Three Years Ago, Her Art Sold for USD 400 at the Beach. Now It Fetches Up To USD 1.6 Million at Auction – Drake Releases Surprise New Album ‘Honestly, Nevermind’- Supermodel Carolyn Murphy’s Secret to Getting Dressed in the Morning – With ‘Renaissance,’ Is Beyoncé Signaling an End to the Surprise Album Drop?

Three years ago, her art sold for USD 400 at the Beach. Now it Fetches up to USD 1.6 Million at Auction” – “Drake, the singer, Releases Surprise New Album ‘Honestly, Nevermind’- Supermodel Carolyn Murphy’s Secret to Getting Dressed in the Morning –With ‘Renaissance,’ Is Beyoncé Signaling an End to the Surprise Album Drop?”

Today, in this edition of the Newsletter we do present to you four items, two of them are a sort of interconnected, because these introduce you to two U.S. reputed singers.

The first feature is entitled “Three years ago, her art sold for USD 400 at the Beach. Now it Fetches up to USD 1.6 Million at Auction”. A new young painter is showing her new life.

The second item is aboutDrake, the singer, Releases Surprise New Album ‘Honestly, Nevermind’

The third feature bears the title “Supermodel Carolyn Murphy’s Secret to Getting Dressed in the Morning”, it provides some interesting answers by the Supermodel.

The last item is entitled “With ‘Renaissance,’ Is Beyoncé Signaling an End to the Surprise Album Drop?” and it shows her side of the coin in music.

We hope you do approve the team selections of TextileFuture and that you do honour our efforts for you in reading all of them. They all were published either in the Wall Street Journal or the Wall Street Magazine.

We wish you a delightful week and remember to call back next Tuesday to see what TextileFuture’s Newsletter has to offer anew. Thank you.

 

 

Here beginns the first feature:

Three Years Ago, Her Art Sold for USD 400 at the Beach. Now It Fetches Up To USD 1.6 Million at Auction

 

Anna Weyant, a new art star whose work evokes a millennial Botticelli, was discovered on Instagram. She’s also dating her dealer, Larry Gagosian.

Anna Weyant

As is, demand for her art outstrips her supply: The waiting list to buy one of her paintings, dealers say, is at least 200 names long. And last month she teamed up with the biggest art gallery of them all, Gagosian.

Ms. Weyant is grateful for the attention. But she is also aware that artists seeking lifelong careers tend to thrive by building a clientele who pay them and their galleries steadily rising prices over time. If prices jump too dramatically at auction, young artists fear their initial bench of collectors won’t be willing or able to keep pace with huge price leaps. This can gut demand if wealthier collectors at auction pivot to other artists. Just as in music or the movies, no visual artist wants to wind up a one-hit wonder.

“People kept congratulating me,” she said, but the Christie’s sale didn’t put her at ease. “All I felt was pressure.”

Last month, each of New York’s three major auction houses included one of Ms. Weyant’s works in their high-profile evening sales for the first time—a sign that collectors on her gallery’s waiting list and beyond were ready to pay a premium at auction instead. All three works surpassed their auction estimates by multiples. Ms. Weyant didn’t get a share, she said, as artists in the U.S. don’t automatically get royalties on auction resales of their work.

Her record is a 2020 portrait, “Falling Woman,” that sold at Sotheby’s for $1.6 million, eight times its high estimate. The painting was consigned by Tim Blum, Ms. Weyant’s former dealer at Blum & Poe with whom she has since fallen out, according to the artist. Mr. Blum declined to comment on the consignment.

Looking ahead, Ms. Weyant’s task will be to focus on painting amid the market frenzy.

“The art world loves to devour its young,” said art critic Jerry Saltz, an early admirer of Ms. Weyant. “It can be difficult to paint with another voice in your head whispering numbers and prices, but maybe she can.”

‘I’m just trying to protect her from the big bad wolves’ 

As she ascends the art world, Ms. Weyant has powerful help. But it’s complicated.

For the past year, the artist has been dating Larry Gagosian, the 77-year-old founder of arguably the most powerful art gallery network in the world. Precedence exists for such art-world romances: New York dealer Gavin Brown is married to artist Hope Atherton, though he said he never represented her. But Ms. Weyant and Mr. Gagosian’s May-December relationship is being scrutinized in art circles.

