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And That's A Wrap, Folks. Here's What Mattered To You In 2013.

Here's how the world 'searched' in 2013, broken down by categories, courtesy of... Google, of course. These are based on search topics with the largest global search volume.

Trends:                    People:

Events:                    Athletes:

Consumer Electronics:  Hashtags:

Movies:                    Performing Artists:

TV Shows:                YouTube Videos:

And here's how the U.S. searched in the categories that really mattered:

Apparel:                   Beer:

Books:                     Blogs:

Cars:                       Dating Sites:

Deaths:                   Dogs:

Internet Animals:     High Fashion Brands:

Memes:                   Movies:

Popular Gifs:            Reality TV Stars:

Restaurants:            Shoes:

Songs:                    Sports:

Tech Gadgets:          Toys:

TV Shows:               Video Games:

What Is...:               Workouts/Exercise:

I hope your 2013 was everything you wanted it to be and that 2014 is even better. Happy New Year!

What Ballers Are Drinking Tonight: Moët's $6200 Luxury Leopard Methuselah Of Rosé Champagne.

As you're toasting the new year tonight with your $20 bottle of champagne from the local liquor outlet, the hip crowd at the most exclusive night clubs and a select number of the elite (or perhaps, extravagant) will be sipping something from a bottle they don't dare to trash once it's empty.

Moët & Chandon Nectar Rose has presented 60 huge fancy schmancy bottles of bubbly - the Luxury Leopard Methuselah: a six liter bottle (the equivalent of eight regular sized bottles) hand-decorated with 22 carat gold leaf.

The majestic six-liter bottle of Moët & Chandon Nectar Impérial Rosé Leopard Luxury Edition's exterior is finely covered in a luxurious layer of 22 carat golden leaves, delicately adorned with the design of the leopard's noble rosettes:

For this new coat, Moët & Chandon called upon the expertise of renowned French jewelers and engravers Arthus-Bertrand.

Only 60 bottles were produced worldwide, a rarity available only in the most select nightclubs or through Sherry-Lehmann Wine & Spirits in New York for $6,200.

Moët Nectar Impérial Rosé distinguishes itself by its extravagant fruitiness and delightfully crisp finish. The refined and sophisticated richness of Nectar Impérial Rosé is a champagne crafted to please the senses.

Moet & Chandon

Price $6200 USD
Buy it here 

Whatever you're drinking, here's to a Happy 2014 with love from If It's Hip, It's Here.

You Thought Packing Tape Was For Shipping Boxes, But Mark Khaisman Proves Otherwise.

Artist Mark Khaisman, originally from the Ukraine and now based in Philadelphia, uses packing - or packaging - tape in a very different manner than you do. Applying layers of 2" wide translucent and clear packing tape to backlit panels, he uses the play of shadow, depth, shape and color to create images of objects, portraits, patterns or motifs and the re-creation of movie and film noir stills. The results are reminiscent of digitized or pixelated photos, only with a depth and tactile quality that is unique to his work.

above: Tape Noir_72, 2012, Packaging tape on acrylic panel with translucent resin light box, 20.5 x 27 x 6 inches (52 x 68.5 x 15.2 cm)

The artwork with the lights off, compared to when it is illuminated from behind, is quite a transformation:

Here are some more wonderful examples of his work from various categories over the past few years.


Birkin Girl 2, 2013:

above: Packaging tape on acrylic panel with translucent resin light box, 27 x 40 x 6 inches (68.5 x 101.6 x 15.2 cm)

Faberge Egg 2, 2013:

above: Packaging tape on acrylic panel with translucent resin light box, 20.5 x 27 x 6 inches (52 x 68.5 x 15.2 cm), Private Collection

Antique Serapi Rug 1 and Antique Serapi Rug 3 (two different pieces), 2012:

above: Packaging tape on backlit polyester film , 100 X 58 inches (254.00 X 147.32 cm) and Packaging tape on backlit polyester film , 96 X 48 inches (244.00 X 122.00 cm)

image at the top:
Birkin Girl 5, 2013, Packaging tape on acrylic panel with translucent resin light box
27 x 40 x 6 inches (68.5 x 101.6 x 15.2 cm), shown with lights off and on


Motif 2013.1, 2013:

above: Packaging tape on acrylic panel with steel light box, 48.5 x 36.5 x 6 inches (123.2 x 92.7 x 15.2 cm)

Motif 2013.3, 2013:

above: Packaging tape on acrylic panel with steel light box, 48.5 x 36.5 x 6 inches (123.2 x 92.7 x 15.2 cm)

Film Stills

James and Ursula #1, 2013

above: Packaging tape on acrylic panel with translucent resin light box, 40.5 x 27 x 6 inches (103 x 68.5 x 15.2 cm)

James and Ursula #3, 2013:

above: Packaging tape on acrylic panel with translucent resin light box, 40.5 x 27 x 6 inches (103 x 68.5 x 15.2 cm)

