In this contemporary take on architectural watercolors, Nathan Walsh creates hyper-realistic paintings of New York and Chicago. In reality, Nathan selects details from several pencil drawings he does on-site, allowing himself to build " a world from scratch." Each painting takes up to four months to complete and includes an incredible amount of detail and architectural integrity. 

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Once upon a time, New York City was full of decrepit, molding apartments. Then people realized there was really no other place to live - why spend an hour commuting from Brooklyn, or pretending to understand Queens? No. Manhattan was the only option. One by one, old buildings were resuscitated. They were born again as slick, modern and modular homes. Were they still tiny? Yes - but this translated as cosy. Architect Tim Seggerman took on the challenge of this once unfortunate Upper West Side studio. The apartment is a showcase for brilliant woodwork if nothing more, being sculptured from the finest cypress, bamboo, ash and beech.

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It can sometimes be tricky to tell the seasons apart, so renowned artist Philip Haas has made it easy for us. His exhibition entitled Four Seasons includes four large sculptures depicting Winter, Spring, Summer and Autumn. Inspired by the Renaissance-era work of Giuseppe Arcimboldo, Haas has morphed classic portraits into larger-than-life 3D representations. The sculptures are made from plants and other organic material that is truthful to each season. They will stand 15 feet tall in the New York Botanical Gardens from May 18 to October 27, 2013.

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Ever gone swimming in New York's East River or dipped a toe into the Gowanus canal? Let's hope not, because the waters of New York are pretty polluted and will occasionally bring some trash, a whale or a member of the mafia onto our shores. Italian brothers Massimiliano Ercolani and Emanuele Ercolani have designed some conceptual artwork for a New York City water farm. In their vision, the East River could be installed with hydroelectric generators and promote organic farming. I'm not sure why these designers of Rome's DoCK Lab are interested in our water, but it is nice that someone cares.

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In the age of blogs and self-proclaimed street photography, the collected works of a children's nanny might not sound like much. But Vivian Maier (above), was a Chicago nanny who, throughout the 20th century, secretly amassed thousands of prints, hundreds of undeveloped rolls, home movies, and audio interviews. Although no one seems to have known of her considerable talent while she was alive, Maier was an incredible street photographer and collector of strangers and their stories. Her former charges, now well into adulthood, remember that she took them along on expeditions to capture the world outside, although she never revealed how in-depth her work had gotten.

In 2007, the 26 year-old John Maloof uncovered Maier's collected works at an auction house, and paid $380 for a box of prints. Since then, Vivian's presence in the art world has loomed quite large, and her story is being told in a documentary called Finding Vivian Maier. It is expected to be released later in 2013.

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Blackouts are great but they never happen when you want them to. Admit it, you look forward to the beer sipping and card playing under gentle candlelight. The good news is that you don't have to wait for the next power outage to enjoy bringing light home. The designers at Radius present their city skyline candle-holders. They are beautifully designed to display your favorite European city (or New York) as little lights glow from behind.

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Today, Canadian pianist and composer Glenn Gould will be accorded a posthumous Lifetime Achievement Award at the 55th annual Grammy Awards. To mark the occasion, the National Film Board has released two documentary portraits of Mr. Gould produced in 1959.

Glenn Gould - On the Record by Wolf Koenig & by Roman Kroitor, National Film Board of Canada

Glenn Gould - Off the Record by Wolf Koenig & by Roman Kroitor, National Film Board of Canada

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Friday, 01 February 2013 17:05

A Meet Cute in Manhattan: Disney's Paperman


Paperman is a new Oscar-nominated short film from Disney director John Kahrs. In this six minute love story, two Manhattanites fall head over heels for each other and spend the day chasing each other's attention through the busy city streets. A cute and beautifully animated distraction to your day.

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There are many advantages to owning a tiny apartment - less space for clutter, fold-down furniture, and a dense urban world at your doorstep. The appearance of micro-apartments in New York City has been flourishing since rent prices skyrocketed, and these tiny homes would make Mary Norton proud. Alright, so the residents may not be as small as Arrietty, but there is something about these miniature homes that stirs the imagination of interior designers and homeowners everywhere. This exhibition called "Making Room: New Models for Housing New Yorkers" at the Museum of the City of New York celebrates space efficient design at its finest. The reason for the exhibition was the announcement of Bloomberg's micro-unit apartment design contest winner -- a building of 55 apartments ranging from 250 to 370 square feet on East 27th Street in Manhattan.

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There are many New Yorkers who are infatuated with their big and exciting city, sometimes to such an extent that they may experience feelings of desire to hug their surroundings. This is a bad idea. Most of these buildings are extremely dirty. But to express your affection in a cleaner, safer and more private way, you can collect these New York themed plush toys from Oeuf. From a Brownstone to a Pigeon, these cuddle-magnets will bring you warmth and joy when you finally take a rest from the city that never sleeps.

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