Tag Archives: Film

PEACE ON EARTH

Bing Crosby and David Bowie – Peace on Earth/Little Drummer Boy – 1977

Come they told me
Pa-rum-pum-pum-pum
A new born king to see
Pa-rum-pum-pum-pum
Our finest gifts we bring
Pa-rum-pum-pum-pum
Rum-pum-pum-pum
Rum-pum-pum-pum

Peace on earth, can it be
Years from now, perhaps we’ll see
See the day of glory
See the day when men of good will
Live in peace, live in peace again
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Peace on earth, can it be

Every child must be made aware
Every child must be made to care
Care enough for his fellow man
To give all the love that he can

I pray my wish will come true
For my child and your child too
He’ll see the day of glory
See the day when men of good will
Live in peace, live in peace again

FILM SCREENING @ THE FACTORY

If you follow along on the Journal, you know that Alabama Chanin is a long-time supporter of the Southern Foodways Alliance. Over the years, we have joined together for countless partnerships, events, and projects: Natalie barbequed dresses for their 2012 Symposium; we created an apron in their honor; we even supplied costumes for their collard green-themed opera. Their values supporting the preservation of Southern food culture and history align with our mission of cultural sustainability in our community. And we always love a good story.

Since the opening of The Factory in 2013, we’ve hosted eight dinners in our community space. Many of these dinners have been, in part, fundraisers for the SFA (along with Alabama Gulf Seafood, The Fatback Collective’s Fatback Fund, and Jones Valley Teaching Farm), featuring guest chefs from all over the South who, themselves, are also avid supporters and members of the SFA—Vivian Howard, Ashley Christensen, and Chris Hastings, to name a few.

On February 25th, we host a new type of event at The Factory: our first-ever film screening, showcasing some of our favorite SFA documentaries.

ALABAMA CHANIN - FILM SCREENING AT THE FACTORY 2

Along with a rich musical history, growing local food movement, and burgeoning restaurant scene, Florence is home to the University of North Alabama. UNA has an award-winning Public History Program that collaborates with the Muscle Shoals National Heritage Area to help communities preserve and interpret their pasts. The heritage area was officially designated by Congress in 2009 and includes six counties of north Alabama’s Tennessee River water basin. We will host the evening in partnership with the University of North Alabama and its Public History Center. Caroline, a member of our media team (also a senior at UNA), is spearheading the project as part of her Public History program to exhibit the way that food has influenced southern culture and history.

As part of this partnership and with thanks to the Southern Foodways Alliance, Alabama Chanin will show a selection of short documentaries produced by filmmaker Joe York for the SFA. Joe is an acclaimed documentary filmmaker and a graduate of Auburn University with a B.A. in anthropology. He received an M.A. in Southern studies from the University of Mississippi and has produced over 30 short films for the SFA.

Join us, on Thursday, February 25, as we celebrate our region’s past, present, and future—and its great food—through film. Tickets are $5 and must be purchased in advance. Beverages and apéritifs will be available for purchase from The Factory Café. Doors open at 5pm. There will be a short introduction, followed by the films, lasting until 7:00pm.

P.S.: You can support the SFA at any time by becoming a member here.

STITCH: A 22-MINUTE DOCUMENTARY

The story of my coming home to Alabama in the year 2000 is one that has been told many times. My journey home started in the spring of 2000 on the corner of 38th Street and 8th Avenue in New York City. It was there that the call to adventure hit me squarely on the head. It was the moment I realized that the hand-embroidered shirts I’d been making were really little more than a quilting stitch. In that moment, I realized that this was something I learned in my childhood and, in the same moment, I understood that I wanted to go back to the community of my childhood in North Alabama. It was clear to me that I wanted to talk to my grandmother and the other ladies like her who had quilted their whole lives; I wanted to make a film about why people made quilts, and I wanted to make a small collection of hand-quilted t-shirts.

