Contemporary design used to be an elitist subject. Despite the crusading populist idealism of the early Modernists, it never catapulted to the masses. Until now. Each book in the Design Briefs series contains short essays, penned by stylish writers with real knowledge and fresh enthusiasm on the subject. The essays address the designer's life, work, and influence, and are followed by numerous pages of illustrations for ongoing reference. Design Briefs: Jean Prouve features an innovative engineer, architect and builder who came into contact with new artistic movements early on in life: with Emile Galle, his father Victor founded the Nancy school that became a focal point of Art Nouveau. In his early career, he worked much in the Art Nouveau and Art Deco styles, but he soon turned to industrial production. Using newly discovered materials, such as steel sections, he produced chairs, school furniture, desks, and beds. His philosophy consisted of always using the newest materials and latest techniques, whether designing an armchair or gas station.
I'm so excited to announce my next project -- "The Beatles Are Here!: 50 Years After the Band Arrived in America, Writers and Other Fans Remember," an anthology due out from Algonquin Books in February, 2014.
"The Beatles!" will look at the repercussions of the band's dramatic 1964 arrival in the United States. In this volume, writers, Beatlemaniacs, musicians, and others -- in both texts and interviews -- chart the course of what was, in effect, a cultural revolution.
The book's wonderfully diverse contributors include: Joe Queenan, Renée Fleming, Roy Blount, Jr., Pico Iyer, "Cousin Brucie" Morrow, and numerous others.
My other books include, most recently, "Paris Was Ours," a collection of essays by writers from all over the world that explore the profound hold that city has on the expatriates who choose to live there. (I was one of them, and wrote one of the essays.)
I was also privileged to write the biography of Carmel Snow, the brilliant Irish-American cultural icon who was editor-in-chief of Harper's Bazaar from 1932 - 1958. In that capacity Snow, with infectious fun and humor, discovered and / or nurtured the careers of an astonishingly disparate collection of boldface names, including Richard Avedon, Diana Vreeland, Truman Capote, Balenciaga, Andy Warhol, and so many more.