etsy find of the day | CURATION REQUEST 1 | 1.29.14

requested by: calirogue
looking for: gilded items under $50

calirogue fell in love with ‘gilded’ items after this bowl post on EFOTD. i must say, girly … you know how to pick 'em! i also love gilded things, so this curation request was super fun for me to do!

first, check out what’s already been listed on etsyfindoftheday:

  • 'gilded’ posts here
  • 'gold’ posts here

next, check out these items found especially for this curation – all under $50 USD:

  • 'wanderlust’ foil map print by misspoppydesign (featured)
  • gold-speckled clay ring bowl by annkaydesign
  • even more from theobjectenthusiast
  • there are many gilded porcelain options at madebymanos
  • a gilded tassel garland from studiomucci
  • a sparkly sequined pillow cover by pillow1
  • alchemy lollipops from thegroovybaker have real edible gold flakes!
  • a gold sequined initial for your desk or dresser
  • a pair of gold 'n sparkly earrings or other jewelry piece from one of my fave shops, tinygalaxies
  • a zag dish or gold point vessel from upintheairsomewhere
  • gold chevron + kraft giftwrap by papernestbylesa
  • some sweet gold + tile coasters from thecoastal – MANY options
  • 'cheers’ gold glitter banner at confettidesignshop
  • pinktwig’s shiny gold-dipped arrow pendant
  • a floating gemstone ring by kristinelily
  • or this SUPER RAD golden palm leather clutch from kertis, on sale for $50!

so, i’m gonna be completely honest here … i have 46 pages of 'gold’ etsy likes in my etsy profile. FORTY SIX PAGES. that’s … a little nuts. can you tell i heart gold? :)

i hope this was a good start (and not too overwhelming for you!) – let me know if you end up getting anything special!


Nabokov frequently voiced annoyance with scientists and science-writers not attributing discovery – not acknowledging the person who discovered and named a butterfly species. Therein lies a broader, and rather timely, lament about our culture’s failure to honor discovery as a creative act and a subset of scholarship – such a scientist, after all, doesn’t invent a species, for it already exists in nature, but discovers it, names it, and contextualizes it in the canon of natural history. It is no coincidence that Nabokov’s own role at the Harvard Museum of Comparative Zoology was that of curator, for this is the task of the curator – to describe, arrange, and contextualize what already exists in such a way as to shed new light on its meaning, to discover and un-cover its significance and place in the canon of ideas.

Embedded in this act is also a lineage of discovery, similar to the “links in a chain” metaphor Pete Seeger used for creativity: I learned of Nabokov’s pet peeve about discovery thanks to Stephen Jay Gould – perhaps the greatest curator of scientific ideas the world has ever known, the greatest contextualizer of such ideas in the popular imagination – and you learned of it via me, and the person you tell about this will learn of it via you. All of us are links in the evolutionary chain of ideas, much like each butterfly species discovered is a link in the evolutionary chain of natural history. This is why Richard Dawkins, in coining the word meme, used a metaphor from evolutionary biology to describe how ideas spread: “Just as genes propagate themselves in the gene pool by leaping from body to body via sperms or eggs, so memes propagate themselves in the meme pool by leaping from brain to brain.”

etsy find of the day | CURATION REQUEST 3 | 1.29.14

requested by: anonymous
looking for: shops selling boho crystal/geode/agate rings

anon, you have come to the ultimate lover of all things boho and geode. srsly :) i have several shops that come to might right away!! let me know if you end up purchasing anything <3

  • luxdivine (featured) has several ring options (and GREAT boho jewelry in general)
  • gossamerandviolet sells many options of geode slice rings in tons of fun colors
  • one of my former shop features, mineralogydesign, has some beautiful rings to choose from
  • i love ohkuol’s druzy jewelry so much, i own two pairs of their earrings! their ring options are SUPER sparkly.
  • freaking love the varied agate, druzy and geode rings at amulettejewelry
  • take a look at the incredible geode rings at anatomi and try not to fall in love :)
  • find all kinds of crystal and druzy beauties at amandaleilanidesigns
  • skyejuice’s agate and geode rings have an earthy quality
  • and gsgjewelry has quite a few smaller and more feminine options

thanks for the fun curation request, anon!!



