Like something out of a Wes Anderson film, this Blue Bottle Coffee cafe in Nagoya, Japan, is a too-perfect, polished, … More
Category: Spaces, Places & Architecture
PARKS AND REC: A QUICK VISIT TO TOKYO’S POPULAR “ROBOT PARK”!
Tucked away on a hillside between two leafy residential blocks of central Tokyo sits Sakurazaka Park. Better known colloquially as … More
ARCHITECTURE 101: WHAT IS “GOOGIE” ARCHITECTURE?
Googie architecture is a style of modernist architecture that emerged in the United States in the mid-20th century, predominantly in … More
DEUS EX MACHINA: THIS TOKYO VENDING MACHINE SOLVES OUR THIRD-WAVE COFFEE LUST!
A cluster of vending machines stands on a Roppongi street corner next to a small public parking lot a few … More
HOUSE BEAUTIFUL: MR. DOODLE TURNS 12-ROOM U.K. MANSION INTO TRULY EPIC GRAFFITI ART CANVAS!
British artist Sam Cox, better known as Mr. Doodle, spent roughly two years during the COVID pandemic painting black-on-white doodles … More
PRINTED MATTER: THE TINY TOKYO BOOKSTORE STUFFED WITH AMAZING COLLECTION OF ART-PHOTO BOOKS!
It’s the little bookstore crammed with enough books to fill a shop twice its size. It’s the Shelf bookshop in … More
ON THE SCENE : DESIGN VISION, STYLE & SURF CULTURE AT MOLLUSK!
The Mollusk surf shop in Santa Barbara, California is a beautiful showpiece of a retail space. It’s the recent addition … More
ARCHITECTURAL DEATH: THE DEMOLITION OF ICONIC TOKYO BUILDING!
The Nakagin Capsule Tower Building in Tokyo is an unmissable architectural oddity and gem in the heart of the Japanese … More
NEW ISSUE OF BELOVED, ARTSY INTERNATIONAL SHELTER MAG HAS ARRIVED AND WE FEEL BLESSED!
The new issue of Apartamento magazine arrived in the mail from Barcelona, Spain last week ands we’ve been savoring its … More
BEAN HERE NOW : OUR NEW COFFEE STATION UNVEILED
Here’s the coffee set-up at our headquarters. We put up these shelves above the counter where the coffee-making gear is … More
SHAMEFUL OR SMART? : TOKYO OLYMPICS ARCHITECTURE LACKS OVERPRICED, PRETENTIOUS NEW TROPHY BUILDINGS!!!
The Tokyo 2020 Olympics will open this week in the here and now of 2021. The world’s biggest sporting and … More
TRANSPARENT THINGS: THE MINIMALIST GLASS CUBE THAT TURNS THE WORLD RED!
Artist Larry Bell’s red, glass cubes at MOCA Los Angeles are a masterful use of color, materials and space. The … More
PUMPIN’!: THE MOST BEAUTIFULLY DESIGNED GAS STATIONS IN THE WORLD!
Gas stations tend to be pretty bland and merely functional when it comes to architectural design. Many are drab, dirty … More
WATERING HOLE: HOTEL BAR EVOKES BYGONE ERA OF CALIFORNIA DESERT GLAMOUR!
“Hola, Amigo!” That’s what you should say when you enter the hotel bar of the Ace Hotel and Swim Club … More
ARCHI-TORTURE: SOMEBODY’S BUILDING A MEMORIAL TO THE GLOBAL PANDEMIC
An architecture firm in Montevideo, Uruguay is building the worlds first memorial to the global COVID-19 pandemic. The firm is … More
CAFFEINATED MINIMALISM: ON THE SCENE AT SUR COFFEE
We made a stop at Sur Coffee over the past weekend. It’s a cafe with a roastery in San Clemente, … More
IN TOKYO: SIGN ON BUILDING LEAVES LITTLE DOUBT AS TO CONTENTS WITHIN
As you approach Little Darling Coffee Roasters for the first time, you’re not sure you’re in the right place. It’s … More
SMOKING DOG IN BATHROOM
MINIMALIST CONSTRUCTION HOARDING
ARCHITECTURE: IF PAUL SMITH DESIGNED AN OFFICE BUILDING IT MIGHT LOOK LIKE THIS
ADDICTIONS: NEON SIGN PERFECTLY EXPRESSES COFFEE VICE
But first, coffee! Absofuckinlutely! Before anything, we need our espresso. In the summer, preferably four shots over lots of ice. … More
BEACH CULTURE: AT THE VENICE BEACH SKATE PARK
“LIKE MAN I’M TIRED (OF WAITING)”
ON THE SCENE AT TORTOISE
ARCHITORTURE: GRIFFITH OBSERVATORY, WHERE TOURISTS AND NERDS BEAUTIFULLY COLLIDE!
