Wednesday, July 30, 2008

noo look for nooka

our noo look book [notice all the lovely double o's there] went to press this week and we updated the website with the noo photos as well. fashion week is for androids, and it's no different for the catwalk on the asteroid we had the photoshoot. comets provide the best ambient lighting and the thin air with cold temperature tighten up those robo-pores better than a mint clay facial masque.

so check it out.

so what does this mean in marketing speak you may ask:
the answer is a renewed focus on fashion, fashion, style, and fashion. i see each of my products as little fashion ambassadors to the embassy of you!

design alumni

mr. dana deskiewicz was a designer who worked for me when i was creative director of award winning yet now defunkt new york zoom in the late 1990s [he was witness to the genesis of nooka as i started developing it while there]. he has since gone on to even bigger and better things, but like all alumni of the matthew waldman network, we keep in touch often. he has released some new t-shirt designs for sale on his mediafury website here. check it out, i'm wearing a svenska t to strengthen the nooka-sweden relationship – thanks dana!

Monday, July 21, 2008

nooka sightings: lil wayne

i was sent these photos of lil wayne, an opera singer from new jersey. the yellow zub looks great on him.

Friday, July 18, 2008

noo moozik

noo purchases and mini reviews [yes, i still buy physical cds, but only when it's not avaialble on itunes PLUS – labels take note, there are many people who will not buy protected music on itunes!].

artist / album
chromatics / night drive: ethereal night time disco. some tracks venture a bit on the ambient side but it's a great cd to f*ck to. vocals are reminiscent of vanessa daou [love you more vaness!!]. support independent music and buy this disc! **** purchased at halcyon in dumbo brooklyn, nyc.

luciano / fabric 41: part of the fabric live series from london, this is a great mix that also tends to run a bit ambient/experimental at points, but danceable [is that a word?] for the most part. *** purchased at fopp in convent garden, london.

nupop / a selection of rare tunes: i love this french label, wagram. they put out year end selections from different genres, and the pop ones always please. this one is a 2 disc set covering 2007 with highlights including mark ronson, hushpuppies and broadcast. i wish alternative pop was more acessible, and this compilation certainly helps. ***** purchased at saturn in alexanderplatz, berlin.

digitalism / kitsuné tabloid: again, a french label but this club mix has some of the best dance music out of nyc mixed with our faves from australia with classic 80s synthpop...super cool. ***** purchased at saturn in alexanderplatz, berlin.

just a short sample of recent tunes you might hear visiting the nooka studio.

nookanooka goes to mt. fuji

thanks to shin tanaka for taking and sending me the photo!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

the devil wears nooka

i am firmly back in new york city, and boy is it HOT after stockholm, berlin and london [rome was just as hot though]. feeling a bit dizzy first day back at the office, but i do need to post a help wanted for a new intern to work as a personal assistant.

so consider this an open call for potential intern/personal assistant. qualifications are as such: be in nyc or be able to relocate on one's own, have a desire to be part of a cutting edge design studio with products sold around the world, be incredibly neat and organized, be personable and ruthless, have a desire to make sure my happiness is your number one priority, and most importantly, have excellent english writing skills for correspondences.

if i'm impressed, a full-time paid position is highly likely.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

london culture

this past sunday, dan came into london from brighton with lovely wife anna and strapping lad sam. i am part of anna’s art collective in brighton though i’m very behind in my duties, it’s the institute of unnecessary research and the website i here. i am head of crypto-zoology and anna is the director of the institute. i really like her artwork, so check it out.

we first went to the royal academy of art’s summer show, which was full of very interesting work from newcomers and established artists, and surprisingly, architects! [i went to the tate modern on monday, and they have an exhibition on models which featured many architectural models as/in art, so i sense a trend here…start asking your architect friends for their discarded models!] this show has been held every summer since 1768!

my favorite of the architectural piece was a cut paper grey scale piece by c. j. lim titled the baker’s garden: smell, heat and light which explored ephemeral qualities of built space in a very emotional expression. i also liked the laser cut model of a gem cut building, though not sure a potentially mass produced model could work as art as i’d rather see it in the gift shop at a more affordable price or as a accessible limited edition. most of the work in the show is for sale, so it’s really an amazing blend of gallery in a museum setting. i think i’ll submit some work for next year’s show, maybe see if they’ll accept a nooka [or at least sell nook in their gift shop. sorry to plug but remember, this is my nooka blog☺].