Penelope Umbrico’s “541,795 Suns from Sunsets from Flickr (Partial) 1/26/2006

As described by Teju Cole:

A decent photograph of the sun looks similar to any other decent photograph of the sun: a pale circle with a livid red or blue sky around it. There are hundreds of thousands of such photographs online, and in the daily contest for “likes” they are close to a sure thing: easy to shoot, fun to look at, a reliable dose of awe. The American artist Penelope Umbrico downloads such photos of the sun from Flickr — she favors sunsets in particular — and then crops and prints them, assembling them into an enormous array. A typical installation may contain 2,500 photographs, organized into a rectangular mural. It is the same sun, photographed repeatedly in the same way, by a large cast of photographers, few of whom are individually remarkable as artists and none of whom are credited. But, with Umbrico’s intervention, the cumulative effect of their images literally dazzles: the sun, the sun, the sun, the sun, in row upon brilliant row.

If you look close, you can see this isn’t a digital mosaic — it’s all printed out and stuck together with tape, which makes me like it more:

More work on her site, like these sunset portraits:

Filed under: photography

For most of human history, a fundamental problem has been the scarcity of material goods and resources, and so we have become ever more efficient in our methods of production and created rituals to enshrine the importance of objects in our culture. Less than a century ago, human beings made a world-changing transition through their rapacious industry. We now inhabit a world in which the overproduction of goods, rather than their scarcity, is one of our most fundamental problems. Yet our economy functions by inciting us to produce more and more with each passing year. In turn, we require cultural forms to enable us to sort through the glut, and our rituals are once again being directed towards the immaterial, towards quality and not quantity. This requires a shift in our values, from producing objects to selecting amongst those that already exist.

In answering the annual Edge Question, which asks 176 prominent thinkers “What scientific idea is ready for retirement?”,  legendary curator Hans Ulrich Obrist speaks to the necessity of curation as a sensemaking tool for our age of abundance. 

Also see previous years’ Edge Questions, including “What scientific concept will improve everybody’s cognitive toolkit?” (2012) and “What is your favorite deep, elegant, or beautiful explanation?” (2013).



Project by Rosi Grillmair automates the art curation process with a bot and the artsy recommendation dataset:

exhy is based on the huge database of  – an online art gallery. More than 15.000 artist profiles are part of it and they are all linked by the logic of the Art Genome Project. The project is growing with every user interaction on which is taken in account to improve the algorithm.

The art recommendation system tries to define the users’ taste in art and suggests works they might like. Each work of art is described by characteristics. Exhy filters similar works by characteristics and generates a list of artworks. To compare the process with browsing, as soon as exhy landed on the site of a linked artwork, it jumps to the next most similar one.
The list of featured artists, title and exhibition text are generated by using the information collected during this process.

You can find out more about the project here


etsy find of the day | CURATION BLITZ 3 | 1.24.14

requested by: pathtoparadise
looking for: a cool new iphone 5s case - unique, maybe with pressed flowers?

FEATURED: annysworkshop. freaking LOVE all these bright and colorful pressed flower options!! <3

other shops selling pressed flower phone cases:

you can also take a look at the phone cases i’ve featured already on EFOTD here. other personal faves:

  • toncase has a TON of cases … hence the name. i love the wood-look ones and this supercolorful floral option. oh, and this neon chartreuse chevron one. and this psychedelic galaxy one.
  • isolatecase - i heart their preppy yet hip personalized case
  • love this glittery gold number at ledazzlecouture
  • also, this hipster arrow case by pencilshavingsstudio
  • rainbow chevrons and minty chevrons

need more ideas? let me know.



After a highly successful music career during which he produced Don McLean’s American Pie, Ed Freeman returned to his original love of photography. While driving around southern Californian deserts to photograph landscapes, he was struck by the beauty of the desolate buildings he passed on the way.

I wanted to appreciate these old, falling-apart buildings that no one pays any attention to. So I photographed them as if they were the most important thing on Earth.

