Directed by RY X & Dugan O’Neal. From the album Dawn.
In conjunction with the debut of the exhibition Carmen Herrera: Lines of Sight at the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York (September 16, 2016 – January 2, 2017), Yale University Press is publishing a companion book that serves as an evaluation of the artist Carmen Herrera’s life and art.
The 101-year-old Herrera, born in Havana, has lived in New York City since the mid-‘50s; having painted for seven decades, it is only of late that her work has been so internationally recognized and delinquently honored. Exploring her career, that includes time in Cuba, France, and New York, the book examines her early studies, her involvement with the Salon des Réalités Nouvelles in post-war Paris, and her innovative output of hard-edge abstraction in New York.
Exploring Herrera’s evolution as an artist, especially shaped by her time in Paris, where she honed her technique to cleaner lines and a reduced palette, a style she continued to evolve stateside, the book speaks to a lifelong dedication to her art. While her male contemporaries such as Frank Stella and Barnett Newman received substantial attention, Herrera quietly continued her work, and it was not until the age of 89 that she sold her first painting; ultimately, museums including MoMA, the Hirschhorn, and Tate Modern began acquiring Herrera’s pieces, which also include sculptural works, which Herrera refers to as “estructuras.”
In addition to the 80 works illustrated as color plates, in what is the most extensive representation of Herrera’s work to date, the book includes personal photographs and further material to enrich the record of her life and her life’s work. Lines of Sight was assembled and written by Dana Miller (Richard DeMartini Family Curator and Director of the Collection at the Whitney), with contributions by Serge Lemoine, Gerardo Mosquera, and Edward J. Sullivan, and chronology by Mónica Espinel.
The book Carmen Herrera: Lines of Sight is available for pre-order, to be released in October.
The exhibition Carmen Herrera: Lines of Sight at the Whitney Museum of American Art, runs September 16, 2016 through January 2, 2017, and will continue to the Wexner Center for the Arts in Columbus, Ohio (February 4 – April 16, 2017).
Though the presentation of these collections took place in February, the time to wear them will soon be upon us, so let’s recap two favorites . . .
Theory Fall 2016 (Menswear)
Head of menswear at Theory, Ben Stubbington’s approach to seasons doesn’t involve of-the-moment trends or hype pieces, but instead, tried-and-true garments that are interchangeable between months and are made to last a very long time. Restraint is key, and as Stubbington comments, “there are no frills, and deliberately so.” This isn’t to say the collection is without character, citing Cy Twombly as inspiration, the charm is executed in inconspicuous sweater patterns and keen use of material. Following Theory’s hallmark of intelligent design, several of the garments are quietly inventive, from hidden pockets to removable layers, even the introduction of Neoteric, a new Swiss-engineered sport material.
More at: Theory
The Row Fall 2016 Ready-To-Wear
The Row is known for sumptuous fabrics, and the Fall 2016 collection upholds this reputation in a flawlessly minimal way. This is not the uptight minimalism of overcut, strict line-based design, but instead exquisite tailoring that hides the unimportant details and let’s the fabric do the talking. Coats that you can’t imagine coming from any other name were presented alongside high-waisted trousers, sheath dresses, and silhouettes that are loose-fitting and seemingly oversized, but maintained length and polish. With their line, and this collection specifically, the Olsens extend the secret to dressing impeccably, but never “designer.”
More at: The Row
Woodard, a family furniture company that started in Michigan, introduced the Sculptura outdoor chair in 1956, and went on to extend an entire collection based on the successfully-received design.
What started as a wood-based production company, Woodard made the switch to metal outdoor furniture when the Great Depression and depletion of Michigan hardwood interfered with business. The second and third generations of the family, Lee Woodard and his sons, rejuvenated the brand as Woodard and Sons. Though Lee pioneered the idea of using wrought iron in outdoor furniture, it was his three sons, Joe, Lyman II, and Russell, who were responsible for bringing attention to their furniture first nationally, and then beyond. Taking a hiatus from furniture production, Woodard and Sons was producing specialty equipment during World War II, but resumed making furniture in 1946. Most designs were traditional in style, and Woodard became a preeminent name in outdoor furniture, both commercial and residential. In the 1950s, Lee’s son Russell Woodard’s contemporary design approach, exemplified by Sculptura, was a new chapter for the Woodard name, a resounding success that went on to become one of the most replicated pieces of mid-century design.
Sculptura’s production used a tooling process that was ahead of its time and eliminated typical factory obstacles. The chair, which can transition between outdoors and in, is almost a balletic amoeba in form, modern, but inviting, thoughtfully molded to cradle the human body. In addition to being comfortable, it didn’t hurt that the pieces were modestly priced, and because of the woven wire body, lightweight and easy to move around. Sculptura was available in a variety of color finishes, with the option of a padded seat. The full line included variations on an occasional chair, sofa, ottoman, and even rocking chair, but the classic armchair is no doubt the most representative of the collection. While wire chairs proliferated in the 1950s, due to emerging production technology and materials, Sculptura elegantly united modernism with the approachable.
