Mobiles and more

Hi Everyone,

I work in a gorgeous building designed by William McDonough. The building is very open and airy with large windows and high ceilings. The signature space in the building is definitely our main atrium.


I know what you are all thinking. It is a beautiful space but where is the art? Me too! On Monday, the school’s Facilities Director and I spoke with the Chief Preparator and Registrar for the Katzen Art Gallery to get some ideas for the atrium. We would like to install some sort of mobile. During our conversation, a few local DC artists were mentioned for their mobiles or large sculptures.

Kendall Buster


John Dreyfus

dreyfusDreyfus2Kendall Buster and John Dreyfus are just two of the artists that came up in discussion. It is amazing how their pieces change the entire mood of a space.

A group of local artists will be sending us a proposal for the atrium within the next few weeks. They are alumni of the school so we really hope that we like their piece. I will keep you updated!


Who made you the center of the universe?

Hi Art Xplorers,

I have a music video that I would like to share with you this morning. The video features Laura Mvula singing “That’s Alright”. My uncle sent me this video yesterday and I am already in love with it. The song has a smooth yet upbeat rhythm and the lyrics are a lot of fun. But being a very visual person, I am really excited by all of the gorgeous visuals in the video.

Check out the architecture of the room. Notice the smooth curves of the staircase contrasted by the square movements of the dancers.

And the fashion! Do not get me started on the fashion. The red dress and shawl that Laura is wearing during the first chorus are breathtaking and so innovative. And her purple eyeliner is the perfect accent.

Well enough from me, take a look for yourself.

Tasty Art

One of my favorite parts of my job as an event planner is catering menus. I love love love catering menus. I believe that a beautifully catered event is a true work of art. The menu, the linens, the floral arrangements…

My obsession with catering is reflected in my weekend morning show selections. I love watching episodes of Top Chef, Whose Wedding is it Anyway? or Food Network Challenge. This morning, I was watching Fabulous Cakes on TLC and began surfing the web for other amazing cake creations.

Take a look at these whimsical creations. What do you think? Are pastry chefs artists? I certainly think so.


Beautiful Table Displays

phoca_thumb_l_cakes-fw-2012-10phoca_thumb_l_cakes-fw-2012-09All of these photos are courtesy of Wedding Style Magazine or Mike’s Amazing Cakes 

Christos J. Palios: Panorama Artist

Christos J. Palios 

Today I have some amazing panoramas for you. Each of Christos J. Palios’ panoramas are created from 300-500 individual photographs. These photographs are combined to form a seamless 360 view of a location. I am absolutely intrigued…do I say that a lot? 😉


Bus Retro | Larissa, Greece | 2007


J6| Manhatten| New York City


Kinzie | Chicago, Illinois | 2007


Lost Melody | Piraeus, Greece | 2008


Penn Station | Baltimore, Maryland | 2007

Don’t settle for an E-Card

Everyone has one or two things that are on their “essential items” list. For example, my brother can justify any amount of money spent on a book (borrowing from the library is an absurd proposition). Food, shelter, gas…. books. According to him, these are all items that you need to live. My weakness is coffee (specifically Starbucks). I am convinced that a venti chai latte is a need and a justifiable part of my monthly budget. Where am I going with this? Well, recently I discovered that I have a new item to add to my splurge list, cards.

Yes, cards. Papyrus has become one of my favorite stores because their cards are tiny works of art. They are so beautiful that I can no longer stand to purchase a card in the isles of CVS or Rite Aid. The artistic value of these cards compensates for the cost. And I find that I will often opt to skip a gift and find a gorgeous card instead.

Here is a photo of a card that I bought today for Mother’s Day. Isn’t it lovely? The flowers in the basket are small cutouts that jump out of the photo.papyrus

My enthusiasm for this recent purchase has me wondering why I do not make my own cards? I have made cards in the past, but I never spent the time to create true works of art. I think it is something that I would really like to do. Take a look at some of the amazing cards that I found below. Wouldn’t you be flattered to receive one?



growing pea



Janine Tinklenberg

Jeanne Silverthorne-Modern Still Lifes

Last Sunday, my friend and I ventured over to the Phillips Collection to view the current exhibition–Angels, Demons and Savages– featuring work by Ossario, Pollock and Dubuffet. While we really enjoyed the exhibit, I left the gallery pondering the work of Jeanne Silverthorne.

