Monthly Archives: August 2011

Collecting: My Parents’ House

Dear My Mom,

During this glorious visit to Yosemite, I have been enjoying ogling all the tiny items you’ve collected over the years. I admit to thinking some of them were cheesy in the past, but now that I’ve entered into a world of object-seeking, I’ve gained a new appreciation for the nuance of your collection of artworks and objects from around the world.

Let’s get started with your crazy sheep collection. Who could resist these cuties?

I’ve always loved this old tansu that grandma got while you guys were living in Japan (sidenote to readers: my mother spent her formative years in Japan which is probably the reason there is so much Japanese stuff in my parents’ house).

Both these pieces are mine: a David Beckham print from my Cornell buddy Blake and a FujiPole (that I obtained whilst climbing Mt. Fuji with my mom in 2001).

This is kind of a lame picture but I love this plant. I don’t know what it’s called but I know they sell them at Mickey Hartigay’s Plants in West Hollywood and they cost more than I care to spend on a weird-looking plant.

My mother loves a dried hydrangea, and I must admit its washed out color meshes well with this bright vignette.

I made this painting. Jealous?

Some of my mother’s kokeshi dolls.

My favorite plate. I used to try to imitate the pissed-off look in that dude’s face.

The head from a kokeshi doll. Sidenote: what’s the deal with decapitated doll heads trending as design objects right now? Or is that just an LA thing?

Gotta love a terrarium, not that there isn’t a whole world of green outside…

My mother’s Stickley china hutch. I dare anyone else to try and fit that much in there.

A detail of the table. See more pics in the full slideshow.

To see the full collection of collected items at my parents’ house, please see:

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this trip into my mother’s collecting brain. I sure know I have.



Filed under Decor

Homme Cooking: Food in Bowls

Dear Diary,

I don’t know why more meals aren’t served from bowls. Really, eating things out of bowls is so much more comforting than on a cold, commonplace plate. Last summer I discovered beanbowls. I know this sounds like hobo-food, but if you use the right (fresh) ingredients this can be a delectable dish.

Recipe (serves 1, multiply by number of guests):

1 cup cooked quinoa

1 cup freshly cooked pinto beans

1 cup freshly cooked black-eyed peas

1/4 cup grated cheese (Monterey jack or mozzarella)

1 1/2 cups heirloom tomato, chopped

1/2 avocado, thinly sliced

cilantro, sprinkle as garnish

From the grill:

1 cup zucchini, sliced into strips

red onions, use as garnish

Follow directions on dry quinoa, pinto beans, and black-eyed peas to prepare your fresh ingredients. Brush zucchini with olive oil and spice with salt and pepper. Grill until floppy, then cut into bit size pieces. When quinoa and beans are ready, create a bed of quinoa and layer the pinto beans and black-eyed peas on top. Add cheese, tomato, avocado, zucchini, and red onions. Garnish with cilantro and sprinkle with pepper.

*Please note: the trick to making this really delicious and gourmet is using freshly cooked ingredients, including beans and black-eyed peas cooked from their dry state. If you’re in a hurry, you can use canned beans and peas, but don’t blame me if it tastes less-than-gourmet. Also, if you don’t have a grill you can sauté the zucchini and onions for an equally delicious result.

*Please also note: Ever notice how hard it is to take a picture of food and make it look yummy? I have. This is why my picture above looks so yucky, and why there is a whole industry of food stylists that use special tricks (mainly white glue and wax food) to make meals look delicious. I couldn’t afford a food stylist, so please excuse my terrible photo.

I hope you enjoy your beanbowl.


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Whut Glamour: Salon Walls

Dear Diary,

The other day I was perusing Apartment Therapy when I came across something so delightful that it filled me with desire, jealousy, and bitterness. It was this photograph of a home in Hollywood:

The home is owned by these three hunks:

Seeing their awesome salon style living room made me want an entire salon style house. For those of you not familiar with salon style galleries, this is where artwork is hung all the way to the ceiling, in order to fit the most art possible into a space. Graduates of art school are familiar with this style because many of our undergraduate shows are exhibited like this. I’ve always kind of hated salon style hanging because it takes a little bit of importance away from each piece by crowding it. But who wouldn’t want to live in a house that was so chock full of art that there was always something new to see? Here are some other glamourous examples of salon style walls:

I suppose one technique to creating a successful salon wall is to choose a theme for your collection. Like here where it’s mainly portraits of gentlemen. Completely random collections can work, too.

I’m pretty sure this is an actual museum, but that’s cool with me because I’ve always wanted to live in a pristine white museum surrounded by beautiful and/or weird art.

I’m such a sucker for bright white room. Especially when it allows the art to provide the pattern and color.

Everyone needs a grand staircase with a picture wall behind it.

In conclusion, I want to hang art on my walls until the buckle under the pressure and fall down. I want to suffocate in my art collection. Now I guess I have some art shopping to do…


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Californiatimez: Yosemite, Childhood, and Posters

Dear Self (Age 16),

Right now, being that you’re 16, you’re probably sitting in your room reading “The Andy Warhol Diaries” whilst counting the days until you can move to New York to become a high-powered lawyer. As you know, Self, I grew up in Yosemite National Park, and totally didn’t appreciate it until I was older (approximately last month). When you grow up with Yosemite Falls visible from your bedroom window, the last thing you care about is nature. Fast forward to now. After a whirlwind year of shooting a TV show and attending fancypants Hollywood parties with the Who’s Who of Whos, I was itching to get back to the woodland home I never appreciated as an adolescent. Thus, I road tripped up to Yosemite with a gaggle of gays, and set forth on a two-week vacation. So far, one of the most interesting things I’ve seen was an exhibit at the Yosemite Museum. It’s a collection of vintage memorabilia from Yosemite’s early days. This got me thinking about how charming vintage posters are. Thus, I’d like to share these with you:

I hope you enjoyed these.

Self (Age 29)

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Filed under Art