In 1994, the Sculptura chair was added to the Cooper Hewitt’s permanent design collection. In 2015, as a response to the public’s interest in authentic mid-century design
, Woodard, now a subsidiary of Litex, revived the iconic Sculptura design collection, introducing new colors and subtle upgrades.
Vintage Sculptura pieces can be found online and at auction, in varying condition, though it is worth noting that most have held up quite well to years of exposure, sometimes refreshed with powder coat, the chairs were built to last. Pieces from the reintroduced collection can be ordered through authorized Woodard dealers and distributors.
Photos: Wright, 1stdibs
More at: Woodard Furniture
Directed by Ben Tricklebank. From the upcoming album Care.
Out of the Blue, a collection of eight sculptures by Milan-based design firm Studiopepe, investigates the relationship of sunlight to surface, through the study of form. Mostly unseen, this language between sun and what it reaches is made physical by the sculptural objects being brushed with a photosensitive cyanotype solution and then “developed” by light; the resulting variations may be interpreted as blue in its own physical form.
Recalling the camera obscura experiments of Thomas Wedgwood in the 1800s, Out of the Blue explores the possible shifts of light, shadows cast, as well as exposure length to a material, which all lend different effects to the the depth and range of shades produced.
As described by Studiopepe: “The colour blue, in all of its shades and depending upon various factors combined together, becomes the direct result of this encounter. Intrinsically, it tells us the story behind how the object was manufactured, the length of its exposure to sunlight after being brushed with the cyanotype solution, and the light conditions during that timeframe. These coordinates are the name of the object itself, defining its identity and uniqueness.”
More at: Studiopepe
The Mill table lamp, from Earnest Studio, the creative venture of American-born, Netherlands-based designer Rachel Griffin, is a piece inspired by the “dexterity of the basic sphere.”
An arm featuring a ball, simply balanced on a cone, allows gravity to give the lamp a broad range of motion and adjustability. The design-form is offset by an understated textural, matte black finish, and Mill uses energy efficient LEDs, aptly powered by a low-voltage USB connection.
More at: Earnest Studio
Photos: Pim Top
In a typical 17th-century flat of the Marais in Paris, architecture and interiors firm Ubalt have completed the project Les Enfants Rouges (a reference to the nearby historic market). The less than 400 sq. ft space is designed to appear longer and more spacious, blocking a bath and kitchen at one end, and a bedroom opposite, with a space arranged as a dining area, lounge, and office in between. The careful use of space and line-based placement, as well as thoughtful, polished finishing, successfully combines functionality and modernity while preserving the historic character of the building.
Specialized design choices, such as accordion partitions that do not reach the ceiling, separate the spaces, maintaining a feeling of openness and allowing the original beamed ceiling to be continuously exposed. Storage, imperative in a small space like this, is situated on the traverse of the apartment’s length; the custom-made furniture pieces are space-specific, and lend aesthetic continuity to the apartment, as well as visual effect with their mirrored bases (topped in marble). An all-white paint job highlights the textures and material applications throughout, including the beams and flooring, and suspended, industrial-inspired lighting runs lengthwise, opposite the ceiling beams.
Ubalt is a Parisian design agency founded in 2015 by National Institute of Architecture (Versailles) graduates Nastasia Potel and Mylène Vasse.
More at: Ubalt
Created by Danish designer Verner Panton in 1969, the VP Globe pendant lamp is an icon of Panton’s playful, yet sophisticated Space Age style. In designing the piece, Panton looked at the technical aspects of light and materials, his final composition consisting of a shielded bulb that reflects light and color onto internal discs, creating an indirect glow from inside a clear globe.
Available in two sizes, the globe itself is made of transparent acrylic, the heart is composed of a series of reflectors, available in lacquered aluminum or opal glass, suspended inside by three metal chains. To mark the 90th anniversary of Verner Panton’s birth, Verpan released a special edition brass variation of the design, with the classic reflector detail in red and blue.
Verpan, the licensed production brand behind Panton’s designs, in collaboration with Frandsen Lighting, produce the Globe lamps in in Denmark. Working closely with the designer’s widow Marianne Panton and her family, Verpan ensures that the integrity of Panton’s distinguished designs remain intact.
One of the most influential designers of the 20th-century, Panton created innovative and often futuristic designs in a variety of materials, but may be best known for his use of plastics, in vibrant and unexpected colors. His lighting career started by designing lamps for Louis Poulsen, and he went on to create many exemplary mid-century lighting designs, in addition to furniture and entire “environments.”
More at: Verpan