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Issue # 6
Archive stories

cover Apartamento Magazine issue #6

Autumn/Winter 2010-2011

Featuring: Carl Johan De Geer, Paz de la Huerta, Leon Ransmeier, 6a Architects, Anders Edström, Ramdane and Victorie Touhami, Felisa Pinto, Herrenstein, Gosha Rubchinskiy, Paul Schiek, Coming to a boil, Outdoor living and cactus misfits, Les Nouïes, Island of calvary, Leopoldo Pomés, Today’s home, Charlie Koolhaas. Plus: Kinder, an everyday life kids supplement curated by Benjamin Sommerhalder with a coloring book by James Jarvis, an interview with Tomi Ungerer, a feature by Yukari Miyagi & kids’ activity pages by Miranda July.


  • A conversation chaired by Jonathan Olivares New York City: Benjamin Pardo, Director of Design at Knoll, Mark Wasiuta, architect and theorist teaching at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation, and Masamichi Udagawa, partner of the industrial, interface and interaction design firm Antenna, met at Benjamin’s New York City apartment to discuss the effect...

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  • Youth prophet of the suburbs Moscow: Gosha Rubchinskiy is 26. He’s an average Muscovite who lives in one of the city suburbs in a huge Soviet blockhouse called ‘Khrushchyovka’. Buildings like this were built between the ‘60s and the ‘80s, and they still exist all over Russia and ex-Soviet countries including East Germany. Low ceilinged (around 250cm),...

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  • Conversation with Enric Ruiz Geli and Ekhi Lopetegi Sometimes things get complicated and don’t happen quite as we’d planned. This clearly depends upon the variables that you interact with. In this case holding a conversation with Enric Ruiz Geli has been more confusing than expected, to the point that when you get to talk to...

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  • Concept by Ana Dominguez & Omar Sosa Retouching by Daniel Ciprian            

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  • Steph MacDonald & Tom Emerson London: 6a is the name of the practice run by the architect couple Steph MacDonald and Tom Emerson. It is also the address of their office and home on Orde Hall Street in Holborn, North London which they share with their 11 year old son Laurie. The two spaces are reached...

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  • Wall Street shack New York City: Leon Ransmeier is a young American industrial designer that has made quite a name for himself designing utilitarian objects, such as doormats, dish racks, lampshades, heaters, and humidifiers. He has been unafraid to take on un-glamorous but essential products transforming them so they can actually fit in with the rest...

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  • The cosmopolitan witness Buenos Aires: Felisa Pinto, in the year approaching her 80th birthday, maintains the vitality, happiness, rage, uncertainty and curiosity of her youth. Muse and magnet for artists, of an autodidactic nature and innate elegance, this Argentinian culture journalist is an untiring generator of human and necessary projects. She defines herself as a rare...

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  • A romanticist modernist Stockholm: Carl Johan De Geer is, at the age of 72, one of the most established visual artists in Sweden. Strangely enough he still keeps an outsider’s perspective on life. Born in Canada into an aristocratic Swedish family of diplomats and members of parliament, young Carl Johan moved to Copenhagen, Brussels and Warsaw before...

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  • I live in a converted paper mill on Hackney Road, East London. Tucked away across the street there’s a City Farm, complete with chickens and goats and guinea pigs, and teeming with toddlers over the weekends coming to pet them and run amuck. The Farm’s restaurant (serving up home-grown salads and herbs but not its...

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  • The beauty of frogs’ legs Cork: Let’s see: one rowing man, made out of a discarded sardine can; one birthday drawing for author colleague Ingrid Noll, showing her sitting at a typewriter with a skeleton dictating behind her; one drawing of a couple dancing tango; one crossword puzzle in the International Herald Tribune; and one song...

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  • Outdoor living and cactus misfits Rotterdam: Frank Bruggeman is an artist/designer, widely acclaimed for his oeuvre of blue objects. He frequently works with plants. For him, nature is an essential precondition for life. I visited him at his home/studio in Rotterdam on a warm summer’s day. What do you enjoy about living in a former school?...

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  • Angelika Unverhau has a collection of 221,357 ballpoint pens from 146 different countries. Niek Vermeulen owns 5,468 airline sickness bags from 1,065 different airlines. The largest collection of toy penguins belongs to Birgit Berends, a German lady who owns 5,098 different items. I have a collection of a single mineral. And I couldn’t be more...