Stitch is that film. The digital version you can watch below includes a 4-minute trailer at the beginning and before the 22-minute documentary. The trailer was played at the Hotel Chelsea as that first collection of 200 one-of-a-kind t-shirts was presented during Fashion Week in February of 2001. The film, shot in January of 2001, is now 15 years old and is the result of 35 hours of digital interviews, 4 rolls of Super-8 film, 469 miles in an old blue Chevy pickup truck, 1 prop plane, and a crew of three that rambled around (and above) Lauderdale and Colbert counties in Northwest Alabama. Additionally, there were approximately 10 transatlantic flights from 1999 to 2001, untold hours in editing suites, and as many hours on-and-around a sound board. Not a single person involved in the making of this film got paid.

Watching the trailer and the film today, it’s clear that a key part of my journey home also has to do with this group of friends and neighbors who are now spread across the globe and the heavens. Many of the ladies and gentlemen interviewed by us have since passed away, including my own grandmother. I’m proud that a small part of these beautiful stories—and way of life—are captured in this little film. Every single one of our interviewees said, “Things were different back then; it’s not like it is today.” How true that statement becomes even 15 years later.

The camera operator and cinematographer—and my dear friend—Sissi Farassat has become a world-renowned artist.

Fish Film, who supported me endlessly—and were also dear friends of my heart—has since closed.

The period during the making of this film, and just before, were a time of great chaos in my life but also of great creativity, beauty, and joy. I’ll always look back to this as one of the best times of my life.

I’m a better designer today for having worked with all the crew at Fish Film and my dear friend Sissi.

I’m grateful to one and all,
xoNatalie

CREDITS:
Concept and Direction: Alabama Chanin
Assistant to Director: Jakob Glatz
Camera: Sissi Farassat and Jacob Glatz
Cut: Gerd Berner
Trailer Editor: Martin Matusiak
Soundtrack: Gammon
Original Song “Stitches”: Khan
Sound Mix: Markus Pochinger
Sound Studio: Soundtrack
Creative Direction: Project Alabama
Graphics: Andrea Jirez and Florian Schmeiser
Stock Material: Lloyd Llewellyn
Producer: Josef Bacher
Chief Trouble Maker: Paul Graves
Positive Criticism: Florian Kehrer
Production Assistant: Agatha Whitechapel and Karen Gruber
Executive Producer: Igor Orovac

INSPIRATION: DEREK JARMAN’S SKETCH BOOK

I’ve been carrying this book around with me for weeks—which is no small feat. In a bag that is already oversized and overloaded, a three-pound book is quite an addition.  But every time I take it out to leave on my home studio table, I reconsider, put it back in my bag and take it back to The Factory—and so begins the dance again of hauling it back home again. I’ve been thinking a lot about my own journals recently, which have become less beautiful over the years. What was once a place to draw and scribble, I now use to make lists of the things I need to do or document meetings. But there is the occasional drawing from Maggie or my granddaughter Stella, and findings from trips that include business cards and ephemera, alongside a few thank you notes. I want my journals to become a place of inspiration (again). I want to cut apart every book and every journal I’ve ever written or compiled and re-do them. I want to write and think and draw. I want to sit in Derek Jarman’s garden and doodle.

Derek Jarman was an English filmmaker, stage designer, artist, author, diarist, and talented gardener. He created eleven feature films, most notably Sebastiane, Jubilee, The Tempest, and Caravaggio. As a director, he cultivated close working relationships with artists like Tilda Swinton and Dame Judi Dench—and even convinced Sir Lawrence Olivier to come out of retirement for what would be his last performance. In addition to his presence on the film scene, he remained relevant in pop culture as part of the 1970s London social scene—directing music videos for Marianne Faithfull, The Smiths, and the Pet Shop Boys.

Jarman was prolific as a painter and a well-known and respected set designer for stage and film—notably for director Ken Russell. He was an outspoken and early advocate for gay rights and AIDS awareness until his death in 1994 from an AIDS-related illness. Jarman was perhaps one of the most well rounded artists of his era; he wrote memoirs, poetry, and social criticism. He also cultivated beautiful highly regarded, postmodern-style gardens, including his home at Prospect Cottage, Dungeness in Kent. On all fronts, he rejected straightforward, modernist visions or design theories. Of his gardens, he said, “Paradise haunts gardens, and some gardens are paradises. Mine is one of them. Others are like bad children, spoilt by their parents, over-watered and covered with noxious chemicals.”

