Origami Geisha

This geisha’s strongest weapon of attraction is her paper folding skills.

• Mademoiselle Maurice’s Origami Installation is a burst of brightly colored origami on a dirty, worn down street in Hong Kong. The rainbow star formation is meant as a message of independence to passerby.

• Kota Hiratsuka’s Mosaic Flowers are slick geometric compositions of folded paper that appear to change shape from different angles and light sources.

• Darbie Nowatka’s Paper Ornaments is a set of eight templates in fluorescent colors and comes with folding instructions.

• Tessa Kendrick’s Origami Ornament is an intricately folded ball of metallic pink and fuchsia papers.

• Sarah Goodell’s Earrings are tiny birds folded from bubblegum pink paper and dipped in a shiny finish.

• Esther and Estella’s Orinuno Bag is a delightful collage of folded flowers made from recycled fabrics.

• Becky Kemp’s Brooch forms a bird from laser cut Baltic birch painted in origami-like sections of color.

• Birgitte Hendricks’ Keyring is a cushion made from turquoise and red Bali Batik fabric.

• Suanne’s Origami Ornament is folded from an outdated Queens bus map and glossed for durability.

• Katie Callahan’s Lamp is part of her Polyhedra Luminaria series of lighting objects folded like traditional origami. The warm orange glow emits triangles of light from the small openings at each corner.

In the Dark

Looking for treasure in the form of silver and glass bubbles?

• Hengki Koentjoro’s Slope and Whalerider capture the dark, still waters around Jakarta, Indonesia. His dreamlike vision is like the darker counterpart to Gregory Colbert’s underwater photography.

• Mihoko Ogaki’s Breath is part of her Milky Way series of sculptures that form human figures out of a constellation of LED lights.

• Penelope Rakov’s Ring is covered with a glass murrini pattern of white dots on blue.

• Kenneth Byrd’s Chandelier is a cluster of handblown glass bubbles suspended from a gold cord.

• Larissa Blokhuis’ Glass Sculpture resembles tunicates, a type of sea creature that filters water through its body.

• Valerie Brown’s Pendant is made of sterling silver with a rippling pattern that looks like sand after the tide runs through it.

• Johnny B. Wilde’s Earrings are tiny clusters of sterling silver bubbles painted with a pearly sheen.

• László Balassa’s Dark Sea is an ominous snapshot of underwater bubbles.

• Elias Cosindas’ Diving Woman captures the play of light underwater and jellyfish-like bubbles.

• Lori Perez’s Ring has cluster of bubbles on a sterling silver band.

One More Time

There’s a fine line between repetitive and mesmerizing, boring and meditative. We’ve selected works of art that balance between the two.

• Tara Donovan’s Ceiling Installation is an oscillating network of cellular silhouettes and light made out of…styrofoam cups? Yes, she is an alchemist who transforms ordinary materials into structures that leave an entirely different impression. Like cells make up bodies, straws become hazy clouds and plastic cups are snowy mountains.

• Martin Pyper’s Someone’s Boring Me illustrates the repetitive process of sticking steel pins into a black board.

• Rob O’Brien’s Cityscape is a cluster of skyscrapers made of staples, a wildly varied spectrum of shapes and sizes constructed from identical building blocks.

• Michael Neil Jacobson’s 023 is a screen print reminiscent of Agnes Martin’s work with its dark grey lines recording the mark of a wavering hand. His 012 is another screenprint of intersecting grey lines caught in circles.

• Jane Buck’s Kitchen Towel is screen printed with a warren of grey bunnies.

• Amanda James’ Stamp is made of wood hand-carved with an Indian motif.

• Jorey Hurley’s Lotus Seed Pods repeats their holed structure with slight variations.

• Sandra Fetingis’ Earrings frame square holes in long rectangles, like tiny pieces of minimalist architecture.

• Kostas’ Ring combines two squares made of sterling silver with a scratched, textured surface.

• Luzelle van der Westhuizen’s Swan Print repeats their elegant necks and bodies in a stylized, Escher-like pattern.

Rainbows & Unicorns

If this doesn’t brighten up your day, we fail to see what will.

• David Waller’s Car Atlas is a rainbow spiral of 2,500 toy cars that just begs to be messed up.