tracey emin curated a room, which was spectacular. the silhouette piece by tim nobel and sue webster called pink narcissus (version 1) is everything i like in an art piece, provocative, whimsical, challenging, and full of good craft (and pretty penises of all sizes).

other pieces of note or just ones i like are by julian opie, and photos of large scale sculpture where the medium was an actual building. there was a nice egg by jeff koones as well. the show is up until august 17th, so if you’re in london it’s worth the admission charge [it really should be free admission, but it’s not]. the royal academy website is here. tell them nooka sent ya!

we then walked all the way to the serpentine gallery to see the summer pavilion [an outdoor pavilion commissioned by the serpentine each year and designed by a different architect. this year is by frank gehry. it opens june 20th so we got to see it almost finished. we were then treated to a show by richard prince, another artist who’s work i really like. more information on the serpentine gallery here, located in the beautiful hyde park and also well worth the walk from anywhere [you can take mass transit as well, but i like to walk in london. next trip i’ll rent a bike].

Saturday, July 12, 2008


the last leg of this business trip is to london, which is a city i know well and absolutely love. my impressions of all cities change each trip and i've been coming often to london for the past 18 years, but i remember my first impression was formed when i spent a week in mumbai/bombay after my first trip – that london is the great mother/father of cities and New York and Mumbai are the half-siblings of travel/conquest/trade – each raised in a different time. and even though the siblings grew up and developed on different continents and different times, one can see the seeds of utopian urbanism in the parent. i see this when i visit all the post colonial cities including sydney and even hong kong – i actually feel like alice through the rabbit hole traveling to alternate realities of the same place or perhaps the cities are morphing through time and just the people are concurrent to my age...i'll devote a separate entry to my musings on utopian urbanism as i see them applied in various cities.

so needless to say, when i'm here, i never have a dearth of things to do and people to see. this trip is no exception.

day 1: dan, my friend and former coworker from my london days as creative director at reuters came in to meet me at the glamorous metropolitan hotel [i got a good rate by london standards from tablet hotels, check out the site here. i booked my rome (the pulitzer hotel which i highly recommend) hotel via them as well. it's a great resource for design savvy travelers like me as an ugly room/hotel can really depress the aesthetically sensitive]. we had lunch at a little pub in mayfair near the hotel that specializes in polish and mexican food [i did not make that up]. we both had the wild boar sausage with mushroom sauce and mash – amazingly deliscious. we then went to the london design museum which always impresses. the had a show on industrial design on one floor, a photography exhibition and a retrospective of richard rogers architects work. the design museum of london is something that the cooper hewitt in NYC needs to study more. i truly feel like the collections and shows are curated by design professionals whereas the cooper hewitt [the american museum of design, part of the smithsonian in in nyc] seems guided by corporate sponsors and populist trends with little research on the true innovators in particular genres. that said, the london design museum could be a bit more international, for example, why are my designs not in the collection and not in the shop? [dear reader, please feel free to email them yourselves and ask them for an answer, their website is here]. moreover, why am i not in the cooper hewitt? [again dear reader, feel free to research and email/contact their curators from their website here. i am an american designer and the cooper hewitt is the national design museum!] THEN we had dinner with mia and kevin who have a lovely toddler named george who was born in my 2 year absence from london. he is adorable. i left them to meet darren at the british museum which is open late on fridays overall...lot's of culture in one day.

day 2: a bit of window shopping and visited selfridges to check out nooka there as well as their new concept store within the store, the wonder room. selfridges is a great store and really merchandises well. they are also early adopters of nooka, so check em out there when you're in the UK. at the moment, nooka is on the 4th floor in the men's department but will soon migrate to the wonder room. i'll update the blog when that happens. i also went to primark, which is the uk version of h&m but even less expensive – it was a ZOO, so i'll go back monday morning to really check out the goods [i can't shop in a crowded shop]. talking of zoos, i met darren at the london zoo where he is a fellow and we had v.i.p. treatment – i got to pet a lemur named dana who was so sweet and affectionate – an incredibly memorable experience. their butterfly exhibition is also amazing with the insects bred on-premises and they are quite tame. not as big as the bronx zoo, but well worth a visit.

i think that's enough for one blog entry. no?