Friend and muse Tilda Swinton wrote hauntingly of Jarman:

This is what I miss, now that there are no more Derek Jarman films: the mess, the cant, the poetry, Simon Fisher Turner’s music, the real faces, the intellectualism, the bad-temperedness, the good-temperedness, the cheek, the standards, the anarchy, the romanticism, the classicism, the activism, the glee, the bumptiousness, the resistance, the wit, the fight, the colours, the grace, the passion, the beauty.

Longlivemess.

Longlivepassion.

Longlivecompany.

ALABAMA CHANIN – INSPIRATION: DEREK JARMAN'S SKETCH BOOK

POWERS OF TEN

In our week-long profile of designers Charles and Ray Eames, we studied their design aesthetic and philosophy and talked about the various media they used to forward those philosophies. They made hundreds of explorations into film, for varied purposes. Produced in 1977, Powers of Ten is perhaps their best-known film—and includes a book version. In it, the Eamses utilized the system of exponential powers to demonstrate the importance of scale.

The premise of the film is simple, though its scope is wide: a narrator—physicist Philip Morrison—guides the viewer on a journey that begins with an overhead shot of a couple in a park. The camera then pans back to see what a ten-meter distance looks like, then 100 meters, then 1,000 meters. Every 10 seconds, the viewer’s distance from the initial scene of the couple is magnified tenfold. We expand to the point of 100 million light years from Earth, a field of view of 1024 meters—the size of the observable universe.

ALABAMA CHANIN – POWERS OF TEN

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DESIGN: GAEL TOWEY

I have known many storytellers in my life. Some have a natural and unrehearsed style that feels captivating and immediate; some present new or unfamiliar points of view; others are quite deliberate and thoughtful in approach; all of them are enthralling to me. As a storyteller born into a family of storytellers, I find master storyteller Gael Towey both compelling and inspiring. She has a distinct perspective and is skilled at many things: crafting a storyline, discovering and highlighting the unique qualities of her subjects, eliciting a response from the audience, and designing beautiful visual elements. Her work has informed contemporary visual language in a way we can barely imagine.

I was lucky to be among Gael’s subjects as part of her series of short films about artists called “Portraits in Creativity” www.portraitsincreativity.com (and I especially love her piece on friend and heroine Maira Kalman). Each of her portraits uncover the unique qualities of her subjects and reveal Towey’s fascination with the creative process. For over two years, we have been speaking with Gael about her past, her present, and the creative processes, media, and methods she uses to propel her ideas forward.

Gael was raised in New Jersey and was the oldest of six children. She revealed that, as a child, she was mildly dyslexic and almost flunked the second and third grade because she couldn’t spell; she reversed all her consonants and vowel combinations.  She was drawn to art and studied it enthusiastically through college. “I loved printmaking and accidentally signed up for a class in typography, and I fell in love with it from the first lecture,” Towey says. “I’d never looked at the design of a letter and had not noticed how beautiful they are.” She switched her major to graphic design and graduated from Boston University, College of Fine Arts. Gael said, “I was extraordinarily lucky. I have met so many young people who don’t know what they want to do, but I always knew.  I struggled academically and art was the only thing I was good at… And it’s funny that I wound up working in the publishing business since I had no confidence in my ability to write properly.”

DESIGN: GAEL TOWEYGael worked on the book, In the Russian Stylewith Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis.

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PORTRAITS IN CREATIVITY: MAIRA KALMAN

We at Alabama Chanin have long been obsessed with and inspired by Maira Kalman. She has a rich and singular voice – as a visual artist, author, illustrator, and storyteller – that imbues people, objects, and words with knowing wit and humanity.

Maira has written and illustrated 18 children’s books, all of which have been popular nighttime reading with my daughter Maggie. Maira’s illustrated version of Strunk and White’s The Elements of Style resides, beautiful and dog-eared, on my desk each day—as it has become part of our company style guide. And for years, I have traded and passed on copies of and links to her columns from the New York Times, The Principles of Uncertainty and The Pursuit of Happiness (both of which are now published exquisitely in book form).

