June 30th, 2012
Barcelona….Where have you been my whole life????
And I’m so stupid… I don’t know why I thought I wouldn’t love Spain.
If you watch the news and are following the economic disaster that’s happening, you would picture women selling their children for bread in Madrid. But this is not the case. Like most coverage from the news, it is super misleading.
Yes, there is an economic disaster but one of the great traits that human beings possess is that they are resilient and keep living their lives. And Barcelona is no exception, it’s incredibly chic!!!!!
First of all, the Spaniards are relaxed and gracious. There is something to be said about a Mediterranean philosophy and way of life, let’s call it… de-lovely.
Also, I think Spanish women could make me straight they’re so beautiful… just kidding! But I have to say, the people on a whole are beautiful.
There is an interesting take on art and culture. They mix classic sensibility with a real twist of fantasy and modernity.
Gaudi’s memories are everywhere. I think he would be the prime example of Spanish artistic sensibility.
The city has its grandeur of old Europe, but without the Parisian attitude which is kind of pleasant!
One guy I met was trying to guess my nationality, his first guess was German, next Dutch, next Italian. When he finally gave up I told him I was American. He said he was surprised because all Americans feel they are number one and carry it in their body language. So, I guess even in Spain it’s not great to be an American, but what the hell… I can still enjoy it while I’m here.
June 29th, 2012
Sorry for being MIA, I was crammed with work and then ran off on vacation, but now I’m back!
I waited until the last minute to book my vacation this summer. I wanted to go to Botswana but I couldn’t deal with the 19 hour flight and being totally jet lagged in Botswana so, I decided to fly to Amsterdam and bike across the Netherlands.
I’d never been there, but I have been to Denmark, where I biked around the country. I thought it would be pretty similar.
There turned out to be a few conventions in town so I almost didn’t get a room. I got one of the last rooms on Expedia, the presidential suite in the Okura Hotel.
When I got to the hotel I was instantly deflated. The Okura felt like it was stuck in time, although I’m not sure what year, maybe 1984? My room had a stationary bike and weird furniture in it. Needless to say… yuck!
Anyway, I went into town after a nap (still ended up being jet lagged) and started walking.
Amsterdam’s old historic part has become the Red Light District, which equates to hookers behind glass, sex shops and bars.
I started to feel like I was in a cross between Las Vegas, Thailand and Copenhagen.
It’s definitely a place where if you are 22 years old and were discovering freedom from your parents, you would have a blast… Or, if you were 55 years old and wanted to cheat on your wife, it would be your Mecca.
The weather had predicted rain for the next 4 days so I made a quick decision and I decided to leave instantly and fly to Barcelona.
To be fair, I’m sure if I had given Amsterdam more of a chance I could have discovered more of its beauty than just seeing the obvious.
Here are a couple of pictures I took…
June 15th, 2012
Yes, Aliens are real. After we are long gone, we will be superseded by our hairless predecessors. One ominous clue was the alien graffiti I found in Page, Utah…
Ok… whatever…. I’m really trying to talk about Prometheus, it had lines outside of movie theaters in NY, which is quite rare. People were psyched.
Ridley Scott delivered a rich visual of the prequel Aliens with amazing imagery.
Fassbender showed us that he is not a one trick pony actor and delivered a dramatic role reversal from his character in the movie Shame.
I definitely recommend it.
One small critique… Come up with a new formulated script from the Alien series. You can tell who will be picked off by the aliens because of their casting profile.
June 13th, 2012
June 13th, 2012
Rei Kawakubo, the mastermind behind Comme Des Garcons, has been one of my biggest inspirations my whole adult life.
She changed my perception of Fashion and Design to be an extension of art, a perception that questions what we think is attractive, how it’s constructed and executed.
I think for most of us in the fashion world, she has changed our perception of fashion.
Last Monday she was duly awarded a Lifetime Achievement Award by the CFDA.
