Category Archives: People

Forecast: David Adjaye, Surface, December 2011

adjaye05While anyone would be grateful to receive Design Miami’s annual Designer of the Year Award and join the ranks of recipients like Konstantin Grcic, Marc Newson, and Zaha Hadid, for David Adjaye the honor also represents a particularly uncanny moment of professional synergy. Having spent the better part of his career designing in and around the art world—traversing the same borders that Design Miami purports to blur—the Tanzania-born, London-based architect is now gearing up to produce his own series of limited-edition furniture. Adjaye has never been one to limit himself to a single creative role, whether it’s masterminding a 10-year documentary photo-research project on urban Africa’s built landscape—released this month as a book, African Metropolitan Architecture (Rizzoli)—or designing the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, D.C., scheduled for completion in 2015. He calls his practice “holistic.” A more apt description may be superhuman. Continue reading

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Making Waves, W magazine, May 2011



JONATHAN MUECKE: Jonathan Muecke’s “Mass” is a hollow volcano-shaped vessel made of paper coated in heavy coal slag. While you could theoretically store objects inside it, Muecke prefers that you experience it as a black hole in your living room, sucking in light and space. Similarly, his wedge of polystyrene lined with reflective glass particles could be employed as a room divider but functions mostly as a six-foot optical illusion. This is the mystery of Muecke’s work, which makes its domestic debut this spring at Chicago’s Volume Gallery, a launchpad for new American design talent: It pretends to be utilitarian yet has that ineffable quality usually reserved for Minimalist art—or the monolith in 2001: A Space Odyssey. Continue reading

The Home Team’s Hot New Talent, Cover Story, T Design Winter 2010

If they can make it here…… Monica Khemsurov profiles six up-and-coming New York City designers.

RICH BRILLIANT WILLING
When Theo Richardson, Charles Brill and Alex Williams, three baby-faced graduates of the Rhode Island School of Design, first appeared in 2007 with a floor lamp inspired by graphs and pick-up sticks, they were filled with energy and youthful folly: they called themselves Rich Brilliant Willing. Exhaustive self-promoters and occasional party crashers, they seemed ready to storm the offices of Cappellini or Moroso, demanding a shot at the big time. But if the big time has finally arrived for these 20-somethings, who introduced four products with four different companies in the past year, it’s because they’ve earned it. Continue reading

Maker’s Marks, T Design Winter 2010


‘‘Hella Jongerius — Misfit,’’ the title of the Dutch designer’s retrospective that opens Nov. 13 at the Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen in Rotterdam, refers not so much to her status in the design world but to the imperfect objects she has long championed. As the exhibition demonstrates, Jongerius has never had trouble finding sympathy for her ideas in the design industry, where companies like Vitra, Ikea and Maharam hired her to introduce beautiful inconsistencies into their sofas, vases and upholstery fabrics. As it turns out, the only people who ever took convincing were the craftspeople themselves. Continue reading

Grace Kelly, T Women’s Fashion Spring 2010


For anyone raised on Madonna or Rihanna, it’s hard to fathom how a rich girl with a wardrobe full of shirtdresses, twin sets and pearls — and a firm disbeliever in women wearing trousers — could become the fashion idol of her generation. But Grace Kelly epitomized a time before rebellion was a virtue, and the forthcoming “Grace Kelly: Style Icon” exhibition at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London pays homage to the actress-turned-princess’s sartorial legacy, from her rise to stardom in the ’50s to her untimely death in 1982. Continue reading

Watch This Space, T Design Fall 2009


For Faye Toogood, September’s London Design Festival was a coming-out party of sorts. After spending nearly a decade styling for the British magazine The World of Interiors and developing her signature raw-meets-refined look, she started quietly building her own full-service creative studio in 2008, remaining under the radar despite redesigning Dover Street Market’s shoe department and creating fanciful window displays for Liberty. But following two buzzed-about installations that she curated at the London festival and her high-profile work for Tom Dixon — which includes a catalog and a new London showroom — the design world is beginning to take notice of this multitalented 32-year-old. Continue reading

Craft Fare, T Men’s Fashion Fall 2009


Two years ago, when Paul Smith’s creative directors displayed Paul Loebach’s first collection in the window of their SoHo store, they jokingly called it the ”anti-Moss,” referring to the superslick Manhattan design temple around the corner. It turns out they were onto something: design is back to a more understated aesthetic, and Loebach’s craft-meets-technology vibe is making him the most talked-about young American designer since Jason Miller. Continue reading