Silverthorne’s exhibition is appropriately titled, “Vanitas!” She casts rubber sculptures that feel like 3D still life paintings. These “modernist still lifes” beg you to stop and consider the meaning of everyday objects…their utility…their purpose…their beauty….

I was mesmerized by these pieces. They are simple yet whimsical.

Take a look. Be still.


mutantlamp1017LargeRoseDNA Candelabra (detail)DNA Candelabra


Stitch Brigades and Lots and Lots of Yarn

The Rosslyn Business Improvement District and Arlington Public Art have sponsored three temporary public art projects in Arlington, Virginia. I recently encountered one of the projects located by The Artisphere in Rosslyn. Yarn Bombing!

130 volunteers met for five months as part of the “Guerrilla Stitch Brigade” to create these cheerful pieces of art that brighten the glum streets of Virginia’s business district.



yarn bombingImage

Check out this yarn bombing of the Albert Einstein Memorial downtown from last July. Crocheting is not just for grandma anymore, it has almost become a temporary form of graffiti. What do you think?


Doug Owen: Urban Horses

Last week, I was working in San Francisco which allowed me the opportunity to enjoy a meal with my aunt and uncle that live in California. We met for an early breakfast at Urban Tavern in the Hilton Union Square Hotel. I immediately noted the fun atmosphere of the restaurant which incorporated sleek lighting and a lot of gorgeous wood paneling. I later learned later that all of the decor is made from reclaimed materials including the tavern’s full size horse sculpture that sits in the center of the restaurant. You can view the horse watching over the dining room in the photo below.

urban tavern horseThis intriguing horse was created by artist, Doug Owen. Owen constructed a line of life-size horses made from materials that he and his wife find in “ditches, abandoned lots, and old farmsteads.”

Doug OwenOwen’s online portfolio displays photographs of his sculptures “roaming” fields or lying in front of the beautiful cliffs of South Dakota.


The video below shows Owen at work and exhibits a number of his sculptures.

I would love to own one of these mystical horses. Maybe someday I will have a home large enough to house one. Where would you place your horse? In the living room? Kitchen? Or maybe the garden?


I Want to Be a Sign Painter

sign painters logoLast Saturday was a fun day. My friends, Amy and Erik, met me for brunch at Luna Bar & Grill in Dupont Circle. The restaurant was packed but we were still able to gain a table quickly. I definitely recommend Luna. The atmosphere is fanciful and fun and the food was great.

After brunch, we mosied over to Starbucks to grab coffee to drink during our walk downtown to the Renwick Gallery. We went to see the 2 o’clock screening of Sign Painters. Check out the trailer below.

I really enjoyed the documentary because it was based around a theme that I care about— the gradual extinction of craftsmanship due to the advancement of technology. The filmmakers, Faythe Levin and Sam Macon, interviewed over one dozen sign painters to learn how they got started in the business and why they keep going despite the dissolving customer base. Watching these painters at work was beautiful. Their calculated designs were expressed with ease through the use of swift brushstrokes and eloquent lines. Free-hand lettering, gold leaf stencil, illustration and design…  I guarantee that once you have seen this film you will never look at a sign in the same way. A hand-painted sign IS NOT a printed vinyl sign. It is the product of a craftsman, a work of art. All afternoon, Amy and Erik and I searched for hand-painted designs along the streets of downtown DC. I do not think the three of us will view a sign in the same way as we did before film and we will certainly never miss a hand-painted sign.

Boston'sBest Dressed Signs

Alive!Colt Bowden

OK mitchOK Mitch

Concept Artists

Wikipedia defines concept art as “a form of illustration where the main goal is to convey a visual representation of a design, idea, and/or mood for use in films, video games, animation, or comic books before it is put into the final product. Concept art is also referred to as visual development and/or concept design. This term can also be applied to retail design, set design, fashion design and architectural design.”

Therefore, concept artists are a sub-branch of illustrators. They work with the Art Director and/or Production designer of a film, game, animation, etc. to create visual representations of an abstract vision. They create new worlds, generate new characters, and bring sci-fi dreams to life. The word on the street is that the field of concept art is very competitive and difficult to break into.

I have posted some works by various concept artists below. What do you think?

Feng ZhuFeng Zhu

Jake ParkerJake Parker

Colie wertzColie Wertz

Darren BaconDarren Bacon

Halls and Stairway in Forbidden City in SnowEmmanuel Shiu