One of Los Angeles’s great landmarks is the Griffith Observatory, an architectural gem that mixes art-deco and Mayan aesthetics. It’s … More
GAMEY: VINTAGE PACHINKO MACHINE HAS SEEN THINGS
This vintage Japanese pachinko machine sits on the floor in the corner of a small conference room at the L.A. … More
HOTNESS: BUILDING-ON-BUILDING ACTION
High-rise condo building reflected in windows of a modern glass-and-steel skyscraper in Akasaka, Tokyo.
ARCHITORTURE: ART-DECO MOVIE THEATER MAKES US WONDER IF WE’VE GONE BACK IN TIME
The Aero movie theater on tony Montana Avenue on Santa Monica’s northside is a Los Angeles treasure. A working cinema … More
ARCHITORTURE: MODERN-CONTEMPORARY BUILDING TOO BEAUTIFUL TO LOOK AT
Somebody do something, PLEASE! This building … it … it .. hurts our eyes. It’s just too damn beautiful. Must … More
SPACES: HIPSTER-MEXICO SURF CHIC
Salt Fish Surf Co is a surfy boutique in Venice, in Los Angeles, run by the effusive and friendly French … More
BRUTALISTS IN LEGOLAND!
You, savvy reader, are probably a fan of architecture. If not of architecture in and of itself, then perhaps as … More
ARCHITORTURE: WHEN DESIGN WENT GOOGIE-EYED
Architectural styles are subject to the tastes, fashion and trends of a given era. Some architecture stands the test of … More
ARCHITORTURE: PERFORMING ARTS VENUE GOES POST-POST-MODERN
“I WANT A PRESIDENT”
Artist Zoe Leonard’s 2016 public art project under the Standard Hotel building on the High Line in New York City … More
NEWS FLASH: “SPANTO IS A ‘KOOK’” AND OTHER MYSTERIES OF DEEP VENICE
Sooooooo … Spanto is a Kook. “Who is Spanto? Why is he a kook?” you ask, savvy reader. These are … More
KICKS: GIANT FOOT STICKING OUT FROM ROOF OF HOLLYWOOD STORE “TOO INSTAGRAMMABLE”
Can something be too Instagrammable? That is the question, savvy reader. Our initial thought is, “Yes, yes something can be. … More
CITY LIFE: BIRD MURAL RUINS OTHERWISE COLD, SLEEK, OVERPRICED MINIMALIST CONDO & PERFECTIONIST LIFESTYLE
Text by Van Corsa Imagine. You’ve made it. Went to school. Got a job in a tech start-up. Paid off … More
LUST: A VISIT TO “LONE WOLFS’” LOS ANGELES MUSIC STUDIO
The hyper-aesthetically single-minded and stylistically dialed-in guys who started Lone Wolfs (sic), a surf shop and brand in Los Angeles, … More
CLICHE UPDATE: YET ANOTHER EXAMPLE OF SURFBOARD AS DECOR
A few months ago we posted on the phenomena of shops and restaurants upgrading their space with the simple act … More
RETAIL DESIGN: WHEN YOUR “SHOPPING EXPERIENCE” IS A WORKING GARAGE FOR MOTORBIKE REPAIR
The idea is genius, if maybe accidental and gimmicky to the extreme. HWY is a shop on Sunset Blvd. in … More
GINGERBREAD HOUSES: IS KITSCHY HOLIDAY CRAFT ON CUSP OF BECOMING LEGIT FORM OF SERIOUS ARTISTIC EXPRESSION?
We are fans of architecture. Even more so we are fans of “architectural design.” However, kitsch and the aesthetics of … More
DECK THE WALLS: SKATEBOARDS AS DECOR – THE HORROR!
There’s really no excuse for this. Unless it’s a college dormitory or your parents’ basement or the living room of … More
ART OF OUR TIME: “MERELY DECORATIVE”? JAPANESE ARTIST YAYOI KUSAMA’S BALLOONS
Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama’s current exhibition at the Broad Museum in Los Angeles is a sensation. It’s a huge bona fide … More
POLITICAL BORDERS: THE AESTHETICS OF GEOGRAPHIC DIVISION
The New York Times has just published a fascinating article titled “Eight Ways to Build a Border Wall” that looks … More
CONFUSION: “ART-NOT-ART” STREET ART
A funny thing about “art.” Sometimes the happiest of aesthetic accidents happen as a consequence of totally non-artistic impulses. Take … More
Informative: Tips on Retail Decor Part 1 – Surfboards
Want to add a bit of sexy, aspirational flair to your retail / dining / third-wave coffee establishment, something with … More
Daydreaming A Little Daydream at Dreamy Daydream
The space at Daydream Coffee and Surf in Costa Mesa, California is great, but it’s missing a few things that … More
New Issue of International Hipster Design-Porn Mag “Apartamento” Arrives!
