Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Great Video Tribute to Jørn Utzon

Earlier this month the Guardian UK posted a great short video paying tribute to Danish architect and Sydney Opera House designer Jørn Utzon, who died on November 29th.

Green Issue: The New York Times Magazine

NY Times
You know a topic has arrived when the New York Times magazine devotes a special issue to it. The magazine’s first green design issue, published on Sunday, contains an article about Curitiba, a medium-sized Brazilian city that leads the way in green planning; a profile of Shigeru Ban, whose buildings produce almost no waste; and a first look at the backyard solar-hydrogen plant that may someday power your home and car.

Monday, December 29, 2008

The Spinning Green Skyscraper By David Fisher

Many believe that if you can think it and picture it in your mind, you can build it. Italian architect David Fisher is employing that philosophy with his plan for the world’s first moving skyscraper. Although Fisher hasn’t ever built a skyscraper, and there’re some discrepancies with his professional background, he’s pressing on with his swirling skyscraper. (video after the jump)

It’s the “first building that is dynamic,” Fisher said in June of the 80-story skyscraper that’s slated to have revolving floors that can be rearranged any time. This way, it will be able to constantly provide a different view of the Persian Gulf and its changeable skyline.
Set for construction at an undisclosed location in Dubai this fall, the building will be entirely self-powered and will function like a generator with turbines installed between each floor to utilize the wind that all too often works against traditional skyscrapers.

As far as construction goes, Fisher has said that its parts will be prefabbed in an Italian factory and then shipped to the site, which should breaks its construction cost to approximately $700 million. The finished product will go for $3,000 sq/ft and range from $1 million to nearly $39 million. The perks of owning a penthouse? Lifts will allow you to park your car right inside your digs.

(Resource: huffingtonpost.com)

Interactive Sustainable Gallery Show in L.A.

I read that Otis College of Art and Design was hosting an experiential, sustainable gallery show, it seemed a perfect opportunity for a location shoot!

The exhibit features household products and services of the “G” variety that are made from renewable, recycled and repurposed sources. The artists are individuals, students and companies who are already manufacturing and distributing with environmental integrity – hence the aggressive title:


A bit in your face, I know. I thought the same thing. “Don’t tell me how to live, damn it!” But after touring the exhibit (which runs through October 20th, 2007), I realized the title wasn’t a demand, it was an invitation. (You can) LIVE GREEN NOW. (It’s) DO(able).

It’s about the present, not the future.

So, I aligned our crew and the good people at Otis with a shoot date and we did a show there.

The canvas is three-bedroom house with a front yard “garden” and a backyard area. According to the official press release, the event is “a sensory exploration and practical demonstration of today’s sustainable products that visitors can touch, feel and experience first hand”. With different speakers in this ongoing series, every day is an opportunity to be educated, inspired and entertained about cyclical renewal and product longevity. (There’s also some free swag, if you’re into that. You can never have too many cloth shopping bags or eco-stickers to spread the word.)

visit Otis College of Art and Design’s official site for more info.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

The Recycled Bottle Christmas Tree

water bottles

It’s that time of year again, when the halls are bedecked with holly, mistletoe hangs in waiting and retailers battle it out for the best Christmas window displays. Only not all of them have a renowned design studio hiding in the wings.

Domison, a high-end furniture retailer based in Montreal revealed their secret weapon in the window wars just recently. They commissioned design outfit Paprika to produce a seasonal installation, and the result is pretty spectacular, with an environmental edge.

paprika installation

Over 300 recycled mineral glass water bottles were pieced together to create this magical Christmas installation. The bottles, containing the Domison insignia, were hung at various heights to give the impression of a tree, and were lit from above by eight powerful spotlights, so when the light bounces off the bottles, they sparkle and glow as if made of ice.

bottle tree

The installation will be displayed until January 2009.

Source Design Bloom

Friday, December 26, 2008

Viable London

I came across Viable London on Designboom yesterday and am loving their work. They are debuting a new line of sustainable products at this year's London Design Festival. Slat Shelf is made of sustainably harvested pine and the Spiral Stools of cork, felt and wool. Mehdi Zerouali

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Aesop's Glass Bottle Store - Adelaide


After becoming one of the world's hottest boutique botanical skincare ranges, the Australian-based Aesop brand is now making a name for itself in the world of innovative retail design, injecting a large dose of cool into the concept of sustainability. If you thought the brand's Melbourne "cardboard" concept store was clever (all of the merchandising stands were made from recycled cardboard), you'll love its brand new Adelaide "bottle" boutique. The store's ceiling is crafted entirely out of recycled bottles, precisely arranged in a wave pattern. Who said green had to be dowdy?

