Welcome to our November issue, dedicated to Smart Art. Leading the way, the ever epic Doug Aitken has created three limited-edition subscriber covers alongside an exclusive journey into Americana. In a subversive photographic portfolio, Doug has captured time-worn signage in the American West and reworked it with 21st-century text. The images are witty, poignant, and vivid, but there’s a higher objective to this series too. It piques our interest in the faded glory of long-forgotten spaces, replacing our romanticised visions of the past with unsentimental images of what they are today.
As Doug says, ‘one of the most profound things that any act of creation can give you is to engage you in the present’. As a magazine, we’re forever thinking three to six months ahead, so his work serves as a timely reminder to live in the present, in the here and now. The portfolio accompanies a first look into the artist’s new studio in Culver City, LA, converted from a transmission repair shop in a landscape that could well have featured in his art.
We also head to Paris, where Jean-Michel Othoniel and Johan Creten have transformed a 4,000 sq m former metal workshop into a hive of creativity; and to Warsaw, where Monika Sosnowska has collaborated with emerging studio Architecture Club for an exercise in reductionism. Wrapping up the section is a profile of South Korean artist Kimsooja. Following an ethereal installation at the Yorkshire Sculpture Park Chapel, she is now turning to the French city of Poitiers, cloaking its medieval architecture in a bundle of public art installations.
Meanwhile, we round up radical retreats from Patagonia to Pasadena, stopping by Brussels for a family home ‘with no straight lines’ by Julien de Smedt, and Kent for a country abode that pays homage to vernacular oast houses. We’ve also called upon illustrator Alexis Christodoulou to create a hideaway of our own, inspired by a ring-shaped residence in Spain by Office KGDVS.
There’s power play in our fashion story, inspired by the political campaign trail, and revolutionary spirit in our insider’s look at Saint Laurent Rive Droite, which breathes new life into the retail space formerly known as Colette. Headlining our Officepaper* supplement is the new San Francisco clinic of Jordan Deschamps-Braly – a leading craniofacial surgeon known for his work with transgender patients – photographed by Leandro Farina, a longstanding Wallpaper* contributor with a keen eye for brutalism. We also drop by Lasvit’s new headquarters, a translucent glasshouse in the Czech town of Nový Bor; survey the latest crop of co-working spaces, run by hospitality behemoths; and call on robots to test contract furniture, for an interiors shoot that embraces the age of AI.
And finally, Patricia Urquiola invites us into her studio to show us how she keeps her Wallpaper* collection, as the latest in our star-studded Subscribers Since… 1996 campaign (which has also featured the likes of Jony Ive, Jil Sander, Tadao Ando and the late Karl Lagerfeld). #subscribersince