KALMAN-BOOK-1

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MAKESHIFT 2014

MAKESHIFT began three years ago as a conversation about the intersection of the disciplines of design, craft, art, fashion, and DIY—and, on a bigger level, using this intersection as an agent of change in the world. Since then, we’ve explored making as individuals, and how making as a group can open conversations and build communities.

For MAKESHIFT 2014, we have once again partnered with Standard Talks in New York to host the conversation, and will cover a range of topics, including raw materials, craft, fashion, global communities, food, and the act of making. 2014 James Beard award-winning chef Ashley Christensen will also participate in the discussion, helping answer the question: What can design learn from food?

MAKESHIFT-04W

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SIGN PAINTERS (THE MOVIE)

Yesterday, I wrote about my appreciation of hand-painted signs, inspired by the book Sign Painters, authored by friend Faythe Levine with Sam Macon. Faythe and Sam have directed a documentary – also called Sign Painters, as a companion to the book.

In 2008, Faythe co-authored and directed a book and film, both named Handmade Nation: The Rise of Craft and DIY. We welcomed her to Alabama last April for our Visiting Artist Series, where she highlighted “craftivism” and brought her light-hearted stories to the Factory. This summer she has taken Sign Painters on the road for a series of screenings.

Faythe has an itinerant spirit. She states in the book’s preface, “Many of my earliest memories involve travel, much of which was by car. I’d stare out the window of the family station wagon and watch America transition from one place to the next.”

SIGN PAINTERS_COLOSSALMEDIA Continue reading

FROM SARA: BILL CUNNINGHAM (POST FASHION WEEK)

I don’t want to overstate the obvious, but most of you would know that I am neither a New Yorker nor a fashion expert. While I enjoy style and design and I’m somewhat awed by the city, it’s clear to any observer that I’m native to neither. But, there’s something about Bill Cunningham that makes me feel comfortable with both. He lives and roams in the intimidating worlds of fashion and Manhattan, but manages to do so in an unpretentious way.

This weekend I re-watched the feature-length documentary Bill Cunningham New York, which profiles this prolific photographer and wise fashion observer and, once again, this eighty-something gentleman captured all my heart. Sometimes, as a fashion outsider, I imagine that NY style begins and ends on the runway. Bill Cunningham is a firm believer that this notion is not true. “The best fashion show is definitely on the street – always has been, always will be,” he assures us. His “On the Street,” column in the New York Times is a collage of on-trend people, items, movements, and real-time style progressions. In the film, Harold Koda, Curator of the Costume Institute/Metropolitan Museum of Art, explains that Bill attempts to “tease out trends in terms of the reality of how people dress.” Cunningham himself demurs, “I don’t decide anything. I let the street speak to ME.”

BILL CUNNINGHAM FOR THE NY TIMES

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LES BLANK (A LOVE LETTER)

I’ve written a couple of times about what happens when your heroes and heroines become friends. For me, it brings about a feeling of connection to the ever-expanding universe; all things are possible.  A girl from the countryside in Alabama can dine with royalty (in all its meanings).  The picture above is proof. When I look at this picture, I laughingly think of The Death of Roy Batty in Blade Runner: “I’ve seen things you people wouldn’t believe. Attack ships on fire off the shoulder of Orion. I watched C-beams glitter in the dark near the Tannhauser gate. All those moments will be lost in time, like tears in rain….” However, those moments will not be lost. Knowing and dining with Les Blank gives me a connection to the stories and tiny details of human nature that make me a bigger, and better, person. His contribution to the genre of documentary film is exceptional; his contribution to my life is priceless.  His clear vision of humanity (like that of The Kitchen Sisters)  helped mold the designer, story lover, and human being I am today. I am so sad to write that my friend, and hero, is very ill with a protracted cancer.  The City of Berkeley, California declared January 22nd the official Les Blank Day and wrote this: “With a soft spoken demeanor, an eye for beauty, an insightful mind and great enthusiasm, Les Blank has captured the essence of aspects of American culture,” and “through his respectful, quiet presence, and non-didactic style created films that allow his subjects to reveal their true selves in a unique way.” Well deserved.  The world is a better place because of Les Blank, visionary wayfarer. P.S.: Photo above with Les and Alice Waters from April 2008 at The Edible Schoolyard (where Les first filmed and then cleaned everyone’s plate).

