Olivier Dwek Launches a Pristine Design Gallery in Brussels, and Other News

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

New Hope gallery in Brussels. Photography by Philippe Garcia

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Olivier Dwek Launches a Pristine Design Gallery in Brussels

Nearly two decades ago, Belgian entrepreneur Frédéric Hanrez inherited a history-laden ballroom directly across from the Horta Museum in Brussels. Hanrez had other plans, razing the decrepit structure (minus its distinctive facade) and enlisting his friend, the local interior designer Olivier Dwek, to create a pristine design gallery in a brand-new building on the site. After five years of construction, the gallery, called New Hope, has opened its doors.

Inside, expect design flourishes typical of Dwek’s sumptuous projects, which run the gamut from Greek vacation homes to Parisian townhouses that seamlessly blend styles and eras. On offer will be temporary exhibitions in dialogue with Hanrez’s own collection of pieces by George Nakashima, Sam Maloof, and Ado Chale, as well as rare Scandinavian objects; artwork by Richard Serra and Philip Guston adorns the walls. Perhaps New Hope’s pièce de résistance, however, is a massive double-height marble wall that nods to Mies van der Rohe’s Barcelona Pavilion and was meticulously selected by Dwek so the veins would create a mesmerizing mirror effect. 

Jenny Nguyen, founder of Hello Human

A Cause-Driven PR Firm Enters a New Phase

Jenny Nguyen launched her public relations collective, Hello Human, at the onset of the pandemic with one goal in mind: uplift independent designers who create based on their own intrinsic values and quality, not quantity. The cause-driven firm goes against the grain of its peers, by prioritizing clients who are BIPOC, womxn-owned, and committed to social good. For instance, Nguyen, Tantuvi founder Arati Rao, and Ladies & Gentlemen Studio co-founder Jean Lee came together to launch the #DesignforATL charity raffle in the wake of this year’s spike in anti-Asian racism.

Demand for their services has skyrocketed—they’ve serviced more than 100 clients just one year after launching—so the firm is seeking to crowdfund $50,000 specifically earmarked for growth. Part of their goals include expanding the team and bringing their PR model to industries outside the home and design realm: beauty, fashion, and hospitality among others. The fundraiser, launched on iFundWomen, even offers perks for donators: access to “who’s who” industry guides, strategy tutorials, and even a “we’ll write your pitch” service. In the sharp-elbowed world of PR, it’s a fresh approach that warrants attention.

Insect Index by S. R. Studio. LA. CA. Photography by Noua Unu Studio

Sterling Ruby is diving into the world of insects for S.R. Studio. LA. CA.’s latest collection.

The enigmatic artist is introducing us to a lofty abstraction of bugs through S.R. Studio. LA. CA.’s “INSECT INDEX,” a capsule that conjures new forms of creepy-crawlies by a process coined “an operatic death.” Ruby explains how the destructive mating process of insects led to a fusion of traditional classifications and biological texts to create his newfangled creations, such as “long jawed orb weaver” and “purple witch,” that adorn select pieces of his lineup.

Sotheby’s ventures further into the “Metaverse” with an exclusive NFT marketplace.

As the first major auction house to launch an NFT-only platform, Sotheby’s latest digital venture follows a similar approach to other NFT outlets such as OpenSea and Nifty gateway. Called Metaverse, the online forum has also enlisted NFT artist Pak to craft custom profile images of its expanding roster of clients as it kicked off its inaugural sale earlier this week. 

Port Authority puts the brakes on the LaGuardia AirTrain project after public backlash.

On the heels of Governor Kathy Hochul’s call for alternative transit systems at LaGuardia Airport, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey pushed pause on its controversial transit project. Carrying a $2.1 billion price tag, the LaGuardia AirTrain was approved by the Federal Aviation Administration in July despite criticism of its heavy cost, impractical route, and potential negative impact on the well-being of nearby Queens residents. The plan now faces a lawsuit by two local opposition groups and environmental agency Riverkeeper.

Edie Farnsworth House. Photography by Mike Crews

The Farnsworth House is renamed to honor its namesake’s unsung contributions.

Known as Mies van der Rohe’s first residence, the glass-wrapped landmark’s status as a beacon of Modernism overshadowed the role of Edie Farnsworth, who commissioned the home. To mark its 70th anniversary, the National Trust for Historic Preservation rechristened the structure the Edith Farnsworth House as part of its “Where Women Made History” campaign, which seeks to spotlight the role of women within historic architecture. 

Versace chief Jonathan Akeroyd will succeed Marco Boggetti as the CEO of Burberry.

Following news that Burberry’s current CEO Marco Gobbetti would depart for Salvatore Ferragamo at the end of year, the British label has appointed Versace chief Jonathan Akeroyd to its power table. Akeroyd’s appointment is expected to bolster Burberry’s ongoing plan to solidify its financial pipeline and reestablish its role as a major player in the luxury arena thanks to his experience at Versace and Alexander McQueen.

Fiat Jolly

Today’s attractive distractions:

Martha Stewart gets into NFTs with jack-o-lanterns and a seductive selfie.

Jam out to this song produced only with sounds made from Apple products.

Revisit the Fiat Jolly, a quaint little car intended for wealthy seaside dwellers.

The creepy dolls in this contest definitely won’t murder you in your sleep.


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