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Monday , 22 September 2014

Category Archives: Decor and Design

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Interior design tips, trends, how-tos and features.

Animal chairs from Maximo Riera continue to amaze

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Looking for a piece of furniture that’s really different, something you can be pretty sure no one—but no one—else will have among your circle of friends? Have you considered a “sculptural seating entity” designed by Spanish artist, sculptor, poet and designer Maximo Riera? He is most famous for his series of animal chairs, and there is no getting around it: they are peculiar. Some would say hideous, but that’s a matter of taste. It’s safe to say that where these creations are concerned, context is all. They probably wouldn’t do at all in a room that’s otherwise filled with conventional furnishings—or would they? Riera says that he chose to design ... Read More »

Personal “thermal bubbles” could replace central heating, says visionary

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Using a remotely controlled thermostat, we can already control the heat in our personal environments, i.e., our homes, over time. With a device like the Nest thermostat, for example, we can program the home temperature to rise to 20 degrees at 5 PM on Thursdays, and drop to 15 degrees at 9 AM on Saturdays. But what if we could control heat in our personal space as well as in time? This is the thinking of Italian architect and visionary Carlo Ratti, who has become known for his highly innovative ideas about smart technology and responsive architecture. At his Massachusetts Institute of Technology Senseable City Lab, Ratti designed a system ... Read More »

Where to buy great design for your home

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On your recent trip to the French Alps town of Saint-Martin de Belleville, you stayed at the Chalet la Transhumance, where you were struck by the beauty of the architecture, and by the furnishings. A little chair particularly caught your eye. It was just what you had been looking for, perfect for your study at home,  but you hadn’t seen anything as nice in any of the stores. You asked about it, and learned that it is called the Otto Con Braccioli, the work of one of Europe’s best known designers, Noé Duchaufour-Lawrance. How does one go about getting one of these beautiful chairs for oneself? Can one contact the ... Read More »

I can’t believe it isn’t sunlight!

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One of the mainstays of the home renovation industry is the skylight. Millions of home renovators have installed skylights in light-deprived rooms from the attic to the kitchen to the verandah. But what if you live in a condo or apartment and have a room where you’d like to get more sunlight? An Italian invention could be the solution. Using the latest LED technology and nanocomposites, CoeLux replicates natural sunlight, including the colour temperature of the light and the movement of the sun across the sky. Photos of CoeLux in place show an astonishing level of verisimilitude. From the photos at least, and the website avows that they are not ... Read More »

Canadian honoured with Lifetime Achievement Award at Venice Biennale

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One of Canada’s best-known architect/philanthropists has been named the recipient of the prestigious Golden Lion award at the Venice Architecture Biennale. Phyllis Lambert, daughter of Seagram liquor magnate Samuel Bronfman of Montreal, receives the Lifetime Achievement Award for “her huge contribution to architecture.” The Venice Biennale chair and director singled out Lambert’s role “as a client and custodian” in the creation of the Seagram Building in New York City, which, they said, “would not have happened” without her. She is also the founder of the Canadian Centre for Architecture in her native Montreal, a work that “combines rare vision with rare generosity.” The story of the creation of the Seagram ... Read More »

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