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Artists + Designers Motivational Monday

Motivational Monday: Josef Frank

June 22, 2015

Oh another Monday, but don’t worry I have a Motivation Monday for you!

Today is a feature on Josef Frank.Modern Colorist | Josef FrankAn Austrian-born architect, artist, and designer, Josef Frank fled to Sweden to escape Nazi Austria. He would become known as one of the leading pioneers and for Swedish Modern design and one of Sweden’s most important designers of all time.

Modern Colorist | Josef FrankBorn in Austria in 1885, the architect belonged to the same generation as the most prominent pioneers of modernist design, including Walter Gropius, Mies van der Rohe, and Le Corbusier.  Like his contemporaries, he was passionately committed to shaping a new era. The machine age brought new technologies and lifestyles would have an affect on the way buildings and interiors were designed.

Early in age he was part of front figure of Vienna Modernism’s. Together with Oskar Strnad, he created the Vienna School of Architecture. There he started to question systematic Modernism. The Modernist’s principal was that a house should be a “machine for living in”. It was based on a linear, grid-like restrictions. Frank disagreed with and even feared this type of design. He believed it would make people all too similar.Modern Colorist | Josef Frank

Frank had a freer mindset, a more artistic style in which he developed his own type of Modernism.

“Every human needs a certain degree of sentimentality to feel free. Away with the universal styles, away with the equalization of industry and art.” – Josef Frank

For Frank, modern design should be simple, straightforward, and practical. He believed, however, that such modern precepts should not preclude character and comfort. He focused on his own personal values such as comfort, hominess, and an abundance of color. He perceived tubular steel furniture as a threat to humanity. Rather he contrasted by including nature’s colors and forms into his interiors. He wanted his living space to be a place of relaxation and at the same time to be harmonize with tradition and  development; in contact with nature, but also with culture and refinement. He wanted the space to be breathable, and even feel free from an enclosed room.

To look at his furniture you can see this style coming through. His chairs have space to see through them, his cabinets have long legs to see the floor and the wall. Nothing bulky or heavy. Modern Colorist | Josef FrankModern Colorist | Josef Frank

He embraced personal touches, sentimentality, and asymmetry, outfitting interiors with boldly patterned upholstery, traditional furniture forms, off-grid furnishing arrangements, and motley displays of assorted decorative objects.

Frank argued:

“There’s nothing wrong with mixing old and new, with combining different furniture styles, colors and patterns. Anything that is in your taste will automatically fuse to form an entire, relaxing environment. A home does not need to be planned down to the smallest detail or contrived; it should be an amalgamation of the things that its owner loves and feels at home with.”

Modern Colorist | Josef FrankFrank’s idea of color was also contrary to the Modernist movement. While the rest were pushing a stark monochromatic environment.

Frank wrote:

“The monochromatic surface appears uneasy, while patterns are calming, and the observer is unwillingly influenced by the slow, calm way it is produced. The richness of decoration cannot be fathomed so quickly, in contrast to the monochromatic surface which doesn’t invite any further interest and therefore one is immediately finished with it.”

He rejected sterile, stark white and stern environments and went for light and airy colors instead. The yellows, the light blues, the soft greens and pinks.Modern Colorist | Josef FrankHe gained recognition after joining Estrid Ericson’s design company Svenskt Tenn (Swedish Pewter) in 1934. The duo made international breakthrough with their Svenskt Tenn exhibition room at the World’s Expositions in Paris in 1937 and in New York in 1939. It was completely contrary to the ideal of the time with its bold contrast in materials, color, and patterns.

Modern Colorist | Josef FrankEricson helped inspire Frank to conceptualize and produce a distinctive body of work at Svenskt Tenn. The two complemented each other, Frank producing the textiles and furnishings, Ericson arranging the interiors and overseeing the company. Together, they formed a dynamic partnership, creating imaginative, comfortable, and harmonious interiors. This new, more accessible approach to interior design became known as Swedish Modern.Modern Colorist | Josef FrankDuring WWII, Josef Frank was forced to exile yet again. He moved to Manhattan where he started growing trees and flowers. The product of those trees and flowers can be seen in his textile designs. With these fanciful designs inspired of nature, his patterns were his magic. In their generous scale and lavish use of bright, bold colors, and florals, Franks patterns quickly became popular with a host of Swedish designers and clientele. Today he is most remembered for these patterns, and many are still in production.Modern Colorist | Josef FrankHe had an extremely productive career with Svenskt Tenn’s; giving over 2,000 furniture sketches and 160 textile designs signed with his name in Svenskt Tenn’s archives.

It was because man who was driven out of his home, who brought his design richness of his culture to Sweden. It was because he never forgot where he came from and never forgot his goals and desires. It was because he question the Modernist streak. And because of that man that Swedish Modern is what we know it today.

Sources: Svenskt Tenn | Scandinavian Design | The Enduring Design of Josef Frank | Architect and Outsider | Enduring Design Advice From Moderate Modernist Josef Frank

Artists + Designers Shop Spring + Summer Trends 2015 Style Guide Trending

Spring + Summer Trends: Artsy

June 19, 2015

I love seeing the unique 2015 Spring and Summer Trends that are happening this season!

