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Behind the Scenes: Mudshark Studios

On a recent trip to Portland, Oregon, I got to tour the production facility for Mudshark Studios, a one-stop shop for developing and producing ceramic objects, with CEO and co-founder Brett Binford. Binford, a well-known ceramicist, is also the owner and curator for the contemporary Eutectic Gallery, located in a storefront attached to the studios.

In their 10,000-square-foot facility (an additional 7,000 square feet upstairs is mostly for mold and gallery storage), Mudshark offers model making, mold making, and production services for projects ranging from custom designed plates for Eleven Madison Park in New York City to lighting fixtures for Portland-based Schoolhouse Electric to technical parts for the aerospace industry. Other clients include Cedar and Moss, Barn Light Electric Co., Rejuvenation, and many more.

After my tour, I couldn’t wait to head back to my friend’s house (ceramicist and painter Nicole Curcio), where I got to spend some time playing around in her pottery workshop. I won’t be showing a photo of my endeavors, but let’s just stay I tried and it wasn’t very good. I think I’ll leave the ceramic making to the experts.

Custom plates for Eleven Madison Park in New York City, which happens to be one of my favorite restaurants.

One of the displays of artistic drinking vessels at the Eutectic Gallery, located in front of Mudshark’s facility. Top row: Tim Kowalczyk and Chayo Wilson; Second row: Clara Lanyi and Allan Kluber; Third row: Kate Westfall and Naomi Clement; Bottom row: Lindsay Oesterritter (Jeff Campana green cup in the middle of her two darker cups) and Perry Haas on the right.

Kilns as far as the eye can see.

Bongs for the modern cannabis accessories maker BRNT. They are based in Canada, where marijuana is now legal.

Lighting pendants for Cedar and Moss, also based in Portland.

Miles of molds.

These hourglass shaped lighting fixtures are Alabax lamps for Schoolhouse Electric.

All photos © Rita Catinella Orrell

Kukka Custom Mirror

Designer Rona Meyuchas-Koblenz was commissioned by London-based Kukka Studio to design make-up mirrors for the mid-century Modern interiors of the new Bankside Hotel that opened late last year on London’s South Bank.

The mirror is made of CNC-milled premium crystal with a base of Ceasarstone’s Pebble natural rock-inspied design in a cool gray shade with subtle darker accents. 200 mirrors were ordered to finish the 161 rooms which include seven suites. The designer chose Ceasarstone because the company encourages up-cycling offcuts wherever possible. “The offcuts from the kitchen fabrication industry mostly come in smaller sizes, therefore I found it logical to find a new way to use these pieces,” says Koblenz. Since the Ceaserstone base is heavy enough to hold the mirror in place, there is no need for adhesives or mechanical fittings. It simply sits securely inside the slot.

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Images @Uri Grun Courtesy Kukka Studio. Photos in situ by Merilin kook.

Artifact Uprising Desktop Calendars

With the end of the year soon approaching, what better time to upgrade that calendar you got last year from your local dry cleaner? These elegant (and affordable) desktop photo calendars by Colorado-based Artifact Uprising can make a nice holiday gift for home or office desks.

Made of solid walnut, the Walnut Desktop Photo Calendar (starting at $30) showcases a dozen of your favorite photos in a year-round display. It features a brass-coated clip and peg stand, making a modern statement.

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The Brass Easel & Calendar (starting at $55) combines a solid brass easel with premium quality papers with your favorite snapshots.

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The Wood Calendar (starting from $25) is handcrafted from reclaimed pine. Artifact Uprising partnered with the non-profit SKCAC — a group that provides jobs for adults with intellectual disabilities — on this design.

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Last but not least, the Solidwool Calendar (starting at $40) is made of a sustainable composite material made from British sheep fleece. Like the others, it features 12 sheets with custom images.

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All images courtesy of Artifact Uprising.

Lyd Water Bottle Automatically Opens When It Touches Your Lips

The Lyd Bottle‘s integrated smart lid opens at the touch of the user’s lips, closing once they’ve finished. The technology, along with Lyd’s 360-degree access design, allows users to enjoy their beverage of choice with a one-handed motion.

Lyd’s specialized vacuum flask interior keeps beverages hot or cold for up to eight hours. The bottle comes equipped with wireless charging and charges fully in four hours with a charge lasting for up to two weeks. Should the battery run low, users can still access their drink with a manual click of the lid. The Lyd comes in two sizes: 13 ox. and 17 oz. You can order one by making a $39 pledge on the company’s kickstarter here – they already have raised $110,424 out of their $30,000 goal.

Images courtesy of Lyd.