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The Deep South of America is my dream destination and the top of my wish list. I guess a lot of our dreams come about from intangible ephemera like favourite movies we watch over and over again, well-thumbed books and pored over imagery. I know my fascination with The South started in my teens and with the discovery of the spine-tingling novels of Gothic writer Anne Rice which described New Orlean’s haunting historic districts in luscious detail.

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Since then I have greedily drunk up any literature, films and articles about the atmospheric South – from comforting Rom-Coms set in Alabama, to darkly funny TV shows like True Blood to deliciously deep-fried food programmes and enthralling supernatural books. Adding weight to my curiosity is that of recent, The South has also become a huge draw for emerging designers and home ware brands with favourites like Anthropologie mining the South for unusual and evocative designs.

Sealing the fate of my love affair with The South is my new online obsession – the amusingly titled Garden and Gun. A beautifully designed and styled magazine [available online and in print] the magazine celebrates the rich culture, food, music, and art of the Deep South. Traditional Southern recipes with a twist like Krispy Kreme Brulee and jewel coloured Rose Gimlets sit alongside evocative tales of local syrup farmers in Texas, reviews of off the beaten track Cajun family-run eateries and too cool for school indie rockers of the South all mixed up with poignant narratives of The South’s history. Enough to sate my daily dose of Southern Comfort… for now.

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Kinship

As I grow older my thoughts have been turning towards astrology and how we might be connected to the universe : ) I’m not quite a convert yet but I love the idea of believing in something… and thinking about the stars… and dreaming…

So the idea of resting my head on inky blue pillows dotted with constellations seems infinitely peaceful. Made by Kinship in Kentucky the pillows are hand-printed on navy percale cotton pillowcases and come packaged in a sweet decorative telescope tube (complete with a starry view on the inside).

All twelve zodiac signs are available ($22 each) and come packaged in a sweet decorative telescope tube. I think they would make such a sweet housewarming, wedding, joint gift.

Kinship

Kinship

Kinship

Polpo

A perfect cookbook for a lazy weekend, this landed on my desk earlier this week.

Tucked away in a backstreet of London’s edgy Soho district, Polpo is one of the hottest restaurants in town. Critics and food aficionados have been flocking to this understated ‘bàcaro’ where restauranteur Russell Norman has been sharing his love of the floating city of Venice serving up un-fussy and delicious dishes from the magical city’s backstreets. Now this breathtakingly designed cookbook has been published by BloomsburyPolpo: A Venetian Cookbook of Sorts.

Polpo

Polpo

The 140 recipes in the book include caprese stacks; zucchini shoestring fries; asparagus with Parmesan and anchovy butter; butternut risotto; arancini, rabbit cacciatore; warm duck salad with wet walnuts and beets; crispy baby pizzas with prosciutto and rocket; scallops with lemon and peppermint; mackerel tartare; linguine with clams; whole sea bream; warm octopus salad; soft-shell crab in Parmesan batter with fennel salad; walnut and honey semifreddo; tiramisù; fizzy bellinis and glasses of bright bittersweet Negronis.

Even if like me you’re no Martha Stewart in the kitchen, this beautiful tome is guaranteed to get you inspired. Designed by researching old Venetian books and typography the book takes on the form of an vintage manuscript featuring gold lettering, poetic photography and a stripped-away spine which allows the book to be laid out flat in the kitchen.

Polpo

Polpo

Polpo

Polpo

Orange

Image courtest of Style Lovely

Bracelets and Coral

Image courtesy of Pretty Glamorous

Dior

Image: Dior

Coral and Nudes

Image: Boathouse coral by Essie on thumb and forefinger with a mix of nudes on other nails.

Coral Stripe

Neon

Images above : Pinterest

Tate

Earlier this month I went to see the Edvard Munch: The Modern Eye at the Tate. Few other modern artists are better known and yet less understood than Norwegian painter. He is one of the most famous expressionists in art and in popular culture – I don’t think there is anyone who doesn’t know The Scream. The exhibition looks beyond the clichés of Munch as an angst-ridden and brooding Nordic artist who painted scenes of isolation and trauma and focuses on the neglected aspects of his often radical work, particularly his use of film and photography.

Munch

The exhibition features several rooms highlighting several periods of his artistic life. My favourite was Optical Space which explored Munch’s signature style featuring exaggerated perspectival effects and off kilter compositions  - which I learnt was from his observation of cinematic techniques and observing moving perspectives of crowds on screen which in that day would have seemed novel and strange.

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EdvardMunch

His work admittedly  contained many  notions of sickness, isolation and physical decline which followed a period of nervous breakdown. The images are beautiful and haunting painted in Munch’s lyrical colour palette.

Munch

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The room I found the most surprising was the one that held artworks produced followed a heamorrage in his right eye. Fascinated by the subjective nature of vision – he began to document what he could see through his damaged eye – vibrant pulsating circles of colour created by exposing his eye to sunlight . His notes suggested that he understood the damage to his eye allowed him to experience new visual sensations that would otherwise not be available to him.

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Munch

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