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Latest Articles in Furniture & Products

This photo, taken from designtaxi.com, shows off three views of Paris's Librarie la Hune.

The Language of Bookshops

In the latest installment of Three Buildings, a semi-regular series where I ask people from all over the creative spectrum to muse on a trio of buildings or spaces that they love, I got in touch with Peter Sokolowski, editor-at-large for Merriam-Webster's dictionary. Who better to give us an idiosyncratic take on the world's best bookstores than a true guardian of all those precious words? Here's what Peter has to say:
February 23, 2011
auger loizeau clock

Auger & Loizeau's Carnivorous Design

Is furniture animal, vegetable, or mineral? For designers James Auger and Jimmy Loizeau, who are also researchers at the Royal Academy of Art in London, it's a little of all three. The duo gleaned inspiration from venus flytraps and pitcher plants to create lamps, tables, and clocks that are powered by "digesting" household pests like flies and rodents. Insect to energy—who would've thought? At the core of the design is Microbial Fuel Cell technology, a chemical process that breaks down organic matter into energy. Their experimental concept is unique—albeit a bit disconcerting—and touches on a variety of  issues: how design can be used to make unconventional ideas more palatable, how to tap into unconventional energy sources, and how new technology can fit into our daily lives. We welcome robots to vacuum our floors and act as pets—the Roomba and Sony's AIBO come to mind—but what about catching pests? Here's a video of Auger and Loizeau explaining their "Domestic Entertainment Robots."
February 22, 2011
Holly Hotchner's selection of books that symbolize the spirit of New York City.

New York Stories

Holly Hotchner knows New York. Here, the born-and-bred Manhattanite—and director of the Museum of Arts and Design—shares her picks for books that symbolize the spirit of her city.
February 19, 2011
Library Kitchen by Philippe Starck

Philippe Starck's Library Kitchen

There is no shortage of incredible kitchen systems to ogle—and if you're lucky, incorporate into your home. Following our recent coverage of Viola Park's new kitchen islands and Snaidero's Code Natural kitchen, here we highlight an imm cologne 2011 Interior Innovation Award Winner: Philippe Starck's Library Kitchen for Warendorf.
February 18, 2011
Sliding door divider between bedroom and kitchen

Stow Aways

How do you squeeze maximum functionality out of minimal space? Rosa and Robert Garneau make it happen with multipurpose furniture, a hydraulic Murphy bed, and secret compartments galore.
February 17, 2011
Counter Space PubCover

Counter Space Catalog

For you Dwellers who can't get enough modern kitchens, and who may not have made it to the show Counter Space: Design and the Modern Kitchen up at MoMA in New York through May 2nd, the show's well-laid-out catalog is for you. A managable, well-illustrated book, Counter Space by Juliet Kinchin and Aidan O'Connor is a visual tour through 20th century kitchen design that extends from classic products and spatial innovations to an image of Jack Lemmon straining pasta through a tennis racket from the film The Apartment. My colleague Miyoko Ohtake posted on the show back in September, paying special attention to architect Grete Schütte-Lihotzky's famed Frankfurt Kitchen design, but as the book is out this month I figured I'd refresh your memories. Have a look.
February 17, 2011
Viola Park Kitchen Island

Viola Park's New Kitchen Islands

Henrybuilt and Viola Park rank high on our list of great, modern kitchen systems (a list that includes the likes of Snaidero, Berloni, Scavolini, Pedini, Boffi, Poliform, and Bulthaup to name just a very few). This week, the company announced its latest offering: three, new kitchen islands.
February 16, 2011
Betel Nut Street  1

Magda Biernat's Betel Nut Girls

I recently chatted over the phone with architectural photographer Magda Biernat, whose work photographing Betel Nut Girls of Taiwan (and the small, contained structures they work in) will be on view at Clic Gallery in New York through March 6th. Betel Nut Beauties is both a cultural and architectural investigation of the roadside stands common across Taiwan that sell paan, a chewing treat made of arcea nut and betel leaves common across South East Asia. Though chewing paan is common across the region, Taiwan has evolved a unique culture around selling it. Betel Nut girls are scantily-clad Taiwanese women who work in small, glassed-in boxes selling the food to passing motorists. Check out the slideshow that follows for Biernat's images and commentary.
February 16, 2011
pop up thumb

An Architect's Pop-Up Book

One of the perks of being a Dwell editor are the various fun surprises that appear in the mail—newly published books, the occasional small product, even the random staple gun (yes, really). One of the more intriguing things to cross my desk recently was Wendy Evans Joseph's unusual monograph, a chunky hardcover book entitled 'Pop Up Architecture.' Yes: a pop-up book illustrating the firms' recent work, from the Holocaust Memorial Garden in Salt lake City to a cantilevered pedestrian bridge in New York City. Here's a peek inside.  
February 15, 2011
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