Today is all about…

ARTSY . ARTSY . ARTSY . ARTSY . ARTSY . ARTSY . ARTSY . ARTSY . ARTSY . ARTSY . ARTSY . ARTSY . ARTSY . Modern Colorist | Spring and Summer Trends | Artsy

Alice+ Olivia | Tsumori Chisato | Stella Jean | Novis | Andrew GN | Emanuel Ungaro | Alice+ Olivia | Stella Jean |

Among the finds there is Matisse’s Cut-Out influenced dress by Alice + Olivia. His other piece is more of a loose Expressionist style, with the chunky strokes that make up the portrait and nature. Andrew GN’s designed a dress inspired by famous Claude Monet’s Water Lilies. Emanuel Ungaro is more an abstract style, relying more on the placement of color, rather than form. Novis’ dress is very much on the lines of Mid Century like Modernist art, with its hard lines, yet organic forms. Stella Jean’s two pieces has a very Cuban art feel to me, with the colors, the people and island. Tsumori Chisato’s dress is very playful with a modern imagination.

Modern Colorist Does Artsy…

Modern Colorist | Spring and Summer Trends | ArtsyWhen I saw this skirt at H&M it spoke to me, “It’s an obvious chose here… You have to buy me. I’m an inspiration of Llew Mejia and you can’t find another like me!” Ok of course it didn’t say that but visually it said all that.

There’s hard to find a skirt like this, at a store like H&M. I do wish there was more beautiful patterns like this one.

The painterly feel of the foliage is absolutely beautiful!Modern Colorist | Spring and Summer Trends | ArtsyI paired up my artsy skirt with my long sleeve burnt orange ribbed crop shirt. I wanted to bring out the accents of the little accents of orange in the skirt.Modern Colorist | Spring and Summer Trends | ArtsyModern Colorist | Spring and Summer Trends | ArtsyMy shoes are Proud Mary‘s. They go with pretty much anything and are the best in the summer. Light weight, breezy… need I say more?Modern Colorist | Spring and Summer Trends | ArtsyThis little nook is right near my house. Like a little green house with an array of plants, a fountain and quite place to take a a refreshing break. There’s even quaint little painting studio. DREAM!Modern Colorist | Spring and Summer Trends | ArtsyModern Colorist | Spring and Summer Trends | Artsy

Artists + Designers Motivational Monday

Motivational Monday: Ray Eames

June 1, 2015

Modern Colorist - Ray Eames

Today for Motivational Monday is all about Ray Eames.

Modern Colorist - Ray EamesRay Eames was the other half of the legendary Modern furniture makers. Clean curves and new forms, Charles and Ray Eames were leading designers in modern design. They fell in love because of a chair, and together in their talents, they created much more than a furniture company. Modern Colorist - Ray EamesRay was a painter who rarely painted. Charles was an architecture student who dropped out and never received his license. They married and moved to Los Angeles where they opened a design office. Their aim was to utilize new material and technology so that everyday objects can be produced in high quality at reasonable cost. Their mission was a success. Not only were they leading furniture designers, they also produced toys, films, photographs, textiles, exhibition, architecture…

Modern Colorist - Ray EamesCharles was the face of the company. He was more charismatic in the public eye, but behind it all was an energetic, witty, little woman who was equal partner in their projects. She brought the color to the company. She employed her graphic design skills to create number of textile design. Bold, bright, abstract, repetitive. Rays exceptional visual memory allowed her to create a visual stimulating color palette for Eames furniture.

Modern Colorist - Ray Eames

Ray was an extraordinary lady who did not shy away from her ambitions and embraced color.

Modern Colorist - Ray EamesModern Colorist - Ray Eames

Sources: Met MuseumFemBioThe Library Of Congress


Artists + Designers Motivational Monday

Motivational Monday: Sonia Delaunay

May 11, 2015

Modern Colorist│Sonia DelaunayMaybe the least favorite day of them all are Mondays. It’s hard to leave the weekend and get back in the work mode, so I thought a new blog series will be those people that are inspiring, unique, interesting, motivational. So Motivational Mondays here we come!

Today I want to feature the lady that helped me name Modern Colorist: Meet Sonia Delaunay.

A Russian-born French artist, Sonia Delaunay (1885-1979) cofounded the Orphism art movement, which focused on bright colors and geometric shapes with abstract brushstrokes. Modern Colorist│Sonia DelaunayA master at color theory, Delaunay became known as ‘The Colorist’, where she brought color to all elements of her life, extending passed her paintings; graphics, interiors, fashion, textiles, pottery, film, theater. Delaunay’s work has a universal look, the sense of movement and rhythm with her usages of contrasting colors. Modern Colorist│Sonia DelaunayModern Colorist│Sonia DelaunayModern Colorist│Sonia Delaunay“Sonia was completely free in the way she applied her vision, easily switching from one technique to another. Her aim was to bring art into everyday life.” – Juliet Bingham, curator at the London’s Tate Modern.Modern Colorist│Sonia DelaunayModern Colorist│Sonia Delaunay“I have lived my art,” Sonia professed on many occasions. This is why she is the lady behind the name. Modern Colorist strives to embody her legacy, her colorful Modernist spirit.

Sources: Design Milk │T MagazineTate ModernNY TimesColor Moves: Art and Fashion by Sonia Delaunay (Book)