These new Australian stores are part of a big phase of expansion for Aesop, which has also just opened boutiques in Paris and London's swanky Mayfair.

Source: stylehive.com

Dupli.Casa, Ludwigsburg, Germany

This House that is called Dupli Casa, the geometry of the building is lbased on the footprint of the house that previously was located on the site, originally built in 1984 and with many extensions and modifications since then is located in Ludwigsburg, Germany, was designed and completed by Jürgen Mayer H. Architects in 2006-07. The new building echoes the ‘family archeology’ by duplication and rotation. Lifted up, it creates a semi-public space on ground level between two ayers of discretion. The design therefore reflects a family vernacular – the different levels of a family presenting as twisted versions of the next, performing different functions but communicating as a whole.

“The skin of the villa performs a sophisticated connection between inside and outside and offers spectacular views onto the old town of Marbach and the German national literature archive on the other side of the Neckar valley,” the architects explain. In such close proximity to Chipperfield’s masterpiece Dupli Casa’s design is able to feature the Museum of Modern Literature as an asset in its own design, responding to the simple lines and blanched colouring. And just as RIBA, who deliver the annual Sterling Prize, commended Chipperfield for his “control and discrimination in the choice of materials” the same could be saluted in Dupli Casa’s design. Concrete walls and wooden floors are used creating a connection between the modern and the old, the natural and the man-made and the inside and outside, similarly achieved in Chipperfield’s columned design which integrates the indoors and out. While the three storey house holds a standing of its own, as a piece defining responsive architecture, its stature grows to reflect this.

Submitted for WAN’s House of the Year 2008, Dupli Casa displays sophisticated shape manipulation to transform a simplistic design into a complex yet comprehensible super-home.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008


The SkyPort light (pictured left) collecting panel system is a revolutionary way of shedding natural light into enclosed spaces. Here's how it works: a series of cables, named SunWires collect the suns natural light and feed the light energy through to the light omitting luminaries. These fibers are bundled into a flexible cable with a diameter of 3 cm, permitting transportation of the light up to 15 meters. A mixture of both parallel light and ambient light can be delivered through the system. When the light seems ambient, it imitates the way that natural light strikes through the foliage of a forest. Hence the light systems name, Bjork which is Swedish for birch tree (not the brilliant artist). Two SkyPorts mounted in varied angles makes it possible to bring in both the morning and afternoon sun. This could very well be the future of interior lighting, just as this brilliant device could be the future of water preservation. The Water hog (pictured right) is a rainwater tank that also doubles as a structural building foundation to the home. Weighing 200 kg once filled, the water hog is installed during construction and becomes a part of the interior, appreciated through its see through surface from the interior floor. The water hog can even be installed between walls. Certainly less of an eye sore than the good old tin water tanks by the side of the house. Mehdi Zerouali

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

ArteBA'08 - Buenos Aires


Having spent more than enough time traveling the world, I didn’t think I’d ever been this excited about yet another art event. But Buenos Aires and its amazing ArteBA Contemporary Art Fair have just reminded me how exciting art really can be. Forget the mainstream Basels and Miamis – this is where the world’s hottest art event is right now, and this is where the art world is really happening.

Argentineans are an extremely cultured bunch, more than any other nation, and this is the most important art fair in Latin America. Absolutely everyone seems to be interested in or involved in art here, and the massive daily line-ups were events onto themselves. This is where you meet everybody who is anybody, from artists to collectors to critics to celebrities to the general public. The entire city and its incomparable art, cultural and tourism charm is turned fully on and you are going to love it!


ArteBA is a fantastic meeting point of everything that has to do with art in the Latin American market – new, avant-garde, exotic, experimental, traditional; established artists, newcomers and everybody in between -- you name it, and it is here. Mainly visual artist and galleries from Argentina, Brazil, Peru, Costa Rica, Colombia and Uruguay displayed their best and their hottest art. The venerable, 17-year-old, five-day intensive art event had an attendance of more than 110,000 people, and it came close to having more energy and eye candy than I could handle!

Argentineans are extremely stylish with an edge, and it seems they are all good looking. So, I found myself people-stalking a lot as well, even at the art events where there was more exciting art than I have ever encountered in any art event in any city. From now on, this is THE one art event I will attend every year.


