“I can see [my career] a couple of ways, either as a series of detours, or I can look at as a righteous path that’s never going to end,” said Hillman Curtis in a 2011 interview. “If I see whatever I’m currently doing as just another stop along the way, then I think I’m on the right path.” The filmmaker, designer, and author died on April 18 at the age of 51, after a three-year battle with colon cancer. Curtis left behind a stunning body of work, from the beloved “Artist Series” of documentaries and short narrative films to national commercials and three books on design and film have sold 150,000 copies and counting (in 14 languages). His friends, colleagues, and the subjects of his films have planned “a celebration of the life and work of Hillman Curtis” for the evening of Thursday, June 21, at the School of Visual Arts Theatre in New York. Special guests such as Milton Glaser, Stefan Sagmeister, Paula Scher, and James Victore will be on hand for a reception followed by a film program. Tickets are on sale now ($20 general admission, $15 for students, VIP $50). Proceeds from the evening will benefit the PS29 Arts Fund, the Carroll Gardens elementary school attended by Curtis’s two children, Jasper and Tess.
Archives: June 2012
Marina, Marina, on the wall (ok, screen), who’s the fairest museum director of them all? “Glenn Lowry is really one of the best-looking directors, because he takes care of himself,” Marina Abramović tells Andrew Goldman in a rollicking Q&A that will appear in this Sunday’s New York Times Magazine. “It’s true! I mean, look at the other ones. They are all overweight.” (We hear that the Museum of Modern Art honcho, pictured, keeps trim by balancing his love of ice cream with his passion for cycling.) They land on this topic after Goldman queries the artist about the potential “career calculus” of an e-mail she apparently sent to Lowry (before landing her MoMA retrospective) thanking him for coming to dinner and complimenting his “sexy” physique. “You’re like Rupert Murdoch! Who sent this e-mail? I don’t remember that I said this,” she replies, later adding, “I didn’t get that show because I said that Glenn Lowry is sexy. I think it was much more about the quality of the work.” Meanwhile, she’s less than enamored with MoMA these days. This exchange leads off the Q&A:
Watching the new documentary about you, The Artist Is Present, got me curious about the economics of performance art. In 2010, you did a show at the Museum of Modern Art, where you sat for 700 hours, staring at visitors. It was seen by as many as 750,000 people, and during that time the museum collected millions in receipts. Did you get a cut of the door, like a musician?
I got so little I don’t even want to tell. I was paid an honorarium of exactly $100,000. It covered one year of my work, plus how much I pay for assistants and office rent.
That seems low.
I made an enormous installation out of the project, which took me one and a half years and some of my own money. They should have this major piece, but they completely ran over me.
(Courtesy H&M and Maison Martin Margiela)
• Just as Nostradamus prophesied, fast fashion juggernaut H&M has convinced Maison Martin Margiela to sign on for what is surely the most improbable pairing since that 2010 W “art issue” that linked Kim Kardashian and Barbara Kruger (reader, it still gives us nightmares). The French fashion house is the polar opposite of H&M, yet it’s official: a Margiela collection created in collaboration with H&M will be released on November 15 in select H&M stores across the globe, offering clothes and accessories for both men and women. Shortly thereafter, the world will implode.
• Even with apocalypse nigh, we can appreciate a good chair, such as Gerrit Thomas Rietveld‘s “Aluminium Stoel” (pictured). One of only three prototypes made in the early 1960s by Rietveld and his sons, the perforated metal chair sold yesterday at Sotheby’s in New York for $470,500 (over three times its high estimate), a new record for the artist.
• Something wicked this way comes to Cooper Union’s Rose Auditorium on Monday, June 18, as the Smithsonian’s Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum explores “Wicked Problems in Type Design.” Ellen Lupton and Cara Di Edwardo will be joined by six leading and emerging voices in typography—including Philippe Apeloig, Hubert Jocham, and Jesse Ragan—for a conversation about problems central to their work. Each speaker will address a burning question concerning the design, use, culture, technology, or business of fonts and typefaces. Register here.
“Clothes have nothing to do with success. You can dress however you want and still be successful. Basically, clothes are a pleasure. And as a luxury item, clothes are the cheapest. Why are people scandalized by spending money on clothes? I think there is something against fashion in the world. Everybody is so passionate about this, there’s a resistance to fashion, an idea that to love fashion is to be stupid. I think this is for two reasons. One is because clothes are very intimate. When you get dressed, you are making public your idea about yourself, and I think that embarasses people. And two, I think that fashion is seen as women’s work. My conclusion is that because fashion touches your intimate life, it embarasses people.”
-Miuccia Prada, in an interview with Amy Larocca for New York magazine
(Photo courtesy Guido Harari/Contrasto/Redux)
Flaunt’s all-denim July/August issue and three of the 30 covers commissioned by Wallpaper* for its upcoming handmade issue, by (from left) Quentin Jones, Peter Miles, and mcgarrybowen.
Step away from your iPad. Two summer magazines are best appreciated in their glorious print versions. First up is Flaunt‘s denim issue, which hits newsstands this month. Covered in the rugged fabric (and an Ellen von Unwerth photo of Claudia Schiffer) thanks to sponsor Guess, the magazine is chock full of jeans-themed goodies, from Agave Denim’s Pacific Coast roadtrip postcards and a graffiti-inducing stencil from Kill City to a pull-out booklet of AG Adriano Goldschmied creative director Sam Wu’s favorite L.A. haunts and an iron-on transfer from Genetic Denim. Advertorial? Indeed, but for every Rising Sun kerchief and sheet of Hudson Jeans wrapping paper, there’s a still-life spread on rivets and a rumination on the 1959 exploitation film Blue Denim.
