Dear Hedi Slimane,
I’ve noticed you like taking pictures of the backs of peoples’ heads. I like it.
Dear Travel Journal,
I woke up Sunday morning with a purpose. I packed my car and headed to Yosemite. There was a huge monsoon in Los Angeles and I basically hydroplaned all the way from Southern California to the Northlands. A drive that normally takes 5.5 hours took 7, and by the time I got to the park boundary I was in no mood to find that multiple rockslides and massive amounts of snow had closed all three roads into the park. A sidenote (which I’ll explain in a future post) is that my parents live within Yosemite National Park and I was headed there to visit them. They are now trapped there with no electricity and will probably be forced to eat each other if the power doesn’t come on soon.
Because I’d just driven for 7 hours and I had zero interest in staying in one of the terrifying towns outside of Yosemite, I decided to drive to San Francisco, where my sister and a number of my close friends live. What started off as a harrowing adventure ended up being a totally fun road trip, and now I am in San Francisco working a little bit and playing a little bit.
Highway on the way to San Francisco from Yosemite:
My sister and I ate a quick lunch at The Greens, which is one of the most renowned vegetarian restaurants in the world. A fun fact about this place is that they have a small to-go cafe that opens up for lunch. You can get sandwiches and soups, etc and then go sit in the wonderful dining room. Going to The Greens for dinner is expensive, so if you want to check it out without breaking the bank, lunch is a fun option. Also, at dinnertime when it’s dark out, you can’t see how beautiful the view is, boats and the Golden Gate Bridge in the distance.
Some of the windows inside The Greens. Thought they made for a pretty photograph.
After lunch my sister and I went for a walk at Chrissy Field, my favorite place in the city. Being that I am missing out on Yosemite, being outdoors was highly appreciated.
I love this bright color of this fun thrift store down the street from my sister’s apartment in the Mission District. The Community Thrift Shop allows customers to donate the proceeds from their purchases to the charity of their choice. Fun idea.
What started out as a much-needed trek into the wilderness has turned into a long overdue trip to the prettiest city in the US. My philosophy about my three favorite American cities is as follows:
My brain lives in New York. My body lives in Los Angeles. My heart lives in San Francisco.
It’s cheesy, I know, but I believe it to be true. There is nowhere that makes me feel as intellectually stimulated as New York. There is nowhere that makes me feel as healthy and able to enjoy my body as warm-weathered Los Angeles. And there is no city that makes me feel as happy and comfortable as San Francisco. I grew up coming here frequently and it’s such a treat to be back.
Dear Kate and Laura Mulleavy,
I heard you on The Madeleine Brand Show this morning and learned that you currently have work on exhibit at MOCA’s Pacific Design Center annex. I had no idea that you were California designers and that you lived in Pasadena (one of my favorite places in the world for its uberglamourous suburbanity). Like all shows at the Pacific Design Center annex, yours is small. But the pieces on display (including many of the costumes you designed for Black Swan) are artfully crafted from feathers, leather, lace, and other gorgeous materials. It’s definitely worth a look, and was a much-needed injection of culture into my home-makeover drenched life.
I love the lighting design for the exhibit, which emphasizes the texture and translucence that makes the garments so special. All in all a delightful introduction to your work. You’re awesome.
So now that I’ve moved into my gross West Hollywood Hills apartment and I have no furniture, it’s time to get cracking on buying stuff. Luckily, I find myself shopping for the show almost every single day, so I have ample time to look around and research things I might like to add to my place. Right now, finding a dresser is my biggest priority. Firstly, because I have a ridiculous amount of clothing, and second because all my socks and underwear are in shopping bags in my bedroom. It’s totally impossible to get dressed every day. Thus, DresserSearch 2011. Below are a few selections I found at an antique mall, and some I found through online research.
I like this one because it’s totally 60s and fun. And not bad for $179. I kind of hate that it’s painted with black speckles though so I’d probably just paint the whole thing high gloss white or grey, with a different trim color to bring out the details.
This one is super luxe, love the imbedded handles that lay superflat when closed. $249.
This one is kind of boring, but I can see it working in a Valley Of The Dolls style bedroom. Which isn’t exactly what I’m going for… $199.
This one is nice because it’s so simple. Feels very 60s and adequately masculine for my taste. $1,299.
To be honest, I’ve seen this one in person and it looks kind of cheap because of the veneer, but it does photograph beautifully and it has a playful 1960s sensibility about it. This is a case of great design, poor construction. $149.
Not sure which, if any, of these dressers I’ll choose, but it’s a good start. At this point, anything is better than the mess of sock-filled shopping bags that carpets my bedroom floor.
Anyone who knows me well knows that two men captivate and thrill me to no end. These men are novelist Gore Vidal, who has written some of the most heartwrenching and sensible words of our time, and Hedi Slimane, fine art photographer and former Dior Homme head designer. Thus, you can imagine my shock and delight when I was browsing Hedi Slimane’s Diary and found that he had photographed Gore, my favorite writer ever. I love that he captured the author in his space, surrounding by all these wonderful and evocative objects. If you don’t know Vidal, start with his memoirs (Palimpsest and Point to Point Navigation) and then move onto The City and the Pillar, which is a devastatingly beautiful, painful novel. Here are a few of the images by Slimane:
I love how textured and quiet these images are. I also love how thoughtful Slimane was in choosing which objects to photograph. For example, the image below of a young Paul Newman, Vidal’s life-long friend and, in my opinion, the most beautiful man in the history of time.
To view the rest of the gorgeous photos, as well as more of Slimane’s visual diary, go to Hedi Slimane Diary.
Thanks for this fun Arcade Fire remix. As you know, I’m a total fan of fun remixes and this one makes me want to buy a time machine, get into it, go to 1992, attend a rave, and dance and wiggle until dawn. Awesome!
The track can be downloaded (for free!) here.
Dear Professor Zevi Blum,
I found out you died yesterday and it came as a total shock. You impacted my life in a wonderful way. I’m pretty sure you gave me one of the only Bs I ever got in college, but you were a mentor and a leader and an inspiration to all us kids. We were 18, just transplanted from all over the country and the world to one of the coldest collegiate environments in the world. And you were there to be hard on us, to care about us, and to change the way we thought about art forever. Perhaps it is because my mother is a teacher and I grew up surrounded by teacher’s kids, I will always hold teachers, mentors, professors, instructors, etcetera, in high regard. You were a special case, Professor Blum. You really challenged us and forced us to think outside the box. You gave us grades lower than we were used to and we brutally honest in your critiques of our work. But we always knew you were secretly (or not so secretly) rooting for us, that you wanted us to be great and that you knew we could be. We called you “Captain” (from the Whitman poem) and I can’t think of a more appropriate nickname. I admired you for being a wonderful, engaged professor, and I admired you for fleeing to my favorite city (San Francisco) when you retired. You were a wonderful mentor and I know there are Cornellians all over the world mourning your loss. Thanks, Captain.