinking "


For more information, schedule, background, partners & sponsers and more click here.

Monday, October 23, 2006

Satire will save us

I've had a post in the making ever since I re-structured my links list and a few people asked me why I have the Daily Show with Jon Stewart on my link list grouped together with politics.
I suppose I didn't realise that what was obvious to me (satire always fills a function in political reporting) wasn't obvious to everyone else.

Unfortunately most of our news sources are so watered down, angled, conformed (the US media's reporting during the 2000 election for example) and more then often just plain wrong that alternatives are needed.
I read somewhere that more Americans get their news reporting from satirical shows then traditional news sources - I don't think that's true and very much hope it's not - but if you try to make sure to be properly informed (numerous, varied, international news sources, as well as shows like Counterspin for example) you can do hell of a lot worse then watching the Daily Show, Colbert, or similar as well.

I think that often when something is so ludicrously wrong, deadly serious and ridiciously under-reported at the same time all you can do to show all of this is to make a serious parallel in the form of a joke (see for example this clip I posted before).

All this was articulated so much better by Armando Iannucci on "how comedians are filling the gap where serious debate used to be" [the Guardian's tag-line] - an extract of this Tate Britain lecture was published here on the arts pages of the Guardian.

He's making the excellent point (especially valid in the US I think - mind you with my limited experience of it):

"[it] has come about for three reasons: politicians have stopped speaking to us properly, the media has stopped examining their actions in anything like a forensic way, and broadcast culture has become so watered down, so scared of fact, that people are less inclined to turn to anything other then entertainment for information."

I also noticed this post on Absurdity on the same subject this morning - as always more then worth reading!

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Beautiful things



These cards are beautiful - and so simple - by home from the sea - found via Karin Erikson. On Karin's site I also found these absolutely fantastic pebble-shaped vases:


Made by Miyoko Onishi - she doesn't have a website, but get her contact details here courtesy of Origin. These are definitely another that has got to go on the to have-list for our house!

Friday, October 20, 2006

Republicans say top Democrats support "group of gay paedophiles"

I try to focus posting to one a day, but reading this article in the Independent (titled as above) I just felt that I had to share it.
Bloody shameful!

Makes me think of this clip from the Daily Show re Fox's reporting of the Foley scandal:

Orhan Pamuk - 2006 Nobel Prize for Literature

Orhan Pamuk is one of these authors that I've had in my ever-growing pile of books to read (a literal one taking up a great deal of our space, and an imaginary one collected in my head as reference to all the wonderful works I hear about).

In our politically catastrophic climate his award is timely.

I thought this article in the Guardian was very good. For those of you who reads Swedish you're also lucky enough to be able to read this great entry from Anita Elgerot's blog. There is also this interview from the culture pages of DN.

I will make an effort to be able to read "My Name is Red" / "Mitt Namn är Röd" (in Swedish 2002), which I have on good authority will speak to me the most.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Looking forward to STREET Ord & Text

For those of you in Stockholm on the 18-19 November head down to STREET market where the theme for the weekend is Ord & Text (Words & Text).
I was really annoyed by missing the first offering in the Spring so overly delighted with being given a second change!

Exhibitors / vendors will be small publishers, magazines, fanzines - and there is also author presentations, readings, poetry readings and exhibitions, as well as an opportunity to pick up a lot of really nice stuff!

With the London Artist Book Fair on 3-5/11 November looks like a very good month for picking up a lot of brilliant works!

STREET Ord & Text will be open 11am-6pm. Directions to get there here.

Monday, October 16, 2006

Inspiration



I really like these two - quite different - images by Serge Leblon for 10 magazine. Strangly enough the two that really spoke to me (pictured) is monocrome wheras what I really liked was the colours... Found via Fashion Addict Diary (the entire spread on F.A.D flickr).

Saturday, October 14, 2006

Fantastically inspirational!



I love love love absolutely everything Ana Ventura makes. I don't understand anything on the blog (as I don't speak Portuguese), but I love that to.



