Architectural Storyteller Olalekan Jeyifous’ Vision for Afrofuturist Brooklyn
From aeroponics and cooperative farms to rainwater harvesting and freshwater marshes, Brooklyn-based visual artist Olalekan Jeyifous’ vision for his neighborhood of the last 20 years, Crown Heights, incorporates eco- and agro-futurism, while embracing Afrofuturism, too. The artist refers to his sci-fi concept as “implausible architecture,” but relishes in the opportunity to tell a utopian tale with his art. Jeyifous was slated to exhibit at this year’s Venice Biennale and within MoMA’s Reconstructions: Architecture and Blackness in America exhibition, both of which have been postponed until 2021. Read more about the artist’s work in a new interview at Curbed.
Black in Fashion Council Promotes Accountability Culture
On a mission to expand the breakthroughs around Black Lives Matter into longterm practices that protect marginalized Black employees in the fashion industry, PR consultant Sandrine Charles and Teen Vogue editor in chief Lindsay Peoples Wagner formed the Black in Fashion Council this June. Along with an impactful executive board and guidance from Human Rights Campaign, the council will establish inclusivity benchmarks, as well as policies for hiring managers, and ask participating companies to sign a three-year commitment. Each year, the council will publish an evaluation of these companies and their Black representation in an annual report. Of equal importance, the council will also create a roster of Black professionals brands can hire. Read more about their push for radical accountability at Fast Company.
Eau de Space Perfume Replicates the Scent of Outer Space
Based upon the smell of outer space, recreated from various “natural flavors and ingredients for the food and beverage industry,” and verified by multiple astronauts (including space shuttle pilot Tony Antonelli, who described his experience of smelling space as “strong and unique” and “nothing like anything” he’d smelled on Earth), Eau de Space translates the cosmos into a perfume. Developed by chemist Steve Pearce, who was contracted by NASA to develop the scent in 2008 for astronaut-training exercises, the final formula took four years to perfect. Now, it’s on Kickstarter and has blown past its initial target. For only $29, the fragrance is available to anyone who wants to smell like “a mix of gunpowder, seared steak, raspberries and rum,” according to Eau de Space product manager Matt Richmond. The team plans to release the scent of the moon in the future, too. Read more at CNN.
An International Weekly Publication Made for Inmates, InHouse Magazine
An offshoot of InHouse Records (a non-profit organization that offers graphic design courses as well as existing as a record label that functions inside and outside UK prisons), InHouse magazine recently launched and contains content aimed to inspire, educate and entertain inmates—who are currently spending more time alone due to COVID-19 precautions. Helmed by London-based graphic designed Hannah Lee and founded by Judah Armani, the 16-page, weekly publication is divided into “Creativity, Writing, Music, Wellbeing, Rhythm, Production and Recording, and Culture, plus a poem from one of the InHouse graduates each week.” It reaches 2,500 incarcerated people across the UK and the US. Lee explains the entire organization (some of which has been halted due to the pandemic) aims to create “safe and enabling environments for individuals to improve their technical and social skills… focusing on prisoners’ rehabilitation and employment with dignity and aspiration.” See some of the magazine at It’s Nice That.
Pokémon Go Creator Niantic Labs Partners with Sleep No More’s Punchdrunk Theatre Company
The groundbreaking immersive theatrical experience Sleep No More first welcomed guests to experience its uniquely interactive, multi-narrative and non-linear mash-up of Macbeth and a haunted hotel in 2011, across several floors of a building in NYC. Five years later, the augmented reality game Pokémon Go swept the world, inviting users to experience AR in an exciting, engaging new way. Now, UK-based Punchdrunk Theatre Company (the imagination and execution behind the former) and SF-based Niantic Labs (the developers of the latter), will partner on “multiple projects that will reinvent storytelling for a 21st century audience and further expand the horizon of interactive entertainment.” From the rule-bending explorations of the former and the reality-altering technological prowess of the latter, it’s a partnership worth paying close attention to. Read more at The Verge.
Milton Glaser Explains His Final Project, “Together”
Milton Glaser—celebrated graphic designer and creator of the “I ♥ NY” logo, among many other era-defining images—passed away last Friday, on his 91st birthday. Five weeks prior, Glaser called Jeremy Elias, who had sent a question to his office a few hours before. The chat unfolded into an interview. There, Glaser explains that “Together” (one of his final projects, made in response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic) provides “the symbolic equivalent of that phrase,” etched so that the letters look “as though they are all different, but all related.” This design (like his post-9/11 “I ♥ NY More Than Ever”) was created to bolster New Yorkers with an artwork, an idea and a mantra that hopefully “opens the heart,” he explains. “You need people who go beyond what is objective and what is logical. I suppose you have to call them artists,” Glaser says. Read more at The New York Times.
Online Exhibitions Exploring Race, Resistance and Resilience
Writing for Smithsonian Magazine, Jennifer Nalewicki has listed eight art exhibitions online currently that center around Black history, racism, protest and identity. Including Nina Chanel Abney’s gorgeous work (that she herself describes as “colorfully seductive and deceptively simple investigations of contemporary cultural issues”), Jacob Lawrence and Jordan Casteel, the list comprises talented painters—but there are also photo shows and exhibits of historical ephemera. From art to artifacts, these eight exhibitions are worth taking the time to explore. Read more about them at Smithsonian Magazine.
LEGO Art’s Puzzle-Like Reproductions of Famous Works
LEGO’s newest category, LEGO Art, allows kids and adults alike to assemble reproductions of famous artworks, grand depictions of film figures and more. The pieces are slightly different than LEGO’s signature blocks, resulting in a vertical image to hang on a wall (rather than a 3D structure). It’s easiest to imagine them as caps on a cylindrical peg. Andy Warhol’s famous Marilyn Monroe will be available for $119, and so too will portraits of The Beatles, several of Star Wars’ Sith Lords, and Marvel’s Iron Man. But be prepared for quite the process: Monroe is comprised of 3,341 pieces. Read more at Creative Boom.
Link About It is our filtered look at the web, shared daily in Link and on social media, and rounded up every Saturday morning.