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AlessiLux LED Accent Light
“This table lamp design is such a fun, modern spin on the original oil lamp.”
- P. Jackson, Interior Designer
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The Art Story
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For design lovers, presentation is nearly everything. So when looking at Restaurant magazine's 2012 list of the world's best restaurant design, it only makes sense to compare the plates with the restaurant in which they're served.
For three years in a row, Copenhagen's Noma tops the list (above). Who would expect anything other than restaurant design perfection from this Danish icon? Noma's cuisine (below) is a colorfully chic take on Nordic cuisine utilizing foraged flowers, fungi and sea vegetables, but the design is fundamentally Scandinavian in it's functionalism. In a fun nod to the past, faux pelts drape over the modern chairs of the dining room (above).
At the number two spot for the best restaurant design is El Celler de Can Roca, Barcelona, where the wine list reigns supreme as evidenced by the modern cellar design (below).
At El Celler de Can Roca, landscape design and plate design have a funny way of mimicking one another (below).
Ranked third in the world is another Spanish restaurant, Mugaritz. Housed in a rustic farmhouse. It flaunts some adventurous cuisine and design details, such as this towel station outside the restrooms (below).
With a dark wooded ceiling, contemporary wall lamps cantilevered from the beams, and modern sculptures on the table, the dining room (below) is elegant yet restrained. Try one of these contemporary wall lamps to ge the look.
Dishes at Mugaritz show similar sculptural restraint, as with this plate of violet ice cream (below).
Put the world's top three restaurants together and you've got some unforgettable flavors set amid some great design.
Set of 2 Laine Wood and Faux Leather Dining Chairs, Sonneman Contra Perno Satin Nickel Boom Arm Floor Lamp, Silver Ribbon Twist Sculpture On Stand
Now we might not all be Michelin star chefs, but at least it's possible with the help of a few simple modern designs to re-create the look of the world's best restaurants at home.
Images: Unravel Travel, Fine Dining Lovers, Fifth Floor Cooking, Travel Takeaway, Barcelona.com, Pursuitist, el Pais, Wallpaper*
LEGO building blocks have inspired generations of young builders. In recent years, they've also become an object of affection for grown adults looking to indulge their childhood dreams of becoming an architect.
In 2008, LEGO introduced the LEGO Architecture Series, a series of building block sets that replicate some of the world's most iconic structures. Included are a number of modern residences that would be of particular interest to fans of modern design.
There's Mies van der Rohe's Farnsworth House:
There's Frank Lloyd Wright's Fallingwater:
And there's even Le Corbusier's Villa Savoye:
The LEGO design fad has definitely taken hold. Earlier this year in fact, Dwell Magazine and LEGO joined forces to stage a contest in which participants were asked to create a Mid-century Modern home using the blocks (pictured at the top of this post and below).
Put any of these sets together, literally, and you've got the best in mid-century houses. Unfortunately these models aren't large enough to fit our favorite lighting fixtures and furniture. For a real home, we recommend modern black leather chairs, Danish wood tables or credenzas, and any of our favorite arc designer floor lamps.
For a fraction of the cost of real construction, it's fun to fantasize for a moment about building one of the world's most recognizable modernist residences.
Images: Dwell, LEGO, Local Planet
Paper art. It can be so much more than ink or graphite drawings on flat white sheets. Folded, constructed or crumpled (or even lacquered as in David Jang's paper towel floor installation pictured above), paper becomes a sculptural goldmine.
Eva Black's "Folded" installation is a sculpture consisting of approximately 3,500 folded paper pyramids that, when combined, looks like an origami quilt.
The entire piece is constructed from found, gifted and collected paper Black culled from old art projects, paper bags, bookstores and more.
A scaled down, terrarium sized piece, reminiscent of Black's work, is this fun sculpture by Mark from the London based Present and Correct.
For a less geometric and more organic paper art, check out this installation of more than 100 paper sculptures by artist Peter Gentenaar. Floating throughout the church of Saint Riquier, close to Abbeyville, Somme, Northern France, the sculptures are floral in form and jelly-like in their weightlessness.