In Buenos Aires, my home away from home was Palermo’s Home Hotel, one of the Hotels included in our latest book World’s Coolest Hotel Rooms. and also Tailor Made Hotel in Las Cañitas. Palermo Viejo is Buenos Aires's equivalent to New York's Soho and it is definitely the trendiest neighborhood and way much cheaper than Soho. The cobbled streets are lined with fashion boutiques, amazing restaurants and design shops, mostly one-off local brands, the really interesting stuff. I liked Arte Etnico Argentino that sells textiles, furniture and accessories made in tribal villages. Another amazing area is San Telmo with its antique stores and the hugely popular Sunday antique market. This is the way antiquing is supposed to feel like!


I have never experienced a city more extroverted and exotic in its fusion of night and day, history and future, foreign and local. My every sense has been heightened here by the overwhelming richness of sights, sounds, smells and tastes, and by the endless succession of nightlife, tango parties, special events, dinners, clubs...I’ve had an amazing time and I have Astrid Perkins and her great team at Think Argentina to thank for pretty much all of it. I have never been looked after better than here in Buenos Aires!

A big thank you to LAN Airlines business class for flying me to Buenos Aires from New York.


Monday, December 22, 2008

Tsai Design Studio

Tsai Design Studio created this interesting bunk bed as the winning entry to the 2006 36sqm Challenge, a design competition that asked for solutions for large families living in small spaces (36 sq. meters, to be exact). The Nested Bunk Beds were inspired by traditional Russian Matriochka dolls, with five nested beds that can be pulled out for sleeping. The design went from concept to reality after being installed at an AIDS orphanage in Wellington, South Africa.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

The Foals - 'Antidotes'

Foals make me jealous. I mean, how embarrassing is it to see these kids blast their way onto the scene with the kind of awe-inspiring, frenetic indie-meets-dance-punk you wished that second Valentinos EP would’ve had? Pretty embarrassing. In the spotlight for less than a year and Foals have already featured on a Kitsuné Maison compilation, inked major deals, and had their drummer pose for Burberry’s Spring/Summer line. Shit, these kids get their record produced by TV On The Radio’s main man Dave Sitek and essentially scrap his mixes in favour of their own. Next thing you know they’ll be ignoring all those MySpace messages from Timbaland. Damn them.

Then they go and rub it in my face with their terrific debut album Antidotes. Look at them…flaunting those nervous guitar lines, those booming drums and fevered vox. Even the horns can’t slow down the raucous second single Cassius, nor the stomp of Heavy Water.

Get envious at myspace.com/foals

Perillo Chair

Perillo Chair
German designer Martin Ballendat’s Perillo lounge chair for Zuco won the people’s choice award at the Orgatec trade show in October and has earned our nod of approval, too. The futuristic piece of furniture wraps around itself, flowing seamlessly from the backrest to armrests to seat to the floor.

If the white and red combination looks too much like something better suited for a rocket ship than your living room, the warmer wood-finished Perillo is a perfect—and just as intriguing—alternative.
Cant wait until i try this seat :)

Cities and their Grids

John Briscella, a Philadelphian now earning his Masters in "Urban Strategies" in Vienna—surely one of the most interesting degree titles out there—has put together a new journal with pages consisting entirely of lightly printed street grids from different cities around the world. The Urban Gridded Notebook, as it's called, opens up with the statement that "the modern city is controlled by the grid...we should not let it control our creativity."

From there, it's an aerial tour through the abstract and unlabeled street grids of the modern metropolis, sketched out as mere lines in space, with no landmarks to guide us.

Whether it's used as a sketchpad for ideas, a stimulus for architectural drawings, or simply a coloring book—turning the endless tilework of Manhattan into a weave of colors—the Notebook offers a fascinating glimpse of the infrastructural forms taken by contemporary urbanism. Is that Amsterdam? Philadelphia? Tokyo? London?

While at least our office's copy of the notebook—which can only be ordered through Lulu.com, the popular print-on-demand service—is unfortunately marred by several instances of bad printing (as if the printer's toner has run low), the idea is fantastic and deserves to be picked up by another publisher, elsewhere.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Calvin Klein DollHouse - NY

Architect Joshua Prince-Ramus of Ramus-Ella Architects (REX) created the holiday attraction of the Calvin Klein store on 5th Avenue in New York. It is a miniature four-storey dwelling complete with a landscaped rooftop. It is a miniature but it is not tiny. It weighs 1,000 pounds and is suspended in the air from steel hangers. The house is furnished with mini-versions of products from CK clothing, accessories and home collections including the furniture line that will launch in early 2009. Structural engineering and manufacturing collaborators in this project were Magnusson Klemencic Associates and Situ Studio. -

Wednesday, December 17, 2008


The idea of bringing beauty to something as horrific as a car crash seems impossible. Artist Cai Guo-Qiang has achieved the impossible. His installation Inopportune, featured at MASS MoCA in Massachusetts presents a virtual ballet of individual cars as they twist, revolve and flip in sequence making their way through the motions of a car crash. Long transparent rods radiate from the car, pulsing with dazzling multi coloured light as the vehicles appear in stop motion. Suspended from the ceiling with transparent cables the vehicles takes us through the contorted journey of an experience we would otherwise not want. Described as as "an explosive moment“ expanded in time and space as if in a dream Cai Guo-Qiang's work is dramatic, severe and frighteningly beautiful.

