The 2013 Noho Design District is in full swing in New York! We opened our doors to the public yesterday and we couldn’t be happier with what’s on offer this year — from giant braided ropes and tie-dye caltrops at the Merchant’s House Museum to a travel-themed design exhibit by Field and Various Projects to the Trophy show by the American Design Club. Then of course there’s our biggest Noho Next showcase to date, with 13 designers we’ve hand-picked for your enjoyment and an amazing video, sound, and design installation we’ve curated for our sponsor, Jawbone, to celebrate the debut of their custom-colored Big Jamboxes — with impeccable styling by Ladies & Gentlemen Studio. We’ll post many, many more photos of all these shows next week, but for now, here’s a little preview. We hope you’ll join us in person today, Sunday, and Monday from 12PM – 7PM — click here to view or download the official NDD map, with show descriptions and exact opening hours.
Halfway through our ferry ride across Manhattan’s East River to Randall’s Island this weekend, thunder rang out, the skies opened up, and a torrential downpour enveloped our little boat, ruining our hair and prompting dozens of our fellow travelers to whip out their iPhone cameras with glee. But neither rain nor sleet nor snow was going to keep us away from this year’s Freize Art Fair, especially after we missed the 2012 show due to Noho Design District preparations and — through the reports of friends and critics — definitely lived to regret it. Once we were inside the giant white tent (designed by the local architecture firm SO-IL), snapping away on our own iPhones while drooling over the smell of Mission Chinese that hovered mercilessly over the central arc of the space, we didn’t mind so much that our feet were sloshing around inside our shoes. We managed to see nearly everything — including an amazing performance piece by our favorite, Tino Sehgal — identified several strange recurring trends (art made on or from mirrors, references to outdated technologies), and had a major celeb spotting (Jared Leto) to boot. Check out some of the pieces we Instagrammed after the jump, then head over to our Facebook gallery to see even more photos.
Marlon Ilg & Simon Trüb, a resourceful print design duo hailing from Switzerland, created a series of hardcover books entitled, Bändlistrasse 27, 8064 Altstetten. The books feature collected remnants and leftovers from projects made during their time working in the Zurich neighborhood of Altstetten.
Minimalists may disagree, but we think the best part about spring cleaning is clearing out space in your home for newer, better things! Hot on the heels of our jewelry update last week, we’ve stocked the Sight Unseen shop with five new housewares that will beautify your everyday life this season, from Hilda Hellström’s Jesmonite coasters (above), which are perfect for holding summer drinks, to a wind chime tailor-made for catching warm breezes. Check out the goods below (shot, once again, by the talented Paul Barbera), then head over to the shop and treat yourself!
We suppose a lot could be made of the fact that Paul Johnson’s usually private Johnson Trading Gallery is finally opening its doors for an exhibition at the same time that both the Collective Design Fair and the Frieze Art Fair descend on New York City — and of the fact that Johnson’s former cinema–turned–gallery space is located in Nowheresville, Queens, pretty much smack in the middle between Collective’s Chelsea pier and Frieze’s takeover of Roosevelt Island. After all, the gallery has always been on the fringes of both design and art, what with its carefully groomed roster of young talent making things that sometimes count as furniture in name only (Aranda/Lasch’s industrial rubber–sprayed Modern Primitives chair comes to mind). But to tell the truth, we’re pretty tired of the whole design vs. art debate at this point. It’s been nearly two years since Johnson hosted an exhibition in New York, and considering this one’s meant to celebrate four young designers who’ve barely yet made a blip on the scene, we were more interested to see what exactly Johnson’s been up to in his far-out lair and who he’s been scouting in the interim.