Robert L. Peters

20 October 2008




Winnipeg, Canada

As economies erode and monetary currencies tank around the world, here’s a fun little “value-added” activity you can do with those extra paper bills… Moneygami (money + origami)—lots more here.

19 October 2008

Thinking about… singular vision.




Winnipeg Beach, Manitoba

[weird warning—blame it on the fresh air…]

While stacking my girlfriend’s supply of winter firewood in the brilliant sunshine of a perfect October day I found myself thinking about singular vision, the mythical Cyclops, and my dear old cat Erasmus (who departed this temporal realm two years ago) who I had named 18 years ago after one of my favourite old dead guys (whom I still tend to quote a lot), the Dutch Renaissance humanist Erasmus (Desiderius Erasmus Roterodamus)—the man who is credited with the maxim:

“In the land of the blind, the one-eyed man is king.”

(from the Latin in regione caecorum rex est luscus.)

Images: The Cyclops Café (below my favorite hotel in Seattle, the Ace, and with such a clever WYSIWYG sign); Cyclops (by Jaime Pitarch); and the mythical Cyclops that has stuck in my mind since first encountering Homer’s Odyssey in grammar school over four decades ago (as envisioned by

18 October 2008

Commonsensically utilitarian…



Makes sense to me… (sources unknown).

16 October 2008

Designer signs of the times…



Toronto, Canada

The signs sprang up suddenly under the cover of night. Official-looking and made of hard plastic and aluminum, they were bolted to posts at major intersections along Lake Shore Blvd. Others turned up at busy downtown hubs. “Quiet,” read one, in front of a downtown hospital. “Homeless people sleeping.”

Another advised, “Homeless warming grate. Please keep clear.” For Mark Daye, who created the series of seven signs, it seemed a master stroke of subversion. How do you draw attention to an age-old urban issue, especially when passersby have long been conditioned to ignore the usual signage—those tattered posters glued to poles and construction sites? “I started thinking about the way sign systems work,” says the 30-year-old Toronto student. “There’s official signage. There’s advertising. So I thought, what would happen if I used official-looking signage, but I put an unofficial message in it?”

Read the full article in the Toronto Star here. View more images on Mark Daye’s flickr™ photostream here. (Thanks to Aiden Enns of Geez magazine for the heads-up… I’m not sure quite what to think of this either—will it reinforce stereotypes to people with no homes, or could it actually inspire compassion, raise public consciousness, and increase support for social safety-nets?)

15 October 2008

Design ethics pool…




Stumbled across these—on flickr™ here

13 October 2008

Blue Note… a legacy.





Tokyo, Japan

If you’re a fan of jazz and/or Blue Note graphics, there’s an incredible online resource here of album design and artwork (1930s – 1970s).

12 October 2008

Inspiring sustainability…



Paris, France

Though I’d encountered his remarkable aerial photography a number of times during the past decade, I was completely blown away when I received a gift copy of Yann Arthus-Bertrand’s tome Earth From Above as a speaker gift at the AIGA conference in Vancouver five years ago. Two years ago, Ev and I experienced Yann’s work in a large outdoor exhibit installation of 150 prints in Melbourne (an exhibit which will come to New York in May and June of 2009). Yann’s unique views of our planet aim to inspire people to think globally about sustainable living. Read about the upcoming New York show here. Visit the official websites of Yann Arthus-Bertrand here. Download 2000 incredible wallpaper images here.

Images (© Yann Arthus-Bertrand): 1) A mangrove swamp near the town of Voh in New Caledonia, a group of Pacific islands covering 7,000 square miles (18,575 square km)—nature has carved a clearing in the form of a heart. 2) A worker resting on bales of cotton, Thonakaha, Korhogo, Ivory Coast. Cotton crops occupy approximately 335,000 square kilometers worldwide, and use nearly one quarter of all pesticides sold. 

10 October 2008

Zebra Crossing… in Ljubljana.



Ljubljana, Slovenia

This just in from my friend Eduard Cehovin in Ljubljana… “You are kindly invited to the opening of the exhibition on Thursday, 16 October 2008, at 6 pm, at Stritarjeva ulica 6 in Ljubljana, Slovenia. The exhibition will be opened by Janez Kozelj, Deputy Mayor of Ljubljana.” Wish I could attend…

THE ZEBRA CROSSING (Eduard Cehovin and Tanja Devetak)

Urban centres offer visual artists a space for free expression and critical reflection of the environment in which they work. The Zebra Crossing project implements the street art concept on the existing street…  the redesigned visual image does not change the functional dimension of the street crossing, and as such creates a space for an art activity in a public area. Innovative expression sets an example for possible further use.

9 October 2008

Ummm… hold up there, Abraham.


Abu Dhabi & Jerusalem

Greetings on this fine day to both Muslim and Jewish friends around the world… Eid al-Fitr for the former  (a Muslim holiday that marks the end of the Islamic holy/fasting month of Ramadan), and Yom Kippur for the latter (also a fast and the most solemn day of the Jewish holidays). Father Abraham (along with son Ishmael/Isaac) looms large in both belief systems… and of course in Christianity as well. Best wishes to all… let’s give peace a chance, eh?

Image: detail from Laurent de LaHyre’s 1650 painting Abraham Sacrificing Isaac, at the Musée des Beaux-Arts d’Orléans. See the full image here.


Nice! Monte Rosa solar-powered alpine hut…



Monte Rosa, Switzerland

“This remote alpine retreat calls to mind classic James Bond architecture, complete with a futuristic design, advanced building technology, and killer views of the Matterhorn. Can’t you just see Bond skiing down the glacier in a white ski suit, stealthily approaching his enemy’s headquarters? You could imagine that the top of the roof pulls down to reveal a giant laser, which is used as a tractor beam to smash the moon into Earth as the villain demands 700 million 700 billion dollars from the US Government. Oh wait, sorry, we’ve been having nightmares about the economy. But seriously though, this hut outside of Zermatt in the Swiss Alps is for real. It’s the Swiss Alpine Club’s new Monte Rosa mountaineer’s hut, and it’s 90% energy self-sufficient.”

From Inhabitat—read the whole story here. (That’s the Matterhorn on the left edge of the upper image).

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