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Another prize for Latvian design! May 27, 2009

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I have a great pleasure to share good some good news with you! Latvian designer, the leading person in RIJADA and Design Drive group and also my friend Rihards Funts (see him on the picture, in the middle) won an international design competition in Vinius (Lithuania). The competition “NEFORMATE 2009” was organized by “Lithuanian Design Forum” and its aim was to stimulate designers to create furniture for public spaces. More than one hundred projects from Baltic states, Scandinavia, France and Spain were submitted.

Bench DOMINO is inspired by typical Latvian home made benches in countryside households. Rihards found the sitting principle, when the wall or fence is used as back of the seat, unique and particularly comfortable. . This type of bench is usually located in front of a house near the main entrance, which often faces the street.

The concept of the bench is to make it possible for the user to adapt the bench to his taste, wishes and needs. DOMINO is a “Green Seating” project that encourages people to apply used materials such as planking, doors, furniture, snowboards and others.


The production process of the supports is fast and simple: just punch and fold the metal sheet. Once mounted, the construction is very strong. The supports are made from zinced steel and are colored with weatherproof powder coating.

And once again- Bravo for Rihards!

P.S.: When I will finally live in my own house, I will certainly order from him some bench legs!

Photos by Valdis Jansons.

Herman de Vries in Kröller-Müller museum. May 20, 2009

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Herman de Vries is a Dutch artist (1931), who’s currently exhibiting his work at the Kroller-Muller museum that is located in a beautiful area of Netherlands, in the middle of a forest (yes, there are some..).

He writes his name in lower-case “to avoid hierarchy”.

,,Nature in itself is enough and must be enough for people as well, ” he states. He thinks that nature doesn’t have to be elevated to the state of art as it is beautiful and interesting in itself. He believes that humanity does to nature an injustice by making a difference between nature and culture or between art and non-art. It is not necessary to explain nature or to attach symbols to it. Anyone who observes nature attentively will encounter a wealth of ideas.

Samples of earth from all over the world rubbed on paper.

Poster for an exhibition.

One of my favorite pieces..

(zoom in)

artist, himself..

What’s inside my teddy bear? May 11, 2009

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It’s a book I found amazing since the first time I saw it six months ago. Beautiful and shocking. It tells what we (at least me as a long time vegetarian) don’t like to know- the pig is EVERYWHERE!!

The book ,,PIG 05049,, by Christien Meindertsma is the result of three years long research. It is also an example of simple and beautiful graphic design.

,,The idea of this book arose from my interest in the invisible lines that link raw materials, producers and consumers world wide. In a strongly globalised world, it is becoming increasingly difficult to trace these lines and due to the increasing scope and complexity of the meat processing industry, the consumer has hardly any idea of the route an animal takes to the various finished products.” says Chrisien Meindertsma. She claims the book is not meant to be a manual for vegetarians or people who, due to their religious convictions, don’t eat pork. It is an impossible manual- impossible to follow for those who live in our ,,developed,, Western society.

Here are some examples of the long list:

Hemoglobin is a protein in red blood cells used to transport oxygen around the body. Recently hemoglobin derived from pig blood has been started to be used in cigarette filters. It creates an ,,artificial lung,, where harmful reactions take place before the chemicals reach the smoker.

Bone ash is added to fine bone china to achieve a high strength and translucency. Amongst other things it is used to make hand painted figurines.

Glycerine is an alcohol made through hydrolysis of pork fat. Glycerine can be used in toothpaste.

Gelatine capsules are used to hold oils or ingredients suspended in oil.

In the production of wine, bear and juices gelatine can be used as a clarifying agent. Gelatine reacts with the tannins and bitter substances and absorbs the cloudy elements that can then be separated from the drink.

Fatty acids derived from pork bone fat are used in body lotions.

Bone glue can be used to prepare wall before applying wallpaper as well as an ingredient in the paper itself.

And so on and so on… we find pig in nearly 200 products.

Is it ethical? Do we have rights to know what we pay for? Are the producers interested to inform us? Is it better to know or not to know? Well, at least, if we don’t know what we don’t want to know, then we can’t feel bad about it…

P.S. The book is Christien’s graduation project at the Design Academy Eindhoven.

P.S. The photos of the products above have nothing to do with the beautiful pictures in the book.

Back for good. May 9, 2009

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April has been full of sun, gardening on my balcony, sewing dresses, walks in nature and some studies’ related stress. I’ve also had a chance to discover some more beautiful secret corners of Netherlands.

I’ve received the first prize in unique design category in the competition organized by Latvian design magazine Deko.

And- no I haven’t been in Milan this year. But thanks to my friends I’m gonna publish some nice photos very soon!