Friday, December 12, 2008


This beautifully designed graphic video by Seth Brau is well worth watching. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights is 60 years old...but who among us has actually read it? Length 4:31

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights
from Seth Brau on Vimeo.

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Thursday, December 11, 2008

A watercolour of an unknown rabbit painted by Beatrix Potter has been sold at auction in London for £15,600.

Who is the mystery bunny who loves tea? And why didn't she get her own story? The watercolour of a girl rabbit with a pink ribbon tied daintily around her neck has left experts puzzled. The subject of this highly-finished painting never appeared in any of Beatrix Potter's rabbit tales. It has been in a private UK collection for the past fifty years.

Cropped version of the unknown watercolour.

Uncropped version of the unknown watercolour.

Knightsbridge London
Lot No: 275

Beatrix Potter (British, 1866-1943)
The little bunny drinking tea
signed 'H.B.P.' (lower right)
12.5 x 10cm (4 15/16 x 3 15/16in)
Sold for £15,600 inclusive of Buyer's Premium
Provenance: A private UK collection for over fifty years.

The present lot was not published in any of Potter's childrens books. It exists in another version with contains exactly the same components except that the animal is a kitten, rather than a bunny. This reflects Potter’s practice of making a number of versions of her pictures and experimenting with poses and props. The version which depicts the kitten is much sketchier than the present lot which suggests that Potter found the composition with the bunny far more satisfactory. The version depicting the kitten was painted circa 1895 and was originally offered to Ernest Nisbet (see Anne Stevenson Hobbs, Beatrix Potter The artist and her world (Warne 1987), p. 58). Another press release regarding this sale.

Take care of your antiques and they will take care of you.

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Wednesday, December 10, 2008

The Economic Crisis | CAPITALIST FOOLS . . .

Hilarious photo illustration by Darrow

Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson and former Federal Reserve Board chairman Alan Greenspan bookend two decades of economic missteps.

The Economic Crisis ~ Capitalist Fools
Behind the debate over remaking U.S. financial policy will be a debate over who’s to blame. It’s crucial to get the history right, writes Joseph E. Stiglitz, a Nobel-laureate economist, identifying five key mistakes—under Reagan, Clinton, and Bush II—and one national delusion...
read more ~ Vanity Fair ~ January 2009

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Tuesday, December 9, 2008

The Face of The Great Depression | Update (video) . . .

As the U.S. slips into recession, a daughter reflects on Dorothea Lange's photo, which has come to symbolize the Depression.

'Migrant Mother' remembered (3:41)

A friend sent me the original CNN video but I could not embed it for some reason. Luckily I found it on YouTube. I found it very interesting to learn the real story of the most famous photograph from the Great Depression from one of the children in the picture. She is the little girl on the left with her head on her mother's shoulder.

Watch and listen.
There is a very timely message at the end.

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Monday, December 8, 2008

Boy Designs 'Home Domb Shelter' from Trash . . .

You will love this heartwarming story! Max is my hero.

Twelve-year-old Max Wallack was recently named the winner of Design Squad's Trash to Treasure competition — a contest that inspired kids to repurpose trash into practical inventions.

So just what was the brilliant idea Max came up with? Wallack invented a “Home Dome,” a structure made of plastic bags filled with Styrofoam packing peanuts, designed to serve as a temporary shelter for homeless people and disaster victims. It also would help relieve landfill growth. Max was awarded a $10,000 prize provided by the Intel Foundation, but said: “I don’t really care about the money. I care about helping people.”

This isn’t the first big win for Wallack either! “When I was six,” Max said, “I won an invention contest that included a trip to Chicago. While there, I saw homeless people living on streets, and beneath highways and underpasses. I felt very sorry for these people, and ever since then, felt that my goal and obligation was to find a way to help them. My invention improves the living conditions for homeless people, refugees, or disaster victims by giving them easy-to-assemble shelter.”

Source: ecorazzi via treehugger

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This puppy will steal your heart . . .

Please don't tell Webster, but I love this little guy!

via Holga

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Sunday, December 7, 2008

Sunday Inspiration | Gifts that keep on giving . . .

One of the premises of Lewis Hyde’s book ‘The Gift: Imagination and the Erotic Life of Property’ is that gift exchange is the economy of the creative spirit. He discusses the art of gifting.

Reprinted from the Wall Street Journal
When we were students, young and poor, a friend of mine would give his family books for Christmas. Library books. He would seek out works well matched to his relatives’ interests, check them out, wrap them up and deposit them beneath the tree, leaving his loved ones the single task of returning them to the library once they had been read.

An Indian giver, some would say, and more correctly so than they might think. Years ago when I first set out to write a book about gift-giving and art, I thought it would be useful to figure out how that phrase came into being. The first recorded use turns out to appear in Thomas Hutchinson’s 1765 history of the Massachusetts Bay Colony, the implication being that something odd had happened when the Puritans first met up with Native generosity. “An Indian gift,” one footnote reads, “is a proverbial expression signifying a present for which an equivalent return is expected.” Over two centuries later we still use the phrase, its sense now broadened to refer to anyone who gives a gift with the clear expectation that the recipient should not keep it.

The experiences that Hutchinson’s forebears were trying to name turn out to demonstrate a simple ethic well known in all traditional gift-exchange societies: The recipient of a gift is more its custodian or steward than its owner. “The gift must always move” is the old wisdom, meaning that what we have received from others must eventually be passed along again, either the actual gift itself or something of similar value and meaning.
~

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