Most Beautiful Items: February 7 - 14, 2014

After a week of snow melts into disgusting slush, you could say that things are very much the opposite of beautiful in New York this Friday evening. But you don't have to look outside to get your fix of good lookin' things. We've got plenty to sate your appetite right here, from the worlds of art, design, architecture, and more.


Why Olympic Mascots Are Always So Goddamn Creepy

Most Beautiful Items: February 7 - 14, 2014

Every two years, the world takes part in a figurative dance that's been decades in the making. First, it's the iconic passing of the torch. Then, an epic, national-pride-filled opening ceremony. And, finally, it's the moment we've all been waiting for. The holiest and most timeless of Olympic traditions: It's time to mock the mascots.


Proof that drones will completely change the way everyone makes movies

I don't know if it's the The Verve's Bitter Sweet Symphony or the slow twisting motion of the quadcopter's descent, but I really love this first scene from Viktor Mirzoyan's aerial video over a beige Washington D.C.


Time-lapse: The hypnotizing superstorms of the Great Plains

The Great Plains of the United States. Some of the most breathtaking landscapes on Earth happen over this vast land. Often, their beauty is on their skies, as these territories are the stage of some of the the most incredible thunderstorms and supercells in the world.


The New Museum's Soviet Spaceship Is A Wasted Opportunity

Most Beautiful Items: February 7 - 14, 2014

Back in 1963, a Czech sci-fi film called Ikarie XB-1 told an epic story—set 200 years in the future—of an eponymous spaceship that went in search of a mysterious, unknown planet. This month, the fateful spacecraft has been recreated on the top floor of NYC'sNew Museum.


Listen to Hieronymus Bosch's 500-Year-Old Butt Song From Hell

Most Beautiful Items: February 7 - 14, 2014

In any other painting, a naked butt tattooed with a musical score would be the first thing you'd notice. But it's just another detail in Hieronymus Bosch's masterpiece, The Garden of Earthly Delights—which explains why it's taken someone 500 years to try to play it.


Dumb Starbucks Wasn't Dumb Enough

Most Beautiful Items: February 7 - 14, 2014

The first thing I thought of when I heard about Dumb Starbucks was the movie Idiocracy.


This Man Built A Colorful Mountain In The Desert With His Bare Hands

Most Beautiful Items: February 7 - 14, 2014

The only color in the landscape for miles, Salvation Mountain looms like a mirage on the horizon. The three-story, three-decade work of artist Leonard Knight, who died yesterday at the age of 82, is a piece of brightly painted, hand-sculpted California desert, like an impossibly scaled cathedral made from Play-Doh.


Sochi's Giant Pinscreen Wall Is Hypnotic in Action

Most Beautiful Items: February 7 - 14, 2014

British architect Asif Khan's MegaFace art installation was teased well before the athletes had even arrived in Sochi. But now that the Winter Olympics are well under way, we've finally got footage of the giant automated pinscreen in action—and it's even more awesome than we'd hoped.


How a Simple Fabric Pattern Uplifted a Post-War Finland

Most Beautiful Items: February 7 - 14, 2014

In the years after World War II, most of Europe was devastated, both physically and financially. From this drab reality, one country began producing bright, technicolor textiles, including a print which bolstered its economy, created national pride, and ended up becoming one of the most beloved and recognizable patterns in the world.


Escape Your Winter Nightmare In These Five Perfect Dream Houses

Most Beautiful Items: February 7 - 14, 2014

If you're somehow not sick of winter yet, then you're sick of hearing other people complain about it. And there's at least another month of this crap in our future. So sit back, relax, and let Jesus Diaz take you on a calming ride through the world's best beach houses.


12 Buildings Nominated For the Year's Best Design

Most Beautiful Items: February 7 - 14, 2014

A cemetery in Sweden. A floating school in Nigeria. A cast-iron facade in the UK. The wildly divergent list of nominees for the Design Museum's annual awards make you wonder: How the hell do you pick a single building to represent such a broad profession?


Tomorrow's Spacecraft Could Be Made of the Same Bone You Are

Most Beautiful Items: February 7 - 14, 2014

Human bones are amazing—seriously, they're incredibly cool—but up until recently, it's been hard to engineer a synthetic material that replicates the super-strong structure of the real thing. Now, scientists in Germany are using a 3D printer to do just that—and it could mean a breakthrough for how we build everything from architecture to spacecraft.


The New High Line for Queens Could Include This Human Roller Coaster

Most Beautiful Items: February 7 - 14, 2014

If you could build your own High Line, what would it look like? That's the question the QueensWay Project, an effort to turn an abandoned stretch of railway in Queens into an elevated pedestrian and bike path, recently asked designers to answer. Some of the winners announced today are truly wild.