Above the Fold: From Department Store to Art Production House
The New York Times spent some time in Paris this week (downtime from the runway shows, no doubt) visiting the construction site that will soon become Lafayette Anticipations, a new space for the Fondation Galeries Lafayette. (The Fondation already programs a gallery that, though smaller, has long attracted heavy hitters like Chris Dercon and Martin Hatebur to its board.) The Timesasks the big question: How will Anticipations stand out from the already crowded field that includes nonprofit private museums by Louis Vuitton, Cartier, and Ricard? The answer is a surprising one: "What Mr. Houzé hopes will set Lafayette Anticipations apart will be its provisions for production, with exchanges of ideas across disciplines and the ability to fabricate artworks and spectacles on a massive scale, for exhibition both on and off site." Probing the relationship between Guillaume Houzé, president of the Fondation, and the architect, Rem Koolhaas's OMA: "One could view Lafayette Anticipations’ production facility as, in part, an architect and a collector’s solution to an architect- and collector-generated problem: a way to help artists tasked with filling enormous gallery spaces beyond the practical scope of an individual." That's an unusual mission for brand involvement in art, even for a family of committed collectors.
H Queen's is the latest art-driven real estate development.
We've come across a lot of art-driven development projects in the past few years: there's 21c's line of museum hotels, Mana's series of storage-meets-studio facilities, and New World's K11 Art Malls. Public art installations are an increasingly expected sweetener in luxury residential developments. Chelsea, in New York, has witnessed a rash of residential buildings incorporating gallery spaces into the lower floors, as a way to suit the neighborhood and differentiate from the competition. Hong Kong's latest entry, H Queen's, developed by Henderson, is another new mold: 24 floors of F&B and galleries, leased out to the likes of Pace, Hauser & Wirth, and Pearl Lam. Architect (and noted local collector) William Lim's design incorporates gondolas that can deliver art from the roadside to galleries upstairs: "A whole new approach to art logistics and delivery. We spent a lot of time thinking about what galleries need and how to create the best space for them." (That's developer Kristine Li speaking to the Tatler.)
A Margiela archive show outshines the art in Paris.
Art types in Paris this week have been jealous of the curatorial work and exhibition design that went into "Margiela/Galliera, 1989-2009," a retrospective exhibition of the designer at the Palais Galliera. Critic Cathy Horyn reviews the show for The Cut: "These ideas included not only his explorations into tailoring—really, deconstruction, a term he introduced into fashion—and pioneering use of reclaimed materials such as silk scarves, but also a new system of presenting fashion." The systems of thinking evident in this show make it ripe for the art press, so we would expect to see review notes in Friezeor Artforum shortly. Also an interesting paraphrase from Margiela himself: "Designers forget clothes. They are just interested in images." A warning against too much art in fashion?
Milan fashion week takes the art crown.
We talk a lot about fashion designers and branding executives producing collaborations with artists, but equally influential over the past half decade has been the rise of the designer or producer inspired by the languages of contemporary art. Across the past month's numerous fashion weeks, Milan has been the richest in art imagery. Alessandro Michele's Gucci is a repeat entry in this column. Hyperallergic tied his disembodied model heads to renaissance painting. We saw echoes of Josh Kline 3D-printed workers' heads and David Joselit's "painting beside itself" ("models beside themselves"). Elsewhere, Jeremy Scott's alien Jackie O conspiracy theory for Moschino, outlined in detail by Garage, had us thinking about Mark Lombardi.
DIS.art's pivot to video is complete.
Last year DIS announced the end of its embodiment as a magazine and a coming "pivot to video," which seemed like a joke, emerging just as the cracks in Facebook Live, Snapchat, YouTube and autoplaying social videos, now crippling and obvious, were beginning to emerge. Now the pivot is complete, the new site is up, and the videos are beginning to show up in exhibitions. And Artnews, for one, is not having it: "With its reboot, it has positioned itself at the intolerable end of the spectrum; it’s finally become the overly ironic and cold-blooded thing it’s so often accused of being." Our take: the humor of the "streaming edutainment" premise is already stale, but the content could last. We're mystified by the fact that videos disappear after a month. Where do they go?!?!
It's art fair week in New York.
Which provides a moment to reflect on the fact that brands pay very little attention to art events in art centers like New York. There are sponsors to the Armory, Independent, and ADAA fairs, of course, but nothing that approaches the relationships that Art Basel has with UBS, Davidoff, and BMW, among others. More to the point, the feeding frenzy of fashion and celebrity parties that surrounds Art Basel in Miami Beach is utterly alien to the New York fairs, which is a blessing to many and a missed opportunity for some. We're most looking forward to the Focus section that Gabriel Ritter has curated for the Armory Show, with a stated focus this year on technology and the body. It includes solo booths from CultureTM collaborators Amalia Ulman, Carter Mull, and Constant Dullaart, among many others.
ROUNDUP: Licensing the Right Art for the Right Brands
Artestar announces their spring projects.
Including Keith Haring for Coach and Basquiat for Comme des Garçons. Artestar
The American Gothic painter needs more licensing agreements.
Grant Wood has a major exhibition up at the Whitney that could be great inspiration for an Alessandro Michele of the Midwest. New Yorker
James Jean drew the poster for Oscar-trumping The Shape of Water.
Can't lie, it's pretty hot. New York Times
Irving Penn's centennial exhibition moves to Berlin.
Sure, the centennial was actually last year and opened a year ago at the Met. But now it's in Berlin, and it's always a good time to revisit some reviews of the most important midcentury fashion photographer. C/O Berlin
A David Bowie show grows in Brooklyn..
We'd like to see more attention paid to the critical celebrity figures who bridge art, fashion, and entertainment. New York Times