Monday, 31 August 2009


Saturday, 29 August 2009

Festival season

As the summer festival season nears its end, this picture takes me back to a warm night in April where I danced in the desert.

Crosby Beach

Anthony Gormley's incredible installation of 100 life-size cast iron sculptures, 'Another Place', stand on Crosby Beach in Merseyside.

The artist says: "Depending on the fall of the land, the state of the tide, the weather conditions and the time of day the work will be more or less visible. At high water, the sculptures that are completely visible when the tide is out will be standing up to their necks in water. The sculptures are all standing in a similar way, with the lungs more or less inflated and their postures carrying different degrees of tension or relaxation. The idea was to test time and tide, stillness and movement, and somehow engage with the daily life of the beach.'

On an otherwise deserted beach, these sculptures create an eerily beautiful atmosphere.

Reykjavik 1.30am

After spending four days in Iceland during high summer, I thought it was the most starkly beautiful place I had ever seen. The long days of sunlight were invigorating and disorienting in equal measure.

Summer Light

Monday, 24 August 2009

Sunday, 23 August 2009

Not Fade Away

There is something moving about once glamorous British seaside towns that no longer buzz with regular visitors.


Away from the heavily-touristed towns, there are areas of strange and breathtaking beauty.

Saturday, 22 August 2009

Las Vegas

The Hamptons

I was fortunate to spend last summer in New York as part of a work assignment. My love surprised me by flying over from London and booking a cottage in the Hamptons, complete with hammock. We also ate some of the biggest prawns I've ever seen.


I am a little obsessed by Bauhaus architecture so a few years ago I went on a pilgrimage to Germany, taking in Weimar, Dessau and Berlin over an extended long weekend. The Bauhaus style is one of the most influential in modern design, influencing post-war building and interior design, graphics and typography. The Bauhaus museum in Berlin provides an excellent introduction.


After walking from Mayfair to North London, stopping only for a cheeky margarita at Chilango, I visited the Estorick Collection of Modern Italian Art in Highbury. Their current exhibition is called Workshop Missoni: Daring to be Different.

It is dedicated to the work of the Missoni family, renowned for their innovative colour treatments and intricate knitwear. The exhibition is thoughtfully curated within the intimate gallery space. Inspirational mood boards are displayed alongside textiles, tapestries and the end creations.

One of the highlights is a documentary about their work, featuring Margherita Missoni who says ‘the first words I learnt were the names of the colours; I could say the words for fuchsia and orange before I could count’. I left the exhibition wanting to visit Milan again.

Up North

I spent last week in Newcastle as part of a work assignment. The mix of old and contemporary structures create a dynamic and interesting city.

The Baltic is a contemporary art gallery with an amazing book and gift shop and cafe space on the ground floor. Two of the current exhibitions include Sarah Sze's intricate installations and Fiona Crisp's large scale photographs of underground spaces.

My favourite structure in the city is the Millenium Bridge, which links Newcastle to Gateshead.

Designed by Wilkinson Eyre Architects, it is reminiscent of the groundbreaking creations of Santiago Calatrava, a Spanish Architect whose buildings helped to re-ignite the cultural heart of Valencia and transform the Malmö skyline.

Friday, 21 August 2009

The Summer Pavilion

This week I visited the Summer Pavilion at the Serpentine Gallery in Kensington.

It is designed by Kazuyo Sejima + Ryue Nishizawa from the Tokyo-based architectural firm SANAA. They also designed the New Musuem Contemporary Art Gallery in New York.

Describing their structure the architects say: ‘The Pavilion is floating aluminium, drifting freely between the trees like smoke. The reflective canopy undulates across the site, expanding the park and sky. Its appearance changes according to the weather, allowing it to melt into the surroundings. It is a sheltered extension of the park where people can read, relax and enjoy lovely summer days.’

Every element of the design is well considered and perfectly crafted. This is SANAA's first built structure in the UK and I hope the first of many.

Claybury Park

I recently discovered Claybury Park in Woodford Bridge, Essex. It is a beautiful woodland space where I love to potter on a Sunday afternoon. I met a chap who told me as a child that he used to toboggan down the snow-filled hills of this park.

He also said he made himself ill one day eating too many blackberries. There are hundreds of blackberry brambles so I was inspired.

I filled my shopping basket and made blackberry jam...a delicious sugar rush.