Martin Smick, Ms. Weyant’s painting professor at the Rhode Island School of Design, said he recently defended her against some artists who “were being snarky and jaded” about the preferential treatment she might get by joining her boyfriend’s gallery. “I feel protective of her,” Mr. Smick said.

Ellie Rines, owner of the New York gallery 56 Henry, which gave Ms. Weyant her first New York solo show three years ago, said anyone who factors the artist’s dating life into her odds of success is being misogynistic.

For his part, Mr. Gagosian said he has never dated an artist of any kind before. The pair even wavered on whether she should join the gallery because of the optics, they both said. He said he feels his gallery can help get more of her pieces into museums than auction catalogs, though, and when it comes to discussions about her career, he said, he treats her the same as his other artists.

“She’s intelligent and has this Midwestern reserve, and she doesn’t speak all the art lingo,” he said. “I’m just trying to protect her from the big bad wolves.”

Ms. Weyant said she welcomes his gallery’s market expertise, calling it a comfort.

The artist is also trying to stick to her familiar routine.

Although she increasingly travels in Mr. Gagosian’s jet-set circuit, she still lives and works in the one-bedroom apartment on Manhattan’s Upper West Side that she moved into in 2017. She pulls the curtains shut in her living-room-turned-studio when she works, her King Charles spaniel snoring beside her. The environment is hermetic, though her disposition is bubbly. When visitors come, the artist said she likes to bake chocolate-chip cookies.

‘A lot of potential’

Growing up, Ms. Weyant didn’t know anyone who chose a life in art. The daughter of a lawyer and a provincial court judge, she said the only paintings in her childhood home were her grandfather’s flea-market finds.

She signed up to attend college at RISD mainly because it was the closest school to New York that accepted her. She didn’t immediately declare a major, but by her first winter there she had gravitated to its painting classes. Emulating British painter Lucian Freud’s impasto style, she entered an art contest held by the National Gallery of Canada the summer after her freshman year—and placed in the top three.

Her sophomore year, she started painting women and girls who looked lost in forested fairy tales.

“Being new, confused and homesick in a new country, I was just scared,” she said. “I remember thinking that if I could transfer my fears to the woman I was painting, at least I had another person in the conversation with me.”

Weyant 5

After graduating in 2017, she spent seven months painting at the China Academy of Art in Hangzhou, and she credits the city’s sepia-tone terrain with influencing her signature muted palette. Her thick brushstrokes started to smooth.

Ms. Weyant’s big break came when she moved back to New York in the spring of 2018 and began assisting Cynthia Talmadge, a pointillist painter. Ms. Talmadge promoted her assistant by posting some of Ms. Weyant’s work on her own Instagram, including a young woman lounging in a bathrobe with one leg popped skyward, “Reposing V.”

Ms. Talmadge also introduced her assistant to her dealer at 56 Henry, Ms. Rines. “I saw a lot of potential in her,” Ms. Rines said.

Group shows started to follow. That next summer of 2019, Ms. Rines laid out Ms. Weyant’s drawings on a beach towel at a Hamptons art fair and sold some for around USD 400 apiece.

That same summer, the young artist received an unsolicited—and critical—voucher from the art establishment: Mr. Saltz, the critic, posted nine examples of her work on his Instagram that he said he had found by googling her, attracting 4,352 likes. He doesn’t own any work by her; he said later he merely found her work gripping.

By September 2019, buzz was mounting for Ms. Weyant’s first New York solo show, “Welcome to the Dollhouse,” at 56 Henry. Her paintings of somber young girls summed up the agonies of early adolescence, including one who had stuffed tissues into her gaping bra. Every piece in the show sold out for between $2,000 to $12,000 apiece.

After that, collectors had to get creative to get access to her work. Canadian collector Lorin Gu commissioned Ms. Weyant to paint a work he unveiled at his family’s Recharge Foundation in Singapore. The piece, “Dinner,” shows a girl whose face has planted onto her plate, her blonde hair spilling luxuriously over the table. In Los Angeles, designer Justine Freeman and her lawyer husband Ben Khakshour enlisted art adviser Adam Green to secure Ms. Weyant’s self-portrait, “Aw,” from a group show at Anna Zorina Gallery.

Private dealer Joe Sheftel managed to help his client buy another work, “Summertime,” after first giving it pride of place in a group show he organized in Provincetown, Mass. Mr. Sheftel confirmed he helped the same client resell it two years later at Christie’s.

