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Posts Tagged ‘Stephanie Murg’

So, I, Um, Don’t Know How to Say This…But I’m Leaving You

Uh oh. You already know something’s up because I’m not writing in the third person, huh? But I assure you, it’s not you (and it’s not we), it’s me. Exactly two years ago today, Steve and I took the UnBeige reins, and as you may know, two years is practically a lifetime in blog-years. I decided that this was as good a time as any to make a change, a decision that was only slightly influenced by the fact that this is the very same night that Lost returns to television (8/7pm Central).

Over the last two years my life has changed in ways that I can’t begin to explain in what I hope will be a short and sweet post. I’ve traveled all over the country, met my heroes, and hopefully, introduced you to a few worthy people and causes along the way. When I started at UnBeige I was terrified by this big scary design world that, frankly, I didn’t know nearly enough about. Now I look over there at that blogroll and I see a list of my dearest friends.

Thanks to the dearest of all those new friends, Steve Delahoyde, and that’s saying a lot since we have still never met in person. Steve is such an effortlessly funny human being–he is the only person in the world I can count on for a solid laugh at 7am–and I will miss being his partner in crime. But I would never have felt comfortable leaving if it wasn’t for one Stephanie Murg, who has leapt into this role with grace and wit. Thanks to my wonderful boyfriend Keith Scharwath, who provided me with so much support, advice and good tips that thanking him every time would have made it seem like he was writing this blog instead. Thank you to Jen Bekman and Eva Hagberg, who left gigantic, like, size 12EEE shoes to fill. Huge thanks to both Bryn Mooth and Taffy Brodesser-Akner, who recommended me for the gig in the first place. And to Laurel Touby, who has always been a big inspiration to me, but especially when she sold mediabistro.com for $23 million freaking dollars.

Finally, thank you to everyone out there who read this over the years, all 15 of you, even though four of you are my immediate family members and read this blog even though you have no idea what I’m talking about. I have absolutely no clue what I’m doing next (although I’m fairly certain you won’t find me anywhere near a computer for the next week or two), but you can always find out what I’m up to at my personal blog, Gelatobaby. And if you want to be kept abreast of my situation, just drop me a line at getthescoop AT gelatobaby.com. I’m sure we’ll meet again.

Love, Alissa

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And Then There Were Three: Welcome to Stephanie Murg

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Being the dedicated and diligent UnBeige readers that you are, certainly you’ve noticed more than a few posts lately by a woman scribe with an eye for design and a nose for news. Today, as you can see over there in that little column to the right, Stephanie Murg has joined the UnBeige ranks as contributor. Here’s a little more about the fabulous Ms. Murg:

Stephanie Murg is a New York-based writer and art consultant whose work has appeared in such publications as ARTnews and Smithsonian. In her art consulting practice, she advises clients on collecting modern and contemporary art and design and the dynamics of the international art market. Her interests lie at the nexus of art, design, fashion, and capital markets.

For all of you heading out to the National Design Awards tomorrow, Stephanie will be making her grand debut covering the festivities at the Cooper-Hewitt, so if you see her there, be sure to give her the usual UnBeige welcome. (That’s three tequila shots and a hug, in case you forgot.)

Victore’s Plate Gets Fuller, Rubino Kills Animals

For those not stuffing themselves with cake last night in celebration of mb.com’s boa models, the place to be in NYC was the Art Directors Club. And that’s exactly where our Stephanie Murg was.

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Designers James Victore and Chris Rubino headlined the third in ADC’s series of four Adobe-sponsored “Young Guns” events. The pair kept the crowd amused and riveted by discussing some of their DIY-flavored projects and how they relate to their client work.

Cliche-clobbering Victore hinted that he’s close to a deal to produce plates featuring his designs with Royal Tichelaar Makkum, the Dutch ceramics firm that has collaborated with the likes of Hella Jongerius. The venture would build upon a series of recent Victore plate exhibitions (at venues including Design with Reach and The Future Perfect) that stemmed from the designer’s habit of drawing on plates in restaurants during his salad days.

