The Eye
Slate’s design blog.

June 28 2016 9:04 AM

Why Did This Artist Build Giant, Technicolor “Magic Mountains” in the Desert?

About 10 miles south of Las Vegas, near Jean Dry Lake and Interstate 15, seven technicolor limestone totem poles rise in the arid, sun-faded desert landscape like a shockingly pigmented mirage. The fluorescent acid trip of an art installation is Seven Magic Mountains, the work of Swiss-born, New York–based artist Ugo Rondinone.

June 27 2016 12:35 PM

The Director of Helvetica Is Making a Documentary About the Man Who Likely Designed Your Coffeemaker

There has never been a full-length feature documentary about the life and work of Dieter Rams, one of the most influential designers of the 20th century. The now 84-year-old German designer has spent more than half a century creating more than 500 products for Braun and Vitsoe that have been used by millions of people around the world—who might never have given a second thought to wondering who designed their coffeemaker, alarm clock, electric toothbrush or stereo.

June 24 2016 9:13 AM

One of the Most Celebrated Buildings in the U.K. Is a Highway Rest Stop

One of the best buildings in the U.K. is a highway rest stop, according to the Royal Institute of British Architects, which announced Thursday its shortlist of 46 buildings in line for the prestigious RIBA Stirling Prize this October.

The RIBA–award-winning Gloucester Services is a “motorway service area” designed by Glenn Howells Architects.

June 23 2016 8:41 AM

Is Blue Wine the New Rosé?

It’s officially summer, which means that the thoughts of wine drinkers often turn to rosé. But Spanish startup Gïk has decided that rosés, reds, and whites are for old-school wine snobs. So this group of twentysomething designers, programmers, artists, and musicians with no background in winemaking has come together to engineer a shocking blue-colored sweetened wine that it is peddling as “a blasphemous drink.”

June 22 2016 8:54 AM

Fantastic Small-Scale Architecture Can Include More Than Tiny Houses

Long before tiny houses were a lifestyle trend, architects, designers and artists were creating small-scale buildings that allowed them to experiment and take creative risks. Nanotecture: Tiny Built Things, published recently by Phaidon, is a fun little book that “presents 300 examples of small built works that illustrate how tiny projects can convey interesting design resolutions,” author Rebecca Roke writes in the introduction, “all the more compelling for being made in miniature.”

June 21 2016 8:51 AM

Christo Enables Mere Mortals to Walk on the Water of a Scenic Italian Lake

The now 81-year-old artist Christo and his late wife and creative partner Jeanne-Claude are known for sometimes controversial large-scale public art installations that often involve wrapping scenic spots around the world in audacious swaths of fabric—like Paris’ Pont Neuf and Berlin’s Reichstag. For his latest project, The Floating Piers, Christo has created a 1.9-mile walkway made from 220,000 high-density polyethylene cubes that rises just above the surface of Italy’s scenic Lake Iseo. The walkway, covered in more than 1 million square feet of blazing saffron-colored fabric, undulates with the movement of the waves.

June 20 2016 3:24 PM

This Huge Man-Made Hive Sculpture Is Controlled by Bees’ Activity

Artist Wolfgang Buttress’ nearly 56-foot-tall, 40-ton sculpture The Hive has received multiple accolades since it won a gold award for architecture and landscape as the centerpiece for the U.K. Pavilion at the Expo 2015 in Milan.

June 17 2016 8:51 AM

Cool, Creative Workplaces From Around the Globe That Will Give You Office Envy

Creative industries such as graphic design, architecture, advertising, and digital media have added pressure to provide inspiring, statement-making workplaces. The Creative Workplace by design writer Rob Alderson features a selection of stunningly designed work environments from around the world that set a high bar for what it means to create a stimulating office tailored to specific work styles and needs.

June 16 2016 8:39 AM

The Movie Yarn Shows That Knitting and Crocheting Can Create Stunning Works of Art

Knitting and crocheting have turned into hipster pastimes for men and women of varying ages. But although they might no longer be seen as the domain of grannies, knitting and crocheting still largely suffer from the perception that they are but a crafty hobby, not a medium for art. Yarn: The Movie is a new documentary by Montreal-based Icelandic director Una Lorenzen that focuses on a handful of global artists whose work explores the possibilities contained in a skein of yarn.

June 15 2016 9:20 AM

A Midcentury Architect’s Innovative “Demountable” Office Is Restored to Its Former Glory

For the past two decades, Parisian gallerist Patrick Seguin, who specializes in 20th-century design, has been devoted to showcasing his collection of demountable structures by French midcentury architect and furniture designer Jean Prouvé (1901–84). Restored by Galerie Patrick Seguin in 2015, Prouvé’s Maxéville Design Office (1948) is being erected during the Design Miami festival taking place in Basel, Switzerland, until Sunday.

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