• Kimberley Hart’s Corney is a unicorn hat and mittens hanging on a hook, ready for you to slip into fantasy. Her work explores just how closely we weave fairy tales and imaginative narratives into our own lives. To do that, she’s not afraid to create work that hovers between unexpected amusement and absurdity.

• Judy Chicago’s Rainbow Pickett is a line of trapezoids leaning into a wall in decreasing order of size. It’s named after legendary soul singer Wilson Pickett. Stop what you’re doing and watch his In the Midnight Hour.

• Paula and Chris Jeanniton’s Seed Balls are made of recycled paper scraps in a rainbow of colors and are filled with seeds of flowers like poppies, foxgloves, and snapdragons.

• Amber’s Necklaces suspend jars of rainbow glitter from colorful ribbons.

• Annie’s Hair Clip is a tiny unicorn horn made of purple felt and metallic gold swirl.

• This Hammock by Yellow Leaf Hammocks is hand-woven by an artisan collective in rural Thailand in rainbow stripes.

• Aubrey Elizabeth’s Soaps take the shape of unicorns in pale pastels and smell like berries.

• Veska Abad’s Rainbow is a ball of rolled up paper strips that transition from cool blue to warm orange.

• Raphaela Cornut’s Nowa Necklace combines four layers of thread-wrapped rope in delicious, summery colors.

• Hilary’s Unicorns Who Love Unicorns is an adorable cake topper made from recycled wood.

Blue Jeans

Old fabric tells a story, on personal, local, global, and cultural levels. We’ve selected some unique ways of repurposing denim to create new stories and remember old ones.

• Kathryn Clark’s Quilts are handmade Google maps of the foreclosure crisis. She uses scraps of fabric to depict specific neighborhoods, with the cut-outs representing where the foreclosed lots are located.

• Kaarina Kaikkonen’s Fabric Installations are shirts and men’s jackets arranged in the shape of a neat laundry line and ship’s hull. The pieces of fabric create a muted palette, as though a watercolor artist were mixing shades of blue and peachy pink.

• This Boro Jacket by Sri Threads is made from antique boro, or mended fabrics worn by workers in rural Japan. The indigo dye acts as a natural insect repellent.

• Kathy Hopper’s Quilt is stitched together from various denim jean pockets.

• Amy Jo’s Messenger Bag combines Balinese Ikat with recycled denim, two very different fabrics that complement each other well.

• This Dress by G_Art_Ment has a unique asymmetrical shape with a bleached denim trim of fragmenting ruffles.

• Lori’s Rug was woven on a large vintage loom from old, faded jeans. The myriad shades of blue looks like moving, shimmering water.

• Kelly Kellie’s Rug is a tightly-woven grid of blue jeans and vintage fabrics in rainbow colors.

• This Jacket by Sheila Couture is made of blue denim linen and has turned up cuffs showing a polkadot pattern.

• Beverly Kingwood’s Bag is a cascade of shredded pieces of recycled denim.

• Erin’s Pillows are made from rectangular patches of denim with patches and frayed edges to give them a worn feel.

Night of Fireflies

• For his Nebulae series Fabian Oefner created galaxies in a photography studio by taking long exposure shots of fibre glass lamps. All of his work exposes what the naked eye can’t see, and reveals how even the most ordinary materials become surreal landscapes at the micro level.

• Leopold’s Legolas Lamp has a tree-like structure with linking pieces that you can arrange in any way you want.

• Stacey’s Cassette Tape Lamp shines blue LED lights through a tower of cassette tapes.

• During this year’s Tokyo Hotaru festival, LED Fireflies floated down the Sumida river in honor of the real fireflies that lived there during the Edo period.

• Cory’s Pendant Light is wrapped in an image of distressed blue paint.

• Camille’s Sea of Light is an oil painting that resembles sea foam illuminated by moonlight.

• Miya Ando paid tribute to bioluminescence in Obon, a collection of phosphorescence-coated leaves floating in a pond. After they absorbed sunlight during the day, the leaves glowed blue at night.

Flower Child

• Kathy Klein’s Danmalas (the giver of flower garlands in Sanskrit) arrange petals, fruit, and leaves into luscious mandalas. She creates and photographs her work in nature, and sells the prints here.

