Design Dispatch

The Psychoanalytic Approach of Avant-Garde Collective AES+F, and Other News

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

Still from AES+F's take on “Turnadot.” Credit: AES+F

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A New Rizzoli Monograph Chronicles Avant-Garde Practice of AES+F

It’s difficult to neatly categorize artist collective AES+F: with work spanning theater, photography, video, and sculpture, members Tatiana Arzamasova, Lev Evzovich, Evgeny Svyatsky, and Vladimir Fridkes choose to define their practice as “social psychoanalysis.” The group accrued international acclaim at the 2007 Venice Biennale with “Last Riot,” a darkly comedic epic that immerses viewers in a made-up world where social order has collapsed.

Since then, the group has gone on to stage a reinterpretation of Puccini’s classic opera, Turnadot and turn heads everywhere from the Centre Pompidou to the Bangkok Art Biennale with their audacious creations. A new Rizzoli monograph explores the group’s psychoanalytic approach through a close reading of their works’ conceptual evolution between the years 1995 and 2020. —Jenna Adrian-Diaz

Surface readers are invited to attend a panel with Lev Evzovich, The Whitney Museum of Art curator Christiane Paul, and Daata co-directors David Gryn and Tiffany Zabludowicz to celebrate the launch of the book and Daata’s new augmented reality app. 

Ulla Johnson; credit: Weston Wells

Womenswear designer Ulla Johnson secures a new footwear licensing deal

“HIM Co will produce and distribute Ulla Johnson footwear, starting with pre-spring 2024 for an initial term of three years. Johnson first introduced footwear in 2013. ‘The creation of future heirlooms, of pieces whose beauty and meaning transcends time and place has always been a core value, so I am happy to have found a like-minded partner in HIM Co who have an incredible commitment to design, craft, and innovation,’ Johnson said.” [H/T WWD

Annie Leibovitz will capture homes in seven countries for her new Ikea collaboration.

“In the same way that there has been a typical idea in the fashion industry about what size a woman should be, there’s been a typical idea of what a home is,’ wagers Leibovitz. ‘But now we’ve opened up in all sorts of ways, and there’s a difference between a home and feeling at home. And the latter can happen in many different places and maybe that’s more important now than an actual home.” [H/T Wallpaper]

Perkins&Will's design proposal for the U.S. Navy Museum. Credit: Perkins&Will.

Five firms from BIG to Gehry Partners reveal their ideas for the U.S. Navy Museum.

“The competition’s aim is to create a modern museum for Naval veterans and the public, a new building and ceremonial courtyard to reflect the Navy’s values and legacy. The campus would consist of approximately 270,000 square feet, with 100,000 square feet of gallery space. The Navy’s preferred location for the museum is on a site adjacent to the Washington Navy Yard. [H/T ArchDaily]

Disney World will break ground on affordable housing in central Florida come 2024.

“Walt Disney World’s 80-acre affordable housing project in Central Florida is expected to open in 2026, the company has confirmed. Disney plans to break ground on the attainable housing development in 2024, with the first units due to be completed in 2026.” [H/T BlooLoop]

Accessories brand BOYY and Danish artist FOS team up on a sleek flagship in Milan.

“With his artistic approach, FOS has challenged the conventional luxury retail model by subverting the established idea of a store concept. He has woven together layers of design, each one building upon the last, to create a space that mirrors the flow of time. Materials old and new work in harmony to showcase BOYY’s products, blurring the boundaries between interior and product and evoking a state of wonderment.” [H/T Wallpaper]

The cultural living room at the Arkansas Museum of Fine Art, designed by Studio Gang. Credit: Iwan Baan.

The Arkansas Museum of Fine Art reopens with a Studio Gang–led refit in Little Rock.

“In total, $160 million was raised to reimagine the A/MFA, with major donations from the Stephens as well as the Windgate Foundation. This price tag doesn’t only include the architectural work, the landscaping, and improvements to amenities like the theater (which now has a backstage). Money was also set aside for acquisitions and, crucially, to clean 100 works in the permanent collection that had long been languishing in storage.” [H/T ArtNews]

A former Art Institute of Chicago employee pleads guilty to embezzling $2 million.

“Michael Maurello may face up to 20 years in prison for his financial misdeeds at the museum. He will be sentenced on 14 September and faces up to 20 years in prison, the Chicago Tribune reported. He was also ordered to pay the AIC restitution amounting to just over $2.3m, and may also face an additional $250,000 fine.” [H/T The Art Newspaper]

Martha Stewart's basket house. Credit: Martha Stewart via Instagram.

Today’s attractive distractions:

An AI-generated dupe of a Drake and Weeknd single sets the internet ablaze.

Of course Martha Stewart has an entire house dedicated to her basket hoard.

Here’s Australia’s Lord Howe Island rid itself of a century-long rat infestation. 

The McDonalds Hamburglar is making a long-awaited return to the spotlight.

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