Paris has the Louvre, London the National Gallery, Madrid the Prado…and Amsterdam the Rijksmuseum.
First opened in The Hague in 1800, the museum was moved to Amsterdam in 1808 and settled into the iconic palace designed by Cuypers in 1885, where it’s been attracting millions of art lovers since. Thanks to the rich artistic tradition of The Netherlands, the Rijksmuseum ranks among the world’s finest, having become the ‘home gallery’ for the likes of Rembrandt,Vermeer, Hals, van Ruysdael and many, many others. Continue reading
Normally I would – with all due respect – not regard Nissan as a maker of particularly stylish cars. Functional and utilitarian, yes, but desirable for its own sake, seldom. There are some notable examples, however, and the Nissan Figaro is one of the funkiest and most memorable of all.
I suppose the fact that this is a retro car says as much about me as it does about the car, but given its popularity and subsequent cult status I am obviously not alone in seeing its appeal. Originally appearing in 1991, the apparent risk of launching a 1960s lookalike in the early 90s was soon dispelled. Sure, Nissan had received a healthy collection of reservation signatures at the 1989 Tokyo Motor Show and subsequent events, but even they could not have envisaged the wave of nostalgia that this model would ride – and indeed help create. Continue reading
Design, as a force that marries the practical requirements of function with the more visually driven aspects of form, has been around since mankind first started shaping its surroundings. Throughout history, however, there have been times when prosperity allowed creativity to flow freely and produce the architectural and artistic masterpieces that still have such a powerful impact upon us today.
While large parts of the past hundred years will not exactly inspire future generations to the same extent, I am happy to say that we now live in a world where design is not only appreciated but plays an important role in our lives. From the funky new Mini and Beetle to the rather more austere, futuristic interior design of modern offices, shops, homes and indeed hotels, a pure notion of design has been revived that enlivens the senses and exposes beauty in its many diverse forms. Continue reading
Inaugurated as the Great Central Hotel in 1899, The Landmark London was the last great Victorian railway hotel, and remains a living monument to that halcyon era of elegance and style. In over a century, hotel and structure alike have made their mark on the city – not just as a well-known architectural landmark, but also establishing a place for itself in the rich tapestry of London’s recent past.
The building that started life as a grand luxury hotel linked to rail travel, then was requisitioned during the world wars as a place for officers and soldiers to convalesce and ultimately served as a corporate headquarters of British Rail for 40 years before being restored to its former glory and reopened as a luxury five-star hotel – now one of the unquestionable jewels in the city’s crown. Continue reading
McDonough and Braungart do not see greater efficiency of raw material use as a real solution because it simply slows down the process of depletion and pollution, but doesn’t really break the negative production cycle and replace it with a sustainable one. Their leap outside the box involves looking at the whole process of production, consuming and waste disposal in an ‘eco-effective’ way.
They believe we should shed the old concept of efficiency and replace it with one of effectiveness: an eco-efficient building is a big energy-saver, sealed tight to avoid heat loss and leakage, which would make it use more energy or water to achieve the same ends. It likewise lowers temperatures with dark-tinted windows that help reduce the workload – and energy consumption – of the air-conditioning system. Being more energy-efficient means lower bills and less pollution, creating a double-whammy in which you do the right thing and save money. Continue reading
Creative Cloud designed a newspaper for the city of Delft called Delft Highlights concerning technological innovation from Delft’s Technological University . Delft possesses a lovely landscape of canals and produces the famous Delft Blue earthenware, as well as having ties with the Dutch royal family. Continue reading
Our world is increasingly built upon a pile of junk. In fact, ever since the onset of the mass-production and mass-consumption era, with its mass-marketed brands and the onslaught of cheap, readily available synthetic materials, the world has become increasingly inundated with junk.
We are aware that factories, cars and power plants pollute, but seldom take into account how much of this is directly contributed to by us as consumers. We crave goods, go out and buy them, rip off the inevitable plastic layering, consume or use the product and eventually dump it somewhere. Continue reading
For what is a rock star primarily renowned?
Well, apart from their blazing onstage performances, many of the music business’s biggest names are equally famous for the myriad creative ways that they trashed their hotel rooms. In the glory days of Led Zeppelin, drummer John Bonham memorably rode a motorbike along the corridors of Los Angeles’ Continental Hyatt House, thus securing the establishment’s somewhat louche reputation. Those of a sensitive disposition should be advised that the motorbike incident was one of the more repeatable stunts pulled by Robert Plant and friends, whose famously over-the-top on tour lifestyle set the gold standard for rock ‘n roll excess. Continue reading
Curled around the borders of my note pads when I was a schoolgirl. And thousands of roses were cut out from my mother’s gardening books. At the Academy of Arts, flowers as large as life were painted on my canvasses. There were always flowers. They flourished in the self-portraits of the eighties and grew bigger in the flower wallpapers made in the nineties. Continue reading