MUSCLE SHOALS (SOUND)


Following on the heels of Sam and Becky Phillips, more on the musical heritage of Muscle Shoals… little town, big sound.  Indeed.

The hometown will be rooting for a Sundance win.

Read the story here.

MAKE THINGS (AND FLY)


Next week we return to our regularly scheduled programming:

Monday – Beautiful Life: Things, stories, and people that inspire us.
Tuesday – Sustainable Life + Design: Good, good, and more good.
Wednesday – In the Kitchen: Food, of course, recipes and cookbooks, and occasional garden updates. And a cocktail (or three).
Thursday – DIY + Sewing: Do-It-Yourself, Design, Craft, or what ever you would like to call it.
Friday – The Heart, Travel + Other News, or, anything we find fascinating: Stories about our studio, interviews with our team, where we have been, where we are going, what people are talking about, and, sometimes, cotton.

(Disclaimer: Natalie reserves the right to mix it all up from time-to-time.)

We also have some new categories on our mailing list. Take a minute to join or to simply update your preferences, email address, or information. Tell us how much you want. We really want to know. Look for a monthly newsletter, coming soon, and a weekly update, coming later.

In the meantime, make things (and fly),
xo and Happy New Year from all of us @ Alabama Chanin

P.S.: Film about Chabott Engineering by Henrik Hansen

LEARNING FROM THE VERNACULAR

“It is essential to remember that as many arts of living exist as cultural nuances and beliefs.”

I posted about Deidi von Schaewen’s work back in 2010 when her “Learning from Vernacular” first appeared as an exhibition to be seen only by train.

Now, she takes the work one step further in an exhibition that “proposes a world tour of traditional architectures, known as ‘vernacular’, presented in models, films and photographs.”


Deidi von Schaewen by Deidi_vonSchaewen Continue reading

ALABAMA CHANIN: A COTTAGE INDUSTRY SUCCESS STORY

Thank you to our employees and artisans for their commitment to the extraordinary and thank you to everyone at Etsy for telling our story with this beautiful film. It makes us proud to share the stories that unfold each day in our growing community.

Please visit the Etsy blog to read a little more and leave a comment to enter to win a copy of Alabama Studio Sewing + Design plus a DIY kit that includes everything you’ll need to sew your own Alabama Chanin garment.

xoNatalie

 

I WANT TO BE FRIENDS WITH FAYTHE LEVINE.

I’m almost certain she’s the coolest person I’ve never met.

Several pieces of evidence have led me to this conclusion; the first is this article from the NY Times and the second was probably the conference call that spurred our upcoming Visiting Artist event. Natalie and I were hunched over the speaker phone in my office exchanging ideas about “loom rooms,” home-made bitters, and interactive art exhibits with a very agreeable Levine.

She ended the call saying she had to open her art gallery/skate shop a few blocks away.

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BARBEQUE COLLECTION

About this time last year, I agreed to create a barbeque inspired collection for our next Fall/Winter line – yes, that’s right, barbeque. Although it seems impossible, time moves SO QUICKLY and it is time to get started. John T. Edge is headed to our studio today to discuss the upcoming work, as the barbeque collection will be shown at the Southern Foodways Alliance Symposium in Oxford, Mississippi, next year.

In preparation for that collection, I have been working on a series of barbeque inspired Textile Stories Quilts for the Taste of the South auction next month.  When thinking about barbeque (and we have our share here in Florence), what better place to start than with Joe York’s film Cut Chop Cook.

