Alexis

Warm North

by Alexis on June 26, 2014

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Warm North is a furniture studio with a specific mission: “In the world where everything is often over decorated we aim to bring you super simple furniture inspired by the everyday life of Nordic people.” But in this case, super simple is anything but boring. The designs Warm North produces are pared down, but incredibly clever.

The Colors-Series Side Table, which is available in five shades, elegantly brings several functions together in a compact form. I especially love the shiny lacquer next to the thick, rough leather and raw wood. And the Market Crate couldn’t be more straightforward, but the smartly designed handles nest and stack to create a makeshift set of shelves worthy of displaying. For apartment dwellers in small spaces, the Architect’s Stand—a pair of folding legs—makes for a perfect spot for work or group dinners.

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Michelle Morin

by Alexis on June 18, 2014

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The fact that painter Michelle Morin‘s home is on a seacoast comes as no surprise after considering the subject matter of her work. Michelle studied painting and art history at the Massachusetts College of Art, and then went on to pursue horticulture, designing and cultivating gardens. Her two passions merge in her rich depictions of nature. Primarily watercolor and gouache, Michelle’s pieces feel like intricate mosaics of two-dimensional textures that come together to form beautiful landscapes. We’ve been pouring through her portfolio, and also eyeing a few works in her Etsy shop, United Thread.

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{ Images via Michelle Morin }

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Valeria Nascimento

by Alexis on June 11, 2014

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When I first saw the work of Valeria Nascimento, it didn’t cross my mind that the ethereal installations could be made from anything other than paper. But her beautiful, wafer-thin creations are actually ceramic. Valeria has a degree in architecture—which comes through in the ordered structure of many of her pieces—but immediately resonated with clay as soon as she was introduced to the medium after graduation. Her design school education along with the time she spent growing up on a farm in Brazil have fused into a beautiful style Valeria describes as “about repetitive sequencing with separate elements to form a cohesive sculptural group.”

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Jordan Buschur

by Alexis on May 29, 2014

anthology-mag-blog-artists-buschur-01 Buy Some Damn Art, the online shop and gallery curated by Kate Singleton, is one of my favorite places to stop in to discover new artists. On a recent visit, I came across the work of Jordan Buschur and was immediately charmed by her paintings of books. I started looking a bit more into the story behind these compositions and loved them even more.

Before this series, Jordan was focusing on figurative painting. In a serendipitous moment, Jordan set a few of her paintings in libraries, and it became clear to her that she wanted to pursue painting books. And after a a stack of books perched in her studio became a painting, things coalesced, and the series developed from there. Jordan composes the stacks which serve as the basis for the paintings. As Jordan describes them, each acts as “a stand in for one person’s accumulated knowledge and memories.” And each series of books often has a deeper meaning—or even small poem—hidden among the words on the covers and spines.

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{ Images via Jordan Buschur }

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As spring warms and exciting foods ripen, I can’t help but think of berries and tarts. I found a source of non-chemically grown strawberries at my farmers’ market and very happily bought a number of pints. And as great pairings go, I thought to bake little rhubarb and strawberry crostadas, or free-form tarts. Not only are they cute, but they make for a delightful, sweet-tart nibble in the middle of the day. Great warm, chilled, or room temp, the crust enfolds the cooked fruit in just the right pleasing way. — Melina

Rhubarb and Strawberry Crostadas
Yeild 8

Filling

  • 3/4 lb rhubarb, rinsed, trimmed, and cut into 1/4″ pieces
  • 2 pints strawberries, rinsed and hulled, and cut into 1/4-inch pieces
  • 1/2 cup cane sugar
  • zest from one orange
  • 1/4 cup Grand Marnier

Pate Brisse Dough

  • 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp cane sugar
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 2 sticks cubed cold butter*
  • 1/4 cup ice water
  • turbinado or demerara sugar, for sprinkling

*Cube cold butter and then place into freezer for 20 minutes.

Note: You can make the pate brisee pastry dough ahead and keep it wrapped and refrigerated for a few days, or it can be frozen up to 3 weeks. To thaw, place in the fridge overnight. The fruit mixture can also be made in advance, and in fact benefits from a couple days melding together in the refrigerator.

  1. For the filling: Combine the rhubarb, strawberries, sugar, zest, and Grand Marnier in a large bowl and carefully mix everything together. Cover and chill to allow the elements to meld; at least a few hours, up to a couple of days.
  2. For the dough: Place the flour, sugar, and salt in the bowl of a food processor and pulse to combine. Add the cold butter and pulse 5-7 times, until the butter and flour form pea-sized crumbs.
  3. In a slow stream, add the ice water while pulsing, stopping once the dough holds together. Press some of the dough together between your fingers. If it clumps and holds together, you’re where you want to be. If the dough is still crumbly, add a bit more ice water while pulsing a few more times. You may end up using slightly more or less than the 1/4 cup.
  4. Separate the dough into two balls, then flatten each slightly to form a disk. Loosely wrap each disk in cellophane. Chill in the refrigerator for at least an hour before rolling out.
  5. To assemble: On a lightly floured surface, cut each disk into four, chilling the remainder while you roll each out. Roll from the center to the edge, turning an eighth of a turn with each pass of the rolling pin, until the dough is 1/8″ thick. Set aside and roll out remaining dough in the same way.
  6. Line two baking sheets lined with parchment paper and lay rolled dough at least 3″ from each another. Spoon heaping 1/2 cup mounds of the fruit mixture into the centers of each triangle, leaving a one inch border. Fold edges around the fruit, brush water in between creases, and press together gently to keep them in place. If dough becomes soft at any point, it needs to be re-chilled. Once you have filled and crimped all the tarts, place in the refrigerator for at least one hour before baking. (Should you have any leftover fruit, you can cook it over low heat to make compote for yogurt, ice cream, muffins, or toast. Bonus!)
  7. Preheat oven to 400°F. Brush the edges of dough with water and sprinkle demerara or turbinado sugar around the edges. Bake until the crusts are golden brown, about 30 minutes, then lower the temperature to 375°F. Bake for a further 10-15 minutes, until the juices bubble. Cool on wire racks until they can be easily handled. Serve warm or at room temperature.

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