Over 15 years as a journalist, I've edited design, business and arts magazines, swum with sharks, interviewed politicians and artists, and reported on humanitarian issues, sustainable architecture, food and wine. These are a few of my favourite stories.
scandinavian traveler magazine
NOMA's co-founder on the cultural epiphany that led to his New Nordic Food Manifesto, his recent ventures in New York, and how food can be a vehicle for social sustainability. For Scandinavian Traveler's annual food issue.
Designed by architect Richard Naish for his own family, the E-Type House is not a single structure, but three separate two-story pavilions that march upward from the street along a gentle slope, and hold pockets of secluded outdoor space between them to take advantage of the city's mild climate. [Photo: Pippa Drummond].
Hidden away down an almost-secret alleyway surrounded by foxes and birdsong, artist Emily Wolfe’s London home feels delicately removed from the city around it.
After decades as Sydney's unappreciated little sister, the Australian city of Newcastle has undergone a borderline miraculous urban regeneration, adding life and creative dynamism to its quirky seaside charm.
Tucked into a grove of native trees and backing onto a beach, this residence in New Zealand's North island is the most ambitious project to date from local architecture practice Herbst Architects, which is known for its series of elegantly designed, off-grid cabins.
The story of food on this small Greek island is similar to that of a ship on a long sea voyage — a tale of careful husbandry, preservation and wise trading. And it's leading the way for a new school of Greek gastronomy and wine. For Dish magazine.
Dwell & Home New Zealand
Architect Simon Storey had a plot on a street in Echo Park that was just 15 feet wide. His solution, a low-budget mini-tower with four levels, including an outdoor terrace — gave him space to live and work. My original story, for HOME Magazine, was later picked up for publication in Dwell as well.
Located on an unprepossessing and hilly piece of coastal land in Kaiwaka, New Zealand, Nat Cheshire's twin off-grid cabins are simple and effortlessly poetic. They're also a deliberately polemic statement about the country's use of coastal land, and at the time they were completed — and subsequently won the country's highest architectural prize — caused a furore in the national media.
Air NZ + KiaOra Magazine
I documented a roadtrip up the Pacific Coast Highway in words and pictures, from Los Angeles to San Francisco via off-the-beaten track spots in Santa Barbara Wine Country, San Luis Obispo, Big Sur and Oakland.
"I think of the project as a love letter rather than a biography," says designer Bryan Boyer of his restored Ludwig Mies van der Rohe townhouse in Detroit. Indeed, the New York transplant’s take on the Bauhaus master’s legacy, which includes updates like a state-of-the-art kitchen, is more an homage than a reproduction.
Located in upstate New York, this cosy and symmetrical one-bedroom cabin belongs to homewares designer and founder of Thing Industries, Bridie Picot. The prototype "micro-cottage" was carefully placed on a heavily wooded, eight-acre property and built by local design-and-build firm, Catskill Farms, out of largely reclaimed materials, so it already feels like an established part of the landscape.
Every year since I moved to New York in 2012, I've reported for Home on the annual city-wide design festival, an ever-evolving beast that showcases some of the best, worst and most bonkers interior design trends. The 2017 report included installations with a progressive political edge, the millennial rediscovery of 1980s postmodern and what next after "peak pink".
If things had gone according to the plans of Carl G. Fisher, today the quiet, arty fishing town of Montauk would be a northern counterpart to Miami Beach. All that's left is around 80 mock-Tudor houses, hotels and public projects.
The idea of the urban bohemia dates back to 19th-century Paris but, when I was assigned by Virgin Airline's inflight magazine to find five contemporary examples, I was surprised to discover one right outside my window, in the Brooklyn neighbourhood of Bushwick, New York. The four others I covered for the issue — In Bangkok, Sydney, Mexico City and Paris (again) — proved that artists' knack for re-shaping the urban landscape is, indeed, a global phenomenon.
The legendary Louise Fili found her visual voice designing almost 2,000 book covers for Pantheon. Now, her designs for food, wine and restaurants take a similar approach: creating something approachable, real and beautiful.
art quarterly magazine
I was lucky enough to interview one of my favourite living artists, the brilliant and loquacious iconoclast Perry, on his favourite work of art, The Procession to Calvary, by Pieter Bruegel the Elder. Dream job.
Scandinavian Traveler magazine
The photographer, model, UN Ambassador and New York resident on how travelling the world from an early age opened her eyes to both its beauty and injustices. Cover story, Scandinavian Traveler.
The titanic deli sandwich, garlanded with ribbons of hot pastrami or overstuffed with beef brisket or garlicky knoblewurst sausage, is an Old-World recipe wrapped up in a portable New-World format. Created in 1887 and synonymous with Jewish new beginnings in America, it persists long after the heyday of the great Jewish-American cultural institution.
In 2009, Helen Clark became the first female leader of the United Nations Development Programme, after three successive terms as the Prime Minister of New Zealand. For this special Sunday Star-Times cover I story, I met her in New York to talk about her new life with the UN, and weigh up her contribution to New Zealand.
The fascinating story of The Pines, Fire Island's legendary gay enclave, and its idiosyncratic architecture.
Between 2011 and 20014, I reported from the USA on issues relating to the wine industry, covering the devastating effects of Hurricane Sandy on New York wine-makers, Alvaro Siza's winery architecture in the Douro, the journalist and scent-critic Chandler Burr, Julia Child's role in introducing Americans to wine, and the rapidly growing Slovenian wine scene.
On the tiny island off the southern coast of Australia, an eco-conscious architect built an off-the-grid prefab vacation home that combines open-plan living with rugged durability to stand up to an untamed island.