I love this quote from barbeque master Roosevelt Scott (it starts at the 4:48 minute mark):

“After building the fire, while the fire is getting ready put the pig on the pit.  And after you put the pig on, when the coals get ready then you start putting the coal under the hog.

We take the shovel.  Scoop it in there.  Scoop up what we need.  Take it on the inside and we have an open door at each pit where we go under with the shovel and spread the heat at both the ham and the shoulders.  No where else.  And all the heat meets in the middle.

You hear folks all over say they use the wood.  But then they say they use wood chips, or they may use a few pieces of wood.  They might smoke for a little bit. This right here?  All wood.  Nothing else.  One hundred percent wood. Nothing but wood.

Cut. Chop. Cook.  It’s all right here.  In the wood.”

You can almost smell the barbeque.  Food for the soul:

CUT/CHOP/COOK from UM Media Documentary Projects on Vimeo.

 

CLOTHING + SOUND + COLOR

I love, love, LOVE this clip from the New Dragon Inn that  Charty Durrant sent over this morning.

The clip above is from the remake – by Raymond Lee – of a 1960’s classic Kung Fu film.

Her email: “Check out this sequence – the clothing, the sound, the colours… Ahhhhhhhhhhhh.”

Thanks for making my morning Charty!
xoNatalie

LONGBOARD GIRLS CREW

Thanks to BUST Magazine for this beautiful story:

Longboard Girls Crew

I may be 50 but I want a longboard:

A (PRE) LABOR DAY CELEBRATION

Please watch this beautiful film about the labor of making linen.

Thank you to our farmers in Texas, our spinners, and Green Textiles in Spartanburg, South Carolina, for laboring to spread cotton love.

Join the Texas Organic Cotton Marketing Cooperative for their annual Fall Field Day on Thursday, October 20, 2011, in the heart of the South Plains of Texas.

And thank you to Eric and Beth at Etsy for sharing the  Be Linen Movie by Benoit Millot with us!

I want to make a film about the production of our organic cotton.

NEW YORK – NEW ALABAMA

Just back from New York with the new collection and new photos for the new book. (More photos coming soon.)

See you at the DooNanny this weekend…

And don’t forget to vote for Alabama Chanin Studio Store on the TreeHugger Best of Green Reader’s Choice.

Thanks to Eric and all the folks @Etsy for the lovely new film on Butch.  I love John Henry’s song:

UPCOMING DATES

Weekend Workshop – March 4 -6, 2011 @ The Factory in Florence is almost sold out – contact our office to reserve a spot:  256-760-1090.

Natalie will be speaking in The Ballroom @ Athens State University, Athens, Alabama on the 8th of March.  Free and open to the public.

The DooNanny @ The Woods of Wonder in Seale, Alabama – starting March 25th & going through the 27th at 5pm – book your campsite here.

If you are on the West Coast, plan to visit us @ RedBird in Berkeley on the 28th & 29th of April or sign up for our One Day Workshop @ the Edible Schoolyard on the 30th of April.

2011 DooNanny poster designed by Jaime Cervantes and Jack Sanders

I AM LOVE

Last night, I finally saw Luca Guadagnino’s I Am Love.  The cinematography of Yorick Le Sau  is extraordinary. And Tilda Swinton is stunning… Manohla Dargis wrote an interesting review for the New York Times.  I love this last paragraph: “The chase ends in a sylvan perch, where Antonio and Emma make love amid a cacophony of bird calls and a flurry of close-ups of luscious flowers being ravaged by insects. It’s a sublimely beautiful interlude and a touch ridiculous, bringing to mind the blooms of a portentous rose bush in D. H. Lawrence’s Sons and Lovers that “expanded in an ecstasy,” a prelude to later forest rutting. Here, the flora and fauna constitute an alternative reality far from the villa that has become Emma’s sarcophagus and which will at last inspire at least one bird to take flight. As the working-class seducer, Antonio serves a Lawrentian stud function, though truth be told, he’s the kind of sensitive beefcake (he cooks and fulfills her sexually) familiar to readers of women’s romantic fiction, who, like Emma, enjoy their afternoons wet and wasted.” But then, I have never been afraid of Lawrence. Continue reading

HOME + FAMILY


Thank you to Jamie, David and Luke for coming to Alabama to shoot this short film featuring a story from Alabama Chanin.