Have a look at her site, or look at these wonderful flickr slideshows (postcards, paperdolls, illustration, book).



Friday, October 13, 2006

Ethical Fashion Show


This weekend (starting today) the Ethical Fashion Show is taking place in Paris. It's an event to showcase and promote ethical fashion designers, as well as to inform and help dialogue between companies concerned by fair trade and sustainable development in the fashion industry.

"The social and environmental conditions in which products are manufactured are important to the consumer who buys them.
The increase in Fair Trade purchases reflects the evolving buying habits of a growing part of the population.
The number of buyers and sales figures of products sold through fair trade are constantly growing.
Awareness of fair trade is steadily increasing."

Found via fiftyRx3.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

FAIR.org turns 20 years!

FAIR (Fairness & Accuracy In Reporting) turns 20 years today!
"Since 1986, FAIR (Fairness & Accuracy In Reporting) has been monitoring mainstream media to document corporate bias, government influence and skewed reporting, while championing the efforts of independent journalism."
For those in New York City consider heading down to the party or perhaps donating to help their efforts.

I'd recommend anyone to listen to Counterspin, their excellent weekly radio show! (especially so if you live in the US). Description:
"CounterSpin provides a critical examination of the major stories every week, and exposes what the mainstream media might have missed in their own coverage. Combining lively discussion and a thoughtful media critique, CounterSpin is unlike any other show on the dial.
CounterSpin exposes and highlights biased and inaccurate news; censored stories; sexism, racism and homophobia in the news; the power of corporate influence; gaffes and goofs by leading TV pundits; TV news' narrow political spectrum; attacks on free speech; and more."

If you're in the US and Canada you can tune in or otherwise (or if you're located somewhere else in the world) download the podcast.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Karin Eriksson and Bookart at Origin

Saw these great postcards (pictured left) at Karin's Style blog that she made for London's Origin Craft Fair. Made me wish I was at Origin so I could go by her table and pick one up (or wished more that we'd find our dream house so I could visit her studio and buy lots of her wonderful things to fill it with).

Had a little rummage around on the Origin / Craft Council site and found a bookartist called Rachel Hazell exhibiting. I'm not familiar with her before, but I liked these two pieces shown below from her portfolio and also thought the commission work looked quite interesting. I wonder if I'll see her at the London Artist Book Fair...

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Mark Kermode realises Neil Young is fantastic!

I know it's stupid, but Mark Kermode (Mark Kermode's Film Reviews on BBC Radio Five Live) talking about realising how fantastic Neil Young is and how wrong he's been was just fantastic! Best thing today!

Download/listen here
(will add audio stream as soon as figure out how to do it)

Carbon offsetting

This and this article in today's Guardian grabbed my attention.
We've been trying to find a reputable company for months now in order to offset all the traveling we have to do.
We've had an extensive look around and it is really hard to know who to choose. There's Climate Care - heavily mentioned by companies offsetting in the UK (the Guardian and the Lonely Planet, amongst others) - but frankly they just look a bit commercial, and there's the local one (and even though I do want to protect the Swedish Forest I'm not convinced it's the best over-all solution for a global problem).
At the moment Vi-skogen is the front runner with poss 1% for the planet or similar for business... Anyone has any ideas?

(UPDATE: we obviously try to keep the traveling we have to do to the absolute minimum, but for those trips we really can't get out of we'd like to do all we can).

Picture used from Vi-skogen

Friday, October 06, 2006

Book Covers

Maybe it's because it's Frankfurt Book Fair - or maybe it's because I've spent most of my life being equally obsessed with books (as in literature) and books as a physical object - but whilst taking a little break from sourcing out books for our own little book project I was immediately drawn to this posting on neverhappened.org (a site that I didn't know before, but is quickly becoming intrigued by - found via hoping for happy accidents). It took me to a flickr site with some great old style Penguin Book Covers. If you're interested in the Book Cover design of Penguin especially they've been given quite a lot of notice as of late (possible due to turning 70 last year). There was a V&A exhibition last year, and there's currently one on at the Design Museum in London (ends Nov 26 - if you don't have the opportunity to go the site is pretty informative) or perhaps buy Penguin by Design: A Cover Story 1935 - 2005.
Personally I've found that picking up an actual copy from a charity shop or second hand bookshop is vastly superior if it's inspiration you're looking for - maybe it's the authenticity and craftmanship compared with just a glossy reproduced image.

