4 posts tagged "Thelma Golden"
When Rick Owens ordered the alabaster for his new furniture range, so much was removed from a quarry in Spain that spies—actual spies—were dispatched to Paris to see what was being done with it. The answer, the enormous ton-and-a-half bed that is the centerpiece of his new show of furniture (pictured), is now on view at the Upper East Side gallery Salon 94. “The alabaster is hollow,” Owens explained at the opening on Saturday night. “I mean, can you imagine how heavy it would be if it weren’t?” With that, Owens feigned an expression of shock, similar to the one that crossed select parties’ faces when told the bed’s list price. (Too shocking to repeat in a family fashion blog.) Persons taking a definite interest in the piece included Studio Museum in Harlem director Thelma Golden, fashion muse Daphne Guinness, designer emeritus Calvin Klein, and performance artist Justin Bond, all of whom attended the casual dinner gallerist Jeanne Greenberg Rohatyn hosted after the opening. (Salon 94 is housed in her own home.) Also on hand: producer Hunter Gray, who purchased (!) the bed. “I intend to spend a lot of time in that bed. I plan to die in that bed,” Gray said, musing on his new, and perhaps final, resting place. He should expect a few covert ops at the bed-warming party—once he’s had a chance to reinforce his floors.
Ron Arad: No Discipline, the first major U.S. retrospective of the designer’s work (and arguably one of the most anticipated shows of the year; I waited in a 15-minute-long queue to see the actual show alongside the likes of Francesco Clemente, Agnes Gund, and Thelma Golden), opened at the Museum of Modern Art last night. Originally shown at the Centre Pompidou in Paris last winter, the exhibition features approximately 140 works by Arad spanning industrial design, hand-crafted studio pieces, sculpture, and mixed media installations—many of which are displayed in a large translucent structure, dubbed Cage sans Frontières (Cage Without Frontiers). Signature pieces like the Rover Chair and the Concrete Stereo are there, but a highlight of the exhibit is the Lolita chandelier for Swarovski (2004), a crystal chandelier that can receive and display text messages. Arad is no stranger to the world of fashion, having designed Tokyo’s idiosyncratic Yohji Yamamoto boutique back in 2003. Today, he collaborates with French luxury denim brand Notify, the sponsor of the MoMA show. An Arad-designed Notify handbag from last year gave way to his latest project: a Notify atelier in Milan that’s scheduled to open this fall—renderings of the space are included in the exhibition. The show runs until October 19.
A sizable but nevertheless intimate group gathered at the Metropolitan Museum of Art yesterday afternoon to honor one of fashion’s most provocative unsung heroes, African- American designer Arthur McGee. Born in Detroit in 1933, McGee recalled his mother’s sewing from a young age, a memory that would later inspire his career in design. He entered a design scholarship contest at the age of 18 and later moved to New York to attend FIT, where he sharpened his talent for millinery and apparel design. By 1957, McGee was running a Seventh Avenue apparel company, called Bobby Brooks, the first African-American to do so. McGee’s talent exceeded social and racial barriers. He sold to a range of department stores including Henri Bendel, Bergdorf Goodman, and Lord & Taylor, and after opening his own store in the sixties, he designed for celebrities like Sybil Burton, Mrs. Harry Belafonte, Lena Horne, and Josephine Premice. Still, McGee has never been one to wax eloquent about prejudice and inequality. “It’s great to be acknowledged as an African-American designer, but I don’t see in black and white,” said a humble and gracious McGee. “I was really dressing everybody.” Luncheon attendees like André Leon Talley, eBay’s Constance White, Lynn Yaeger, and Thelma Golden were treated to a host of speakers—including Thomas P. Campbell, the newly appointed director of the museum; the Costume Institute’s Harold Koda; and actress Cicely Tyson—and a screening of filmed interviews with the witty McGee. The event was accompanied by an exhibition of McGee’s pieces (among them his iconic shirt dress and mud cloth rompers), which were curated by the Costume Institute.