On Wednesday night Pentagram Architects hosted a party to celebrate famed architectural photographer Julius Shulman’s 97th birthday and the publication of Pentagram Papers 38: The Russian Garbo, which features Shulman’s photographs of the Sten-Frenke House. The Santa Monica residence was designed by Richard Neutra in 1934 for the Ukrainian émigré actress Anna Sten (“The Russian Garbo”) and her husband, Dr. Eugene Frenke, and was restored by James Biber and his team at Pentagram Architects in 2005. Shulman, who photographed Neutra-designed houses for forty years, remarkably did not shoot the Sten-Frenke House until after the restoration was complete.
Luke Hayman and digital production artist Darrow have collaborated on an illustration that runs with an essay by Clive Thompson in the October issue of Wired, about the decline of human memory and the growing reliance on cellphones, PDA’s and other devices to hold basic information. To create the image, a Blackberry was photographed and its keys composited with a figure inspired by the sculpture of Jake and Dinos Chapman.
Abbott Miller will be a keynote speaker at DesignThinkers, the annual conference of the RGD Ontario, 17 to 19 October in Toronto. Other featured speakers include Stefan Sagmeister, James Victore, Karim Rashid, Marc Gobé, Debbie Millman and Hillman Curtis. Registration information here.
Lisa Strausfeld and others paid tribute to Muriel Cooper, an “unsung heroine of on-screen style” in a piece by Alice Rawsthorn in the International Herald Tribune on Sunday. Cooper, who in 1973 co-founded the Visual Language Workshop at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, is remembered by Strausfeld, a former student, as “a real mentor” who “elevated the quality of digital and interactive design work, and inspired a whole generation.”
Condé Nast Traveler asked six designers to each rebrand a country of his or her choice for its September issue, and Paula Scher selected Slovenia for her effort. “I’ve been to Slovenia twice and loved it. But most Americans don’t know what or where it is, which is something I wanted to address” says Scher. By highlighting Slovenia’s proximity to Italy, she made the country appear both physically accessible and “like it has great skiing and great food, which it in fact does.” Although, as she commented in the article, “I don’t think countries should have logos. Logos are for corporations.”
A few taglines after the jump.
The Robb Report features the Montauk Residence designed by James Biber and associate Michael Zweck-Bronner in the cover story of the September issue of Vacation Homes, out now. The residence was designed as “a case study house in New York” inspired by a trip Biber took to California to experience the original mid-century icons. The result is “a beautifully detailed, very elegant case study house” overlooking the Atlantic and with all the modern accoutrements.
Luke Hayman has been awarded a prestigious, if not unconventional, Golden Boa Award from Mediabistro. He is one of ten honorees chosen to receive the award, one from each of the various media outlets Mediabistro serves. Others include Stephen Colbert for The Colbert Report, Adam Moss of New York Magazine and Craig Newmark of Craigslist. The awards, bronzed feather boas inspired by Mediabistro founder Laurel Touby’s penchant for the adornment, will be presented on 4 October in Manhattan.
Organized to celebrate Mediabistro’s tenth anniversary, the award recognizes individuals who have made significant strides in their media careers since the company’s founding. “So much has changed in the media landscape over the last decade – it’s an entirely new world. I wanted to honor some of the people who have contributed to that,” says Touby.
For Saks Fifth Avenue’s fall campaign, Pentagram asked the designer and typographer Marian Bantjes to create a special promotional treatment of the store’s “Want It!” theme, and to extend that treatment to 19 unlikely illustrations of fashion trends that Saks has identified for fall.
Marian was in town the week before last to help celebrate the campaign’s launch and to check out the campaign’s over-the-top installations at Saks’s flagship store. Her entertainingly exhaustive visual diary appears on her blog.
Pentagram’s art direction of the Want It! campaign extends the work that began with the launch of the new Saks identity at the beginning of this year.