Design

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Stunning Staircases to Nowhere Created By Artists and Architects

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The award-winning Monument Valley is a puzzle game that uses architectural mazes and structures to lead its character through optical illusions in various levels. It’s an M. C. Escher drawing come to life, featuring interlocking bridges, rotating structures, and staircases that lead to nowhere. Inspired by the beautifully designed best seller, we looked at real-life staircases to nowhere created by artists and architects around the world.
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Hillary Clinton, Image credit: Christophe Szpajdel

If Presidential Candidates Were Black Metal Bands…

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Black metal is a bloodcurdlingly shrill subgenre of metal music, characterized by indistinguishably shrieked lyrics (as opposed to the baritone belches of death metal). The rare, trained ear that can decipher the human language beneath the deathly wails will find the contents often concern Satanist, pagan, or generally anti-Christian ideologies, blanketing the contemporary societal mores they disdain in the unquenchable flames of their violent vocalizations.
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Stylish Illustrations Showcase Brilliant Quotes From Iconic Architects

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Architects are, of course, best known for their aesthetic sensibilities. But as a series of illustrations by Barcelona-based architect and graphic designer Federico Babina (whose work we’ve featured several times on Flavorwire) reminds us, some of history’s greatest architects also had a way with words. ARCHIQUOTE collects some of their most insightful and inspiring utterances, from Charles and Ray Eames’ “Take your pleasure seriously” to Mies van der Rohe’s immortal “Less is more,” in text that evokes each icon’s unique style. Click through for a selection of highlights from the series.
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10 Design-Savvy Indoor Forts for Adults

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The word “fort” evokes images of blanket mountains and childhood hideaways. Designer Kelly English is keeping the fort dream alive with her imaginative thickets made from willow branches and other natural materials. We spotted the adorable forts, inspired by her daughter’s creative playtime, on the website Honestly WTF. Naturally, we had to go searching for a few adult-sized versions — something cozy, design-savvy, and fit for a grown-up frame. Here are a few stylish indoor forts that would be perfect for your summer staycation… Read More

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15 Things You Didn’t Know About Yves Saint Laurent

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Bertrand Bonello’s Saint Laurent, which premiered at Cannes in 2014, looks at the life of the French fashion designer from 1967 to 1976. This was a career peak for the influential couturier and preceded his breakup with longtime partner Pierre Bergé (who also helped run the business). The film sees a limited release this weekend. In celebration of the Palme d’Or-nominated film, we’ve gathered a few facts about the fashion legend.
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Reese, Blake, Gwyneth: The Commodification of Celebrity Blandness

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There’s a certain aesthetic that I associate with decent to middling romantic comedies of the early millennium, usually starring Cameron Diaz, Drew Barrymore, or Reese Witherspoon. This aesthetic surrounds a lovelorn heroine who is a clean-cut but slightly funky blonde, a little bit frenetic but also warm. She’s pretty for the guys and aspirational for the ladies, and utterly devoid of any real personality, grit, or distinctive cultural background. She’s a blank slate, made to reflect the projections of viewers, just as the big windows and gleaming surfaces of her home reflect her pretty face.
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How Do We Fight a Culture in Which “Pretty Hurts” Workers, From Sweatshops to Nail Salons?

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In the past two weeks, investigative journalism has woken us up to the price, in human terms, of cheap beauty. First, John Oliver and his team reminded us about the sweatshops, child labor, and unsafe conditions that go into our “fast fashion.” Now, The New York Times‘ Sarah Maslin Nir has published a long exposé of conditions in New York City nail salons (short answer: they’re abysmal) that is setting social media ablaze. Reactions have ranged from self-flagellation and self-righteousness among salon clientele to questions about the best way to fix the situation: Tip better? Organize? Abstain?
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"China: Through The Looking Glass" Costume Institute Benefit Gala - Arrivals

How Rihanna Won the Met Gala — and Surpassed Its Awful Theme

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When the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute announced the subject of its spring 2015 exhibit, the media collectively cringed. China: Through the Looking Glass — which, according to the Met, “will explore the impact of Chinese aesthetics on Western fashion, and how China has fueled the fashionable imagination for centuries” — is a perfectly suitable topic for a museum dedicated to the history of fashion; after all, excising Western influence by, or appropriation of, other cultures would wipe out the bulk of art history. But the show’s theme doubled as the theme of last night’s Vogue-hosted opening gala, an event so intertwined with the actual exhibit that the Costume Institute’s official name (The Anna Wintour Costume Center, as of last year) is essentially a formality.
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