The Design Dispatch offers expertly written and essential news from the design world crafted by our dedicated team. Think of it as your cheat sheet for the day in design delivered to your inbox before you’ve had your coffee. Subscribe now.
A rare Christofle x Karl Lagerfeld flatware set is being auctioned to raise money for FIT.
Looking to own a piece of Karl Lagerfeld’s legacy? A rare Karl Lagerfeld Mood silverware set, created in collaboration with Christofle, is up for auction. This numbered edition 25/500 set features an exclusive black lacquer design engraved with Christofle’s coat of arms and Lagerfeld’s signature. The auction, running until May 31, aims to raise funds for the Fashion Institute of Technology, offering a one-of-a-kind opportunity to support the next generation of fashion creatives while acquiring a coveted 24-piece silver-plated flatware collection.
Harvard GSD has named four finalists for this year’s Wheelwright Prize competition.
The Harvard University Graduate School of Design (GSD) has unveiled four finalists for its esteemed Wheelwright Prize competition. This annual competition awards $100,000 to promising early-career practitioners, granting them the opportunity to deliver a lecture at the GSD and publish a research paper in the school’s publications. This year’s finalists include Isabel Abascal, Maya Bird-Murphy, DK Osseo-Asare, and Jingru (Cyan) Cheng. Previous winners have proposed projects that tackle global challenges such as maternal mortality rates, the impact of sand on built environments, and the decolonization of architecture. A winner will be announced next month.
Two photographers earn early victories in a copyright lawsuit against Richard Prince.
Two professional photographers have achieved initial victories in their ongoing copyright lawsuits against appropriation artist Richard Prince. A U.S. federal judge ruled that the lawsuits can proceed to trial as Prince failed to provide sufficient evidence that his New Portraits series transformed the photographs. The judge found that Prince’s modifications were minimal and insufficient, lacking transformative qualities and failing to qualify as satire or parody. This ruling draws on a previous landmark case involving Prince’s use of images from photographer Patrick Cariou’s book and sets the stage for future copyright discussions.
MVRDV will give China’s Hangzhou Oil Refinery Factory Park an eco-friendly revamp.
MVRDV has won a competition to transform China’s Hangzhou Oil Refinery Factory Park into a sustainable and fossil fuel–free space. The park’s centerpiece is an innovative art and science museum designed in the shape of enlarged silos, featuring a complex interior with interconnected terraces. The museum’s permeable façade allows for natural ventilation and incorporates LEDs and photovoltaic spots, serving as a media screen and a source of renewable energy. Existing structures will be repurposed, while new office buildings will generate energy to potentially make the park energy-negative.
Amazon plans to introduce ChatGPT-style product search to its e-commerce platform.
Amazon is planning to introduce ChatGPT-style product search to its web store, competing against Microsoft and Google in integrating generative artificial intelligence into their search engines. The company’s job postings indicate its ambition to reimagine Amazon Search with an interactive conversational experience, enabling users to find answers, compare products, and receive personalized suggestions. Amazon’s move towards conversational product search could reshape its core retail business and improve the search experience for customers, potentially challenging the dominance of Google in product searches.
The lowest-paid workers in the UK’s public art sector aren’t making minimum wage.
A new report commissioned by a-n, the UK’s largest artists’ membership association, reveals that the lowest-paid workers in the country’s public art sector are often the ones who create the art. The report, titled Structurally F–cked and compiled by artist-run organization Industria, exposes a culture of low fees, unpaid labor, and systemic exploitation. Artists earned a median rate of £2.60 ($3.25) per hour, well below the minimum wage, and faced difficulties in securing fair payment for their work. While some artists are finding success in the private realm, the report calls for collective responsibility and suggests practical measures such as joining unions, establishing contracts, and ending unpaid work to improve working conditions.