Around this time, Bill Powers of Half Gallery also introduced the artist’s work to Mr. Gagosian, at one point holding up his cellphone to scroll past images of a dozen artists’ works. Mr. Gagosian later said Ms. Weyant’s work in that batch stood out as “refined and imaginative,” adding, “I loved the clarity and moodiness of it.”

Mr. Gagosian went to 56 Henry and bought Ms. Weyant’s “Head,” an up-close painting of a woman whose blonde hair is cascading down her naked shoulders. It’s hanging in his house now, he said.

‘I feel like I have my footing now’ 

By the spring of 2021, Ms. Weyant was on the ascent. Prices for her paintings were approaching $50,000. Los Angeles gallery Blum & Poe, by then exclusively representing her, let people visit her first solo show with the gallery in March by appointment—including Mr. Gagosian, who invited the artist to dinner at his house in Beverly Hills.

“She wanted to know if I had any gin,” he said. “That’s one of my favorite things to drink.”

Soon enough, tabloids started spotting the couple in Paris and Saint-Tropez. Her works, meanwhile, were increasingly impossible to find on the primary market. When Ms. Rines tried to help one of her biggest collectors buy a work from the Blum & Poe show, she said, dealer Jeff Poe told her that the artist had a long waiting list. “I know,” she said she told him. “I built the waiting list.”

Mr. Poe, reached through the gallery, declined to comment on Ms. Rines or Ms. Weyant.

Ms. Weyant remains friendly with Ms. Rines and others who showed her early work. But she declined to discuss the wind-down of her relationship with Blum & Poe because she was unhappy with how things ended. The artist entered into a confidential settlement agreement with the gallery earlier this year.

According to a friend who said Ms. Weyant confided in her before she shifted galleries, Ms. Weyant felt unsettled after she allowed gallery staff members to buy three paintings and a drawing from her Los Angeles show. Ms. Weyant’s friend said that the artist later told her the dealers held onto these works even as they told significant collectors that her show was sold out.

Blum & Poe co-founder Tim Blum declined to comment.

The artist said she sold Mr. Blum her “Falling Woman” for USD 15000—half the going rate collectors were charged by his gallery for other works in her spring 2021 show. A year later, he consigned it to Sotheby’s where it sold for USD 1.6 million. Traditionally, dealers don’t auction off their own artists’ work, preferring to resell works to their collectors at price levels they can closely manage. It’s unclear in this case whether Mr. Blum still represented Ms. Weyant when he consigned the painting. He declined to discuss the painting.

For her part, Ms. Weyant said Mr. Blum’s alleged consignment proved to be the last straw. Once she found out that three of her works were headed to auction, Ms. Weyant announced that she had officially moved to Gagosian Gallery.

Now, she’s trying to focus on her upcoming solo show at her new gallery this November. Already, the women she paints appear to be changing, taking up bigger canvases and sporting ruby lips and ponytails, “like evil cheerleaders,” she said. She might be channeling the vixens and victims of the Lifetime channel movies that she said she’s been watching lately for research.

“My fear, maybe it’s transitioning into something more theatrical,” she said. “I feel like I have my footing now.”

www.wsj.com

 

This will be the beginning of the second item:

Drake Releases Surprise New Album ‘Honestly, Nevermind’

Unexpected release comes nine months after the hip-hop superstar’s last album ‘Certified Lover Boy’

By guest author Neil Shah from the Wall Street Magazine

Just nine months after his last album, Drake is back with new music.

The hip-hop superstar released late Thursday his seventh studio album, “Honestly, Nevermind,” just hours after announcing it on social media. The release, which consists of 14 tracks—relatively succinct for Drake—is the follow-up to September’s 21-track “Certified Lover Boy.”

Drake’s surprise release is a counterpoint to Beyoncé, who announced Thursday that her seventh studio album, “Renaissance,” would arrive July 29. That news gave her fans six weeks to salivate over her coming music—an unusually long time for an artist who popularized surprise album drops and has repeatedly over the past decade dropped records out of the blue.

For Beyoncé and a growing number of music stars, surprise releases appear to be losing their novelty and promotional bang for the buck. Drake may represent a significant exception.

