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EXTRAORDINARY ORDINARY

design museum

London’s Design Museum recently opened their exciting new exhibit, Extraordinary Stories about Ordinary Things. It tells the story of daily items and their subtle impact on the modern world. Each of these items are unsung heroes. They’re the ones that we can’t live without, but may have overlooked because they do their job so efficiently. Organized by London designer Gitta Gschwendtner, ESOT provides a quick snapshot of the importance of product design and its history. In a conversation with Dezeen, the Director of the Design Museum states, “Design matters at every level. It is what makes daily life a little better; it is about the big economic changes that the world is going through. It is about the designers and the manufacturers, but it is also about the users. It is a unique way of making sense of the world around us.” We’ve posted a few images and details below. Click Read More to view.

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Featured in: TOURISM / Categories: art & design, culture, museums

MONTREAL SWINGS

musical light swings montreal

Although winter is steadily approaching, there’s nothing wrong with looking back at the warmer months. We recently came across an incredible project that took place during Montreal’s spring. Every year the city opens up a high traffic area for art. This year, Daily Tous Les Jours took advantage of the opportunity and built a beautiful set of swings for the public. But these swings have an added bonus. They make music. As they describe it, “21 Swings is a giant collective instrument, a game where together we achieve better things than separately. When in motion, each of the 21 swings in the series triggers different notes and, when used all together, the swings compose a musical piece in which certain melodies emerge only through cooperation.” We loved this installation and posted a few images with a video below.

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Featured in: TOURISM / Categories: art & design, landmarks, people

FLIGHT ATTENDANTS

flight attendants by brian finke

The underground world of flight attendants is rarely documented. The unspoken laws, the routines, the subculture commonalities – they’re all there, but the only way to really understand a flight attendant is to be one. Unless, you come upon the fine work of Brian Finke. A talented photographer and storyteller, Brian spent two years traveling on Delta, Hawaiin, JetBlue, Hooters Air, Air France and others to document the life of flight attendants. As one gallery described his work, “Finke’s ”http://brianfinke.com/flight.html" target="_blank">Flight Attendant series is a vibrant collection of photographs documenting the lives of those adventurous souls who choose to work at 40,000 feet. Shot before, during, and after flights, the photographs capture the allure of the high-flying profession alongside the more quiet moments of the attendant’s daily lives." We really enjoyed this series. We’ve posted a few photos below. Click Read More to view.

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Featured in: TOURISM / Categories: art & design, photography

PARIS TO SHANGHAI

the selby paris shanghai

Recently The Selby and Louis Vuitton collaborated on a photo series sending the acclaimed photographer on an incredible train ride from Paris to Shanghai. In the series The Selby captures subtle moments that beautifully illustrate the journey. Each image feels natural, honest and possesses all of his signature style. Also, among the images you’ll find his notes on the journey including small observations and a few tips. For example he mentions, “For shooting on trains bring window cleaning spray. Shoot wide for context. Use a polarizing filter to bring in sky details. And since windows only open on the left, the best shots of the train are when you are turning left.” We really enjoyed the series, you can view it in its entirety here. We posted a few sample images below. Click Read More to view.

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Featured in: TOURISM / Categories: transport, photography, people

OSMOSE PARIS

osmose street furniture

This is the future. Forget flying cars. We’ll keep our request simple. We want smart transit stops – digital data displays, charging stations, comfortable waiting areas, and more. Marc Aurel and the brilliant minds at Metalco delivered on our hopes by creating Osmose Paris. It’s an interactive transit stop located at the Gare de Lyon Station. Boasting tons of smart features, Omose is approximately 280 square feet. It’s divided into three sections. One is dedicated to realtime maps, tickets and transit times. Another offers comfortable seating illuminated by soft lighting and topographical styled art. Then a third area serves as an open air reading room featuring a lending library and charging stations for your portable devices. We hope more cities adopt projects like this. It’s a great step toward encouraging people to use their city’s public transit system. We’ve posted a few images below. Click Read More to view.

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Featured in: TOURISM / Categories: architecture, innovations

KAZAKHSTAN SUBWAY

almaty subway kazakhstan

Traveling and living in DC convinced me that every great city should have a great subway. It’s practically a requirement. And judging from Kazakhstan’s resurrected commitment to underground transit, it appears they feel the same way too.

After 23 years of development, a stalled construction period and $1 Billion dollars, Kazakhstan’s beautiful subway finally opened its doors and began service. Located in Almaty, the country’s largest city, it stretches 5 miles and expects 26 – 30 thousand passengers a day. That’s quite a rebound considering its development took a massive blow in the early 90s when their economy collapsed after the break up of the USSR. Construction continued years later so that the subway’s completion would coincide with the 20 year anniversary of Kazakhstan’s independence. The end result is beautiful. The detail and craftsmanship is awe-inspiring. We have a few images listed below. Click Read More to view.

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Featured in: TOURISM / Categories: architecture, transport

CHINA'S HARMONY

china bullet train

Nationwide high-speed rail would change everything in America. It’d create jobs, link cities, bridge cultures and revolutionize our freight industry. But that’s idealistic pie in the sky right? Well, check out the work being done in China. Last week, China’s Harmony Bullet-Train broke 302 MPH which is comparable to low flying speeds of a Bombardier Learjet! It cuts typical travel time in half. For example, Harmony’s record run was projected to take 5 hours to go from Beijing to Shanghai. This trek usually takes 10 hours. That’s exiciting news for the travel industry. Plus China has plans to expand its high-speed rail network to approximately 10,000 miles by 2012. Imagine if we had that network here in the states. Click Read More to view a video of the news report.

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Featured in: TOURISM / Categories: transport

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