Eavesdrop CA 05

Eavesdroplet
Friday, July 17, 2009
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A ROYAL BRUSH-OFF
Condé Nast’s Women’s Wear Daily reports that Jeffrey Nemeroff, Architectural Digest‘s longtime art director, has parted ways with the magazine following a contretemps with editor-in-chief Paige Rense: “Nemeroff, who like much of the magazine’s editorial staff is based in California, is also a painter who recently had a show at the Neuhoff Gallery in New York. In May, New York magazine’s Daily Intel blog reported that Rense had called designers to discourage them from attending Nemeroff’s opening and celebratory dinner. Rense told New York’s Steve Fishman that designers believed Architectural Digest was directly involved and felt pressured to purchase a painting. She also said she had been ‘blindsided’ by the event, though the gallery owner was quoted saying Rense had given the show her blessing months earlier.” Nemeroff is not talking, but others are. A couple of designers told Eavesdrop that “pressure” flows in both directions. They said that Rense “encourages” the inclusion of renowned color-field painter Kenneth Noland’s work in photo shoots for the magazine, and his work has appeared on at least one cover. (Noland is her husband.) Double-standard alert!

LEARNING ANNEX
It’s not just the air-conditioners whining: We’ve heard complaints from a few vendors at this year’s AIA convention in San Francisco that the Moscone Center’s pro-union loyalty got a little out of hand. Apparently some booth installations were too complex for local contractors, but since the convention center insists on union work, companies had to hire union workers to stand around and watch as their builders put the displays up. Costs were doubled, and it all looked a little farcical. Maybe union dues should include a CNC-milling social.

THE COMPANY HE KEEPS
Paul Goldberger’s newest self-help book, Why Architecture Matters (Yale University Press) imparts lots of wisdom to architecture aficionados and its anecdotage is gleaned from a wide range of sources, some quite arcane. (Has Trystan Edwards’s Good and Bad Manners in Architecture from 1924 time really come?) In fact, Goldberger’s very title belongs to a 2003 book by Chicago architecture critic Blair Kamin, who is however one of the very few from a new generation of talented architecture writers, along with Christopher Hawthorne, singled out for acknowledgment.

Send tips, gossip, and galley proofs to Eavesdrop@archpaper.com.

A version of this article appeared in AN 05_07.15.2009 CA.

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