Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Samuel Marx

The long-awaited book on architect/designer Samuel Marx is now available. In Ultramodern Samuel Marx: Architect, Designer, Art Collector Liz O'Brien has combined extraordinary archival photographs with a thoughtful and exhaustively researched text. The result is a magnificently produced book that is both lavish and scholarly. Marx's first major building was the 1909 New Orleans Museum of Art (http://www.noma.org/) and his most visible project was the 1940 May Company department store building, now part of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (http://www.lacma.org). Marx was equally adept at furniture and interior design and the book documents all of his output into the 1950s including his collaborations with textile designer Dorothy Liebes and interiors designed for great art collectors such as Mary and Leigh Block. You can purchase the book directly from Liz O'Brien (http://www.lizobrien.com/): stop in to her gallery, see furniture designed by Marx and have Liz sign your copy of her book.
Ultramodern: Samuel Marx by Liz O'Brien

May Company Building

Liz O'Brien's gallery, Marx cabinet in background

Friday, October 26, 2007

Bad Design

My nominations for the worst designs of all time:

CD Jewel Case:
The case cracks and the hinges break on your first attempt to open it.

Ear Buds:
"fit comfortably in your ears and sound great"???--they don't sound too great to everyone within 20 feet of you on the subway or bus!

Miss Blanche by Shiro Kuramata:
Only because it is totally overrated; I was around in 1988 when it appeared and at that time it was trivial and irrelevant: somehow it has become an "icon of design"?? (apologies to Agnes Gund and Patricia Cisneros, two great ladies and true "icons" of art)

Thursday, October 18, 2007

More LA

Coverage in Los Angeles Magazine of their Style issue party, hosted by the fabulous Laurie Pike, LAMag Style Director. Photo bottom center shows me, right, Laurie, center and my twin brother Charles, left.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Is Hicks All there Is?

I find it really tiresome that so many design bloggers, interior designers, design editors and design "gurus" cite David Hicks as their favorite interior designer and greatest influence. I love David Hicks' work--he was one of the most brilliant and important interior designers of the 20th century--but at this point proclaiming David Hicks as your primary inspiration is not exactly the most original citation. I wonder if any of these people know anything about some of the other 20th century decorating greats. My favorites?:

Serge Royaux:

Georges Geoffroy:

Michael Greer:

Ward Bennett:
. . . more coming soon.