Victore emphasized that he went after the project, cold calling and e-mailing the company during a trip to Europe. For him, DIY doesn’t mean going solo. “Don’t do it yourself,” he told the audience. “At my studio, when we want to do something, the first thing we do is figure out who we know that can make this shit happen.” Among the shit they’ve currently got happening is work on the Yohji Yamamoto men’s collection, a line of handpainted surfboards, and, intriguingly, “starting a school.”

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Rubino, who was off to Hong Kong today for the Tuesday opening of a solo show of his work, had the crowd in stitches over a series of his hilarious “Something I Saw This Week” snapshots. Then he talked about killing animals–specifically how the animal-adorned holiday packaging that he designed for Banana Republic led him to draw more animals that factored into a number of personal projects, until finally, he said, “I had killed animals.”

Our pick for quote of the night, however, came during Rubino’s discussion of the evolving poster-based work he has done for Philip Seymour Hoffman and John Ortiz‘s Labyrinth Theater Company. Explained Rubino, “The meetings are like, you won an Oscar, you won a Pulitzer, I’m eating pizza.”

Stephanie Murg

Cramping the Style Book Market

Some breaking news from Stephanie Murg.

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Do you have style? Do you enjoy making style-related pronouncements? Do you frequently refer to “pants” and “shoes” in the singular (e.g., “This paisley dickey calls for a flat-front pant”)? Then the time may be right to take your stab at the latest in publishing trends: the style book.

ELLE’s Nina Garcia is still making the rounds with her guide to chic (The Little Black Book of Style), while her “Project Runway” costar Tim Gunn (one of our favorite people) now has both a book and a BRAVO show touted as his guide to style. Meanwhile, today marks the publication of Style A to Zoe, from ur-stylist Rachel Zoe, who always looks as if she’s just stepped away from Palm Beach patio drinks circa 1974. And in a couple of weeks, the editors of InStyle will publish InStyle: Style 101, in which they tackle such topics as how to pose for a photo and how to set up a bar at a party (hint: set up the bar before posing). Not to be outdone, Bazaar gets into the act this November, with Jenny Levin‘s Harper’s Bazaar Great Style.

We have faith that as style guides go, the best is yet to come. Isaac Mizrahi has just signed a deal with Gotham for How to Have Style, his “illustrated guide to looking fabulous for all occasions.” Our fingers are crossed that Mizrahi will recruit Peter Buchanan-Smith as creative director for the project. The two have worked together on Mizrahi’s visually spectacular, occasionally-published magazine, Isaac’s Style Book, which is available for download here. Note to Isaac: send us a galley!

Stephanie Murg

Victore & Rubino, Reaping the Whirlwind

Another New York must-see by Stephanie Murg.

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“Young Guns” invade the Art Directors Club of New York on Thursday evening, but Emilio Estevez, Kiefer Sutherland, and rugged mustaches will (probably) be nowhere in sight. The mavericks in question are two of our favorites: James Victore and Chris Rubino. They’ll discuss not their dizzyingly vast array of client work but some of the projects they pursue for themselves. Expect knock-your-socks-off visuals and creative boundary-pushing that, in turn, fuels the work they produce for clients.

You’re probably already versed in Victore, who helms “an independent design studio hell-bent on world domination,” among other things. And whether you know it or not, you’ve seen Rubino’s work on everything from Banana Republic bags to Outkast‘s DVD. After Young Guns Live, stroll a dozen blocks uptown and check out the Original Penguin Store, for which Rubino created the pitch-perfect visuals, merchandising, and packaging.

We’ll be there, hoping that someone has the foresight to open and close the event with Bon Jovi’s “Blaze of Glory.”

Tickets and information here.

Stephanie Murg

Here’s the Situation(ist)

Ladies and gentlemen, the lovely Stephanie Murg.

