Tuesday, 28 November 2006
GO GENETIC! INSPIRATIONS BY THE ST ETIENNE DESIGN BIENNIAL, A REPORT BY BENIAMINO MARINI
Everybody is talking about man designing nature. Even L’Uomo Vogue, in this month’s cover, features a story by Steven Meisel of men with gas masks doing genetic experiments in a post-catastrophe garden and a serious essay by transexual author Fran Lebowitz about global warming.
Last week, with my friend Federica, who works in Paris in the design field, I visited the St. Etienne Biennale du Design (near Lyon, France) and the best exhibition was “Eden ADN” (ADN means DNA), curated by Anthony Van Den Bossche. It questions man’s manipulation of nature and the “increasingly fraught overlap between object and living thing which results from such manipulation”.
The most interesting works was the artwork by dutch group “Idiots” (they seem to be loved by Walter Van Beirendonck too...), like this gold and leather lion.
I also saw the softest genetically designed rabbit, called Orylag®. Maybe those who work in the furcoat industry know it very well. I was impressed. I could trade my two cats for one of those!
The rest of the Biennale was a little boring. Old stuff and a lot of schoolworks.
We went to the best restaurant in town - wondering how the cheap ones could be - and met the city mayor dining with Matali Crasset, who, to me (I never go to the french countryside), looked like Joan of Arch.
Later on, we went to the only bar that was open after 11pm and met all the parisian design crowd. My friend knew everybody, I was just looking around. Chantal Amaide, editor in chief of Intramuros magazine, was there, reading press releases.
The following morning I had a nice surprise visiting the Cheval Noir hotel, a 2 stars ugly space downtown St Etienne, completely redone by the design group “Domestic” with their vynil stickers. They became famous couple years ago selling wall decorations chez Colette. At the hotel they created a fantasy greenhouse with experimental life forms all over the lobby walls and furniture.
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Uh, Fran Lebowitz is not a transexual writer...SHE is a writer, and SHE just happens to be a, well, female
Posted by: Nick Balkin | Feb 2, 2009 2:38:15 AM
You are so good, thank you. Kisses, Diane
Posted by: DP | Nov 28, 2006 7:35:51 PM