1. Frieze Week’s Brooklyn Art Fairs
As with all super-powered art fairs, NYC’s Frieze stirs such excitement in the city that a range of other fairs have cropped up at the same time (including three in Brooklyn) ultimately yielding what is referred to as “Frieze Week.” Hyperallergic ventured to Red Hook’s 1-54 Contemporary African Art Fair and Greenpoint’s Moniker and Other Art Fair. Their findings—visible through a photo essay—reveal a distinct vibrancy in a borough equally lauded for its artists. Head there for images of all three fairs.
2. Arca’s Buffed Leather BDSM Headphones
People can be quite particular about headphones, with various specific needs—not all of which are sound-based. In a limited edition, a three-way collaboration between SSENSE, leather company Fleet Ilya and Arca has resulted in headphones unlike any other. Not only are they BDSM-inspired, they also come at quite the cost: $6,450. But while the buffed leather and studs hint that the headphones can handle active use, SSENSE is quick to note that these are “art objects” first and foremost. Read more at designboom.
3. “Flint Is A Place” Reignites Attention to the City and Residents
Part art show, part documentary, “Flint Is A Place” is a poignant project that returns attention to the Michigan city’s ongoing crises and gives voice to its residents. Zackary Canepari and Drea Cooper’s work, composed of photography and film, is a “cross-platform episodic documentary series about the experience and perception of Flint.” This is just as important now as it was decades ago—perhaps even more so as Flint’s residents have been dealing with various calamities (the water crisis among many others) for an unconscionable amount of time. As DazedDigital says, this project (on show now at Bronx Documentary Center) explores how Flint “is the poster child for the American Dream gone wrong.” See more there.
4. New Electric UPS Trucks are Adorable for a Reason
A quick glance at the new crop of electric UPS trucks being trialled in the UK and France gives one immediate reaction: so cute! Those futuristic curved edges, however, actually offer additional safety functionality, allowing truck drivers a wider field of vision for greater awareness. The vision of UK-based technology company Arrival, the vehicles are also lightweight, have zero tailpipe emission, and offer a battery range of more than 150 miles. Read more at Quartz.
5. Explore The Met’s “Heavenly Bodies” Exhibition
While there was no missing the coverage surrounding the Met Gala—whether it’s the reportage, live-tweeting, or ensuing memes—sometimes the celebrity fanfare gets more attention than the Metropolitan Museum of Art Costume Institute’s spring exhibition. This year the show is titled “Heavenly Bodies: Fashion and the Catholic Imagination” and explores the connection between the religion’s iconography, symbolism, imagery and how this identity has influenced the world of fashion. The immense show (spread across two locations, 25 galleries and 60,000 square feet) features striking pieces from Alexander McQueen, YSL, Jean Paul Gaultier, Rick Owens, Galliano, Gareth Pugh and much more. There’s majesty galore—and it doesn’t cease to surprise. See more at dezeen.
6. Lauren Lee’s “Warm Walls” Make Public Bathrooms Better
In an effort to create a public amenity for menstruating women (rather than a product that individuals must go out and buy, oftentimes somewhat discreetly), Lauren Lee has envisioned Warm Walls. Her concept is essentially a “heated, gently curved wall mount that could be installed in public restrooms to give women on their periods a place both to alleviate pain” as well as to help foster a community—and more public conversation and visibility surrounding women’s pain. Hoping to work with architects to make Warm Walls a reality, Lee says it’s not only for women, but for anybody who might also appreciate the aesthetics of the curved walls, “That’s addressing taboo–when it’s just there in plain sight.” Read more at FastCo.
7. 10pt’s Clever Sustainable T-Shirt Packaging
Student designers Antonina Kozlova and Kanokpon Yokchoo from the Anhalt University of Design started a T-shirt brand whose packaging is not only sustainable, but also useful. The innovative packaging—a spiral paper tube which the shirts are shipped inside—doubles as measuring tape. Simply unravel the 100% recycled paper tube, and a colorful tape-measure is the result. See more at thedieline.
8. NYC’s 570 Broome Building Purifies Outside Air
With its facade covered in the spray-on solution Pureti, SoHo’s new 570 Broome Street breaks down contaminants in Manhattan air. It utilizes a photocatalytic process that “transforms polluting particles into oxidizing agents,” according to Quartz. This treatment offers the purifying power of 500 trees; the equivalent of taking 2,000 cars off the road for a year. The building’s design benefits do not stop there. Components like the Neolith sintered stone slabs also lend to clean design. Hopefully this can be a model for future cities.