It's interesting how much more inspiring book covers from 20, 30, 50 years ago are to the ones today - even the most trivial cheap paperback seems to have a more thought-through and well-executed design then most of the ones today. I don't know what it is - perhaps just the ease with which they can technically be produced today - but book covers seem sadly to have gone the same way as album covers.

Luckily today you seem still able to find this kind of inspiration from Artist Books or from some select small press publishers. In London you can go to the excellent bookartbookshop or visit the London Artists Book Fair (this year 3–5 Nov 2006 at the ICA in London). Their website is not much fun, but the book fair never fail to inspire - you can pick up works from small presses, makers of book art, art university graduates, art bookshops, and more - fantastic!

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Perfect book cover?



I love the entry page of this site! Perfect book cover?

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Russian Words A-Z

I found this magical site through imedaGoze.
I wish I could understand the Russian alphabet, but even more I wish my Japanese was on the level for reading the journal or other entries. But maybe it's perfect this way. All I know is I keep returning to it and struggle to turn away - immensely meditative.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Inspiration



I just love these images! I'm not normally big on Moschino or find most fashion campaign particularly inspirational - more like boring and predictable - but I just think these are very very good (found via Fashion Addict Diary / Fashion Addict Diary flickr page).

"Fair and Balanced"

Reading the Guardian Monday (had some technical probs yesterday) I was alerted to the fact that Fox News turns 10 years this week.
I didn't realise that Fox was the no 1 cable news channel in the States (!), but after spending time in the US - and feeling like a little gold fish in a news vacuum (in NYC of all places!) - I'm sadly not that surprised.
More about that another day, but for now see this excellent clip from the Daily Show with Jon Stewart:

Friday, September 29, 2006

Leisuring about with coffee


Sitting here with my coffee and newspapers/blogs in the morning I can't help but want to share this great page called Fikapaus (coffee break). Especially this picture is absolutely amazing (and not the right one to see just before going to view a flat on the ground floor!) - the view and the cup itself is the essence of Stockholm to me.

The cup pictured we're lucky enough to own two of (picked up in a charity shop for less then £1 while waiting for a cab). As far as we've been able to establish it's from Gustavsbergs (well worth the trip to if/when you're in Stockholm) and probably made sometime in the 1940's.

The excellent Fikapaus was found via Karin Eriksson (again) - she has one of these blogs that I for some reason don't look at that often, but everytime I do it's incredibly inspiring. (She also posted about the current exhibiton at Nationalmuseum - looks brilliant! and will post about as soon as been to see it)

Thursday, September 28, 2006

City Farms and Community Gardens



Reading this article in the Independent this morning I was again reminded of the need for green spaces in cities (something I missed immensely, and couldn't quite get used to living without, during my years in Old St/London). Strangely enough I lived for years in Stoke Newington, but was never aware of Stoke Newington Farmers' Market. It was only looking for places for little person that I firstly found the great Hackney City Farm (picture) and thereafter a number of different sites where I could've got fresh, locally grown, organic products - as well as supported important projects (if I would've just known at the time!)

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

For Robin



Really like this image posted on Abigail A. Percy who I found through Karin Eriksson whereas Abigail found it through Selvedge Magazine (you know how it goes!) It's by Petra Borner (she's also - amongst other - made a papercut image called Swedish Summer...) Kinda like Selvedge - maybe go on our subscription list together with the Sat Guardian etc etc...?




This sculptural piece found via Karin's page is fantastic! By Cathy Miles