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Situationism is dead! Long live Situationism! Discuss amongst yourselves on Wednesday evening, when Columbia University’s Temple Hoyne Buell Center for the Study of American Architecture hosts “50 Years of Recuperation: What is Living and What is Dead in the Situationist International,” a lecture by McKenzie Wark, author of Gamer Theory and A Hacker’s Manifesto, among other discipline-transcending tomes.

You’ll recall that the revolutionary pranksters of the Situationist International (1957-1972) are to thank for seeding such concepts as psychogeography, unitary urbanism, and the society of the spectacle. But it wasn’t all jargon-stuffed manifestos, impassioned letter-writing, and avant-garde picnics. OK, it kind of was, but with the best of intentions: “the concrete construction of momentary ambiances of life and their transformation into a superior passional quality.” If only that looked better on a bumper sticker.

Sponsoring the lecture is Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM), so start thinking of a clever question that relates SOM’s Burj Dubai project to Situationist leader Constant’s New Babylon, which he described as “a camp for nomads on a planetary scale.”

Stephanie Murg

When Celebrity Products Attack

Yet another fine report from Stephanie Murg.

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We couldn’t let this month slip away with a nod to a standout spread in the September issue of Radar. The magazine puts its own twist on those cloying In Style-style peeks into celebrity homes with “At Home with the Stars,” which features Andy Ryan‘s photos of a sweet suburban family whose every product, garment, and foodstuff is celebrity-branded. The spooky parents and their two children (also spooky) frolic about Michael Bednark‘s set, which is strewn with everything from Jaclyn Smith furnishings and Andy Warhol watches to plates designed by John Waters and Suzanne Somers‘s Somersize Lemon Pepper and Ginger Teriyaki Marinade. The accompanying article notes that swimsuit model Kathy Ireland‘s retail behemoth (encompassing swan candy dishes, fake trees, and laminate flooring) rakes in a staggering $1.4 billion in annual sales.

So tonight, when you return to your Martha Stewart home, change into your Sean John or L.A.M.B. by Gwen Stefani loungewear, and toss a few Donald Trump Steaks on the George Foreman Grill while nursing a snifter of Willie Nelson‘s Old Whiskey River bourbon, consider what life would be like without all of those things. A world without Dwight Yoakam‘s Chicken Lickin’s Chicken Fries? A planet bereft of Nelly‘s Pimp Juice energy drink? A universe where all of my intimate apparel isn’t designed by Elle Macpherson? It’s too frightening to imagine.

As for those celebrities that have yet to get in on this craze, we’ll light a candle for them. It will, of course, be a Sarah Ferguson, Duchess of York scented candle. The scent? Dignity.

Stephanie Murg

Taking Visionaire Private

Stopping by UnBeige again today is contributor Stephanie Murg.

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Visionaire, the triannual art-meets-fashion publication that has tackled themes ranging from power and desire to Cinderella and the color blue, is getting back to its limited-edition roots in November, when they’ll publish their 52nd issue: “Private,” a book of photographs by famed fashion snappers Mert Alas and Marcus Piggott tucked inside a gold monogrammed case by Louis Vuitton. Pre-order yours today ($375 plus shipping).

Guest Editor (and Vuitton creative director) Marc Jacobs worked with Mert n’ Marcus on the series of “personal” (read: mostly nude) portraits of some of his fashionable friends, including Drew Barrymore, Selma Blair, and Lil’ Kim. “Private” is Visionaire‘s third collaboration with Vuitton. To celebrate, Visionaire will sell a few rare copies of the last collaboration, “Fashion Special” (issue 18), a highly coveted–and similarly LV-encased–issue that featured such memorable spreads as Craig McDean and M/M Paris‘s life-size foldout of a model clad in Comme des Garçons.

Founded in 1991 by Stephen Gan, James Kaliardos, and Cecilia Dean, Visionaire straddles the categories of fashion magazine, artist’s book, and design object. They also seem to function as a repository of art directorial and editorial dreams. One issue consisted entirely of memos sent by Diana Vreeland. Others included latex, embroidery, lenticular screens, flipbooks, flavor-infused plastic strips, and a swatch of the bedsheets of supermodel Gisele Bundchen.

