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Pierre Paulin (1927-2009)

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His designs are strongly rooted in the Sixties, but over 60 years of production by the dutch firm Artifort they have proven to be timeless.

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With comfort as his starting-point, Pierre Paulin became a freelance designer for Artifort from the 1960s. This relationship produced many iconic modernist chairs, including Ribbon, Butterfly, Mushroom, Tulip and Orange Slice. His influential designs are now also produced under licence by LaCividina – Dos à Dos. Design archive Paulin, Paulin, Paulin is run by Maia Paulin, Pierre’s wife and business partner. It offers a deep dive into his works beyond the most well-known pieces, to showcase a creator who was relentlessly producing fresh concepts even after he retired in 1994. Prolific, challenging and ground-breaking, Paulin passed away in June 2009. In November of that year, the French Government posthumously awarded him the distinction of ‘Royal Designer for Industry’.

wwww.ftn-books.com has some Paulin related publications available.

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Viktor & Rolf….a very special publication

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The Australian exhibition from 2016 was the fundament of the exhibition held at the Kunsthal to celebrate 25 years of fashion by Viktor & Rolf. Even the layout from this exhibition publication was used, but…….extended!

Beautiful and spectacular additions by the worlds best photographers and designers. Contributions by Anton Corbijn,, Cindy Sherman, Herb Ritts, Inez & Vinoodh, showing pieces worn by Madonna, Tilda Swinton and many others. I have seen many books on Fashion , but this is without a doubt one of the most spectecular ones and now available at www.ftn-books.com

viktor rolf c

 

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Natasja Kensmil (1973)

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Natasja Kensmil is one of those talents that emerged in the last 10 years and proved tobe highly important for modern art. Her art is personal and her style can not be compared to anyone else’s. If any….. i immediately though of Basquiat, but these paintings and drawings by Kensmil practically all tell a story or contain a message for the viewer. Her series of REGENTEN PORTRAITS  is a tribute to women who held a position in boards and committees who took care of the old and sick. It was not possible for women to hold a position within a company or government , but these woman made charity in these years possible and took care of the old and sick in society.Schermafbeelding 2021-08-16 om 14.07.56

Another multi panelled work is the “HUWELIJKS PORTRET VAN JOHANDE WITT AND WENDELA BICKER “. Natasja Kensmill forces us to look at our (not so nice) history and beside the importance of the art itself it makes us aware of the message too.

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The book i now have for sale at http://www.ftn-books.com is different. Personal, horror like drawings bound and published by Boekhandel Broekhuis in 2003. Edition of only 500 copies, this book already shows the attraction of Kensmil’s drawing. They attract and repel at the same time. This is the kind of art one must admire and i will be on thelook out for work by Kensmil for our collection.

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Phil Bloom (1947)

Phil Bloom for the HOEPLA TV program

The year 1967 and half of the dutch population spoke about the nude appearance of Phil Bloom on national Television. Phil Bloom lowered the newspaper and showed her nude upper body. It was a dutch first and raised a scandal. Later on one understood that this was not just nudity , but more a kind of Avant Garde kind of art initiated by Wim T. Schippers, who made 4 Hoepla programs of which the last one was withdawn by VPRO. You can see the actual appearance of Phil Bloom here:

https://archief.ntr.nl/jarenzestig/#/artikel/avant-garde-op-televisie

Since that appearance Phil Bloom wrote history and her name became  a household among my genaration, but Phil Bloom is still active as an artist, but now on the creating site. She makes and creates what is called Synthetic realism. Scenes in which realism is combined with a fairytale like surroundings. A colorful figure and one of those that wrote not only history but creates better world with her art.

http://www.ftn-books.com has a nice signed print by Phil Bloom available

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John Szarkowski (1925-2007)

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Perhaps Szarkowski was more know for being curator at MOMA then for being one of the greatest photographers from last century.  Here is part of the text the Guardian place shortly after he had passed away.

Szarkowski was a good photographer, a great critic and an extraordinary curator. One could argue that he was the single most important force in American post-war photography.

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Like all good critics and curators, Szarkowski was both visionary and catalyst. When he succeeded the esteemed photographer Edward Steichen as director of the Museum of Modern Art in New York in 1962, he was just 36, and must have been acutely aware of the long shadow cast by his predecessor. Steichen had curated the monumental group exhibition, The Family of Man, at Moma in 1955, which he described as ‘the culmination of his career”. Featuring 503 images by 273 photographers, famous and unknown, it had aimed to show the universality of human experience: death, love, childhood. The show had drawn huge crowds to the gallery and then toured the world, attracting an estimated 9 million viewers.

It was, as Steichen had no doubt intended, a hard act to follow. “We were different people”, Szarkowski later said, “with different talents, characters, limitations, histories, problems and axes to grind. We held the same job at very different times, which means that it was not really the same job.”

More revealingly, Szarkowski also said that Steichen and his predecessor, Beaumont Newhall, “consciously or otherwise, felt more compelled than I to be advocates for photography, whereas I – largely because of their work – could assume a more analytic, less apostolic attitude.” That difference in approach would prove to be a crucial one, and it underpinned a new photographic aesthetic that continues to shape our view of the world to this day.

