i think this must be one of the most beautiful hotels in the world. on the windswept swedish island of gotland, johan hellström has created fabriken furillen, a minimalist eco hotel from a disused former limestone refinery. with nothing much there except a harsh landscape and beautiful clean air, hellström left the building’s raw industrial past to see, from outside you couldn’t guess it is a hotel. and for those really wanting to get away, there are wi-fi free cabins amongst its 600 acres. photos : peter guenzel . via : somewhere i would like to live
from maria & gaioo in sweden comes coloni. the coloni concept comprises of seeds from desert and dry mediterranean climates. the arid climate that prevails in these areas and in an indoor environment have several factors in common which makes it possible, with the right means and the right care, to make wild growing species flourish and flower indoors. these species originate from harsh climates and in order to survive have the most intriguingly particular and fascinating characteristics. here one finds both expressive, vigorously flowering annuals and slow perennials whose main character is both in the shape of the plant, its leaves and spines. so come and see at openhouse
tham & videgard arkitekter designed a tree hotel in the far north of sweden, near the small village of harads, close to the arctic circle. a shelter up in the trees; a lightweight aluminium structure hung around a tree trunk, a 4×4×4 meters box clad in mirrored glass. the exterior reflects the surroundings and the sky, creating a camouflaged refuge. the interior is all made of plywood and the windows give a 360 degree view of the surroundings. to prevent birds colliding with the reflective glass, a transparent ultraviolet colour is laminated into the glass panes which are visible for birds only. the construction also alludes to how man relates to nature, how we use high tech materials and products when exploring remote places in harsh climates (gore-tex, kevlar, composite materials, light weight tents etc).the functions included provide for a living for two people; a double bed, a small bath room, a living room and a roof terrace. access to the cabin is by a rope bridge connected to the next tree. Read More
the story vases tell the personal stories of five south african women. living in remote villages in kwazulu-natal, they are members of the siyazama project, a collective of women who work with traditional bead craft.recorded by the swedish designers front, the stories are the unique documentation of the daily life of women in rural, post apartheid, south africa. they are stories that are rarely told and seldom heard.
they shared their hopes and dreams, and talked about love, life and death. their stories also touch on such serious subjects as the effect of HIV on their society, gender, poverty and unemployment. they talked about their businesses , what beadwork meant to them
and what they would do, or buy, if they could afford to.
after front and the women together selected the parts of conversations to work with, each woman formed their own story into text by threading glass beads on to metal wires. these wires were made into vase-shaped moulds, into which glass was blown.
bead craft is an important part of zulu tradition, not only as a means of expression, but also of communication and telling stories. in the past, patterns and colours were woven into beadwork, symbolising feelings and ideas to lovers and friends, in a way similar to written language.
with the story vases, front used its conceptual approach to design, material and narrative to explore new ways of working with zulu bead craft in collaboration with the siyazama. this long-term project aims to broaden the market for the women’s craft and to let their stories be heard by more people.
the story vases was conceived during a workshop held in durban that aimed to develop a new product by sharing techniques and exchanging ideas. it was initiated and organized by editions in craft. the story vases is an ongoing series and is available in a limited edition produced by editions in craft.
the things you come across on facebook can be truly annoying, but then the odd thing will pop up that just catches your eye. yesterday was this photo by my friend and college lina persson. from sweden lina first moved to london after being a photographers assistant, to study graphic design at central saint martins, but after spending 9 years there decided to change for warmer waters. i first met lina, in my first week here, working in a shop just down the road from where would be openhouse, and then by chance our paths kept on crossing. when openhouse was ready i took her range of necklaces, lo lou, however it is her photography that really interests me. just like a snap shot of every day life, a glimpse from her eyes. this is where you find the magic, because these are memories we all have. i’m hoping to entice her to put on an exhibition here in openhouse. lets wait and see. all photos by lina v. persson