That is because Drake is one of the most popular—and prodigious—artists on streaming, much more so than even R&B-pop colossus Beyoncé. In 2021, Drake generated a slightly bigger share of overall U.S. on-demand streams than the combined streams of all songs released before 1980, according to Billboard magazine. Such dominance depends not only on the popularity of his output, but also its sheer frequency, according to Dan Runcie, founder of music-business media company Trapital.

Drake is a nonstop gusher of content: Before “Certified Lover Boy,” he released the 2020 mixtape “Dark Lane Demo Tapes,” the 2019 compilation “Care Package” and the 2018 studio album “Scorpion.” Since he is releasing music so often, surprise drops make more sense than costly multi-month promotional plans. Beyoncé, by contrast, will be releasing her first studio album in six years.

As one of music’s most powerful stars, Drake also owns the recording copyrights to his music and benefits from a more-is-more release schedule. He licenses his music to Republic Records, part of Universal Music Group NV, the world’s biggest music company. Drake and Universal Music Group reportedly signed a new deal in 2021. A representative for Drake and Republic Records couldn’t be reached. Like Drake, Taylor Swift—who now has a deal where she owns the sound-recording rights to her new music—has upped the frequency of her releases.

“Drake just signed a massive ‘LeBron-sized deal’ with Universal Music Group—the more music he releases, the more he gets to reap those rewards,” Mr. Runcie says. “He’s still the streaming king, and streaming rewards those who feed the playlists and drop regularly.”

Compared with “Certified Lover Boy,” Drake’s latest album is more vibe-oriented and lighter on rapping. It’s a notable shift for an artist famous for toggling between rapping and singing within albums.

Unlike the typical pop or rap blockbuster, “Honestly, Nevermind” seems designed as a late-night companion—with Drake’s often electronically-manipulated warbling and gentle dance beats dominating the mix. The album’s subdued, nocturnal mood and synthesizer-heavy sound is at times reminiscent of the work of R&B singer Frank Ocean. Prominent among Drake’s list of collaborators this time around is Black Coffee, a South African house-music DJ and producer.

Still, there is plenty of the Drake his fans have grown to love—the humorous one-liners and the emotive soul-baring mixed with caustic bravado.

“If I was in your shoes, I would hate myself,” he says on the track “Texts Go Green.” In the new music video for “Falling Back,” the album’s opening track, he stages a wedding where he marries 23 women—a mischievous, over-the-top plot that possibly pokes fun at his reputation as a restless playboy.

www.wsj.com

 

Here starts the third feature:

Supermodel Carolyn Murphy’s Secret to Getting Dressed in the Morning

Murphy also tells us about Patagonia co-founder Yvon Chouinard changed her life: “He and I became friends and he really taught me a lot about living simply.”

By guest author Lane Florsheim from the Wall Street Journal Magazine

 

Supermodel Carolyn Murphy

 

In our series My Monday Morning, self-motivated people tell WSJ. how they start off the week.

“It doesn’t matter what age you are,” says supermodel Carolyn Murphy of her uniform of decades: vintage Levi’s, a white button-down with hoop earrings and her hair pulled back. “It’s great for day—and then if I were going out at night, I could wear the same thing but maybe I would put on a sexy bra and red lipstick and a little mule.”

Murphy, 48, lives in California, where she starts each morning by opening all the windows in her house before her daily surf, weather permitting. Along with Amber Valletta and Shalom Harlow, she’s one of the ’90s supermodels known for both their laidback personalities and the sleek, minimalist styles they modeled. Lately, Murphy has been working with the fashion brand Adeam on a collection inspired by the times she lived in Japan during her early modeling days.

Here, she speaks to WSJ. about having a crush on fashion designer Yohji Yamamoto in the ’90s and painting in her at-home studio until midnight.

What time do you get up on Mondays, and what’s the first thing you do after waking up?

Monday and every day, it’s about 6 a.m., unfortunately. The first thing I do is have a really good stretch. I open the windows, no matter what time of the year it is. I go through the house and I open up all the blinds or curtains, sliders, doors, windows, whatever it is. I brush my teeth and then I make green tea, say hello to my dogs, let them out. And then I like to take a few minutes, sit maybe 15, 20 minutes in the sunshine with my tea and do a little meditation, take some deep breaths. That can usually then evolve into some deep stretches, like 15 to 20 minutes [of] yoga and journaling. I kind of have to have “me time” for a good 30, 45 minutes.

