sue austin’s wheelchair: ‘re-envisioning the familiar’

(Video link here.) When Sue Austin got a power chair 16 years ago after an extended illness, she felt a tremendous sense of freedom — yet others looked at her as though she had lost something. ‘Limitation’, ‘fear’, ‘pity’, ‘restriction’ were the words people used when they tried to imagine using a power chair.  I was…

Read More

good idea: an ipad on a fridge door

fridge + duct tape + tablet-or-phone…. A strangely swell idea, low on style (though it sure beats those ugly water dispensers.) It reminded us of the great video Jesse Rosten made showing how-to secure an ipad to just about anything using velcro, possibly a slightly more elegant and practical solution to the one above. We could see…

Read More

skipping as exercise (we dare you to try it)

(Video link here.) The other day I was in the park across the way doing my ad-hoc workout while listening to the great Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan’s My Heart, My Life on my iPhone.  (Click to listen while you read.)  There was NO WAY I couldn’t dance to that music. Suddenly skipping seemed like the rhythmically perfect move to make.…

Read More

gary snyder ‘don’t… be victimized by your lesser talents’

We were reading a packed-full-of-revelations1992 interview with poet Gary Snyder when we came across this amazing, of-the-cuff line. What a concept!  The context is his answer to the question about whether he’d work as Secretary of the Interior or other political post if asked: I’ve never thought seriously about that question. Probably not, although I am foolish…

Read More

‘yes to all’

It’s amazing how good this sign makes us feel. via uncopy Related posts: ‘yes yes yes yes…oh..oh…oh.. yes yes’ (nora ephron) what happens if you say ‘yes, and…’ (instead of ‘no’)? salvador dali says ‘yes’ to everything ‘there is no such word as “no”‘

Read More

breakfast pizza: how ideas come from visual associations

(Video link here.) The first 20 seconds of this wacky video illustrates an essential tenet of improvisation – especially in cooking: the associations of ideas in your field of vision. Here, a classic breakfast next to a frozen pizza sparks the brilliant idea of a breakfast pizza. For us, it’s lead to the discovery that…

Read More

monday morning wonder: dig these birds of paradise!

(Video link here.) Photographer Tim Laman and ornithologist Ed Scholes journeyed into the remote jungles of New Guinea in search of crazy dazzling Birds of Paradise, whose wondrous plumage is the result of some wild evolutionary development.…improvisation. Says Scholes: The Birds of Paradise represent one of those singular events of evolution that stand out, that…

Read More

ladders as pot racks in wood or copper (diy)

Recently, Design Sponge featured the three-level Copenhagen apartment of  Camilla Ebdrup, half of the Danish duo behind LuckyBoySunday, and her husband, photographer Andreas Stenmann.  Their style is a mix of modern and vintage, with many items foraged from the nearby canals, where interesting items are washed in from the sea.  We especially loved the wooden ladder…

Read More

maurice sendak on aging, seeing, loss and living

(Video link here.) One of the very best things in the New York Times’ recent The Lives They Lived was a clip from Terry Gross’ last interview with Maurice Sendak;  Chrisopher Niemann’ found and illustrated it. It is full of achingly tender, wise words from the 80-year-old Sendak: There’s something I’m finding out as I’m…

Read More

About Improvised Life’s Laboratory

Improvised Life’s LABORATORY is a space where we experiment with all sorts of ideas for home and daily living. It’s transformation from homely, vin ordinaire apartment to a clean-lined loft-like space has been a lesson in seeing through the surface to the bones beneath, and envisioning possibilities. It started with a renovation and carried over into problem-solving…

Read More

Posts navigation