Tape Noir Glimpse 47, 2012:

above: Packaging tape on acrylic panel with steel light box, 48.5 x 36.5 x 6 inches (123.2 x 92.7 x 15.2 cm)

Killer's Kiss (007), 2010:

above: Packaging tape on acrylic panel with translucent resin light box, 20.5 x 27 x 6 inches (52 x 68.5 x 15.2 cm), Private collection, USA


Barbara, 2012:

above: Packaging tape on backlit acrylic panel, 26.5 X 20 inches (67.31 X 50.80 cm), NBC Collection

Alfred, 2012:

above: Packaging tape on backlit acrylic panel, 26.5 X 20 inches (67.31 X 50.80 cm), NBC Collection

Images of his work on display:

The Artist:

above: Mark and his wife Elena stand in front of His Antique Serapi Rugs made of packaging tape at Miami in 2012 (image courtesy of Facebook)

Mark explains his work as follows:

My works are pictorial illusions formed by light and shadow. Tape allows for images that communicate what I'm interested to do in a very direct way. My medium consists of three elements: translucent packing tape, clear acrylic or film panels, and light. By superimposing layers of translucent tape, I play on degrees of opacity that produces transparencies highlighted by the color, shading, and embossment (sic). There are some qualities of tape that make it unique for me as an art material: its banality, humbleness and its “throwaway” nature; its default settings of color and width; its unforgiving translucency; the cold and impersonal attitude that tape surface suggests.

I apply a stripe of translucent tape on a clear backlit panel, and if I don't like it, I peel it off. If I peel off less frequently than apply, a chance is that an image emerges. The whole process is reminiscent to the red room photo development in the pre-digital era, in a way, as my hands do the job, and my mind is witnessing the appearance of the image, then the only concern becomes to not under - or overdevelop it. Though I try not to lose control completely, I am not aware of every move I am taking, so by the time the piece is done, I don't exactly know how it has happened, so I feel compelled to start a next image to make sure that I can do it again.

Layering tape, and even peeling it off, gives me a strange satisfaction. The only explanation for it I can offer comes from the Eastern cultural perception of the self as an onion, according to which if you peel off the outer layers of the onion you find more layers underneath. It makes you want to peel off more, and more, and more to find the pit, but when you finally peel it off to the very last layer you are left with nothing. I do it in reverse, but the feeling that it is only the different direction of the same process feels liberating.

I think that my art may be dabbed as post-digital, because although it has been inspired by the pre-digital movie media and developed in the context of digital pixels, it bypasses virtual reality finding itself in the blizzard combination of light, disposable plastic, and calculated rhythms of imaginable music all holding together with the stuck familiarity of random cultural references.

As soon as I pick up a 2-inch tape and start blocking the light streaming through the Plexiglas screen in attempt to render the image, the abstract field of intersections occurs. It consists of lighter and darker polygons with different lengths and angles of sides, which I refer to as “pixels”. To be immersed in the field of their vibrations and never loose photographical realism of an image woven into the fabric of rhythmic scores and luring into deception that image is all there is, is just too much fun. My goal can be roughly put into three subtasks, which are managing the scale, figuring out the ratios, and controlling intensity of light.

Light has a well-known affect of dispersing in geometrical cones, so that the greater the distance from the light opening the larger it seems. I play with the size of openings, placing the lighter and smaller ones next to the wider and darker to create contrast.

The tape is the message. A parody on Marshall McLuhan’s famous quote could explain the superficial motives, which make up the work. Subjects are categorized into different groups: fragmented stills from classic cinema, iconic objects from art history, portraits. The works are exploring the familiar as our shared visual history; made of a familiar material formed into a familiar image, asking the viewer to recognize and complete the work, stimulating both memory and interpretation in the process.

Mark Khaisman

In the USA, Mark is represented by Pentimenti Gallery
In CANADA, at Galerie LeRoyer
In KOREA, at Gallery YEH
In SPAIN at the Ampersand Foundation PF

images © and courtesy of Mark Khaisman and Pentimenti Gallery

Ring In The New Year With The $3000 Bottle Of Bubbly Wrapped In Carbon Fiber: Cuvée Carbon Champagne.

As this time of year rolls around, I like to point out unusual, highly exclusive vintages and bottles of Champagne. Having exposed you to the fabulously fun and bizarre Zarb Champagne, the Prestige Cuvées of Goût de Diamants (Taste of Diamonds), and the celeb-favorite Angel Champagne, it's time to turn you onto the elegant and luxurious Devravry House's Carbon Cuvée Champagne, a bit of bubbly clad in a carbon fiber wrapped bottle, costing $3000 a pop.