What kind of dogs do you have?

I have two labs and they’re polar opposites. One is very calm. He’s my distinguished fellow who, if he were a human male, we would be reading the paper together. We wouldn’t debate politics but we’d definitely be discussing the art and style sections. And then my other one, he’s more like my goofy buddy. We usually walk down to the beach and do a surf check. If it’s good and I’m not working, then I’ll go for a surf. He’s more my jock. He’s the guy who’s good-looking but dumb.

What do you eat for breakfast to start the week off right? 

My go-to breakfast would be two soft-boiled eggs and avocado. It’s been like that for a really, really long time. I don’t really drink coffee, I’m a green tea person, but occasionally, if I need a kick in the boo-boo or to get my brain going, I’ll have coffee.

Do you take any vitamins?

I take a good multivitamin and some extra [Vitamin] D and God knows what else because of Covid, I think my supplement list expanded tenfold.

What’s your beauty routine like?

The big part is at night. That’s using a really good creamy cleanser, all Estée Lauder, of course. [Murphy is an ambassador for the beauty company.] A couple nights a week, I’ll exfoliate with an exfoliating scrub or mask. And then I do a serum and a moisturizer. For me, it’s more about layering. And then I got this really cool gold, very fancy [facial] roller, which everyone swears works. I’m only one week in but I think my jowls are lifted, or lifting.

In the morning, I usually just splash my face with cold water and then repeat on the serum and moisturizer. I don’t wash again in the morning. And I swear by drinking a gallon of water a day, which everyone teases me, because I do carry around a gallon-sized Hydro Flask.

What’s your exercise routine like? 

Supermodel Carolyn Murphy goes hiking four or five days a week but loves being close to the beach: “If I’m lucky, I get to surf every day,” she says.

In our series My Monday Morning, self-motivated people tell WSJ. how they start off the week.

“It doesn’t matter what age you are,” says supermodel Carolyn Murphy of her uniform of decades: vintage Levi’s, a white button-down with hoop earrings and her hair pulled back. “It’s great for day—and then if I were going out at night, I could wear the same thing but maybe I would put on a sexy bra and red lipstick and a little mule.”

Murphy, 48, lives in California, where she starts each morning by opening all the windows in her house before her daily surf, weather permitting. Along with Amber Valletta and Shalom Harlow, she’s one of the ’90s supermodels known for both their laidback personalities and the sleek, minimalist styles they modeled. Lately, Murphy has been working with the fashion brand Adeam on a collection inspired by the times she lived in Japan during her early modeling days.

Here, she speaks to WSJ. about having a crush on fashion designer Yohji Yamamoto in the ’90s and painting in her at-home studio until midnight.

What time do you get up on Mondays, and what’s the first thing you do after waking up?

Monday and every day, it’s about 6 a.m., unfortunately. The first thing I do is have a really good stretch. I open the windows, no matter what time of the year it is. I go through the house and I open up all the blinds or curtains, sliders, doors, windows, whatever it is. I brush my teeth and then I make green tea, say hello to my dogs, let them out. And then I like to take a few minutes, sit maybe 15, 20 minutes in the sunshine with my tea and do a little meditation, take some deep breaths. That can usually then evolve into some deep stretches, like 15 to 20 minutes [of] yoga and journaling. I kind of have to have “me time” for a good 30, 45 minutes.

What kind of dogs do you have?

I have two labs and they’re polar opposites. One is very calm. He’s my distinguished fellow who, if he were a human male, we would be reading the paper together. We wouldn’t debate politics but we’d definitely be discussing the art and style sections. And then my other one, he’s more like my goofy buddy. We usually walk down to the beach and do a surf check. If it’s good and I’m not working, then I’ll go for a surf. He’s more my jock. He’s the guy who’s good-looking but dumb.

What do you eat for breakfast to start the week off right? 

My go-to breakfast would be two soft-boiled eggs and avocado. It’s been like that for a really, really long time. I don’t really drink coffee, I’m a green tea person, but occasionally, if I need a kick in the boo-boo or to get my brain going, I’ll have coffee.

Do you take any vitamins?

I take a good multivitamin and some extra [Vitamin] D and God knows what else because of Covid, I think my supplement list expanded tenfold.

What’s your beauty routine like?

