February 28, 2011

euro trash

Some might think it strange to covet a garbage bin. Those people have probably never seen a Vipp.

I first laid eyes on one, the Vipp 13 to be precise, in the bathroom of our rented apartment in Copenhagen. A thing of beauty that came with its own special roll of Vipp 13 liner bags, I knew at once that this was no ordinary trash can.

The first Vipp was designed in 1939 by Holger Nielsen for his wife Marie to use in her hair salon. Today, the family owned company is still going strong and has also branched off into kitchen tools and the like but it's that simple pedal bin that has earned them a place among the icons of Danish design.

February 12, 2011

evil people in modernist homes

I think it's a crying shame that modernism has become synonymous in popular culture with cold, clinical and minimalist to the point of monastic. Why is it that the evil, cold-hearted movie villain/pharmaceutical exec/global arms trader always resides in an uber-cool modernist pad while America's sweetheart would never be caught dead in a home boasting fewer than 3 shingle-clad dormers? Ben Critton writes about the phenomenon in "Evil People in Modernist Homes". Get your copy here.

It's lovely when a book comes along that showcases the humanist face of modernism. Leslie Williamson's Handcrafted Modern offers a peek into the homes of over a dozen seminal mid-century architects and designers. I was really happy to see new (to me) pictures of the Eames' upper rooms and found inspiration in the images of private work spaces and studios. I think my favourite picture is the one of George Nakashima's humble yet so perfect front door.