Wednesday, 17 January 2018

Textiles and Persians

Schuyler Samperton Textiles · Lisa Hjalt

If you thought this blog entry was about Persian textiles you have been lured to the blog on false pretences; I'm referring to my Persian cat, who did some serious photobombing the other day when I was photographing patterned fabrics by Schuyler Samperton Textiles. It was a relaxing day, with the sun in hiding but every now and then brightening up our reading nook quite generously, and I had spread books, interior magazines and fabric samples all over the coffee table. There was coffee too.

A certain colour palette had formed in my head and all of a sudden I realised how beautifully it harmonised with the January 2018 cover of The World of Interiors. I picked the fabric samples needed, grabbed the camera, and had shot perhaps four or five photos when my Persian prince appeared on the scene ... and refused to budge (I should have known, he likes sleeping in between my books). I tried to work around him but he kept popping up in the frame. The last photo shows the end result: he had his way and I called it a day.

Schuyler Samperton Textiles · Lisa Hjalt
Caledonia, Doshi and Firefly fabrics by Schuyler Samperton Textiles

Back to that colour palette. I chose three designs by Schuyler Samperton Textiles. The floral fabric with the bird motif is called Caledonia, seen here in the colourways Peony (above in the foreground) and Imperial (under the cup). The design with the loosely printed botanical motif is Doshi, in the colourways Hibiscus and Aubergine. Sandwiched between the two is the Firefly in Plum. In blue it's called Deep End.

A Persian prince enters.

The World of Interiors & Schuyler Samperton Textiles · Lisa Hjalt
Bedroom image from The World of Interiors, January 2018/Simon Upton

The cover photo of the January 2018 issue of The World of Interiors was lensed by Simon Upton. The magazine visited the home, a transformed warehouse in Milan, of art director Roberto Gerosa. The bedroom is textile heaven.
Persian cat sleeping & Schuyler Samperton Textiles · Lisa Hjalt

All's well that ends well.

Sunday, 31 December 2017

New books | Happy New Year

New books | Happy New Year · Lisa Hjalt

On this last day of the year I'm sitting at the computer with a patterned turban on my head, a glass of Christmas beer, and tortilla chips in a bowl; the steak is slow-roasting in the oven, my gang is watching The Hobbit, and there is nothing better for me to do than blogging about new books. I wanted to share this entry earlier in December but I never found the time to finish it. At Christmas it kept popping up in my mind and since most of these works, fiction and coffee tables books, were published in 2017, I thought it best to share the list before the new year. To save time I skip commenting on each book because all the links, apart from one, lead to the website of Book Depository, where you will find a short intro. I would like to read all the books that appear on the list above the thumbnails, so chances are high that you will one day find them on a reading list on the blog. I wish you a peaceful New Year.

New books:
· Spy of the First Person  by Sam Shepard (Knopf). The final work before his death in July this year.
· Debriefing: Collected Stories  by Susan Sontag (FSG). Edited by Benjamin Taylor.
· Sing, Unburied, Sing  by Jesmyn Ward (Bloomsbury). Winner of The National Book Award 2017.
· The Origin of Others  by Toni Morrison (Harvard UP).
· In Search of Ancient North Africa: A History in Six Lives  by Barnaby Rogerson (Haus Publishing).
· The Rub of Time  by Martin Amis (Random House).
· Philip Roth: Why Write? Collected Nonfiction 1960-2013  by Philip Roth (Library of America).

· Persian Art: Collecting the Arts of Iran for the V&A  by Moya Carey (V&A).
· Modern Art in Detail: 75 Masterpieces  by Susie Hodge (Thames & Hudson).
· Henri Cartier-Bresson: The Decisive Moment  by Henri Cartier-Bresson (Steidl). Originally published in 1952, embellished with a collage cover by Henri Matisse.
The Atlas of Beauty: Women of the World in 500 Portraits  by Mihaela Noroc (Penguin).
· Morris  by Charlotte and Peter Fiell (Taschen). Richly illustrated book about the life and work of the designer William Morris (1834-1896).
· Map Cities: Histoires de cartes  by Francisca Mattéoli (Chêne). Currently available in French only but here is hoping for an English translation. I have already featured Map Stories by Mattéoli on the blog.
· Haute Bohemians  by Miguel Flores-Vianna (Vendome Press).

From Haute Bohemians by Miguel Flores-Vianna, pp.80-81, Vendome Press

Sunday, 24 December 2017

№ 13 reading list | Happy Holidays

№ 13 reading list | Happy Holidays · Lisa Hjalt

Earlier this week, I promised to share a short reading list - this one is № 13 - before the holidays (I snapped the photo a couple of days ago between the gift-wrapping; you should see how much the hyacinths have grown since then!). At this moment, I'm enjoying a coffee break while leafing through the latest issue, January 2018, of The World of Interiors, which our oldest brought me from the UK. Tonight and tomorrow's desserts are ready and soon we will start preparing our Christmas Eve feast. The Nordic tradition is to celebrate Christmas on this day with a fancy meal, following the opening of presents.

№ 13 reading list:
· The Underground Railroad  by Colson Whitehead
· Giovanni's Room  by James Baldwin
· Der Gute Mensch von Sezuan  by Bertolt Brecht
· Jane Eyre  by Charlotte Brontë

Last summer I bought a copy of Giovanni's Room by James Baldwin and I have been waiting for a more quiet time to read it. If my last blog post escaped you, he has become my new favourite author. Over the holidays, I have made it a habit to reread one classic and this year I chose Jane Eyre. It's been years since I read it and last Christmas my husband gave me this beautiful Penguin clothbound edition. It's been staring at me for a year and I swear I can sometimes hear it whisper, Read me!  The other two you may have spotted on Instagram already; Whitehead was part of a book gift from a dear friend in Iceland and the play by Brecht was the first book I bought in German after the move (here is a Bloomsbury edition in English, The Good Person of Szechwan, translated by John Willett). I'm already reading it, but slowly. Very slowly. It's my way to try to reclaim my German vocabulary.

I wish you all Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!