Phoebe Philo Opens Up About Her Vision, and Other News

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Image courtesy of Phoebe Philo

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Phoebe Philo Opens Up About Her Vision, the Industry, and Her Label

Vanessa Friedman’s most recent big byline was the interview heard ‘round the world, or at least the fashion world: a rare sit-down with Phoebe Philo. One of the industry’s most aloof talents, Philo has overtly rejected the mantle of industry “personality,” and influencer. Instead, her talent, point of view, and willingness to all but disappear at what many saw as the height of her career catapulted her to a level of superstardom that reached a fever pitch with the release of her eponymous collection’s first “edit” in 2023. Still, even Philo’s most devout fans have had some questions, which the designer acknowledged in her interview with Friedman: What’s her brand story, let alone her label’s return policy? And those prices

Anyone hoping for overwrought explanations might be disappointed, but approach the story optimistically for a stroke of clarity and you might just find it. To Edward Enninful, Bella Freud, and Ruthie Rogers, a few of Philo’s friends who were quoted, none of this is news, but Friedman shows the rest of us sides of the designer that we don’t normally see. From the playful: “‘I always tell my kids, the more you mess about, the more you find out,’ she said, using a fruitier term than ‘mess,’” she writes; to the idealistic “I don’t know why it can’t just be continuous,” Philo says, lamenting what Friedman describes as the industry’s “planned obsolescence” baked into the fashion season system as we know it. And it sounds like a better system for payments, returns, and client care is coming to Philo’s brand sometime soon. But the designer takes the last word on those prices: “The intention, really, is that the pieces stick around for a while. They have to be made well, and they have to be considered. And that tends to come at a price point.” —Jenna Adrian-Diaz

Renering of Hudson Yards West. Image courtesy Related Companies and Wynn Resorts

Wynn Resorts and Related unveil renderings—and plans for a casino—at Hudson Yards.

Wynn Resorts and Related Companies have revealed plans for Hudson Yards West, aiming to develop Manhattan’s west side with additional office space, residential towers, and hospitality venues on the currently undeveloped Western Rail Yard Site. Key to the plan is a casino, contingent on securing one of three New York State gaming licenses. Recent filings with the New York City Department of City Planning outline a resort with a casino, a commercial/office building, and a residential tower spanning between 30th and 33rd streets. Renderings illustrate an 80-story tower with a tapered form housing 1,750 hotel rooms, conference space, and amenities atop a five-story podium. The development integrates green space and promises neighborhood amenities like a daycare and community center within the office tower, with a significant portion of residential units designated as affordable housing.

An investigation reveals that three Damien Hirst animal sculptures were artificially aged.

An investigation by The Guardian reveals that three Damien Hirst sculptures, initially thought to be from the 1990s, were actually created in 2017, raising questions about transparency in the art world. Despite being dated by Hirst’s company to the ‘90s, the formaldehyde sculptures—a dove, a shark, and twin calves—were fabricated by employees in Gloucestershire in 2017 and showcased in exhibitions around the world. While Hirst’s company claims the dates represent the conception of the works rather than their creation, industry norms typically denote the year of physical completion, prompting scrutiny over the accuracy of the artworks’ origins and dates.

Metabirkins. Images via Mason Rothschild

Hermès and Mason Rothschild’s legal battle over the MetaBirkins NFTs is raging on.

The legal battle between Hermès and artist Mason Rothschild over the MetaBirkins NFTs is continuing despite Hermès winning a trademark infringement case last year. The brand sued Rothschild for selling 100 MetaBirkins, claiming confusion and brand dilution, while Rothschild argued it was protected artistic expression. A permanent injunction against Rothschild was issued, barring him from showing the digital tokens in an exhibition at the Spritmuseum in Stockholm, prompting Rothschild to seek clarification. The court order, citing potential consumer confusion, was confirmed by Justice Jed S. Rakoff, who called Rothschild a “swindler.”

Pelli Clarke & Partners completes the Mori JP Tower, the tallest skyscraper in Tokyo.

Pelli Clarke & Partners has finished Japan’s tallest skyscraper, the Mori JP Tower, which rises 1,083 feet tall in Tokyo’s Minato ward as part of the Azabudai Hills development. Collaborating with Mori Building, the studio aimed to create an urban center with green spaces and distinctive architecture. With a curved silhouette counteracting its width, the tower houses apartments, offices, and restaurants, while adjacent skyscrapers provide additional accommodations and amenities. The development replaces old housing units with modern residential towers.

Austin’s once-booming housing market is now experiencing a significant downturn.

Austin’s once-booming housing market is now experiencing a downturn, with landlords offering incentives like weeks of free rent to retain tenants. The city’s home prices and apartment rents have plummeted more sharply than anywhere else in the country due to slow job and population growth. Despite a previous building boom and economic expansion, Austin is now witnessing a decline in population growth, with home values dropping 11 percent since their peak. At the same time, Tech companies like Tesla and Oracle that were initially drawn to the city by lower taxes and fewer regulations are now relocating while venture funding has also sharply declined.

Image courtesy of Quarto Books

Today’s attractive distractions:

Archaeologists discover a lost building in Sicily’s ancient Valley of the Temples.

A stage musical adapted from Sufjan Stevens’ Illinoise is heading to Broadway.

Squatting party throwers are moving into the quiet cul-de-sacs of Beverly Hills. 

Deyan Sudjic’s latest book explores hundreds of pieces of personal technology.

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