Here are some photos from past collections…
June 9th, 2012
After leaving the decadence of Vegas I needed some time to clear my head. Solitude was calling me and I decided to head to Page, Utah, which out of ignorance, I thought was the Grand Canyon… It looked pretty similar…?
I stayed at the Amangiri which is an impeccably designed building. It fuses Fascist bunker architecture with a clean modernist sensibility. It really is a remarkable place.
The desert is really the beauty. It’s ominous with its majestic mountains that have stood for thousands of years. I was instantly reminded of how I’m just passing through this life while these mountains have been and will be here for centuries.
I did some hiking and one thing to remember is you need to hike from 7-10am or 6-9pm because the desert is 100 degrees, which equates to super hot!
While the desert was really pretty, Page was really scary. It was built in the 1950′s and the population is 9000 people. It’s divided into 3 groups, American Indians, Mormons and drunk white people… They seem to not mix too well. This means you should skip going into town and stay at the hotel.
Here are some photos from my trip:
Here’s a tarantula that I found in my bedroom. The attendant said it was a good sized one. Apparently, they help keep rodents out of the hotel.
The swimming pool at the resort.
This is the Glen Canyon Dam.
In the airport I found these amazing American Indian trinkets… all made in China.
Amongst the Indian ruins, I found some cool vandalism.
June 8th, 2012
You all might hate me after this but… I HATE Vegas.
It’s one of the most depressing destinations I’ve ever been to. I have to go there for business every year.
The first time I went I felt suicidal. It seemed so incredibly depressing. The day I got there, I had the combo of seeing a crippled man gambling at 7am in the lobby of my hotel, scattered prostitution cards all over the sidewalk and crazy/drunk American tourists who fly to Vegas because they think they can capture a European experience/gambling extravaganza by going to the Paris and the Bellagio hotels. It just seems like the worst parts of American culture rolled up into one city.
Upon reflection, it’s probably because Las Vegas’ founding is based on the commodities of gambling, prostitution and alcohol.
When I arrived this time, I was talking to my cab driver from the airport and asked her if she liked Vegas. She was a mild mannered, sweet woman from Iran. I was surprised she had moved there, it seemed like a crazy culture shock for her. Anyway, her response was, “I hate it, too many crazy people, gambling people and lost people. I can’t wait to leave.” That’s exactly how I feel!!
Upon reflecting on this, I’ve decided to list the 3 worst countries/cities I’ve traveled to followed by my favorite 10 places to visit.
1. Las Vegas
2. Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
3. Moscow in winter
2. Tanzania Masai Mara
4. Edinburgh, Scotland
6. Krakow, Poland
9. Damascus Syria (not currently)
June 5th, 2012
Here’s a great book that just came out. Its making news for its glorification of age. I did a quick interview about it on The Daily Beast, which you should read.
June 4th, 2012
I rarely do this, but I wanted to introduce an upcoming jewelry designer I met in Miami while doing a personal appearance at Neimans in Bal Harbour, FL.
This is Angeles Almuna, who designs sculptural jewelry made from mixed materials and hand blown glass. She has an other worldly smile and an artistic sensibility to her work.
I took a picture of one of her pins so you could get a gander. If you’re interested in her work, click here to check it out. She just started so go easy on her!
June 1st, 2012
I had dinner with Zoe Saldana (above) and Mary Alice Stephenson (below) last week at Amy Sacco’s new restaurant called 8, on 16th St between 7th and 8th Aves. Amy, who was the queen of high end nightlife in NYC with clubs like Bungalow 8, is at it again with her new joint.
Zoe has just finished filming the next Star Trek, she wears jewelry I designed for her in the film. It’s styled by Michael Kaplan who is a genius. If you think you are not familiar with his work, remember Blade Runner. He did that. So you can kind of see his vision…
He styled that in 1982, which is incredible since it still has this futuristic feel. At the time it really resonated and ended up impacting film and fashion forever.