Tian Tan Buddha on Lantau Island, Hong Kong
Fernando De Noronha - Brazil
Spirit Island, Magligne Lake, Alberta, Canada
Rice Field Terraces in Yunnan, China
Coron Palawan, Philippines
Rocky Village, Vernazza, Italy
Porto Katsiki, Lefkada Island, Greece
Lower Lewis River Falls - Gifford Pinchot National Forest - Washington, USA
Pangong Tso Lake in the Himalayas
Golden Eye Hotel - St. Mary, Jamaica
Golden Horn, Brac Island - Croatia
Soneva Fushi, Maldives
Etretat, Normandy, France
The Pearl Waterfall, Jiuzhaigou Valley, China
Awa’awapuhi Trail Kauai, Hawaii
Santa Domenica nel Salento
Discovered a place we should include in Part 3 of Amazing Places? - get in contact
Former jazz singer Lana Del Rey defines her genre as Hollywood pop/sad core and says she hopes her music can be the “sonic equivalent of a Vincent Gallo film”. The 24-year old New Yorker also describes herself as “gangsta Nancy Sinatra”, putting into words the surprisingly coherent mix of the classic 60s round sound, the gloomy, grown up lyrics and the strong, convincing presence. Owing to Marianne Faithfull as much as she does to Fiona Apple and Norah Jones, this promising newcomer contrasts dark references with her fresh face via a series of DIY Youtube videos.
Her yet-to-be-released album is still being produced with a little help from a very cool production team including Liam Howe, Chris Braide and Emile Haynie. The foregoing teasing Youtube offerings seem to be all instant hits despite the poor production value of the videos: this is definitely the most awaited release of this autumn (Lana has signed with Stranger Records on June 30th and Video Games and Blue Jeans will be available on October 9th).
Befriend her on Facebook and keep an eye on those updates: 14k of fans before the album release can’t be wrong! - Andreea Popa
In July, luminaries from the art, fashion, & music world descended upon Berlin to celebrate the launch of The Avant/Garde Diaries – the new digital lifestyle hub & event series from Mercedes-Benz.
The first event in a global series, Transmission 1 was curated by renowned fashion designer Raf Simons with the aim of showcasing emerging and innovative artists across the cultural spectrum. Mercedes-Benz is collaborating with “cultural curaters” like Simons to create a connective tissue between the legendary carmaker and the next generation of tastemakers.
The centerpiece of the event was a showcase of the Mercedes-Benz Concept A Class screened by an Installation of glass, lighting and visual effects
British Art Director - Peter Seville, best known for his album covers for Joy Division and New Order, showcased his own 1998 Mercedes-Benz SL 500 at the event. Peter also attended the press workshop offering fascinating comments about avant-garde and pop culture. Other artists featured at the event included Germaine Kruip, These New Puritans, Fischerspooner, and Konstantin Grcic.
The tone and structure of the event allowed for guests to form their own opinions about the festival and what is indeed avant-garde.
As the inventor of the automobile, Mercedes Benz has long been an innovator in the automotive field. This festival and brand direction will also see them playing a similar role in the ongoing conversation of culture, expression, and innovation.
We look forward to seeing what comes next in this series of events. Stayed tuned-in and look for Transmission 2 here The Avant/Garde Diaries.
We have offered a few special products for sale on our site before and we are now excited to continue this by bringing to you this super sexy light made of wood.
The American Oak veneer shade has a big presence — 40 inches (101.1 cm) in diameter and 27.5 inches (70 cm) in height — yet it seems to float serenely in the air. The shade adds a warm Scandinavian glow to you decor in any room at home, and it looks great in the office, too, over a conference table or above a seating area. Bulb and fittings are customized to your geographic location, so you should have no problem setting it up.
You can order it here and pay by PayPal. (for bulk orders, send us an email)
Youth Factory, Factoría Joven, in Mérida, Spain, is an example of what can be done if a regional government works with the community and local designers to meet the needs of youth that may otherwise be heading down the slippery path of street life.
The structure may not be a permanent monument to architecture, but it is definitely a better place than the back streets of Spanish cities. We are all for any attempt at all to provide children and youth a place to be kids, to be creative and just have some fun.
Factoría Joven was designed by Madrid-based Selgascano Architects, a partnership between husband and wife, José Selgas and Lucía Cano.
Using recycled furniture, inexpensive building materials and temporary solutions, the designers were definitely not looking to build a monument to architecture; they were much more interested in affordable ordinariness and practical possibilities.
