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Wednesday
Jul282010

artist profile: maria berrios

Created in partnership with San Francisco’s Creativity Explored, a nonprofit visual arts center where artists with developmental disabilities create, exhibit and sell art—animated birds, critters, bugs and fireflies buzz whimsically within the warp and weft of the entre flores y pajaros rug.

Born in El Salvador in 1959, artist Maria Berrios has been gracing Creativity Explored with her dynamic artwork and jovial nature since 1999.

Berrios works in a variety of drawing media and also enjoys printmaking. From family groupings, flora, and fauna, her favorite color—red—is well represented with all of her typical subjects. Berrios’ art making process is very slow and meticulous. After sketching a composition, she often places her subjects around the picture plane so that the piece may be viewed from any direction.

Her fantastical, naïve vision, which translates to “among flowers and birds”, is hand-tufted in great detail—using no less than in 28 colors of wool yarns—with her signature woven in each.

To spend one minute with Maria Berrios in the Creativity Explored studio, go here.

Tuesday
Jul272010

month at the museum

What: Month at the Museum
Where: Museum of Science+Industry Chicago
When: October 20-November 18, 2010

photo by: J.B. Spector, Museum of Science and Industry

The Museum of Science + Industry Chicago is looking for someone to take on the once-in-a-lifetime assignment of spending a Month at the Museum—720 hours—plenty of time to explore the Museum’s 35,000 artifacts privately, and talk about living with them 24/7.

The only building remaining from the White City of the 1893 World’s Columbian Exhibition—which celebrated the 400th anniversary of Christoper Columbus’s arrival in the “new world”—the 14-acre building is the largest in the Americas that’s dedicated to science. Opened in 1933 as part of the Century of Progress World’s Fair, today the Museum features 400,000 square feet of exhibit space and has hosted over 175 million guests over 75 years—but none like this.

Imagine experiencing all that lives and breathes within this Chicago landmark, living in spaces decorated with CB2 furniture and accessories, and sharing your experiences with the outside world via blogging and personal interviews. Check out the specifics here and get your entry ready for review soon—the deadline to qualify is August 11th!

photo by: J.B. Spector, Museum of Science and Industry

Monday
Jul262010

jam cafe

In our neighborhood, Jam Cafe is an amazing oasis with both indoor and outdoor seating. A great BYO that keeps menu items affordable by accepting cash only.

Go for the delicious modern spins on classic sandwiches and dinners—don’t miss the CB2 placemats, plates… Enjoy!

Friday
Jul232010

10 essentials: megan

1. Everything about style makes me think of my mom. Fashion and decorating, beautiful fabrics—especially simple, elegant raw linen—I fell in love with pearls, Paris and Vogue because she’s shared her passions since I was young.

2. The stories you can read into candid photography. It’s great food for the imagination and I love the art form.

3. Riding to work on my Jamis hybrid bicycle. Chicago’s getting more and more biker friendly with new lanes every year—there’s even a bike station at Millenium Park.

4. Summer street festivals where we can be outside listening to bands, with good food and drink—all local. Favorites are the Green Music Festival, West Fest and Tour de Fat.

5. Making home-brewed beer after taking classes at Bev Art.

6. Keeping it simple in the kitchen. We use stemless wine glasses and cuatro appetizer plates as multi-purpose—they work great for everything.

7. Cooking Thanksgiving dinner—it’s my favorite holiday because I get to spend time with my large Irish family. We have a weigh-in and whoever gains the most wins the leftovers.

8. Hanging out with Monroe, who’s very sociable, at dog friendly cafes.

9. Organic—especially Seventh Generation cleaning products and organic baking.

10. How can you not buy a pair of TOMS shoes when you know a pair will be provided to a child in need? Bonus: the sustainable materials they use, new fun designs all the time, and they’re super comfortable!

Thanks to megan, product manager assistant, for this submission.

Thursday
Jul222010

in multiples: pendants

If all the world’s a stage, we want better lighting! No matter the fixture, lighting always creates drama. Concert-goers remember a favorite song, maybe the playlist, but they always comment on the light show!

Lighting sets a mood and is the first extension of the architecture of a space into room settings—so choose accordingly. Direct or fluorescent lighting is best used in places like offices or schools where energy efficiency and high clarity are priorities. While warmer lighting—usually low wattage—is great in multiples to cast a flattering glow.

hint: research and imagine the possibilities!