1. Crochet Playground
Japanese fiber artist Toshiko Horiuchi-MacAdam has transformed the delicate arts of knitting and crochet into an industrial practice to create massive playgrounds for children. Horiuchi-MacAdam’s inspiration for usable art is the “undisguised delight of children exploring a new play space.” The colorful playground, which contains nets, swings, cushions and pockets, is currently at Japan’s Hakone Open Air Museum.
2. Conqueror Typographic Games
To encourage graphic designers around the world to channel their inner jock in honor of the upcoming Olympics, paper brand Conqueror recently held the Typographic Games. Over 1,700 designers responded, with entries as varied as the 60 countries from which they came. South African designer Graeme Gauld won the gold with a beautifully illustrated letterform poster, earning him a trip to the London games this summer.
3. Bill Murray Coloring Book
Indie film lovers’ prayers have been answered—Bellykids is working on a Bill Murray coloring book filled with drawings from his most beloved films. The “Thrill Murray” cover explains that it’s “inspired by the great man of cinema” and will be released August 2012.
4. Reel Bike Storage
Hold your bread in a DIY bike basket from young Korean designers Yeongkeun Jeong and Aareum Jeong. Users can wrap the lengthy single nylon band in any cross-hatched pattern they choose to store anything from groceries to school books.
5. Aether Summer Photo Contest
Whip out your camera and start shooting because Aether Journal is holding a contest for the photo that best sums up the essence of summer. The grand prize is chock-full of goodies, like a brand new Fujifilm X10 Finepix Fuji X10 Finepix, a $500 Aether gift card, and their newly redesigned canvas travel bag—to name a few.
6. AntiVJ: Omicron
AntiVJ‘s newest endeavor in projection mapping is an experience that transposes cutting edge technology onto an early 20th-century historical setting in Poland, proving once and for all that the fresh art form will surely transfix more than just science geeks and stoners.
7. Flaunt Magazine Does Denim
Creative minds in the journalism world seek to shake things up this summer with magazine covers made of anything but paper. Flaunt takes up the cause with Guess as its partner, releasing a one-of-a-kind issue with a denim cover that features the sultry stare of Claudia Schiffer. That girl really can look good in —or on— anything.
8. Eastpak and WOOD WOOD
The universal backpack brand Eastpak has teamed up with WOOD WOOD to create a classic line of waxed cotton duffels and backpacks. The utilitarian bag line “Desertion” can be seen in the newly released lookbook and will be in select stores soon.
9. Brooklyn Watches
Former gallery owner David Sokosh abandoned his business during the recession and created Brooklyn Watches, a manufacturer of handmade time pieces. Sokosh utilizes 1970s mechanics and themes his models to reflect various Brooklyn neighborhoods.
10. Delfina Delettrez at Pitti
The Palazzo Ricasoli in Florence has honored jewelry designer Delfina Delettrez with four historic rooms to display her iconic creations for Pitti Immagine. From classic baubles to live-insect installation pieces, her collection will surely make a lasting impression on the celebrated palazzo.
11. Electric Blue Heaven
Electric Blue Heaven offers a uniquely artistic look at the world’s best man made wave uncannily placed as far from its natural habitat as possible in the mountains outside of Dubai. If the surreal setting and high flying moves of surfer Dion Agius aren’t enough to keep you glued to the screen for seven minutes, Globe enlisted 10 Russian models and a Lamborghini to serve as supplementary eye candy.
12. Tilt of Light
Debuting at the X Games, design group Enness recently moved their lighted seesaw to a playground installation in Melbourne’s Federation Square. Thirty-three rows of light panels and motion sensors cascade light in response to seesaw movements, and four preset “atmospheres” change the nature and behavior of the rays.
13. Tweet for Tea
No need to scrounge for loose change at the vending machine—South African canned tea company BOS has taken interactive social media to the next level, allowing customers to Tweet a specific hashtag and their location in exchange for an iced tea. The high-tech Bevmax 4-45 machine waits 60 seconds before allowing the next parched customer to tweet @BOS in exchange for enjoying their freshest marketing idea yet.
14. A Door to Nowhere
Rather than welcome you to the local 7-11, the automatic sliding doors recently installed in Long Island City’s Socrates Sculpture Park serve little more purpose than to welcome you to the other side of the grass lawn. The installation is either trying to challenge the societal view of barriers and the doors that one must enter to find success, or, maybe, it’s just for fun.
15. Pax Vaporizer
The “iPhone of vaporizers”, Pax is the latest from the innovative San Francisco-based company Ploom. An LED indicator displays heat status, temperature and battery life, ensuring that you can keep a close eye on your carefully cooked bud.
16. 2013 Vanquish
Reviving the unassailably hip “Vanquish” name from Aston Martin’s vault, the company has announced that the reinstated model will become available early on in 2013. The sharp lines of the model are enhanced by rows of LED bulbs on the front and rear lights, and sport performance is backed by a burly 6.0 liter V12 engine with 565 horsepower.