To see more, log onto http://www.caiguoqiang.com/

Monday, December 15, 2008

The Rebirth Of Disco

Much like designers, musicians are continually swinging through history, cherry-picking the best bits from long-forgotten eras and reinterpreting them with a modern slant. Recently, we’ve trudged through nostalgic New Order clones and the post-post-punk boom with bands like Interpol and Editors, but now it would seem that the much maligned genre of disco is coming back. So break out the bellbottoms because disco is about to be cool again.


Inspired by the free flowing form of water, and constructed from eco friendly woods from Ecuador, the new 'sande' series from designer David Brunicardi is both earthy and slick in its appearance. The range includes the wave coffee table, the mag bench and the sande side table. Fluid form is consistent throughout the range and the wood used is positively beautiful. This is as fine as furniture gets in terms of simplicity and materials used.

Home Made Delicate Food Delivery

Home Made Delicate Food Delivery on Milan’s via Tortona is homey in a supremely stylish way. And it should be, being as it is located right at the epicenter of Salone del Mobile. Owner Monica Bangari with architects Riccardo Salvi and Luca Rossire envisioned a real home and created a cozy flow from the living room to a little garden (by landscape architect Carlo Callari of Milan’s ARePA studios). The fabulous AGAPE bathtub on the patio is an example of the clever partnership deals that the architects made with several prominent suppliers – all of whom are keen to be present where the world of design mingles. The suppliers, including the architects, are listed as “sponsors” on the restaurant’s website, which perhaps is an indication of their home-grown version of “let’s all work together for a common good and forget being so greedy.” Salvi and Rossire have collaborated since 1998 and completed many innovative projects including the design of furniture and accessories for various manufacturers. The food at Home Made is healthy and fresh — slow food at its Italian finest — and take out is delivered in swanky and lean 50s retro baggies. Handy and simple menus are published online for easy online ordering.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Munetsugu Hall,

Norihiko Dan — born in 1956 in the Kanagawa Prefecture in Japan — is the designer of the beautiful Munetsugu Hall, completed in 2007 in Naka Ward, Nagoya, Japan. It is a privately-funded concert hall that continues the age-old but almost-dead tradition of wealthy arts patrons initiating and financing the creation of art spaces. Fluid, white wall shapes are the distinctive feature of Munetsugu Hall’s main performance space. The walls bring to mind artistic sweep marks left by a gigantic builder who in his boredom doodled in his mortar tray with a massive trowel and then let the shapes solidify.

Norihiko Dan has won several architecture awards in Japan and Taiwan including the Distinguished Architect Award of the Japanese Institute of Architecture and the ARCADIA Award Gold Medal in 2007. His work has been part of exhibitions in Japan, Taiwan, USA, Canada, Germany, Austria, Italy and the UK. In addition to being a respected architect and educator, Norihiko Dan is also an architecture historian and writes novels and screenplays.

Munetsugu Hall’s generous benefactor is Tokuji Munetsugu who with his wife Naomi made a fortune in the restaurants business. Their company Ichibanya Co. Ltd. (based in Aichi, Japan) operates more than 1,000 curry and pasta restaurants under the names Curry House CoCo Ichibanya and Pasta de Coco. Munetsugu spent two billion yen to build the 310-seat concert hall. He has also set up a nonprofit organization to support welfare, sports and arts activities.
Source: The Coolhunter.uk

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Welcome to Creative Hunter ©

Here is the first issue of Creative Hunter ©, I hope that you will enjoy the articles posted by both El Mehdi Zerouali and Allan Chow. Creative Hunter will try to be a natural fit for its readers - creative influencers who stay in the know and ahead of the curve. Global in outlook, culturally discerning, readers will be connected, creatively aware, confident, stylish and sociable. They value architecture, design, style, music, fashion and entertainment. They work, play and travel internationally and bring with them distinguished tastes and a demanding appetite for quality information. That's why we are here to share all this stuff with you. Enjoy !