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Friday Finds 5.27.11

This week we've been busily (and excitedly!) prepping for Dwell on Design, which is just under one month away. Among the many events slated are our ever-popular tours of modern homes in Los Angeles, a keynote talk by Cradle to Cradle author William McDonough, and discussions with many more Dwell favorites on topics as far reaching as crafting beer to creating a kid-friendly abode. This week, we also welcomed a new addition to our magazine, designer Everett Pelayo, who shares his first Friday Find today: the lives of Quinnford and Scout.
May 27, 2011
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Design Open Mic

Dwell on Design is proud to host Architecture for Humanity's Design Open Mic on the Design Innovation Stage this year. A Pecha Kucha-style hour of rapid-fire design presentations, Design Open Mic will host seven architects and designers thinking about how we can reshape areas hit by natural and man-made disasters. I had a chat with Sarah Bush of Architecture for Humanity to learn more about what we can expect onstage, why the hour's theme of Regeneration hits so close to home, and to how to register to participate.
May 18, 2011

Fantastical Photographic Maps

If photography is an act of capturing reality, then artist Sohei Nishino has gone leaps and bounds further than most with his “diorama maps.” Influenced by the 18th century Japanese surveyor Ino Tadataka—who spent 17 years creating the first detailed map of Japan during the early 1800s—Nishino pounds the streets of a city for a month, taking thousands of photographs in an effort to immortalize his experience of a place. For three months after photographing, he “re-experiences” the city by holing up in his Tokyo studio, cutting and gluing together the small prints of the city as he recalls it. “It will be the embodiment of how I remember the city, and a diary of the streets I walk,” says Nishino. So time consuming is the process to make his monumental work that Nishino can only to produce three maps a year. Nishino’s work is on view at the Michael Hoppen Gallery in London until April 2nd, and in the slideshow that follows.
March 29, 2011
The designer sits atop Kala, a rug designed by students in India. With a portion of the proceeds, Marquina helps fund a school for boys and girls in the area. All images courtesy Albert Font.

Nani Marquina

We were already big fans of Barcelona–based designer Nani Marquina, but now that we hear she helped reopen a shuttered school for 366 kids in Bhadohi, India, we're approaching swoon territory.
February 21, 2011
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Activist Designers: Design 99

Gina Reichert, an architectural designer, and her husband, artist Mitch Cope, are the duo behind Design 99, an organization in Detroit that creates everything from bathroom tile designs to neighborhood planning strategies. They set up shop—–quite literally as a shop—–in August 2007, offering design services for 99 cents a minute or $99 per house call. “We put design in a retail environment because people know how to enter a store and ask questions,” Reichert says. “A lot of people disregard design not because they’re uninterested but because they don’t think they have access to it.”    
December 21, 2010
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Gifts For a Cause

December 8, 2010
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MoMA's Small Scale, Big Change

The exhibition "Small Scale, Big Change" opens at the Museum of Modern Art in New York this Sunday. Curious to hear more about the show—which sadly I won't have the chance to see in person—I got curator Andres Lepik on the phone to talk about the exhibition, which focuses on 11 architectural projects in underserved communities around the world.
October 4, 2010
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Allez Design! NYC's Iron Designer

With the Hearst Tower and the New York Times Building gleaming in the distance, the inaugural Iron Designer Challenge was held on the rooftop at the Urban Assembly School of Design and Construction (SDC) last week. The challenge? To build a full-scale emergency shelter in three hours and in front of a live audience.
June 22, 2010
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An Architecture Prof Weighs in on Haiti

There are thousands of architects and designers in the Dwell audience and beyond who are contemplating how they can help with the massive rebuilding effort that will soon get underway in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. While the immediate needs in the city demand more of the medical field than the architectural community, planning and rebuilding are tied to the recovery of the people, and it won't be long before reconstruction begins. In order to get a better sense of how the recovery process may go (and how it has gone so far) from an architectural standpoint, we spoke with Mary Comerio, a professor of architecture at UC Berkeley. 
January 25, 2010