joy magnetism: Is FLW the new Monet?

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Sunday, May 31, 2009

Is FLW the new Monet?

Magnet #464 - Frank Lloyd Wright's City by the Sea

Here's one of the many (many, many, many, many) items I purchased today (at wholesale, thank God).

It's the City by the Sea design that FLW originally created in 1913 as a mural for the Midway Gardens in Chicago. Almost 50 years later, he brought back the design for the Music Pavilion at Taliesin West. It's supposed to be geometric forms abstracty image of a city skyline, complete with balloons and confetti of color.

Yes, I know - superbusy, huh. I bet it's even more awesome when you see it in person, as that guy did. (What a great Flickr photoset of Taliesin West!)

Anyway, this weekend was almost as busy as this magnet! Another weekend with terrific friends in town. Aside from visits to Burgers & Cupcakes (which I think has the best frosting in the city) and hanging out with fun friends, the Guggenheim and a trade show were my little highlights.

It feels like lately, more people have jumped aboard the FLW bandwagon, as his work over the past few years seems to be enjoying the same attention Monet did back in the 90s. Am I the only one to notice this?

Yesterday, I finally got to see the Gugg's FLW: From Within Outward exhibition. Words can totally not explain how terrific this was. It's their 50th anniversary, and this is the largest exhibition of his work - and is a fabulous tribute to his work - both built and unbuilt.

You basically start at the bottom of the rotunda, and wend your way upward, with separated out galleries for other segments of his work. The drawings are amazing, and coupled with slideshows of the works in real life. I'm totally going to have to go back, so that I can be that obnoxious person dwelling over all the drawings and models.

The models are amazing - particularly for the unbuilt works. Though, they had a model of my holy grail of buildings - the SC Johnson Wax headquarters. Yes, yes, I know all I have to do is go to Wisconsin to see it, but really, when was the last time you up and went, hey! I need to go to Wisconsin. So, sorry, Wisconsin, it'll have to wait a little bit longer. But, seriously. How cool is this lily pad great room? According to the Guggenheim audio tour, they almost didn't let him build it, because they didn't think the columns would hold. So he produced a test column, and put something like 60,000 tons of weight on it to prove a point, and they finally relented and let him build it.

And, yes, I could keep talking about this exhibit. But ya'll should all go. I'm just sayin'.

So, the other big highlight this weekend, was BookExpo America, which is just a big publishing tradeshow. That was fun, because I could pretend I was back in the industry, caring about books and literature and pub dates and distribution, and authors and backlists, etc.

Plus, on an advertising/marketing level, I do love trade shows, seeing the booths and displays, how people laid out their floor plans and foot traffic, and seeing which booths had great stuff. And even if they're all saying that there wasn't great swag out there, I beg to differ. There just wasn't as much as previous years, from what I hear. But then again, I was happy with fun pens and bags. So silly, but a great bag makes a booth. Chronicle Press had the prettiest damn bag ever - and at least a handful of people asked me where to find it. Now. Easily the hit (bag) of the show. What? I said I like trade shows!

Today was the best day, because while I love the free stuff, a lot of the stuff in the booth I wouldn't have minded buying. And buy, I did. You know how when you go into gift shops, and they have those supercool postcard books, or those wonderfully designed and packaged notecards? Or, even those fun decks of knowledge cards? The mousepads with the artwork on it? Or, those coffee table books that you love in the store, but feel too extravagant to spend on just yourself?

Umm, yeah. They come from a company called Pomegranate.


I buy it everywhere I go - and ya'll know I'm in gift shops, constantly. Their stuff is in every nook and cranny of my apartment and my cubicle at work. And I bought a bagful of stuff from them today, from notecards and knowledge cards to notepads and mousepads, and of course, a handful of magnets.

No lie. In fact, I was chatting with one of the ladies at the booth, and I said, OMG, I love your stuff. I should own stock in Pomegranate with as much of this stuff that I buy! And she laughed softly and said, well, it's privately owned. And later, I found her and her husband.

Good grief, how in the heck do I end up fangurling over the most obscure stuff - ever? With the people I'm fangurling over? Sheesh.
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cc said...

The other day during class, one of the guest lecturers randomly mentioned the Guggenheim design and I was smugly able to throw out FLW's name at 8am thanks to you. So fangurl away, my dear.

Vicki said...

The FLW exhibit was amazing! Thanks for waiting for us. Also, after reviewing the Pomegranate stuff last night, I am only sad that I didn't buy more. It is beautiful! Thanks, as always, for helping make our visit so much fun.

joy said...

Heh. I'm glad I could help, cc!

And Vicki, I had thought I was kinda joking when I wrote about having a ton of Pomegranate stuff. Now, as I'm sitting in my cube, changing calendars, switching out mousepads, it's completely true. Whoa. I *really* should own stock. Or, maybe that nice lady will adopt me. Heh.