Meanwhile, now on view at the Visionaire gallery in New York is issue 51, “Harmony,” a series of jigsaw puzzles designed by artists including Richard Misrach and Maurizio Cattelan. Vik Muniz goes for the mise en abyme, making a puzzle out of an image of puzzle pieces.

Stephanie Murg is a New York-based writer and art consultant.

Rashid Parties with UnBeige, Bids Good Riddance to Jewel Cases

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Unfortunately we couldn’t smell the sweat firsthand, but our new favorite contributor Stephanie Murg filed this report from last night’s UnBeige party at the Karim Rashid Shop.

Karim Rashid‘s Garbo trash can is now standard issue in Westin hotels [cut to shot of grinning Starwood execs seated in artfully staggered row of Panton chairs] and last year, the designer got his first solo U.S. museum exhibition, at Oklahoma’s Price Tower Arts Center, where he left for the permanent collection a massive metallic blobject that probably keeps the ghost of Frank Lloyd Wright up at night. But Rashid’s not one to rest on his laurels, even if those laurels do include an awfully comfy chair–and another with a built-in bucket for your Veuve Clicquot. The next frontier? The CD case.

Rashid announced the in-progress project at last night’s UnBeige Design Party, which was held at the three-year-old Karim Rashid Shop on W. 19th St. in NYC. As designers, design writers, creative directors, and other design types sipped Rosemount Estate wine and munched upon shell-shaped Guylian chocolates amidst Rashid-designed objets, the man himself took the floor for some design affirmations. “Design is about shaping the contemporary world,” he said. “It’s not about fashion or style.”

In discussing his collaboration with ObliqSound on the second volume of ObliqSound Remixes, he praised the New York- and Hamburg-based label as one of the “small, rigorous companies that are receptive to ways that the world is changing,” a group that also prompted a shout-out to Method, which, Rashid reminded the crowd “a few years ago was just a couple of guys from San Francisco.”

The limited edition version of ObliqSounds Remixes Vol 2 comes tucked inside a circular rubber carrying case designed by Rashid and produced by Melissa Shoes, the Brazilian company that injects tutti-frutti scents into its PVC footwear. “With the packaging I tried to make the intangible tangible. The undulating line pattern on the CD, case, and bag are all inspired by the vibe of the jazz musicians. I sketched digitally as I listened,” said Rashid, who paid his way through college by DJing and once owned 12,000 records.

He announced last night that he is now focused on “revisiting the CD case” and developing a new way to package CDs that will “create a moment in time with a little more pleasure.”

Among those enjoying the pleasures of last night was Russell Flinchum, who wrote the book on industrial designer Henry Dreyfuss and reminds UnBeige readers that today is the last day to register for his MoMA course on car design, “The Automobile Aesthetically Considered.” Also on hand was Lydia Mann, who will soon join AIGA in New York as web director. Mann was new to the world of Rashid but is impressed by his creations–”and that’s saying something, because I consider myself a design snob.”

Stephanie Murg is a New York-based writer and art consultant whose work has appeared in such publications as ARTnews and Smithsonian. In her art consulting practice, she advises clients on collecting modern and contemporary art and design and the dynamics of the international art market. Her interests lie at the nexus of art, design, fashion, and capital markets.

Party With UnBeige the Karim Rashid Way

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Attention New Yorkers! The next UnBeige Design Party will be held this Thursday night at the Karim Rashid Design Shop. Keep in mind that partying with Rashid could mean one of four things:

1. Your roommate is escorted out for wearing shoes deemed cooler than his.

2. Doggie hairspray for everyone!

3. A celebration of music and design with ObliqSound.

4. He asks your girlfriend to “smell each other’s sweat.”

We’ll be sending the intrepid Stephanie Murg to find out what transpires, as we can’t make it out there this time. Actually, our significant others won’t allow it.


Details and RSVP
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