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Posts Tagged ‘art’

Retro pattern fiends and curtain makers rejoice! Those lovely people at the Victoria & Albert Museum have thrown open their archives of prints, wallpapers and textiles and laid the dusted-down innards bare in the V&A Pattern book series. The first four installments are published this month.

V&APatternBooks 
These four titles cover (pictured above, L-R) the mind-boggling creations of  ‘Digital Pioneers’, the stunning style of ‘The Fifties’, exotic and sensuous ‘Indian Florals’ and the eye-popping patterns *swoon* of ‘William Morris‘.

William Morris's 'Single Stem' print

William Morris's 'Single Stem' print

The first to find its way into my loving arms (and my disc drive – each book is accompanied by a CD of all the images featured in it) will surely be the tome of Morris’s treasure. All those muted twisted thistles and lolloping leaves remind me of childhood mornings, lying in bed in my grandparents’ spare room and visually picking apart the gradually brightening patterns printed on the curtains while waiting for the signal (the bright tinkle of the bell on Sian the Cairn Terrier’s collar) that it was no longer too early to get up, trot downstairs and empty the contents of the Fimo box out on the kitchen table.

One of the V&A's Indian Patterns

One of the V&A's Indian Patterns

Check out the chintz for yourself with the limited-edition boxed set for £30 (the books are available individually for £7.99) from the new V&A Bookshop, the V&A Museum’s shop or online.

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HereSign

It’s the cherry on top of one of Bristol’s most spirited spots – where jolly, jeering street drinkers rock beneath crumbling walls sporting Banksy originals; afternoon gig-goers spill out onto pavements from cafes-cum-gig venues to puff on their rollies; the spitting hiss of vats and vats of boiling oil sizzles from rows of red-topped takeaways to mingle with wheeze of rattling spray paint cans over the engine growls and scooter-horn squeals of the humming Gloucester Road. Ahh… Stokes Croft – the Here Gallery and Bookshop.

HereFrontage
Since its doors were opened by siblings Ben and Kate O’Leary in 2003, not-for-profit creative cooperative Here has been bringing art books, small-press publications, comics and a whole host of crafty cuts to the folks of Bristol and beyond. And that’s not all; the shop sits above Here’s gallery space, which is currently exhibiting The Joyful Bewilderment from The Outcrowd Collective.
 Outcrowd Collective poster
HereDrawers
HereSwoon
HereSmallBooks
Here Bookshelf

You are Here: Ben

You are Here: Ben

HereArtBooks
HereBurgerman
And 2008 saw the Here family branching out there and everywhere – well Falmouth, to be precise. “As well as providing a welcoming atmosphere, and a meeting place for like minded individuals, Here and Now [showcases] new artwork from local students and established artists,” says Kate O’Leary, who’s at the helm in Falmouth while Ben steers the good ship Here back in Bristol. Wish you were here? Check out the Flickr feed for a guided tour.

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The Murder One plaque: whodunnit?

The Murder One plaque: whodunnit?

 

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One of Charing Cross’s past crime novel hubs finds itself embroiled in its very own mystery. Murder One, which saw its last spy thriller creep out of its doors back in January after 20 years of touting furtive thrills, and its Charing Cross companion Shipley, a specialist in art books that has also permanently shut up shop, have been gifted cultural landmark status by a clandestine crusader.

Past master: Shipley's blue plaque

Past master: Shipley's blue plaque

Shelved: The bowels of the Shipley

Shelved: The bowels of the Shipley

The plaques – which resemble the official blue plaques bestowed on sites of significant cultural heritage across a number of UK cities – that have appeared to mark the shell-like site of each shop were spotted by staff of other local bookshops as they rolled up to work last week. According to Time Out’s blog, a bookseller at Charing Cross art bookshop Keonig Books put the plaques puzzle down to “probably just some bullshit art students” (hmm… a faint whiff of culpability…?).

Shipley: Now you see it…

Shipley: Now you see it…

… now you don't

… now you don't

Well, be they presently whitewashed like lazy graffiti or allowed to remain as poignant, mysterious markers, the blue plaques are a fitting salute to this pair of lost literary luminaries.

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WalcotMart books and shakers

WalcotMart shop

WalcotMart - book about nothing

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Pavement arrow

Ladybird Books shelf

Modern Toss

Bugbooks

The first ever ‘Discovery of the Week’ crown is donned by Bath’s WalcotMart and its Artists’ Book Fair, timed to coincide with the closing weekend of the Bath Literature Festival.

walcotmart_book_fair

The shop is stunning (keep your ears to the cobbles – otherwise known as WalcotMart’s Facebook group – for news of music, film and Subutteo football soirees) and the team who run it are fab (although my being distracted by a teapot necklace meant that I forgot to ask their names. Everything stops for tea…)

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Penguin's 150th Anniversary edition of Darwin's classic

Penguin's 150th Anniversary edition of Darwin's classic

Damien Hirst has come a long way since he presented Charles Saatchi with a maggot-infested cow’s head as a graduate; his painting ‘The Human Skull in Space’ is now fronting Penguin Classics’ 150th Anniversary reprint of Charles Darwin’s On the Origin of Species.

In Hirst’s recent interview with The Guardian, Hirst attributed his obsession with natural history and penchant for creative controversy to everyone’s favourite fossil collector.

“I was given a paperback copy of On the Origin of Species many years ago by a friend and I loved it,” Hirst tells The Guardian, “especially the contentious aspects of it. Being brought up a Catholic and questioning the nonsensical creation theory, it was exciting.”

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