The House of Devavry started in 1946 with Bertrand Devavry. Jean Loup, following his footsteps, while adding his personal touch, keeps on creating his wines solely from the “cuvée” (the “vintage”) using a traditional wine press without going for the malolactic fermentation in order to preserve the quality, vivacity and better aging of his wines.

Alexandre Mea-Devavry, the youngest son of Bertrand and Gisele Devavry, inspired by the legacy of his family and his culture of striving to the best at all times, created from the best vines located on the famous slopes of the Champagne region the Cuvee Carbon.

With a wine created from only the best grapes in the Grand and Premier cru rated vineyards, and superb vines located on the famous slopes of the Champagne region, the House of Devavry has both the know how and the experience.

Carefully kept in their cellars with rigorous measures to assure the best aging possible, all the conditions are reunited to guarantee the finest quality that is the standard of the Devravry House since the beginning.

The Grapes:
A clever mix of the greatest grapes from the Côte des Blancs chardonnay and the Marne Valley Pinot Noir gives it a subtle mixture of strength and finesse, elegance and structured freshness.

The Magic of Carbon vintage is the result of complex and harmonious association of these two grapes comprised of up to 80% Chardonnay and 20% Pinot Noir.

Vines Avize, Chouilly, Oger make up the Chardonnay grape. Located on the Kingdom of the Côte des Blancs, synonymous with delicacy and finesse but also highly accurate in its purity, a character that remains a beautiful presence in the mouth.

For the Pinot noir grape, the vineyards of Ay are selected : brilliant power and consistency to develop its specific aroma of red fruits.

The Bottle Design:

As the most precious jewels should be protected in the most beautiful cases, Alexandre Mea taught that the valuable heritage that his family passes from generation to generation was meant to be kept in an iconic bottle.

Therefore he thought that the Carbon would both keep the wine safe from alteration and give to the container the prestige that deserves the Cuvée. Which lead him to create this bottle, embodiment of the family’s philosophy.

Well known for its qualities of lightness and strength, Carbon is a highly sought after material and courted by the best designers who strive to innovation in their creations.

Each bottle is unique and bears the signature of the craftsman, a true artist. The achievement of each bottle requires six days of work before receiving therein the precious nectar of the Cuvée.

For every moment of joy and type of meal, Cuvée Carbon is perfect accompaniment, with a collection of different champagnes having each one their own character. Vintage 2006, Vintage Rosé 2005 and Blanc de Blancs

•Vintage 2006 - The original and most famous of the collection, there is no type of festivity that doesn’t suit perfectly with this bottle.

•Vintage Rosé 2005 - Exquisite with Salmon, Poultry, Game and even red fruits based desserts.

•Blanc De Blanc - Great as appetizer, with light hors-d’oeuvre, seafood, or fish.

above: Available in Magnum (1,5L), Jéroboam (3L), Nabuchodonosor (15L), and Melchizedek (30L)

Carbon Cuvée Champagne

A Doctor AND A Lawyer? I'm Gonna Need A Cold Shower. Introducing Porn4Jews.

Lately, there have been so many wonderful things shared by my friends on Facebook, I can hardly keep up. Here's one that will make any self-respecting, matzoh-munching Jew (and goyishe friends thereof) giggle, assuming you have a sense of humor.

The tumblr site, Porn4Jews - 5,000 years of tradition. 5,000 years of sexy, is a tongue in cheek collection of memes that play off on the cultural stereotypes*, clichés and traditions most often associated with Judaism.

Created by New York based writer/director/filmmaker/actress 23 year old Sarah Rosen, the site, which is barely a month old, has been featured on HuffPo as something even your Bubbe can appreciate.

above: Sarah, herself, appears in some of the memes

Owning real estate, attending therapy, earned doctorates and law degrees, food.... these are the things that make Jews hot under the Tallit.

The Huffington Post article reports that the models are all Jewish friends of Sarah's from a variety of backgrounds. One is an Israeli fimmaker at NYU, one is a Russian actor/model, some are old friends, or people that attended Yale University with her.

"I first came up with the idea after reading that PEW study in the NY Times that basically said that American Jews are assimilating more and identifying as Jewish less. My own Jewishness has always been really important to me, and the idea for Porn4Jews came from my wanting to humorously celebrate that."

above: Sarah Rosen, the brainchild of Porn4Jews

Sarah tells HuffPo that an unexpected bonus of the project was the formation of a community bonding over the blog's making. Together, with the models and photographer, Philadelphia-based Tom Stokes, Sarah was able to bring people together with dirty jokes about dreidels, the Torah, Birthright and more.

"It's also been really cool seeing how Jews from all over (France, Canada, Israel) relate to the blog and find it funny... We had a blast taking the photos -- it was a very collaborative process. Everyone was pitching captions, trying to find the funniest one."

They are accepting submissions and have plans to publish a book.

See more at Porn4Jews

*And no, being cheap is not a stereotype amongst Jews - that's a mean one made up by bitter, poor non-jews.

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