Liaigre Repurposes Studio Scraps Into Covetable Objects, and Other News

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Upcrafted Objects–The Vase by Liaigre

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Liaigre Repurposes Studio Scraps Into Covetable Objects

Luxury goods aren’t historically known for ecological sensitivity, but famed French interiors firm Liaigre hopes to change that with Upcrafted Objects. The range of four pieces transforms workshop scraps into gallery-ready objets, like the Tray, for which multicolored leather scraps are stacked into a gentle arc and held in place by brushed chrome or black patina handles. 

The same material forms petals, tinted and waxed in earthy shades of rust and blue, to blossom across the rounds of the Vase. A charming slump sculpted of marble or onyx, and topped with a bronze handle made from the lost wax casting process of other projects, becomes the Doorstopper. But the Bookend is most beguiling of all, setting a chunk of textured bronze spotted cerulean within a simple piece of wood—a fine example of turning what might have been trash into treasure. —Jesse Dorris

The shattered Jeff Koons sculpture at Art Wynwood. Photography by Bel-Air Fine Art–Contemporary Art Galleries

An Art Wynwood fairgoer shatters a Jeff Koons balloon dog sculpture worth $42,000.

A $42,000 porcelain balloon dog sculpture by Jeff Koons fell and shattered into pieces during the V.I.P. preview night of Art Wynwood on Thursday. The sculpture, which closely imitates its twisted latex inspiration, was perched on a transparent pedestal and was knocked over by a woman tapping it with her finger. In the aftermath, a collector asked the gallery if they were willing to sell him the broken pieces. The sculpture’s shards are being stored in a box, waiting for an insurance company to review them, perhaps increasing their rarity and value.

Audiobook narrators and authors fear Apple may have used their voices to train AI.

Audiobook narrators and authors have raised concerns over a new agreement struck by audiobook distributor Findaway Voices, which grants Apple rights to use audiobook files for machine learning training and models. After being contacted by the creators, Apple and Findaway agreed to halt the practice, as well as address concerns raised by labor union SAG-AFTRA, including safe storage for the recordings and data, usage limitations, and appropriate compensation. Voice actors and authors claim the clause, which was not clearly informed, could have allowed their work or voices to contribute to Apple’s development of synthetic voices for audiobooks, potentially taking their jobs.

Following in Twitter Blue’s footsteps, Meta will soon roll out paid verification for users.

Mark Zuckerberg has announced on Instagram that Meta is testing a new subscription service called “Meta Verified” that will allow Facebook and Instagram users to pay $11.99 per month for verification. The service comes with extra protection from impersonation accounts and direct access to customer support, and users must provide a government ID matching their profile name and photo to avoid fake accounts. Meta is joining other platforms, such as Discord, Reddit, and YouTube, which recently introduced their own subscription-based models, and notably Twitter Blue’s paid verification service.

Yoko Ono in Frankfurt, 2013. Photography by Daniel Roland/AFP/Getty Images

Sean Ono Lennon creates a virtual “wish tree” to celebrate Yoko Ono’s 90th birthday.

Sean Ono Lennon, the son of Yoko Ono and John Lennon, has created a virtual “wish tree” to celebrate his mother’s 90th birthday. Inspired by Ono’s own installation from 1996, the tree allows people to write their personal wishes for peace and tie them to a branch. Lennon is also encouraging people to plant real trees in Yoko’s honor. Celebrities such as Elton John, Annie Leibovitz, and Liam Gallagher had already sent wishes ahead of Saturday’s launch.

James Turrell will bring a Skyspace to Fort Worth in honor of Meta Alice Keith Bratten.

The late Meta Alice Keith Bratten will be honored with a permanent Skyspace installation by James Turrell in Fort Worth. Named the Keith Skyspace and scheduled to open in mid-2023, the structure is modeled after Quaker meeting houses and will serve as a gathering space for people of all backgrounds. “I just hope it becomes a bright spot for people to gather,” says Adelaide Leavens, executive director of the Met Alice Keith Bratten Foundation. “If you have a heated community meeting, there are (different) dynamics when the speakers are up on a stage and they’re talking to a classroom or an audience. But if you’re in this space and you’ve got four or five people looking at each other, does that make the conversation more civil and hopefully more productive?” 

New York City appoints its first chief public realm officer to oversee public spaces.

New York City has appointed its first-ever chief public realm officer, Ya-Ting Liu, to oversee the city’s public spaces, including parks, plazas, and streets. The position was created by Mayor Eric Adams to improve how the city manages and uses its communal spaces. Liu will act as a central point person between city agencies and the public, working to create and maintain public spaces and develop guidelines for outdoor dining. New York has joined a short list of municipalities, including Boston and Los Angeles, that have turned to a public realm czar as the demand for communal spaces has soared, especially as cities create new parks or repurpose streets and infrastructure as a way to improve public health, promote transit use, revitalize struggling downtowns, and combat climate change.

Image courtesy of Airbnb

Today’s attractive distractions:

Unlucky tech workers who were laid off are finding runaway TikTok success.

Midjourney renders some tricked-out cars in the style of famous architects.

This custom Airbnb is styled to resemble the Phantom of the Opera theater.

Soon your Twitter feed will start being littered with cannabis advertisements

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