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Happy Fourth! Fun Design Facts to Ponder While You Wait for the Fireworks


Pill Flag,” artist Ray Geary’s prescription for patriotism. (Photo: Jordan Doner)

Happy birthday, USA—you don’t look a day over 200. Before heading out for a day of flag-themed frozen novelties, imported periodicals, and sparklers, lots and lots of sparklers, we assembled this list of a dozen fun facts—all gleaned from recent UnBeige stories—for you to muse upon during your own Fourth of July festivities. Enjoy the holiday!

• Designing brothers Humberto and Fernando Campana grew up in a house filled with crystals, plucked from farms in Brazil by their father, an agronomic engineer.

Kanye West‘s new album, Yeezus, was inspired by a Le Corbusier lamp.

• The Smithsonian’s first crowdfunding campaign is a success, having surpassed the $125,000 goal to back “Yoga: The Art of Transformation,” an upcoming exhibition at the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery in Washington, D.C. (You have until July 8 to donate.)

• You can spend eternity in a dwelling designed by Tom Kundig: the architect has designed a funerary urn.

• The Soviets made some swell notebooks. Rad and Hungry founder Hen Chung told us that Latvian composition books (with “yellowing pages, faded mint covers, and a simple rubber-stamped logo”) are her favorite of the items that have been included in her company’s country-themed cool-tools packs.

• Fashion designer Vera Wang is interested in expanding into athleticwear…or maybe donuts.

• For Le Corbusier, his paintings “were the secret laboratory for his architecture,” according to Jean-Louis Cohen, professor in the history of architecture at New York University’s Institute of Fine Arts

• One of architect Moshe Safdie‘s sons, Oren, studied architecture but is now an accomplished playwright.

• OXO founder Sam Farber, who died last month at the age of 88, chose the company’s name for its graphic versatility: it reads the same horizontal, vertical, upside-down, or backwards.

• Architect and designer Michael Graves‘ favorite food? Peeps.

• “Waku-Doki” is Japanese term that describes the excitement of an adrenalin rush–and the feeling of being behind the wheel of the 2014 Lexus IS at Rockingham Speedway.

Martha Stewart says that she was raised to be “diligent, determined, and orderly.” Also, she names many of her dogs after classical composers.

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