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  • I drew the blinds on June When they told me you were in the park With Another. Tempted to hide beneath the ledge And spy out the swings in dark glasses I hibernated instead As the pavement sweat outside In the heat wave I played records inside Danced with bare feet and water in my...

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  • My boyfriend and I have always shared a long distance relationship. He had his own set of keys to my apartment, and could come and go as he pleased, but he never actually lived here. His toothbrush resided next to mine in the cup on the edge of the bathroom sink and yet any mail...

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  • Our past is not something we can choose to leave behind. It guides our hands and sways our gaze, it is our blood and tears and bliss. Paint chip trails and ghost images are left behind in abandoned places, lived in to death and to pieces. Every life leaves an imprint. Plants shoot out roots...

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  • The idea of more space, more room and a more organized studio sounds great. And it is, in theory and in the long run, but in the immediate present, there is something unsettling about it. After working from home for so long, opening a new store/studio space took some getting used to. It just wasn’t...

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  • Paz De La Huerta is beautiful, impossibly cute, tempestuous, and candid. It’s disarming. When I meet her, she’s got her hair piled up in a leftover style from the night before, no doubt one of the many premiere events she’s been attending. This 26 year old innocent is very accomplished as an actress, and has...

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  • Text by Enrique Giner de los Ríos

    My uncle Pedro

    My uncle Pedro left Chile at the end of the ‘60s on a Greek ship. Despite being a minor and living in a small city like Santiago, he had already lived a full life. He wasn’t interested in politics and he was indifferent to the suggestions of a socialist utopia. He devoted his time to...

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  • Island of Calvary, as an islander called it. Wild and beautiful, inhabited by a strong nature, which defends it by external aggressions. Only when you are there, from time to time, you can perceive this sensation. Here, air, water and even fire manifest themselves as the true fury of the elements. When the wind shifts...

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  • Spending summer holidays on the Italian coast, devoting my time mostly to cooking after a hectic spring at work with my new design practice, I got absorbed into Cedric Price’s writings whom I found out to be into food, too. Comparing food and architecture, Price is not the only important designer with culinary references. Wasn’t it...

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  • Friends of mine, a couple and their daughter, Ulrike, Bernd and Luzy, invited me and some other friends to stay for some days in their country house in Herrenstein, a small village 94km north of Berlin, which they bought about two years ago and which they would fix carefully up step by step. We arrived at the house in...

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  • ‘Early man had to build with readily available local materials—canes and grasses, leaves and twigs. From these pliant and insubstantial materials he had to create a relatively permanent and structurally rigid unit’. (Di Lloyd Kahn, Shelter, by Shelter Publications, California, 1973) I’m guessing that if you were ever a kid, you have built (or helped...

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  • What is the life of objects after they have fulfilled their utilitarian duties? After they have met the unexpected needs of the fickle buyer? For a lot of contemporary culture paraphernalia (namely plastic), life goes on, albeit at the dump. Plastic’s longevity is precisely what makes the material, environmentally speaking, so polemic, and yet in...

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  • Text by Victoire and Ramdane Touhami

    africamento

    Photography from the personal archive of Agnes Chemetov, Victoire and Ramdane Touhami In April 2008, we set off for Tangier. The initial plan was to stay there for one year. I knew nothing about the city, but Ramdane had a good feeling that we would be happy there. One evening in June, together with Noor, I...

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  • Tiphaine de Lussy’s childhood summers would begin with the sight of an exotic bird’s tail. Waking up at her grandparents’ chateau in a room shared with her brother and one of her nine cousins, the first morning’s glimpse of the original 19th century bird and flower wallpaper would remind her of the holidays. In the...

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  • Five years ago, when I moved to China I rented this apartment in City 21 Millenium; a residential housing project in the heart of old Guangzhou, that overlooks the river of this massive pink and green city that is always covered in a purple tinged pollution cloud—a sign of continuous productivity from the province’s 800,000...

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  • I’ve lived in Tokyo since 2004 with my wife Yoshiko and our two children.  For the first few years I had quite a difficult time trying to adjust and I spent a lot of time alone or in Japanese class. The classes were hard and not that fun—not like learning French or English, those classes...

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  • The left side of the omelette Before Catalan design, and long before Catalan design became that uncomfortable name which we try to shake off at the sight of Mao necklines, frameless glasses and untreated wood, there was Leopoldo Pomés (Barcelona, 1931). Photographer, creative advertiser, film-maker, restaurateur; and art, design and photography catalytic visionary. A figure of...

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