When Szarkowski took over at Moma, there was not a single commercial gallery exhibiting photography in New York and, despite Steichen and Newhall’s pioneering work, the form had still not been accepted by most curators or critics. Szarkowski changed all that. He was the right person in the right place at the right time: a forward thinker who was given control of a major art institution at a moment when his democratic vision chimed with the rapidly changing cultural tastes of the time.

Szarkowski insisted on the democracy of the image, whether it be a formally composed Ansel Adams landscape, a snatched shot that caught the frenetic cut-and-thrust of a modern city or a vernacular subject like a road sign or a parking lot. “A skillful photographer can photograph anything well,” he once insisted.

In his still-challenging book, The Photographer’s Eye (1964), Szarkowski included snapshots alongside images by great photographers, and argued – brilliantly – that photography differed from any other art form because its history had been “less a journey than a growth”. “Its movement has not been linear and consecutive but centrifugal,” he suggested. “Photography, and our understanding of it, has spread from a centre; it has, by infusion, penetrated our consciousness. Like an organism, photography was born whole. It is in our progressive discovery of it that its history lies.”

szarkowski a

www.ftn-books.com has the Szarkowski /Josef Albers Museum available

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A Willem Sandberg Xmas card

I found this picture at the Herb Lubalin center who has this in its collection. A very nice and typical Willem Sandberg card to wish you a Merry Christmas in 1958.

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an old wish, but a new one from me….. a Merry Christmas 2021

 

Many Sandberg and Lubalin items are available at www.ftn-books.com

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10 great and iconic buildings , no. 2

This list is invented to make some quick and easy blogs for this month filled with festivities. I chose the buildings because i think they belong to the most important from all buildings realized in the last 100 years.

So here is no. 2. the Rietveld – Schröder house, by Gerrit Rietveld

Rietveld Schroder huis

In 1924, Truus Schröder asked well-known Utrecht furniture designer Gerrit Rietveld to design a new house for her. A recently widowed mother of three, she wanted a dwelling completely attuned to her – and to her unconventional ideas about what a home should be. Having worked with Rietveld in the past, she knew his disdain for tradition. It was a match made in heaven.

Schröder played an important role in the design process. She knew exactly what she wanted: simplicity and a space that freed rather than constrained her…. and the result one of the most iconic houses which is still inspiring for many young architects.

www.ftn-books.com has some nice Rietveld publications available

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10 great and iconic buildings, no. 3

This list is invented to make some quick and easy blogs for this month filled with festivities. I chose the buildings because i think they belong to the most important from all buildings realized in the last 100 years.

So here is no. 3. the Barcelona pavillion by Mies von der Rohe

Barcelona pavillion

Bauhaus inspired and made as the German pavilion for the Barcelona World fair from 1929. It was demolished after the exhibition , but because of its architectural importance rebuild. This is a pilgrimage site for almost all architecture and interior design fans., since this is one of the first projects in which the architect designed the interior as well. The Barcelona chair is a true design classic which is till made.

PS. The Miro museum is nearby too….another absolute must see when you visit Barcelona

www.ftn-books.com has some ncie publications available on Miesz von der Rohe

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10 great and iconic buildings, no. 4

This list is invented to make some quick and easy blogs for this month filled with festivities. I chose the buildings because i think they belong to the most important from all buildings realized in the last 100 years.

So here is no. 4. the Guggenheim Museum, New York by Frank Lloyd Wright

The second museum on the list and also one of my personal favorites.

Certainly Iconic. Next to Central Park /Fifth Avenue near 88th street.

the Guggenheim Museum by Frank Lloyd Wright

My personal story on the Guggenheim. ….I visited New York 3 times and never visited the Guggenheim. All 3 times the museum was closed , one time renovation and 2 times changing the exhibitions and therefore i never had a chance to see it from the inside and walk the spiral galleries. Still i admire the buidlinge and from my books i know they have one of the greatest art collections in the world.

www.ftn-books.com has some nice Guggenheim publications available

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10 great and iconic buildings, no. 6

This list is invented to make some quick and easy blogs for this month filled with festivities. I chose these specific buildings because i think they belong to the most important from all buildings realized in the last 100 years.

So here is no.6. the Villa Savoye by Le Corbusier

Villa Savoye

No…., this is not a contemporary house, but one of the first buildings finished in 1931 where Le Corbusier tried to invent a new architecture.

The five points of a new architecture. Formulated by Le Corbusier in 1927 as the fundamental principles of the Modern movement, the five points advocate reinforced concrete for constructing the pilotis, roof garden, open plan design, horizontal windows and free design of the façade – all applied in the design of the Villa Savoye.
 
The architect. Swiss-born, Charles-Édouard Jeanneret (1887-1965), known as Le Corbusier, was part of the Parisian avant-garde. He was a founding member of the International Congress on Modern Architecture (or CIAM), launched in 1928. The Villa is now a museum and can be visited.

www.ftn-books.com has some nice publications on Le Corbusier

Le Corbusier