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10 Moleskine Journals From Some Of The Most Interesting Creatives Alive

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Despite the ever-encroaching digital world, the popularity of Moleskine, those utterly dignified black notebooks that can be carried in your pocket, seems to only have increased. The many 20th-century cultural heroes who carried Moleskines, from Oscar Wilde to Pablo Picasso, have lent the brand an aura of creative genius.

But this winter, Moleskine is bolstering its 21st-century cred with the publication of The Detour Book, a collection of the creative journals of present-day artists, designers, and writers. Noted by Brain Pickings’ Maria Popova last week, The Detour Book sounds like one of those tomes that deserves to be poured over:

Scattered across the pages of The Detour Book are the images of over 250 notebooks decorated, hacked, and filled with intimate sketches and drawings by some of the world’s most celebrated creative professionals; among them architects, designers, film directors and musicians including Spike Jonze, Sigur Ros, Mary Ellen Mark and Karim Rashid, to name a few.

There are funny little cartoons from Dave Eggers and brilliant sketches from Toyo Ito, which show the Mikimoto building taking over Ginza. Each book is its own unique archive, preserving the struggle to bring a spark of an idea to fruition.

What’s interesting about the collection is that most people don’t use Moleskines as traditional sketchbooks at all. Instead, designers like Tord Boontje have used them as 3-D objects, slicing through their eggshell pages and hacking them into study models. ATELYE 70, the Turkish architecture studio, turned the fold-out pages of a Moleskine Pocket Accordion into an actual architectural model, inserting plexiglass staircases and scale models between the folds.


The Detour Book is one of those rare pieces of marketing that rewards a company and the consumer equally. It’s marvelously fun reading. And who can blame Moleskine for being proud?  Buy your copy here

This gallery contains 10 photos

Light Drawings — photographs of Pablo Picasso by Gjon Mili, 1949

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It would be very curious to record by means of photographs, not the stage of the picture, but its metamorphoses  —Pablo Picasso

When LIFE magazine’s Gjon Mili, a technical prodigy and lighting innovator, visited Pablo Picasso in the South of France in 1949, it was clear that the meeting of these two artists and craftsmen was bound to result in something extraordinary. Mili showed Picasso some of his photographs of ice skaters with tiny lights affixed to their skates, jumping in the dark — and the Spanish genius’s lively, ever-stirring mind began to race.

“Picasso” LIFE magazine reported at the time, “gave Mili 15 minutes to try one experiment. He was so fascinated by the result that he posed for five sessions, projecting 30 drawings of centaurs, bulls, Greek profiles and his signature. Mili took his photographs in a darkened room, using two cameras, one for side view, another for front view. By leaving the shutters open, he caught the light streaks swirling through space.”

This series of photographs, known ever since as Picasso’s “light drawings,” were made with a small electric light in a darkened room; in effect, the images vanished as soon as they were created — and yet they still live, six decades later, in Mili’s playful, hypnotic images. Many of them were also put on display in early 1950 in a show at New York’s Museum of Modern Art.

Finally, while the “Picasso draws a centaur in the air” photo that leads off this gallery is rightly celebrated, many of the images in this gallery are far less well-known — in fact, many of them never ran in the magazine — but they are no less thrilling, after all these years, than the iconic picture of the archetypal creative genius of the 20th century crafting, on the fly, a fleeting (albeit captured forever on film) work of art.


Jack Kerouac Reads from On the Road (1959)

Jack Kerouac wrote On the Road in three very short weeks in 1951. But then it took six years for the book, famously written on a long scroll, to reach the reading public in 1957. Shortly after its publication, critics were at least quick to recognize what the book meant. One New York Times reviewer called it “the most beautifully executed, the clearest and the most important utterance yet made by the generation Kerouac himself named years ago asbeat.” Another saw in the novel “a descriptive excitement unmatched since the days of Thomas Wolfe.” 54 years later, those early reviews have withstood the proverbial test of time. These days, Modern Library and TIME place the novel on their lists of the 100 greatest novels.

And now the vintage clip — Jack Kerouac, the man himself, appearing on The Steve Allen Show in 1959, first fielding some questions, then reading from his beat classic.

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Bodybuilders’ World « surreal photography by Kurt Stallaert

belgian photographer kurt stallaert has conceived a series of hyper-realistic images entitled ‘bodybuilder’s world’. the personal project suggests an imaginary world with a literal ‘powerful twist’. at first glance the subjects look ordinary in their daily surroundings, but on closer inspection they have been augmented to look like avid members of the professional fitness sport. the faces of the individuals, often those of children, are attached to the superhuman trunk of a bodybuilder generating a peculiar sense of curiosity, particularly within the everyday life setting.

We Are Nature « Vol. II

Multiple Exposure Portraits from Christoffer Relander


via Behance Network

Mary Button Durell

When I came across the work of Mary Button Durell, a San Francisco-based artist, I was instantly drawn in. Her sculptures are otherworldly and beautiful. And I was completely surprised when I found out the simple process she  employs to create them. Each is built primarily from just two simple things: tracing paper and wheat paste. The forms are carefully constructed one layer at a time to create rigid, self-supporting structures, which are then attached to one another to create complex, multi-celled systems.

The real beauty in these pieces is Durell’s use of such simple materials to capture light and redirect it into beautiful washes and shadows. The pieces are so colorful, even though (and also because) the use of color is so restrained.  To read more about Durell’s process and get a glimpse into her workspace, there’s a great interview with her over at In the Make.

All images: Mary Button Durell

Robert Longo // Men in Cities

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ROBERT LONGO b. 1953 Untitled (Men in Cities), 1984
charcoal, graphite and ink on paper
49 1/2 x 37 3/4 in. (125.7 x 95.9 cm)
Signed and dated “Robert Longo 84” lower right.
Estimate $100,000-150,000

“Isolated in the white blankness of their uniform background, Longo’s drawings of urban men display a formal beauty that disguises their unsettling content. The descriptions of men and women are ambiguous — we will never learn whether it a dance of joy or the gestures of infantile grief; whether it is the spinning fall of the victim or of the assassin, which Longo has singled out to be locked into visual performance…In his earlier work, Longo used to derive his images from movie stills, but at present, he creates his own sources. He photographs his friends in countless poses, carefully screens the images for their dynamic content, and then enlarges those he selects into drawings, Clad in the black armor of formal business suits, Longo’s figures become anonymous as people. They become personifications of universal feelings and anxieties, pathetic in their dehumanization, objects in the hands of their creator.”

– C. Kotik, Figures, Forms and Expressions, Albright/CEPA, 1981