Friday, July 11, 2008

elton john in venice

on wednesday night, i had the pleasure of seeing elton john play live in piazza san marco in venice! it was a concert to raise money for the maintenance of the square, and it was packed with over 4500 people in the open air event, just elton john, a grand piano, and the night. the last time i saw elton john was when i was still in junior high school and he performed with a full band and numerous costume changes, and i must say, seeing him perform with just his piano is preferable. he stuck to the old stuff, which was good as far as i'm concerned, and though he doesn't hit the same high notes on his recordings of the 70s, but he's still a great performer. needless to say, the setting made it all the more magical.

here are some pics, and special thanks to roberto of nooka italia for arranging the last minute trip to venice! i personally love the backlit foto of the guy with the beard in the first row.

i can write more about venice but i think wikipedia does a better job, but we had a great meal afterwards with great company.

i'd like to write about where you can buy nooka in italia but i'm still waiting for a list from roberto.....

in london now and let me say, gatwick was a nightmare....more on that later perhaps?

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

high school musical spoof...

breaking hollywood news on my blog? it's possible...

i met the lovely and talented marisa lauren at the nooka party at ddc lab in los angeles last month and we've been emailing back and forth since [we are members of each others mutual admiration societies] so i was excited to hear that she's now filming "Private High Musical", a "High School Musical" spoof to be released sometime in 2009. as you know from this blog, i'm more of an indie/alternative guy here but i don't live in a secluded hipster cave – i know that high school musical is hugely popular:)

these are totally unofficial photos from the artist, but make sure to check her page for official updates when they become available. her site is here. and doesn't she look great! she's well on her way to pop stardom i think. note on foto#2, that is a candy cigarette. also, on another note, we are developing a worldtime nooka, but until it is released, you can do what marisa does – wear more than one nooka!

from sunny at HOT rome italia...

nookanooka in rome

Sunday, July 6, 2008

der nookanooka wurde über Berliner Himmel entdeckt

my trip to berlin is winding down. i got to see my friends, do some shopping and visit the holocaust memorial near the newly opened u.s. embassy. last night, after dinner at a beer garden [i drank this thing called berliner weissen which is bright green woodruff syrup in a light wheat beer] i met yuna at platoon, an art organization that does some cool stuff in korea of all places [as well as locally and in europe]. i signed up as a member of their platoon and got a membership dog tag. their website is here. berlin is full of great art spaces and it seems every night is a party right in the museums and galleries . we hit a photo installation on one street and then a dj party at the KW [kunstwerk] after platoon. the dj at KW was amazing but the cops came and made them turn the volume down at midnight.

foto is of a nookanooka near alexanderplatz. next stop...rome!

Thursday, July 3, 2008

nooka loves berlin

day 4 in berlin and i am writing my blog in a laundrymat as i've run out of things to wear, and even though i do love to shop, the weak dollar has made even that thought painful [i am a practical person at heart!]. germany, like scandinavia is a region nooka should be a big star in, but we're having a slow start – so here i is! (i also have friends and godkids here to visit, so it's a great coincidence that our distributor for germania is located here as well)

day one was great! falko picked me up at the airport and took me to my über-chic hotel, the velvet oranienburgerstrasse. we later met up with ben, one of his sales people who is hollywood actor handsome [see foto]. before that though, i spent the whole afternoon trying to find a usb-ethernet adaptor as the hotel does not have wifi [luckily i know my way around berlin, but it was still difficult to find. i thought i had packed mine, but it turned out to be a dvi plug! anyway, bought one only to find out the hotel has problems getting macs online even on ethernet! between caled to NYC and going to a cafe next door, i finally got online. needless to say, there are very few open wifi connections in berlin so my iphone is offline].

we had a great german dinner and discussed strategy. it was very productive to do face to face as we had never met. as nooka is successful in 2 different types of stores and press in the US, it was confusing to how to approach in germany. also, germans like to see a brand on the market for a while before they are comfortable buying. many things to study to fine tune our communications as honestly, as a start-up and a small company, we do not have a full time marketing department to craft brand messages in every language. it's exciting to identify new things to improve though and it seems that the new photography and look book will appeal well to the german fashion market and we may even do a party like the one we did in LA last month here in berlin, but with a more fashion-focus.

i had a wonderful time riding a rental bicyce ALL over [rode one to the laundrymat too!] as like stockholm, berlin is a very biker-friendly city with protected lanes in many of the roads. i got to catch up with friends [actually spent an adfternoon with shinya and yuna for those who know who they are] and see my god kids far a wonderful trip continues. not sure if berlin loves nooka yet, but i sure love berlin.

top pic, falko is wearing the new BKc collab watch, available here and at other fine retailers.