The big part is at night. That’s using a really good creamy cleanser, all Estée Lauder, of course. [Murphy is an ambassador for the beauty company.] A couple nights a week, I’ll exfoliate with an exfoliating scrub or mask. And then I do a serum and a moisturizer. For me, it’s more about layering. And then I got this really cool gold, very fancy [facial] roller, which everyone swears works. I’m only one week in but I think my jowls are lifted, or lifting.

In the morning, I usually just splash my face with cold water and then repeat on the serum and moisturiser. I don’t wash again in the morning. And I swear by drinking a gallon of water a day, which everyone teases me, because I do carry around a gallon-sized Hydro Flask.

What’s your exercise routine like?

If I’m lucky, I get to surf every day. That’s a big workout. Four or five days a week, I’m hiking. I have this little mini trampoline I’ll try to do for 15 or 20 minutes, that’s really good for the lymphatic system. I’m really outdoorsy and living in California is conducive to that. And then I’ll just use small weights and little things I have here at the house to do target areas and squats and lunges. It’s all about the butt these days, gotta keep that up.

What was the inspiration for your new collection with Adeam?

I looked at [Adeam creative director] Hanako [Maeda]’s silhouettes and there’s this femininity there, and a softness, and that’s what I love about Japan. There’s this juxtaposition—the yin, the yang—how you can be in this metropolis of the city and then there’s this beautiful, quiet park somewhere and next thing you know, you’re under the cherry blossoms and the dogwood. I’ve lived in Japan three or four different times throughout my career. That was my place of choice as opposed to all the clubs on the Champs-Élysées in Paris. I had such respect and this real reverence for the Japanese culture—so much so that at one point in my life, I got a very big tattoo that was Japanese that I’ve since removed because my father didn’t speak to me for three months.

What was the tattoo?

Oh, it was a big koi fish, with peony flowers and waves. It could not have been more Yakuza, which is the Japanese mafia, and I didn’t know at the time. I was like 25. This was the ’90s. It was a different time. Fashion was so much more exploratory, and I could be in Japan and I would wear wide-legged trousers with a little T-shirt and trainers. Hanako was fascinated by that time. We really went into detail about what fashion was like back then. I was sharing stories with her about my early days in Japan and why I loved that.

I worked very closely with Yohji [Yamamoto] quite a bit. When I was putting together my references for Hanako, there was a mix—not only of some of those older pieces I had from Yohji and Comme des Garçons, just these simple silhouettes that would have just one quirk to them—but also there were some vintage dresses I had from the ’70s. There were also ceramics, these Japanese female ceramists for textures and color and nature. Even some Japanese film. I just wanted to really honor her and the country and to somehow bring it all together in that way.

Could you share a favourite memory of that time from living in Japan or working with Yohji?

Well, Yohji was actually in Paris and working with him, I just remember that I thought he was a Japanese Neil Young. And then I found out from one of his assistants that he actually is that. I don’t know if anybody knows, but Yohji was actually kind of a folk-indie rock star in Japan. And of course that made me have a crush on him more.

What have you been reading and watching lately?

This weekend, my daughter [Dylan Blue] and I watched this crazy docuseries called The Way Down. Let’s just put it this way: There’s a saying in the South called, “The higher the hair, the closer to God.” This is this whole docuseries about this church and this woman who ran it. It’s nutso bonkers. Of course I binged Bridgerton when that came out.

I’m actually more of a reader than I am a TV person. I just finished a great book, which kind of reworked mythological characters and created modern love stories. It’s this book called Love in Color: Mythical Tales from Around the World, Retold by Bolu Babalola. It’s so beautifully written, so poetic. And then I just started another one called The Sweetness of Water [by Nathan Harris] because it’s an Oprah’s Book Club book.

You’re a big advocate for sustainability, how does that play a role in your routines?

I’m not the queen of sustainability and I’ve never claimed to be. I live a back-to-basics lifestyle. I don’t like a lot of stuff, I like things really minimal. I like to support smaller brands or heritage brands. If I can buy locally or at least keep it in America, that means a lot to me. That’s something I really started paying attention to when I met [Patagonia co-founder] Yvon Chouinard when I was living up on a farm in Ojai back in the mid-2000s. Because I was exchanging horse poop for his seaweed—we were composting—he and I became friends and he really taught me a lot about living simply, and it kind of changed my life.

