November 30, 2013 |
When an elderly woman showed up at a small law firm several years ago and asked for help managing her estate, an attorney asked her what she thought it was worth. Kathleen Magowan said she didn't really know. She thought maybe about $40,000. The real answer? $6 million. A quiet, unassuming woman who never made headlines during her 87 years, Magowan taught first grade in the northern Connecticut town of Simsbury for 35 years and never brought attention to herself. She wasn't much of a philanthropist during her life, but Magowan, who died in 2011, is now surprising many with huge donations through her estate to her favorite causes - including nearly $480,000 to her beloved Simsbury public schools, more than $400,000 to the nursing home where she died, and nearly $375,000 to her local parish, St. Mary's Roman Catholic Church.
November 28, 2013 |
Mike D'Antoni, coach of the year? Whoa. Settle down. Frank Vogel has the Indiana Pacers at a league-best 14-1 and Terry Stotts has Portland off to a surprising 13-3 start. Plus, there's always good ol' standby Gregg Popovich, who has everybody wondering how San Antonio is so good year after year (13-2 so far). But the Lakers are 8-8 with Kobe Bryant playing zero games and Steve Nash playing only six games with teeny-tiny averages (6.7 points, 4.8 assists). The players are happy too. It's not as if they are scoring a ton of points, tied for 14th in the NBA at 100.3 a game, and they certainly are not stopping many people defensively (25th, 102.3 points)
November 9, 2013 |
For the next installment of our Handmade Holiday Gift Guide, we turn to the Ojai Art Festival, running through Nov. 24 -- a celebration of work made from trash and meant to provoke questions about waste. That's where, if you're lucky, you'll see the barbed wire baskets of Karl Vidstrand. The artist scavenges in the Mojave, near where he lives, for the desert detritus that accents his pieces. What's intriguing about the resulting designs is that they subversively prevent each basket from performing its function: holding stuff.
November 6, 2013 |
For an artist who calls her studio Humble Ceramics, it's fitting that Delphine Lippens reduces all of her work to circles and rectangles -- a minimalist binary of O's and I's, she says, simple and clean forms that nevertheless have a complex beauty. Last year we were drawn to her cork-lidded containers. This year we're all about her cazuelas and cazuelitas, which are something between dishes and bowls. Beyond the practical uses for such a piece, there is the lovely presence of the hand: Lippens fires up each piece at 2340 degrees to achieve the proper finish, leaving tiny air bubbles and warps as hints of their artist origins.
November 5, 2013 |
For those looking for gifts with a little urban edge, we take our Handmade Holidays series to the studio of Meyghan Hill in downtown Los Angeles. That's where Hill welds her Salvaged Steel & Stenciled planters, sold as plain vessels or with personalized graphics. Each planter measures 12 inches wide, 12 inches deep and 8 inches high. Price: $125. Hill sells her various designs on her own studio site as well as through the Angelo:Home store downtown. For those who can spend a bit more, check out her Fallon Salvaged Steel Bound bookend, $275, composed of stair-stepped marble sheets wrangled into brackets that Hill welds herself.
November 4, 2013 |
For our next pick of unique holiday gifts, we head to the high desert: Brian Bosworth of BKB Ceramics in Joshua Tree. Among Bosworth's newest works is his Spectrum series, in which he melds a Japanese raku process with colors rooted in the midcentury design of nearby Palm Springs. "I am trying to keep with the primary palette of modernism," Bosworth said. The pieces pictured here range from $45 to $110, bought through his showroom (open on weekends or by appointment) or through his BKB Ceramics website , where you can see other examples of his work.