(via The Guardian)

Sometimes I meet people and they say, “check out my blog.” Rather than the Livejournal-era confessional writing and diary entries that comprised the blogs of the early 00’s, image and repost-heavy platforms like Tumblr mean that these days, a blog might be devoid of “personal” content altogether. Instead, we get a different portrait of its creator: we get to know their taste. When I look at new friend’s said blog, more often than not it’s simply a collection of images that reflect the kind of person they wish to present to the world.

Advertising your good taste, whatever your version of good might be, is no longer exclusively the purview of the very rich or very mobile. Because blogs allow us to easily curate and display the material we find, anyone can be a cultivated collector. In an image-saturated society, taste has transcended consumption: we do not need to own nice things in order to be the kind of people who understand nice things. Instead of conspicuous consumption, we have conspicuous curation, ergo: CHECK OUT MY BLOG! It’s great. I have great taste. I’m great. Be my friend.
—  my latest for full stop magazine is up: “Hey, check out my blog!”: Curating Taste and the Future of Art

Attention is neither monopolized nor homogenized. The exhibition is a very democratic and liberal ritual where the viewer decides the duration of his or her stay. There are, however, limits to the ritual of the exhibition.


If one looks at curatorial history, there are figures like Diaghilev, who invented his own way of doing this. He curated painting shows in the early 20th Century in Russian museums that would then tour through Europe. And then at a certain moment he felt that it was too limiting and too narrow; he wanted to go into other disciplines. But where could he go? He had to invent his own structure, which became the Ballets Russes. The Ballets Russes was like a migrating troupe, touring from city to city. And he collaborated with the greatest composers of his time like Stravinsky, and artists like Picasso. And his idea was that it would be a construct where he could pool all the knowledge and bring all the great practitioners of his time together to produce the ballet.

I think about exhibitions in a similar way. The exhibition is a great opportunity to bring it all together because it’s an experimental form; it’s not like a feature film, which has a prescribed duration. A film needs to be more or less 90 minutes; it’s difficult for the cinemas if it’s only 10 minutes or it’s 12 hours. Obviously, there are experiments where filmmakers break that form, but the exhibition has this amazing advantage: that it’s a ritual, it’s extremely public. There isn’t a prescribed time when people can visit it, or a prescribed length to their visit. They can visit it for a minute or for five hours or ten hours. There isn’t the sense that one has to visit it in a group; it can very often be a one-to-one experience. But still, it’s a one-to-one experience for millions of people. Within this sort of 21st Century ritual, the exhibition, there’s a great opportunity to bring all the disciplines together.


A fantastic Edge conversation with legendary curator Hans Ulrich Obrist, who has long held strong opinions on the subject.

Complement with HUO's Do It, an instructional compendium twenty years in the making.

etsyfindoftheday | CURATION CRAZYBLITZ | 3.5.14

requested by: lonelyhearts-club-band
looking for: tapestries for a dorm room wall <3

  • hand block-printed multi-colored tapestries by cloud9jewels (featured)
  • double spiral rainbow tie dye tapestry by doyoudreamoutloud
  • other shops with with lots of tapestry options: craftaurahome and labhanshi
  • and take a less literal, more fashion-forward tapestry approach with the ‘pearl’ tapestry & leather cross-body shoulder bag from giftshopbrooklyn
I think a good curator is like a good chef. They understand the city’s needs – and fulfill and challenge them. How do curators and artists work with each other? Ideally, it’s a collaboration in which one inspires and challenges the other. The best thing a curator can do is elicit the response, “I didn’t know you could do that,” from the public. The worst thing is to present a show that is no longer relevant.
—  John Baldessari on the art of curation.

Maira Kalman, My Favorite Things

Love what she says about walking:

The ability to walk from one point to the next point, that is half the battle won.

Go out and walk.

That is the glory of life.

This Lydia Davis piece

This bit about abandoned chairs, which made me think of Bill Keaggy’s wonderful project, 50 Sad Chairs

Here’s a great video of Maira talking about the exhibit that led to the book

Filed under: Maira Kalman

When you can’t find the answer, it’s the best for you to just quietly work with your hands. There are times when you can’t find an answer, even if you sit at home and hold your head, or ask others for help. But oddly enough, when you concentrate on one task and keep working at it, you may find the answer lying in the hundredth plate you create. Work with diligence.
—  Professor Shōda, Episode 20, Honey and Clover