• Susanna Star’s Hypnotic layers sheets of brightly colored mylar, cut out with lace-like patterns, to create a kaleidoscopic sculpture.

• Sarah Walker’s Spiderpool resembles a neuron saturated with abstract patterns.

• Amelia Graham’s Prints have a saturated quality similar to the work of Mary Katrantzou. Her work stands out on iPhone cases, which you can get here.

• Andrea’s Earrings are big buttons covered in fabric with a funky pattern.

• Heidi’s Mandala Tile has a mesmerizing blue lattice on white.

• Manola’s Decorative Plate has an intricate geometric and floral pattern.

• Stephanie’s Seahorse Mandala displays coral, seashells, and sea creatures in perfect symmetry.

Bruce’s Ice Mandala is a rich pattern in smoky shades of blue, red, and golden yellow.

• Rowena’s Mandala Clutch paints a burgundy and teal starburst on lightly gridded silk.

Sparkle

• Part crystal chandelier, part Star Trek transporter, Leo Villareal’s Volume installation suspends LED nodes on a waterfall of stainless steel, moving through patterns predetermined by software code.

• Giorgio Armani’s Spring 2013 Collection layered transparent, embellished chiffon to resemble shimmering water at midnight.

• Andrea’s Glitter Collar will add glamour to even the most dull of blouses.

• Bobbi’s Necklace frames black dots in a circle of sparkling grey resin.

• Kambriel’s Scarf is a stormy combination of sequins and shades of grey.

• Lea’s Bracelet transitions from clear glass to black lava stone in a rich variety of textures and materials.

• Sharona’s Lariat Necklace brings together four strands of sterling silver, crystals, grey labradorite, and hematite.

• Christyl’s Fingerless Gloves embellish a grey knit with buttons, sequins, crystals, and glass beads.

• Sara’s Earrings add some subtle sparkle to silver studs. 

Dreamboats

• Books of Venice by Ilmārs Blumbergs takes an Odyssean journey through the sunken city through drawings, photographs, surreal postcards, and plates serving sea-like objects. The smudged, singed, and blurred records suggest that the collection was recovered from an old, damp suitcase. In their distorted, dream-like state, the drawings depict gondolas as elongated wisps containing the city.

• The Model Solar Boat of Imhotep provides a more sturdy, but perhaps more mythic, mode of travel than the gondola.

• This Yacht by Artax Studio models its sleek geometry on the paper boats children make.

• Cai Guo-Qiang’s Reflection is a reconstructed wreck, excavated from the coastal town of Iwaki, Japan and filled with broken blanc de chine from Dehua, China.

• Hannes’ Lightbox illuminates a boat in an industrial harbor with a tree for sails.

The surfaces of Jessica’s Lucite Earrings play with light like water lapping the side of a boat.

• Kathleen’s Necklace weaves sterling silver in a boat curve accented with drops of London Blue Topaz.

• Isaac’s Stoneware Serving Boat was fired in an Anagama kiln for nine days, resting on a bed of crushed oyster shells that left a rippling impression.

• This black-and-white print of Row Boats exposes their ribbed sides fading into black.

• Virginia’s Boathouse compensates for its tiny size with an fantastic sail made of an intricate network of intersecting planes.

Dreaming in the Orient

• Taiwanese artist Wu Mai’s installation Follow the Dreamboat surrounds an old wooden rowboat with strings of paper dreamboats, inscribed by visitors with their thoughts and wishes. What would I write in my dreamboat? A request to take that old boat to the Orient. And a few things to take with me:

• Nanette Lapore’s Emerald Dress from her spring collection.

• Linda’s Enamel Pendant, with a Chinese butterfly pattern and a shower of blue-green and cloisonne beads.

• Steve’s Yunomi Tea Cup, with a pale turquoise glaze and subtle green cracks. If I had to pick one tea for my journey, it would be a rich pu’er like this one.

• Lauren and Amy’s Pillow Cover, made from Schumacher Shanghai Peacock pattern, to decorate my boat.

• Mimi’s Oriental Bookmarks for my current read: Life and Death are Wearing Me Out by Mo Yan.

• Martin’s Emerald Necklace, with a green cinnabar bead and tassel.

• Examples of Chinese Ornament by Owen Jones, published in 1867. Learn more about why Jones wrote it here.