Meanwhile, over in London, Wallpaper* has been busy preparing its August issue, a tribute to the handmade. Subscribers were recently given the opportunity to customize their copy by choosing from one of a whopping 30 covers (below) featuring work commissioned by illustrators and graphic designers including Anthony Burrill, Rob Ryan, and James Joyce. Jonathan Ellery whipped up a duct-tape homage to the magazine’s signature asterisk, while ad agency mcgarrybowen interpreted “handmade” ultra-literally and created one from fingernail clippings (on a chalkboard, of course). Inside the issue, readers will get a behind-the-scenes glimpse at the third annual Wallpaper* Handmade exhibition, held in Milan in April during Salone del Mobile.
The countdown to the London Olympics is on—robo-mascots Wenlock and Mandeville! Wolff Olins’ seizure-inducing logo that we maintain is a stealth tribute to Jem and the Holograms! women’s boxing!—but what effect do the Games have on their host cities and the people who live there? Filmmaker Gary Hustwit (Helvetica, Objectified, Urbanized) and photographer Jon Pack have teamed up to answer this question with “The Olympic City,” a photography project that looks at the legacy of the Olympic Games in former host cities around the world. The duo has embarked on a world tour of sorts that has already taken them to Los Angeles, Montreal, Lake Placid, Athens, Rome, and, most recently, Mexico City.
“We’re documenting the successes and failures, the forgotten remnants and ghosts of the Olympic spectacle,” they say. “Some former Olympic sites are retrofitted and used in ways that belie their grand beginnings; turned into prisons, housing, malls, gyms, churches. Others sit unused for decades and become tragic time capsules, examples of misguided planning and broken promises of the benefits that the Games would bring.” A Kickstarter campaign is underway to fund the project, including printing costs for a large-format hardcover art book slated for publication next year to coincide with an exhibition of the photographs. Paul Sahre has signed on to design the book, which will also be available in digital form. Backers get first dibs on the books and photo prints from the project, and big spenders ($3,500+) can spend the day in an Olympic city with Hustwit and Pack.
“I have said that my career exists because of Bilbao, because Bilbao made architecture important again. Architecture had drifted off the cultural radar. With Bilbao, it was instantly driven to the forefront. As much as it has created opportunities for all architects, certainly myself, it also created a kind of aberrant expectation that anybody could it. One could hire a prestigious architect and the city or the installation is legitimized….Initially I worked with smaller, emerging arts institutions that wanted to engage in interesting architecture. They wanted the Bilbao effect, but they saw the writing on the wall, that that kind of spectacular architecture is not really where the future is. They wanted something more introspective, something more determined or definite.”
-Brad Cloepfil, founding principal of Allied Works Architecture, in a conversation with theologian Mark C. Taylor published in the gorgeous monograph Allied Works Architecture Brad Cloepfil: Occupation (Gregory R. Miller & Co.)
This week, Rodale is hiring an online art director for Women’s Health and Men’s Health, while the Daily Mail is looking for a photo editor for its site. Barefoot Proximity is seeking a creative director, and 7×7 Magazine needs a graphic designer. Get the scoop on these openings and more below, and find additional just-posted gigs on Mediabistro.
- Online Art Director Rodale (New York, NY)
- Photo Editor Daily Mail (New York, NY)
- Creative Director Barefoot Proximity (Cincinnati, OH)
- Graphic Designer 7×7 Magazine (San Francisco, CA)
- Art Director Sactown Magazine (Sacramento, CA)
Find more great design jobs on the UnBeige job board. Looking to hire? Tap into our network of talented UnBeige pros and post a risk-free job listing. For real-time openings and employment news, follow @MBJobPost.
‘Tis the season for Art Basel, which runs through Sunday in Basel, Switzerland. After yesterday’s private preview, Design Miami/Basel opened to the public today with a roster of 40 participating galleries that includes first-time exhibitors such as New York’s Salon 94, Heritage Gallery from Moscow, and Paris-based Galerie Dutko. The fair also marks the debut of freshly commissioned works by the 2012 W Hotels Designers of the Future: Tom Foulsham (United Kingdom), Markus Kayser (Germany), and Philippe Malouin (Canada). Inaugurated in 2006, the award honors “up-and-coming designers and studios that are expanding the field of design.” This year’s winners were challenged to create work that sheds light on their own creative process. With the theme “From Spark to Finish,” the brief was to demonstrate how the spark of inspiration evolves into material designs through projects will involve an interactive element. Here’s a first look at what each of them came up with… Read more
“I only make something if I think I can add something new,” says Ron Arad. Among the architect, designer, and artist’s latest innovations is “pq,” a bold new line of eyewear that is ultra-durable, slightly wacky, and named for a doodle. “It’s called ‘pq’ because when you write that you make spectacles,” Arad told Reed Krakoff in a recent conversation that appeared in the Financial Times.
Arad was slow to embrace the eyewear project but gradually came around. “I thought: ‘OK. Here is the challenge: how do you free people from the tyranny of the hinge? How do you free them from the tyranny of the components?” he said in the FT. “And we did! We made them out of polyamide (nylon)…and they can mold to your head.” The A-Frame range (pictured) features an A-shaped wire structure in the middle of the frame for easy adjustment (lower the bar, move the lenses closer together or farther apart), but we prefer the eye-catching Corbs. Named for distinctively spectacled Le Corbusier, these sunglasses have a novel one-piece frame inspired by animal vertebrae: flat on the inside, slatted on the outside so that they can bend inward but not outward. And then there’s the case: a transparent plastic bubble, inside which is a silicon brush that minds your pqs when they’re not snugly—but not too snugly!—tethered affixed to your skull.