Robert L. Peters

16 September 2011

Moments in time… watch sculptures.

London, U.K.

Designer Dominic Wilcox has created a series of one-off, customised time pieces commissioned by Dezeen for the London Design Festival 2011. Each sculpture is a unique piece, based on a vintage watch and protected by a glass dome (hand-blown to fit the time piece). Themes include a looter running off with a TV while a riot policeman stands and watches (inspired by the recent London riots); another (shown above) depicts an unrequited handshake… “The outstretched hand of friendship is continually rejected.”

See more here. Thanks to my colleague Adrian Shum for the link.

15 September 2011

Of all the enemies to public liberty war is, perhaps, the most to be dreaded because it comprises and develops the germs of every other. War is the parent of armies; from these proceed debts and taxes… known instruments for bringing the many under the domination of the few…. No nation could preserve its freedom in the midst of continual warfare.

James Madison, (1751-1836), Political Observations

14 September 2011

I like Lettres…


Old lettering and alphabet ephemera make me happy… is that odd?


13 September 2011

In this short span between my fingertips and the smooth edge and these tense feet cramped to a crystal ledge, I hold the life of a man.

Geoffrey Winthrop Young (1876-1958), climber, poet, educator, author, and conscientious objector

Geoffrey lost a leg during World War I… though he continued alpine climbing for years thereafter, using a specially designed artificial leg that accepted a number of attachments for snow and rock work. He even climbed the Matterhorn in 1928. Following is a poem he wrote that references his struggles over his loss…

I have not lost the magic of long days:
I live them, dream them still.
Still I am master of the starry ways,
and freeman of the hill.

Shattered my glass, ere half the sands had run,—
I hold the heights, I hold the heights I won.
Mine still the hope that hailed me from each height,

mine the unresting flame.

With dreams I charmed each doing to delight;
I charm my rest the same.
Severed my skein, ere half the strands were spun,—
I keep the dreams, I keep the dreams I won.

What if I live no more those kingly days?
their night sleeps with me still.
I dream my feet upon the starry ways;
my heart rests in the hill.
I may not grudge the little left undone;
I hold the heights, I keep the dreams I won.

12 September 2011

Design Code… at Maison & objet

Paris, France

My industrial designer friend Hiroshi Tsunoda and his Barcelona-based company Design Code are participating in Maison & Objet Paris… with great response, by the sound of it. Shown above are a few of Hiroshi’s recent designs— Chibi, Ola, and Tobo.

Rock on, Hiroshi!


11 September 2011

Never boring… Aurora Borealis.

Lake Winnipeg, Manitoba

On Saturday night, Ev and I enjoyed a long evening of fire-pit fellowship with her daughter Jennifer and son-in-law Derek… and in spite of a shockingly bright (almost full-moon) sky, watching shooting stars and dancing Aurora Borealis. Ev’s grandsons Sam and Jayden meanwhile spent hours playing moonlight soccer, and gleefully staged stealth-attacks on the fireside grown-ups (the hundreds of too-bitter-to-eat pears falling from her tree offered an unlimited supply of ammo).

Unbeknownst to me, my outstanding photographer friend Mike Grandmaison was at the same time capturing images of the Northern Lights at Matlock, just a few clicks south along the lake… shown above is one of the images he’s just shared with me.

Our First Nation peoples thought of Aurora Borealis as a manifestation of deceased ancestors; ancient Norsemen envisioned warlike virgins on horses armed with helmets, swords, and spears; and though I know the phenomena is caused by the collision of energetic charged particles with atoms in the high altitude atmosphere, I like to think of the Northern Lights as waves of experiential unction sent to us as a gift of metaphysical affirmation.

10 September 2011

You cannot stay on the summit forever; you have to come down again. So why bother in the first place? Just this: What is above knows what is below, but what is below does not know what is above. One climbs, one sees. One descends, one sees no longer, but one has seen. There is an art of conducting oneself in the lower regions by the memory of what one saw higher up. When one can no longer see, one can at least still know.

René Daumal (1908-1944), para-surrealist writer

8 September 2011

Canadian Recording Artists… stamp panes.

Ottawa, Canada

In response to popular demand (and catering to both music fans and philatelists), our latest commemorative stamps in the Canadian Recording Artists series for Canada Post are now available as individual panes, in limited quantity. The iconic Canadian artists featured in this series which launched on the last day of June are Bruce Cockburn, Robbie Robertson, Kate & Anna McGarrigle, and chanteuse Ginette Reno.

We have been designing stamps featuring Canadian Recording Artists since 2007; the first series featured Gordon Lightfoot, Joni Mitchell, Anne Murray, and Paul Anka; series two featured Édith Butler, Stompin’ Tom (Connors), Bryan Adams, and Robert Charlebois.

Stamp panes can be ordered by calling toll-free: 1-800-565-4362 (Canada and the United States), or 1-902-863-6550 (from other countries). Due to limited supply, these dedicated 16-stamp panes are not available at normal post offices or postal outlets. You can read more about this series release in the latest details / en détail magazine (2.5 MB PDF here); the magazine cover is shown below.

Some previous posts on this blog relating to similar stamp releases can be viewed here.

7 September 2011

A makerspace… in Winnipeg.

Winnipeg, Manitoba

Opening 26 days from now at a Beta location in the Exchange District… thousands of (admittedly still-rough) square feet on the 3rd Floor of 125 Adelaide St., featuring 24/7 access to some remarkable rapid prototyping and 3D printing equipment, as well as a supportive “community” of good, passionate folks who are into unapologetic ideation and iteration, embedded system design, woodworking, metalworking, and a variety of creative disciplines related to “making.” Expect to encounter opportunities for collaborative project development, mentorship, and skills transfer in this non-profit environment…

See you there?

6 September 2011

U.S. Foreign Policy Flow Chart…

Washington, USA

I just received this impressively insightful process diagram from an ex-pat African design colleague who’s seen the world from several sides… hard to quibble with.

Illustration by Andy Singer.

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