Design Dispatch

Our daily look at the world through the lens of design.

Dancers perform Trisha Brown’s choreography, “Set and Reset.” (Photo: Vimeo)

Trisha Brown, 1936-2017

Seminal postmodern dancer and choreographer Trisha Brown died this past Saturday. She was best known for cofounding the Judson Dance Theater in 1962, and later starting the the Trisha Brown Dance Company. Over her career, she collaborated with many notable creatives, including Robert Rauschenberg and Yvonne Rainer.

Marc Newson’s NikeLab Air Vapormax. (Photo: Courtesy Nike)

Vapor Trail

Industrial designer Marc Newson sheds light on his design for the NikeLab Air Vapormax, which will be released toward the end of the month. “The overwhelming emotion when you see this thing for the first time is tactile. You want to touch it and squeeze it and figure out how it works,” Newson said of the shoe’s platform. “It is a mesmerizing thing really.”

David Rockefeller with Eleanor Roosevelt, Trygvie Lie, and Thomas J.Watson. (Photo: Wikimedia)

David Rockefeller, 1915-2017

Banker and philanthropist David Rockefeller died on Monday at the age of 101. He was the last surviving grandson of America’s first billionaire, John D. Rockefeller. In art and design circles, David Rockefeller was known for his art collection, as well as serving as the Museum of Modern Art’s chairman of the board.

Detail from “Elevator” (2017), another one of Dana Schutz’s works in the Whitney Biennial. (Photo: Surface)

Wrangling at the Whitney

Artists and writers a protesting the exhibition of “Open Casket,” a painting by Dana Schutz included in the Whitney Biennial. The work is based on a photograph documenting the open casket of Emmett Till, an African American who was brutally murdered in Mississippi for allegedly whistling at a white woman. The image of his gruesome corpse was a touchstone for the civil rights movement. “Non-Black people must accept that they will never embody and cannot understand this gesture,” reads a letter signed by several people in the art world. “Even if Schutz has not been gifted with any real sensitivity to history, if Black people are telling her that the painting has caused unnecessary hurt, she and you must accept the truth of this. The painting must go.”

Robert B. Silvers. (Photo: via Dallas News)

Robert B. Silvers, 1929-2017

The founder of The New York Review of Books, Robert B. Silvers, died on Monday. “What we saw was that the book review is a form that is capable of being used to address nearly any kind of issue, and any kind of question, because there’s always a book,” Silvers said in 1999. One of topics the publication addressed was architecture, which brought fresh and incisive criticism to the field.
[The New York Times]

David Adjaye. (Photo: Nathan Perkel for Surface)

Academy Awards

Architect David Adjaye has been elected as a Royal Academician of the UK’s Royal Academy of Arts. Other architects currently in the Academy include Ron Arad, Norman Foster, and David Chipperfield.
[The Architects’ Journal]

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