And to everyone at Starbucks who felt that our story deserved to be shared…

Happy holidays from our family to yours,
Natalie and all of us @ Alabama Chanin

WYATT TROLL

Have I mentioned how much we love Wyatt Troll?

What’s not to love?  Spike Jonze, Patti Smith & more…

And don’t forget to LOVE Wyatt’s film on Alabama Chanin for NOWNESS:
A Southern Sense of Place

CITIZEN ARCHITECT

Tune into PBS on MONDAY, AUGUST 23rd, 9PM CST

(AFTER HISTORY DETECTIVES)

for the National Broadcast of

CITIZEN ARCHITECT: SAMUEL MOCKBEE AND THE RURAL STUDIO

If you can not tune in, check out the website / or facebook page for theatrical screening updates / or buy the DVD online:

http://www.citizenarchitectfilm.com/

http://www.facebook.com/pages/CITIZEN-ARCHITECT-FILM/285692586601?ref=ts

Bravo to our friends Sam and Jay… and, of course, to Samuel Mockbee – who inspired a generation.

Watch and then plan your road trip to Hale County, Alabama…

NOWNESS

NOWNESS – Every day of the month there is something to love. NOWNESS

Look for Alabama Chanin on NOWNESS in the coming months thanks to Wyatt Troll and all our friends at Commune.

BLUE MONDAY

Back in the studio after what seems months & happy to get back to the business of making beautiful things…

Here is my favorite shot from Spring/Summer 2010. I feel like I can breathe this blue.   We will be working on the web catalog and hope to have something to share by next week.

Read: Blue: The History of a Color

Watch one of my favorite films: Blue from Three Colors Trilogy by Krzysztof Kieslowski

 

HELVETICA

It has taken me two years to finally see this film that friend, painter and film buff Judith Eisler recommended so long ago. A fantastic and beautifully made look at the global visual culture that touches our lives every day.

One of the best movies I have seen for a very long time.

Helvetica: A Documentary Film by Gary Hustwit

IT TAKES BALLS

Okay, what about a woman who can sing and cook, has her own radio program called “Apron Strings” and has a song about how it “Takes Balls” to be a woman?

Check out Elizabeth Cook.

Elizabeth has fans from all corners of the earth that make their own music videos to her songs. Check out this awesome It Takes Balls video that Elizabeth found on You Tube.

 

APALACHICOLA, FLORIDA

From St. EOM’s birthday party, we are on to Apalachicola for swimming, oysters, and Tupelo Honey with friend and storyteller Frank Venable.

Maggie keeps saying over and over again, “Mommy,  going beach, Mommy,  going beach.”

Don’t miss Working the Miles by Joe York, a tribute to the men and women of 13 Mile Oyster Company, honoring Tommy Ward who, like his father before him, has served as a guardian of the Apalachicola Bay.

ROSES LOVE GARLIC

It has been a really busy week. I had intended to post every day about the wonder and beauty of our simple garden. Now it is Thursday and here you have the second post of the week. Perhaps there will be time to elaborate as the weekend approaches.

This is the first year that I really concentrated on companion planting. What seems a complicated subject matter to me is demystified by Louise Riotte in her two books:

Roses Love Garlic & Carrots Love Tomatoes

I love how my blooming garlic mingles with an old rose bush that was a part of my house the day I moved in. Maggie and I have enjoyed watching the garlic blooms pop their little ‘hats’ as the blossoms open from their little paper shell.

I have to admit that I have not been able to wait until the fall harvest and have been sampling our garlic since the stems emerged last autumn.

I recently came across an article with recipes for young garlic in a magazine which I simply cannot recall this morning. However, a simple Google search provides scores of young garlic recipes from Shrimp Stir Fry to soup.

And be sure to watch Garlic is as Good as Ten Mothers by Les Blank.

Enjoy!

THE STORY OF STUFF

A beautifully illustrated, and clever, look at our current production system: