The Design Observer Group
Observatory

WEEKLY EMAIL: OCTOBER 01, 2010


The Wood Stacker

FEATURED THIS WEEK : ADAM HARRISON LEVY

The Wood Stacker

Elwood Shaler has been stacking wood for 75 years. His wood piles are the envy of the valley in which he lives. They are unlike the squat pragmatic designs you often see when driving the back roads of New England. They are monumental.
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DEBBIE MILLMAN

The Art of Poetry

I still own the first copy of Poetry magazine I ever bought; the May 1981 issue aptly titled “First Appearances.” The simple two-color cover, once a fluorescent sea-green, is now badly faded, and the line drawing of a flying horse (Pegasus) illustrated by James Thurber is largely obscured by what looks like an ugly oil-stain.
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LUC SANTE

Circus: The Photographs of Frederick W. Glasier

Frederick W. Glasier seems to have traveled with the Barnum & Bailey Circus for a while, and maybe later with the Sparks Circus, and may have journeyed to the west, although certainly the better part of his photographs of Native Americans were taken in studio settings and could just as well have been made on the east coast.
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JOSHUA GLENN

The "X" Factor

I started collecting Cold War-era (i.e., from the end of WWII through détente) "X" paperbacks when I was 12 years old. From the pulp fiction pile in my grandfather's summer house in Maine, I smuggled home a 1945 Pocket Book edition of Philip MacDonald's Warrant for X. I didn't want to read it; I was obsessed with the free-standing "X" on its cover: two swipes of red paint topped by two narrower swipes of white
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THOMAS DE MONCHAUX

In Search of Sukkah City

Sukkah City: NYC 2010 is a design/build architecture competition that will support and build a dozen experimental pavilions in Union Square Park in New York City this Fall. Here, co-organizer Thomas de Monchaux explores the very old questions that the sukkah seem to eternally inspire — as an idea, tradition, place, structure and festival. It's a perplexing design challenge, to say the least.
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JAN CONRADI

Looking Back, Thinking Forward: A Narrative of the Vignellis

He is an extrovert. Gregarious, outspoken, delighted to work the crowd that is usually equally delighted to be in the room with him. She is poised, quieter, more reserved, less comfortable with the spotlight though no less deserving of its shine. Together they are confident in their choices, earnest in their vision, and determined to create something lasting in a profession that is too often ephemeral.
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OBSERVATORY ARCHIVE

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POEM OF THE WEEK

"Q"

Q, a poem by Sharon Olds.
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RECENT BOOKS RECEIVED

Culinary Ephemera: An Illustrated HistoryCulinary Ephemera: An Illustrated History
William Woys Weaver

Caca GrandeCaca Grande
Carlos Amorales

Window Display: New Visual MerchandisingWindow Display: New Visual Merchandising
Tony Morgan

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