Arndt Schlaudraff, the LEGO® brutalist

I love LEGO® and I love brutalism so this is a match made in heaven for me.

Arndt Schlaudraff is a self-proclaimed “Berlinist, Brutalist, Modernist, and Legoist” and his Instagram account is filled with wonderful constructions all real and no 3D renderings. His buildings come with beautiful lighting inside and out, creating an atmosphere not often associated with the harshness of brutalism.

Check out his Instagram page for more.

(via Ewan Wilson on Twitter and Boing Boing)

Carry A Bag Man's carrier bag designs

Aaron Thompson’s job involves garden maintenance and clearing out derelict homes but in his spare time, he goes by the name of Carry A Bag Man on Instagram. The account is dedicated to retro carry bags he finds on his travels.

The power of something so simple as a crinkled old carrier bag hit Aaron time and time again on his searches, and when he found a bag relating to his own life in a 1990s Kwik Save bag, “I was hooked.”

Since expanding his collection, he decided to include bundles from local auctions: “After collecting them for five years, I started to realise that I should probably do something with them all,” Aaron tells It’s Nice That. In need of a way to revisit his finds “without having to haul out all the storage boxes under my bed,” he began to photograph each find, laid flat to showcase their iconic design and shape. Instagram resultantly appeared to be “the fasted way to go about archiving them all,” and is where Aaron has been selflessly pasting design inspiration over the past two years as Carry A Bag Man.

The retro designs on these carrier bags are glorious. They transport me back to the 90s.

(via It’s Nice That)

Whiteness and racism aren't illnesses

a sign that says racism is a pandemic

I initially opted for a softer title but it was a life goal to be more active with my language back in 2016 or 2017 so there you go.

Three things popped up on my social feed today regarding the connection between whiteness and racism and the language of illness. In reverse order:

  1. An article called “Whiteness is a Pandemic” by Damon Young, referenced in this Kottke.org post of the same title.
  2. An Instagram story from Josh Rivers of Busy Being Black discussing his personal use of language linking white supremacy to illness
  3. This thread from Dr Subini which Josh had originally referenced from an Instagram screenshot post as a counterpoint to the above

Before I dive into anything else, it’s amazing how circumstances can connect through the power of the Internet. And yet that’s exactly what it was created for. Large networks of information rabbit holes that are never too far apart to be deemed coincidence.

Anyway, the final paragraph from Young’s piece for The Root:

White supremacy is a virus that, like other viruses, will not die until there are no bodies left for it to infect. Which means the only way to stop it is to locate it, isolate it, extract it, and kill it. I guess a vaccine could work, too. But we’ve had 400 years to develop one, so I won’t hold my breath.

It’s common to see racism and its structures to be represented that way and while I’ve not done it myself, I know many friends and family who have and haven’t argued against it. But then Josh Rivers mentioned how he’d used similar language before finding this Instagram post from Project LETS which referenced a Twitter thread by Dr. Subini Annamma, a Black Asian feminist and author of The Pedagogy of Pathologization: Dis/abled Girls of Color in the School-prison Nexus. Here’s the first tweet of it:

Fam, racism is not a virus. White supremacy is not a pandemic. Using illness & disability as a metaphor situates white supremacy & racism as passively spreading. These metaphors evade the way white supremacy & racism are purposefully built into structures & strategically enacted

Now this I can relate to. I understand the idea of white supremacy and racism like diseases in that they pervade society and you don’t always see it or can do little to prevent or cure it at all in large quantities. But viewing them as physical structures makes more sense because there are actual constructs that were built for the purpose of promoting white supremacy.

There is no vaccine for racism and knocking down buildings of oppression won’t solve the problem in and of itself. Instead, we tear those walls down and we clear the debris and we use those bricks to create the opposite. The work doesn’t stop because the buildings aren’t standing anymore.

(featured image by Ehimetalor Akhere Unuabona)

Nancy Grace reading Shakespeare (by Ryan Ken)

It’s been a long year and we’re only into the second week. Things are heavy for so many of us and sometimes you need a bit of light relief to keep you going.

Of the main people I follow on Instagram for that purpose, Ryan Ken is one of my favourites. His hilarious send-ups of white people in all kinds of situations are mental palate cleansers and this one is no exception.

Yesterday, Ryan donned his blonde wig to impersonate Nancy Grace reading Shakespeare. The impersonation is spot-on and Hamlet and Romeo and Juliet never sounded so American South and fed up.

Black comedy related: The TikTok meme with the dancing duck and Steve Harvey on getting fired.

The Instagram account capturing Japanese facades

japanese facade

With any populous nation, there are varying levels of architecture; you get spectacular modern buildings, decadent classical monuments, or harsh, functional structures. Naturally, you get facades with them too (the exterior side of a building, often at the front).

On Instagram, a graphic designer who goes by the username @ka_nai has been uploading photos of Japanese facades and, while that will sound boring to most people, I love them. Every image is a little different in colour and style, mostly industrial or concrete/brick clad but occasionally you get something more uniform or vibrant.

View this post on Instagram

路地裏の黒い三連星。 #ザ壁部

A post shared by ザ壁 (@ka_nai) on

View this post on Instagram

裏アカ発見。 #ザ壁部

A post shared by ザ壁 (@ka_nai) on

(via Pen Magazine)

The Awesome Art of Karis Pierre

Karis Pierre

The London graphic designer is one to watch for the future.

Social media can be a hellish place when you suffer from anxiety. But I prefer visual therapy in the form of art and that’s what makes Instagram so good (for the most part).

I discovered Karis Pierre aka karpie.jpg via Rhea Ellen and I love her work. According to her Insta bio, she’s studying graphic design at Norwich University of the Arts but originally from/based in London.

My favourite piece is the “Dunk” Nike Store poster. That’d look awesome on sports fan’s wall.

Art by Karis Pierre
Art by Karis Pierre
Art by Karis Pierre
Art by Karis Pierre
Art by Karis Pierre

(All image rights reserved © Karis Pierre)

The Photography of Sook Moon

The Photography of Sook Moon

Sook Moon is one such creative who brings a new life to the seemingly mundane: butchers’ markets, closed convenience stores, empty alleys. Yes, they are stylised in a certain way but not to diminish the character or the story each image tells. Instead, they enhance the vision and give extended importance to their portrayal.

We take for granted the food we eat or the shops we visit for a packet of cigarettes or box of teabags. There’s an ugly abandonment to these services, commercially and emotionally. But these images put them at the forefront and turn bleak and underappreciated moments into felicitous wonders.

You can follow the rest of Sook’s work on Instagram and I strongly recommend you do.

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