We love Apartamento magazine. And so should you. The new issue of this mag devoted to “everyday interiors” and design/designers … More
Unbearable Cuteness x Freakishness: Artwork at a Venice Beach Surf Shop
Mollusk is the wonderful name of a wonderful surf shop in Venice Beach, Los Angeles. It’s one of three such … More
“Mirage” at Desert X
Like a shiny extra-terrestrial bobble tucked into the foothills above Palm Springs, “Mirage” by Los Angeles-based artist Doug Aitken is … More
The Awesomeness of the Pacific Design Center
The collection of buildings that make up the Pacific Design Center is a bold, massive landmark of West Hollywood, in … More
The branding of coffee roaster and cafe Common Room in Costa Mesa, California is a simple two-dimensional, flat icon of … More
Massive Street Art in L.A. Arts District
We love it when artists create street art that incoporates the architectural elements of the building, like the epic-scaled artwork … More
Pop-up for David Hockney
Maximalist German publisher Taschen, producer of epic coffee-table books devoted to all things art and design, has recently given its Los … More
“Rock the Dots” Minnie Mouse Mural at Alfred Coffee
Murals of iconic Disney cartoon character Minnie Mouse recently have been popping up at locations of the hip Alfred Coffee … More
Bicycle-Shaped Bicycle Rack
There must be a word in the English language for when a thing is designed to look like another object … More
A classic example of Los Angeles movie-theater architecture from the early days of cinema, the Vista on Sunset Boulevard in … More
Skull of Converse
This decorative installation artwork at the Converse concept store in Santa Monica, in Los Angeles, is a spooky and clever … More
Minimalist Architecture in the Evening
In terms of architectural minimalism in Los Angeles, the picture speaks for itself.
Warm Minimalist Shelf Architecture at A.P.C.
The Parisian clothing and retail brand A.P.C. recently opened a shop in Silver Lake in Los Angeles. Like may of … More
DIY Taco Stand Architecture
This taco stand popped up at the biannual Echo Park Craft Fair in Silver Lake this past weekend. It seems … More
Entrance to MOCA / Geffen Contemporary
We’re not religious. But museums are our cathedrals, our churches and temples, our shrines. MoMA may be the modern art … More
Monrow at Dusk
The clothing brand Monrow will soon be opening a retail concept store in this tiny, old California-style bungalow near Venice … More
Street Art as Office Decor
We recently went to a series of meetings at a creative agency in Southern California. The walls of the conference … More
What the Original Gold’s Gym in Venice Looks Like Now
The original location of the iconic and legendary bodybuilding mecca Gold’s Gym is a block away from the sands of … More
On the Scene at Menotti’s Coffee Shop in Venice
The cafe at Menotti’s Coffee is a third-wave espresso joint and a friendly little hub for the legion of caffeinated … More
Los Angeles Contemporary Architecture
On the Scene at Arcana Books
Among our favorite places in Los Angeles is the Arcana bookstore in Culver City. It’s specialized in “books on the … More
“Love Wall” by JGoldcrown at Alfred Coffee … Silver Lake, Los Angeles
UK artist J Goldcrown has made these “Lovewall” / “Bleeding Hearts” murals of simple, spray-painted hearts part of the urban … More
Mystery Boy Sticker … Venice, Los Angeles
We’ve seen these mysterious circular stickers of a boy’s face around Los Angeles in recent weeks. The face is drawn … More
Epic Mural by Sol LeWitt at SFMoMA … San Francisco
The artwork of the late American conceptual and minimalist artist Sol LeWitt dominates the new mezzanine-level ticket lobby of the … More
Halloween Expression on a Campground RV
Some campers at the Carpinteria Beach campground near Santa Barbara, California decked out their camper with some funny, inventive Halloween … More
Thatched Hut Video Art Installation by Simone Leigh … Hammer Museum, Los Angeles
The work of Brooklyn-based artist Simone Leigh explores many themes. Among these are the African diaspora and identity. A small exhibition … More
Cool Spaces – Enclosed Work Park at TBWA Offices … Los Angeles
The work space at the Los Angeles offices of mega-global advertising agency TBWA (a.k.a, TBWA Chiat Day) is epic and … More
“A Quick Perspective”
Kevin Wisbith runs a YouTube series called “A Quick Perspective” and has posted a series of images on Imgur that show … More
Plain Minimalist All-White Leather Sneakers … Venice, Los Angeles
We recently popped into the Rag & Bone store on Abbot Kinney Blvd. in Venice, in Los Angeles, to try … More
The Oculus Bridge at SFMoMA … San Francisco
One of the distinct features of the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art ( SFMoMA ) is its architectural design, … More
“Love” by DFace … West Adams, Los Angeles
Alongside Interstate 10, otherwise known at the Santa Monica Freeway, there’s a massive mural by street-art star DFace on the … More
“256 Colours” by Gerhard Richter at SFMoMA … San Francisco
We’re fans of German visual artist Gerhard Richter, perhaps best known for his “capitalist realism” and his photo-realistic and “blur” paintings. … More
Tourist Architecture + Scene … Waikiki, Honolulu
Graffiti Art Next to Vacant Lot … Shibuya, Tokyo
Street Art at Sneaker Emporium “California Street” … Daikanyama, Tokyo
Japanese Election Campaign Posters on a Wall … Naka-Meguro, Tokyo
The optics and media of Japanese political election campaigns are fascinating for their restraint and orderliness. Campaign posters for the various … More