Factoría Joven helps attract the restless, unemployed street youth off the streets and provides them with a place to skateboard, hip-hop dance, climb rocks, create graffiti — whatever they would otherwise do in much more sinister surroundings. There are also a computer lab and a dance studio, both 800-square-meters in size. Meeting rooms and spaces for theatre, video and music are all included.
This is one of several such “youth factories” in the area; recreational centers and places that are inclusive, open and safe. - Tuija Seipell
Photography by Roland Halbe.
Susanne Nobis has the enviable privilege of living in this gorgeous, tranquil house in Berg by Lake Starnberg (Starnberger See), a popular southern Bavarian recreation area for the residents of the nearby city of Munich.
As both the client and the designer, engineer/architect Nobis designed the home and office for her own four-member family and for her architectural practice.
It is a beautifully minimalist, modern take on a traditional twin wooden boathouse, popular by the lake. While the boathouses are on stilts over the water, Nobis’s house is on 60-centimeter high illuminated legs.
This gives the house its wonderful, impermanent, hovering feel but it was in fact a necessity in this location where the ground water rises very high. This also meant that everything must fit in the space above ground — no basement or cellar possible.
The structure, mainly of wood and glass, includes two separate but connected houses. House one includes living, eating and cooking functions on the ground floor, and the “gallery” above it.
In the second house, two offices and guest room are on the ground floor, bedrooms and bathrooms above it.
Nobis’s goals were to provide ample views of the lake, to let as much natural light in as possible and to not interfere with the surrounding nature or old trees.
She also wanted to use materials sparingly and economically, and to reduce everything to its essential beauty, purpose and function. Shelving and stairs of metal and wood, open storage, minimal furniture — all give the house its clarity and lightness.
The structure is long and narrow, but thanks to the use of glass and wooden slats, it appears almost transparent.
Nobis says that in essence, the house is nothing more than a shelter from the climate, a space where one can move as freely as possible. We envyingly agree. - Tuija Seipell.
Photography by Roland Halbe.
Brazilian architect Fred Mafra, no novice to night club design, was given the unusual opportunity to redesign his earlier work, the night club Josefine/Roxy.
Since 2007, the club has been a strong player in Savassi, the night life area of Belo Horizonte, the capital of and largest city in the state of Minas Gerais in southeastern Brazil.
The 955m² space has two dance floors, three bars, plus four VIP areas that can be combined into one larger VIP space. In addition, it has two lounges and smoking areas with a retractable roof.
With his new design, Mafra went to town with the hexagon and triangle forms.. By using them in the honeycombed ceilings and black-and-white floors, by including padded-vinyl seating and walls, and by lighting the space with creative LED, he's created an angularly sinful madhouse effect that is destined to help guests forget the outside world.
Roxy Clubis open on Wednesdays and Fridays when the DJs play techno and e-music to a straight crowd. Josefine Club is open on Thursdays and Saturdays when the DJs play tribal and pop music to gay/hipster crowd.
It seems we really like the work of Sydney's Dreamtime Australia Design as this is the third time we featured their work.
Dreamtime director Michael McCann and team are the designers of the Concrete Blonde restaurant recently launched in Potts Point at Kings Cross in Sydney.
Earlier, we've covered their Victor Churchill butcher and the Sydney Seafood School.
Concrete Blonde is a 100-seat restaurant presided over by chef Patrick Dang who has brought the many nuances of his international experience to the stylish tables of Concrete Blonde.
We love the stunning fireplace, the retro comic-book mural and the clever metal "tin-can" wall slots for firewood. The strong focus on metal evokes thoughts of industrial kitchens and huge dining halls, yet the atmosphere manages also to exude inviting warmth.
As it should be, the best feature of Concrete Blonde is the food. Our recent visit had us face the formidable problem of deciding what to eat. There are many options, plus the menu changes - the chefs here are capable of experimenting and improvising while focusing on freshness, local produce, Berkshire Pork, Murrylands Farm lamb.
We had the prawns popped with popcorn, then Himasa kingfish (coffee-cured with cranberry & burnt-scallion vinaigrette, pickled mustard seeds) and for the main event, we had the Meredith duck (passion fruit-glazed root vegetables with duck ravioli in pain d'épices consommé).
Being big fans of duck, we had high expectations and they were exceeded. By now we were stuffed, yet had to indulge in dessert, which turned out to be the best part of the already amazing dinner. The chocolate dessert with its pistachio wafers and olive oil jam was phenomenal in its perfect consistency, sweetness, and rich chocolate flavour. And don't get us started on the lychee and rosewater martinis, one of the many choices on the extensive martini menu. We will be going back for more. - Mark Cunial