December 31, 2012
Jim Isermann is a practicing artist, based in Palm Springs, California. Since receiving his MFA from the California Institute of Arts in 1980 Isermann’s artistic output has chronicled the conflation of post-war industrial design and fine art through popular culture. Functional installations that reclaimed a utopian view of the future while revealing the pathos of that failed promise have maintained an unflagging belief in the beauty of utilitarian design. Through out the 1990′s Isermann explored traditional handicraft technique to produce works (i.e.: stained glass, weaving, etc) that are unashamedly beautiful, a beauty that is integral to the limitations and specific characteristics of fabrication. In 1998, following a 15-year survey exhibition organized by David Pagel for UW Milwaukee’s institute of visual art, Isermann began to use a computer to design manufactured elements. Realized installations and commissions have employed mass-produced thermal die-cut vinyl decals, plotter-cut mylar decals, ContraVision© ink jet printed vinyl and projects incorporating multiple vacuum-formed ABS plastic panels. In 2003, a 35-foot 5-pendent chandelier, custom carpeting and furniture selection were permanently installed in the atrium of Genentech Hall at the UCSF Mission Bay Campus.
Currently Isermann divides his practice between producing labor-intensive studio work for gallery and museum exhibitions and designing and overseeing commissioned projects that involve industrial manufacturing processes. Most recently Isermann has mounted solo exhibitions at Deitch Projects, New York in 2007, Corvi-Mora, London in 2008 and Richard Telles Fine Art, Los Angeles in 2009. Commissioned projects were completed in 2006 for the UCLA Hammer Museum, the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority and the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, in 2007 for Yale University Art Museum, in 2008 for Princeton University and in 2009 for Stanford University and UCR.
December 3, 2012
Another great video from Theo Jansen. Directed and Produced by Salazar for Red Bull Media House. Theo Jansen is a Dutch artist. In 1990, he began what he is known for today: building large mechanical animals out of PVC that are able to live on their own, known as Strandbeest. His animated works are a fusion of art and engineering; in a car company (BMW) television commercial Jansen says: “The walls between art and engineering exist only in our minds.” He strives to equip his creations with their own artificial intelligence so they can avoid obstacles by changing course when one is detected, such as the sea itself. see more here Previous post
March 21, 2012
Schröder House, Utrecht, The Netherlands
Gerrit Rietveld (1888-1964)
Dutch minimalist architect and designer Gerrit Rietveld was a member of the De Stijl movement. Significant for his work is how he pared his design down to basic cubist elements and often used primary colours to emphasise the different planes. Most of his furniture was designed and manufactured to accompany his architectural commissions.
His lengthy career began already as a young boy in his father’s carpentry shop in Utrecht. The shop, catering to the bourgeois taste of the local clientele, produced quality period pieces of furniture. He left the shop in 1917 to set up an establishment of his own. This move marked a definite break with the traditions of his father’s work.
His first attempts in search of his own artistic line, were influenced by the Amsterdam School. Rietveld re-invented the structure of chairs and other objects and built them as constructivist sculptures. In 1918 he designed an early version of his legendary Red and Blue Chair. It was published in the De Stijl Magazine, the magazine of the movement of which he became a member in 1919. In this way Rietveld came in contact with various architects associated with the modern Dutch movement. They were all looking for a way to purify their work, to remove all remnants of past styles and influences. As the fame of De Stijl rapidly spread, Rietveld’s reputation grew from that of a local craftsman to an architect recognized in avant-garde circles across Europe. While working on the Schröder House, built in 1925, he left his furniture workshop with his long-time assistant, Gerhard van der Groenekan. Most of Rietveld’s furniture designs were sold at Metz & Co, a Dutch department store.
Rietveld’s career proceeded uninterrupted until 1943. He then was subsequently barred from practising as an architect, due to his refusal to join the Nazi-controlled Kulturkammer. After the war, the country and Rietveld gradually returned to normality, and Rietveld continued his work until he died at an age of 76.
Among his numerous furniture models, The Zig Zag chair, The Red and Blue Chair, the Schelling and Military series remain as eternal design icons. Gerrit Rietveld’s designs are to be found in the most important museum collections over the world.