When Charlotte Perriand, Le Corbusier, and Pierre Jeanneret premiered their jointly-designed LC4 chaise longue in 1929, the debut was accompanied by controversial publicity photos of Perriand lounging in the chair, sporting an industrial ball necklace, a devil-may-care attitude, what was then considered a short hemline. Now, the pioneering female architect is causing a stir yet again, with a posthumous presence at last week’s Design Miami/ that included a redux of her infamous chair, revamped by none other than Louis Vuitton and Cassina in celebration of what would have been the designer’s 110th birthday. (more…)
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MIAMI — For its second edition, Collective Design Fair is expanding its gallery representation to farther reaches around the globe, architect and Collective founder Steven Learner announced Friday. In 2014, London’s 88 Gallery, Paris’ Galerie BSL, Mexico City’s ADN Galería, L.A. and Seoul’s Gallery SEOMI, New York’s Dienst + Dotter Antikviteter, Stockholm’s Modernity, and Philadelphia’s Moderne Gallery are joining the lineup.
“We [the Collective] all developed a list of galleries that were the best from around the world that would be an amazing mix,” Learner told ARTINFO. “We were all leaning towards a very inclusive approach, so that it wasn’t just the top four French dealers that we’ve all seen.” While Mondo Cane, Ornamentum, R 20th Century, Cristina Grajales, and other founding galleries will be returning, sadly fair favorites Southern Guild are sitting this one out. After a tremendous year for the Johanesburg-based gallery, including showing at Design Miami/Basel and heading the 2014 events of World Design Capital Cape Town, “They asked for a break,” Learner was overheard saying.
The lineup thus far is below, although additions are ongoing. “We’re working on a couple of Italians,” Learner told us.
If you’re not one to get the Christmas shopping done early, Sotheby’s will have plenty of last-minute gifts for you to choose from come December 18, when the auction house hosts its sale of important 20th century design. Among the 136 lots featured in the show, an asymmetrical desk and matching armchair designed by Frank Lloyd Wright for the S.C. Johnson Company offices in 1937 fetch the highest estimates for $400,000-$600,000 and $80,000-$120,000, respectively. Almost as impressive as those high sums is the fact that this particular desk design appears at auction for the first time in 30 years.
“In the United States…design has been kind of neglected or misconstrued as decoration or as an embellishment for a really long time,” Paola Antonelli recently told Australian architect Anthony Burke. As part of her mission to curb the misunderstanding of design as mere frivolity or amusement, the Senior Architecture and Design Curator at MoMA co-founded Design and Violence with Parsons professor Jamer Hunt and MoMA Curatorial Assistant Kate Carmody. Their “curatorial experiment,” as the museum explains the online showcase, considers objects designed after 2001 (that need not be in the museum’s permanent collection) in their capacity as tools of violence, rather than beauty or comfort. Updated weekly with posts from leading scholars, the site will develop into an archive of reflections on the interplay of design and violence, featuring objects both expected and unusual — box cutters, stiletto heels, and the 3D-printed gun, among others, have been written up so far. The site will add “a map of where the physical objects can be found so that you are able to see if any of these objects exist where you live,” Antonelli explained to Disegno in an interview published on Tuesday, adding, “We’re going to do a few events in real life.” Further details about these new features have yet to be released; we’ll leave any speculation about what happens when you locate every single box cutter and stiletto in the vicinity to you. [Disegno]
— Anna Kats
Image via Design and Violence by Jamer Hunt
MIAMI — In a conversation moderated by Serpentine Gallery co-director Hans Ulrich Obrist, Jacques Herzog offered Kanye West his two cents on the hip hop star’s mission to create his own fashion line: When it comes to crossover products, don’t ever put your name on anything.
“After a few seasons, it ends up in the $2 bin, and then you feel very bad,” he said, woefully recalling Herzog & de Meuron’s 2004 Rotterdam perfume.
— Janelle Zara
Image by Janelle Zara
The unpredictable surfaces of Simon and Nikolai Haas’s new tables, laboriously hand-finished in hexagon-shaped brass tiles and placed on giraffe-like legs, are a dynamic centerpiece at Design Miami’s R 20th Century booth. The pieces embody the qualities that have catapulted the Haas Brother’s L.A.-based studio to the forefront of the design world — a high level of craftsmanship; young, high-energy opulence; animalistic hedonism; alluring voluptuousness. In the small details, these tables also show the progress the Haas’s craft has made. The knees and joints of the legs have become more articulated and animal-like, the tiling more refined, almost seamless. Amazingly they were done by hand, according to Simon.
“We’re obsessed with figuring out very difficult things to make,” he told ARTINFO, explaining the studio’s approach. ”We grew up dissatisfied with the pretention surrounding art and the importance given to conceptual art. I really love conceptual art, but I think it’s been played out over and over and over.” In response, he and his brother sought to create art that relied less on high concepts and more on process, creation, and human involvement, jettisoning the distinctions between art and design along the way.
— Janelle Zara
Image by Janelle Zara
ARTINFO spent the better part of last week’s Thanksgiving break in sunny Palm Springs, southern California’s mid-century modern capital and home to several stunning Richard Neutra projects. His Kaufmann House, built in 1946 and restored during the early aughts by architectural historian and former owner Beth Harris, displays the complementary relationship between landscape and architecture for which Neutra has entered the annals of architectural history. Though we couldn’t get a tour of the residence — it’s still privately owned — ARTINFO managed to snap this photo of the driveway, which features the low, horizontal planes that define, too, the geometry of the back facade and backyard.
— Anna Kats
Image by Anna Kats
Fire broke out inside the Simon Bolivar Auditorium of the Oscar Niemeyer-designed 1989 Latin America Memorial building in Sao Paulo, Brazil on Friday, reports the BBC. Though the exterior remains intact, nearly 90 percent of the interior was destroyed by the flames, according to Brazilian newspaper Estadao. (more…)
Stefano Tonchi, W editor-in-chief, “makes industrial design come to life like an opera!” according to Ambra Medda, L’Arco Baleno founder and longtime friend. “I couldn’t do that,” she continued. “He’s amazing.”
Medda had gathered a few luminaries in the worlds of art and design last night at the newly opened Marlton hotel simply to raise their glasses in Tonchi’s honor. There was artist Lorna Simpson seen chatting with architect and Collective Design Fair founder Steven Learner at the bar; one-half of the Snarkitecture team spotted perusing the new Katy Perry cover of W’s Global Style Issue; nightlife impresario André Saraiva keeping mum on Le Baron’s secret Art Basel in Miami Beach pop-up locations; and David Maupin and Damian Kulash, Tonchi’s and Medda’s respective other halves, happily welcoming guests.
“I’ve known Stefano for about a decade,” Medda said, expounding on their friendship. “He’s someone I have always admired and respected. I think he also added glamor to the world of design which was and still is incredibly necessary.” For a look into the glamorous evening, notably the Marlton’s sumptuous interior and many, many finely tailored suits, click the slideshow.
— Janelle Zara
Images courtesy BFA
“I don’t like my work shown in an obvious way,” Brazilian architect Isay Weinfeld told ARTINFO at the opening of Espasso’s “Isay Weinfeld: A to Z,” the first U.S. survey of his 40-year career, timed to coincide with a newly published monograph. Eschewing “models, photos, or drawings, or filling the whole gallery with my work,” Weinfeld opted to use a more dynamic medium: film.