Is there a time of the day or week when you’re most creative?

I paint and I sculpt and I will say that I find that the evening, after dusk into dark, is my most creative time for that. I have this little room off the side of my house where I have my table and paintbrushes and everything set up. Depending on the mood, I’ll put on Black Sabbath or Lana Del Rey and I’m just painting or sculpting. Sometimes I’ll look at the clock and my like, “Oh my God, how is it midnight?”

www.wsj.com

 

Here beginns the last item of today:

With ‘Renaissance,’ Is Beyoncé Signaling an End to the Surprise Album Drop?

The pop star’s seventh studio album, due July 29, abandons the surprise-release drop she herself popularised

By guest author Neil Shah from the Wall Street Magazine.

Beyoncé has surprised us again—this time, by opting not to surprise us.

The pop star on Thursday announced that her seventh solo studio album, “Renaissance”—one of the most eagerly-anticipated albums in music—will arrive July 29. The six-week roll-out is unusually long for the R&B and pop singer, who over the past decade has repeatedly dropped albums out of the blue.

The new album was announced six days after she put fans on alert by cryptically removing her profile picture across Twitter, Instagram and Facebook. It is a follow-up to 2016’s Grammy-winning “Lemonade.” That album, which tackled issues such as infidelity and sexism, arrived on a Saturday night during an hour-long HBO video special. It was nominated for album of the year at the 2017 Grammys (it lost to Adele’s “25”) and went multi-platinum, despite its sales and streams being clipped by its initial release as an exclusive for Tidal, the music-streaming service, which limited its early distribution.

Compared to “Lemonade,” the roll-out of “Renaissance” resembles more of a traditional release strategy, even if it remains mysterious and of short duration. In addition to the unusual length of the roll-out, there’s a new cover story in British Vogue that describes the sound of the album, calling it “music that will unite so many on the dance floor.”

A spokesperson for Beyoncé, 40, confirmed the July 29 date and album title and added that the album would consist of 16 tracks.

The relatively long lead-time for “Renaissance” begs the question: Is the surprise release dead? Beyoncé’s latest move is a striking departure for an artist who herself popularized the strategy in the 2010s.

Back in 2018, “Everything Is Love,” a nine-track collaborative album with husband Jay-Z, was released on a Saturday evening during the couple’s joint stadium tour. With “Lemonade,” Beyoncé teased a mysterious HBO special one week before the album arrived. And she first popularized the strategy in 2013, when she surprise-dropped a visual album (a music album with accompanying videos) while on tour.

The 2013 release set a blueprint for scores of artists to follow. There’s even a Harvard Business School case study about it. The strategy aimed in part to counteract the risk of music leaks. Since no master copies of the album were sent in advance to manufacturing plants to make CDs — it was just released digitally initially — there was no opportunity for pirates to pilfer and release cuts. (Such a move also preempts any potential negative critic reviews.)

Surprise releases, which artists such as Radiohead began doing in the 2000s, became popular among superstars a decade later. The strategy helped some artists cut through the noise of an increasingly-noisy pop-music market. By surprising fans, an artist of a certain level of fame could generate a wave of instant, free publicity — instead of spending millions of dollars on promotional activities with questionable dividends.

Recently, however, the surprise drop has appeared to lose favor—potentially because it’s not so surprising anymore. Some of 2022’s marquee releases have come with significant lead times. In April, Kendrick Lamar announced his own long-awaited album would arrive roughly a month later. In March, Harry Styles said his new album would land in May, two months later.

Not much is known about “Renaissance.”

On Beyoncé’s website, fans can “pre-save” or “pre-add” the album on Spotify and Apple Music.

The words “RENAISSANCE” and “act i” appear in white on a black background. The artist’s store includes four variations of a USD 39.99 box set that includes a metallic-colored collectible case, a T-shirt, a CD, a 28-page photo booklet and a mini-poster. (Full artwork hasn’t been revealed yet.)

While she hasn’t released a full-length album of original material in six years, Beyoncé has kept busy. Among her recent projects are a 2019 live album capturing her widely-touted Coachella performance and the 2020 Grammy-winning single “Black Parade.”

Music-industry watchers are curious about how “Renaissance” will fare commercially and in the broader culture—much as they were in the run-up to Adele’s release of her blockbuster “30” late last year.