My favorite paper artist ever (and a personal friend) is Olga Lah, who I first discovered while sitting on a jury for the Los Angeles Art Association. She installed this amazing and adaptable piece in the entryway of the 2012 Palm Springs Art Fair which took place last February during the city's vaunted Modernism Week.
Most fine art is archival, it will stand the test of time. Paper often contains acid, which breaks the material and its colors down over time. While some of the art above is archival, not all of it (especially in the case of Eva Black's found paper) will hold up over time. Lighting plays a big role in the display and preservation of art. Halogen track lighting is preferred by many galleries, as it provides a full spectrum of white light, is low in harmful UV rays, and is adjustable so you can fine tune the lighting of your art work. For sculptural pieces, you may want to try recessed lighting overhead.
Last are some sculptural works nearly impervious to fading. Check out these complex, monochromatic origami-ish paper pieces by artist Matt Shlian.
Paper as sculptural fine art is only the beginning. Origami is increasingly being explored, in everything from space flight to nano-technologies, as a means to pack more stuff into less space. And for most design junkies, packing cool, beautiful forms into small spaces is what we're all about.
Images: David Jang, Eva Black Design, Design for Mankind, Gentenaar-Torley, Olga Lah, Matt Shlian
We have invited Erin Loechner, from the super cool art/design blog Design for Mankind, to help us with modern lighting trends while staying on budget. Take it away Erin...
Lighting can transform any space, but can all too often break the bank just as quickly. Lucky for you, I've rounded up 10 fantastic lighting finds - all under $100. Whether your dream makeover calls for industrial or baroque, I've got something for every budget-friendly style, plus tips on how to make the most of your new statement lighting. Enjoy!
INDUSTRIAL:Industrial lighting can sometimes look cold and outdated, so cozy up these pieces with plenty of layered textiles and earthy elements. Try pairing industrial-inspired spotlights and uplights in a warm, white kitchen with subway tiles and raw wood countertops for a chic Scandinavian aesthetic. Or, give the tripod table lamp a spin in an office filled to the brim with books and magazines with a flokati rug underfoot. Whatever you decide, rest easy knowing your lighting is making a bold statement in the space!
Lil Wonder Black Mini Spotlight ($84.99 Modern In Studio Adjustable Steel Tripod Table Lamp ($99.91) Lil Wonder Micro Mini Uplight ($84.99)
TRADITIONAL:Traditional lighting can be universally flattering in a variety of spaces. I recommend traditional chandeliers in a mission style dining room with tufted chairs for your next dinner party. Better yet? Add a bronze outdoor wall light to welcome your guests in style.
White and Chrome Finish Swag Style Plug-In Chandelier ($99.99) John Timberland 13" Wide Seedy Glass Outdoor Wall Light ($79.99)
GLAMOROUS:For the gal who can't get enough jewels, glamour-inspired table lamps and sconces are the perfect addition to a modern living room. Want to complete the look? Add an animal print rug, modern sectional and sculptural artwork for the chicest entertaining space around. Or tone down the glamour by pairing my picks with more natural elements, such as a wooden coffee table or concrete-inspired console.
Baroque Clear Acrylic Table Lamp ($99.99) Possini Euro Chrome Crystal Rainfall Modern Wall Sconce ($99.99) Mercury Glass 26 1/2 Inch - H Triple Gourd Table Lamp ($99.99)
CONTEMPORARYWant to freshen up any room of the home? Contemporary light fixtures work overtime in every space - from bedrooms to offices and everywhere between. Choose a chic table lamps to complement a modern bedside table or add sophistication to a drab desk. And I dare you to find an entryway that doesn't sing when paired with contemporary ceiling lights!
Resin White Drum Shade Michelle Table Lamp ($90.81) Possini Euro Design White Flower 15 3/4" Wide Ceiling Light ($99.99)
Happy lighting, friends!
Thanks so much Erin for your great modern lighting trends!
We are very happy to announch the launch of our print catalog! Iniside, you'll find 55 pages of our fabulous products, including some of our furniture.
To view the catalog, please visit the iTunes store.
Of course you can also shop us on-line at EuroStyleLighting.com!
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