A Rare Peek Inside the Prestigious Mobilier National, and Other News

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Photography by Rodrigo Rize

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In Paris, a Rare Peek Inside the Prestigious Mobilier National

Attendees of this week’s Maison et Objet and Paris Déco Off will have the rare chance to enter the storied rooms of Féau & Cie, the French woodwork purveyor that has supplied designers and architects with period paneling since 1875. There, an assortment of limited-edition pieces from Mobilier National’s 2022 Campagne d’Acquisition—a program that administers furniture by homegrown talents to French institutions and embassies—will be on display thanks to the design marketplace Invisible Collection, which will also showcase the pieces online. Among the highlights are the sculptural rattan Spline chair by Fritsch DurisottiLudovic Roth’s leather-sheathed Cosse pendant, and the bronze Elan shelf by Pierre Salagnac. —Ryan Waddoups

Lesley Lokko. Photography by Murdo McLeod/courtesy of the Venice Architecture Biennale

Ghanaian-Scottish architect Lesley Lokko wins the prestigious RIBA Royal Gold Medal.

Lesley Lokko, a Ghanaian-Scottish architect, has made history as the first African woman to be awarded the Royal Gold Medal for Architecture by the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA). Lokko’s work, primarily focused on Africa and the Global South, has been commended for democratizing the architecture industry and promoting diversity. She is renowned for her role as an architecture teacher and academic, advocating for increased representation of people of color and under-represented backgrounds in architecture. In addition to receiving the Royal Gold Medal, Lokko was also made an OBE in the New Year Honors list and was named curator of the Venice Architecture Biennale. The medal will be presented to her in London in May.

Kim Kardashian re-enters color cosmetics with new makeup line Skkn by Kim Makeup.

Kim Kardashian is launching a new makeup line called Skkn by Kim Makeup on January 26, marking her return to the world of color cosmetics. The collection aims to provide user-friendly products based on her 20 years of experience getting her makeup done and includes lip liners, lipsticks, and an eye shadow palette, all in shades of nude. Kardashian’s focus is on offering classic neutrals that make the skin look its best, with plans to expand into fragrance and complexion products like foundations. While initially launching as a direct-to-consumer brand, Kardashian aims to expand into retail in the future.

Villa Bagatti Valsecchi. Photography by Mary Gaudin, courtesy of Alcova

Alcova will take over Villa Borsani and Villa Bagatti Valsecchi during Milan Design Week.

Alcova 2024, the itinerant collectible design show, will be hosted in two iconic venues, Villa Borsani and Villa Bagatti Valsecchi, during this year’s Fuorisalone. This marks the seventh edition of Alcova, which is known for utilizing distinctive locations off the beaten path. The Modernist masterpiece Villa Borsani features remarkable elements like a Lucio Fontana fireplace and Guglielmo Ulrich lighting fixtures. Nearby is Villa Bagatti Valsecchi, a 19th-century mansion with a central structure, terraced roofs, and a portico with 15th-century columns from Milan’s Lazzaretto. Alcova’s mission is to provide access to rarely seen spaces, fostering a dialogue between design displays and one-of-a-kind locations, showcasing emerging and independent designers and brands, and offering insights into contemporary design trends.

In a “last-minute decision,” Morocco scraps its planned pavilion for the Venice Biennale. 

Less than four months before the 60th Venice Biennale, the Moroccan Ministry of Culture has replaced the artists and curator originally chosen to represent the country in its first-ever national pavilion. Curator Mahi Binebine, along with artists Safaa Erruas, Majida Khattari, and Fatiha Zemmouri, were informed by a ministry official of this “last-minute decision.” The artists had already invested significant time and resources in preparing their artwork for the pavilion. The Ministry of Culture has not provided a comment on the situation. The Venice Biennale is set to open on April 20, with Morocco making its debut alongside other countries like Benin.

Hauser & Wirth Institute announces their latest initiative to help artists and art organizations with their archives.

Hauser & Wirth Institute just announced their latest archival initiative to assist artists and art organizations in cataloging, preserving, and digitizing their archives. This program aims to address the challenges faced by artists and organizations, particularly smaller ones, in managing their records due to budget constraints and limited resources. The nonprofit foundation is currently processing three archives, including that of artist Jesse Murry, Brooklyn-based papermaking organization Dieu Donné, and a portion of the Drawing Center’s archive. By offering these services, the Institute hopes to facilitate better access to historical records in the arts and promote the preservation of cultural heritage.

Today’s attractive distractions:

“Bookshelf Wealth,” the latest design trend on TikTok, is irking some bibliophiles.

The world’s oldest piece of fossilized skin is discovered in an Oklahoma cave.

ADHD communities are endorsing Rocketbook, a personalized smart planner

Perfect Days, the latest film by Wim Wenders, spotlights the Tokyo Toilet project.

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