That is because so much has changed in the music business and among listeners’ preferences since 2016, when Beyoncé dropped “Lemonade.”

Streaming has become even more ubiquitous as a music format, with older listeners, many of whom listen to country and rock, adopting it in greater numbers. Over the past year or so, pop stars such as Olivia Rodrigo and Harry Styles and country star Morgan Wallen have dominated the charts — giving genres other than hip-hop more of a presence in the cultural conversation. By contrast, “Lemonade” was part of a flowering of hip-hop and R&B in the mid-2010s, including landmark albums and songs by artists such as Frank Ocean, Kanye West and Childish Gambino.

Hip-hop and R&B remains America’s No. 1 genre, however.

At the end of 2021, it accounted for 28 % of all U.S. recorded-music consumption—more than rock (20 %), pop (13 %) and country (8 %), according to data-tracker Luminate, which was formerly Nielsen Music. Hip-hop & R&B are responsible for 30 % of all U.S. on-demand streams, compared with 17 % for rock, 13 % for pop and 8 % for country.

www.wsj.com

 

 

 

Newsletter of last Week

The next frontier for AI in China could add USD 600 billion to its economy – Retail Retreats – The Role of Artificial Intelligence in Sports https://textile-future.com/archives/91664

 

The highlights of last week’s NEWS, for your convenience, just click on the feature to read.

 

Acquisition

EU Commission clears acquisition of joint control of Dome by Itochu and Under Armour https://textile-future.com/archives/91768

Africa

IMF – High-level conference on the Promotion of Good Governance and Fight Against Corruption https://textile-future.com/archives/91635

Agriculture

NIFA funds ‘Farm of the Future’ project at Illinois college https://textile-future.com/archives/91656

Swiss federal Office for Agriculture chairs high-level G10 Gathering https://textile-future.com/archives/91712

Farm to Fork: Ongoing reduction of chemical pesticides’ use in the EU but pace needs to pick up https://textile-future.com/archives/91879

Automotives

VivaTech: Renault and Jean-Michel Jarre make cars a space for unique soundscape experiences https://textile-future.com/archives/91921

China

The China-Germany Investment Nexus Frays https://textile-future.com/archives/91553

BASF expands production capacity in China for industry-leading cathode active materials and achieves multi-ton scale manufacturing for manganese-rich products https://textile-future.com/archives/91826

Companies

Meeting the needs of woven biomedical textiles https://textile-future.com/archives/91793

Swiss Autoneum updates its outlook for 2022 as a result of the Ukraine war https://textile-future.com/archives/91925

Croatia

Croatia: use of EUR for extra-EU trade in goods https://textile-future.com/archives/91777

Drones

Swiss Empa:  Environmental observations in the air and under water: A drone that can both fly and dive https://textile-future.com/archives/91783

EU

Executive Vice-President Dombrovskis at the 12th WTO Ministerial Conference https://textile-future.com/archives/91562

New exascale era for European supercomputing: five new hosting sites announced https://textile-future.com/archives/91876

Events

Welcome to Groz-Beckert at Techtextil 2022 https://textile-future.com/archives/91547

Bringing Textile Technology Leaders Together, ITM 2022 is Getting Ready to Open Its Doors https://textile-future.com/archives/91597

SHIMA SEIKI to Exhibit at ITM 2022 https://textile-future.com/archives/91608

Interior.Architecture.Hospitality with textile innovations and ‘Room Scenarios’ at the Heimtextil Summer Special https://textile-future.com/archives/91729

Marzoli at ITM 2022 https://textile-future.com/archives/91747

Taking responsibility for the textile industry https://textile-future.com/archives/91756

Feeling ‘ALIVE’: Intertextile Shanghai Home Textiles unveils three trend themes for 2023 https://textile-future.com/archives/91812

Individual and extraordinary fastening solutions https://textile-future.com/archives/91836

Data

Environmental protection spending continues to rise https://textile-future.com/archives/91566

The McKinsey Week in Charts  https://textile-future.com/archives/91620

Increase in the number of hours worked in Switzerland in 2021 https://textile-future.com/archives/91717

How many healthy life years for EU men and women? https://textile-future.com/archives/91771

Swiss Economic forecast: recovery continues at a slower pace https://textile-future.com/archives/91830

EU Excess mortality increased to 10 % in April 2022 https://textile-future.com/archives/91849

Structure of general EU government gross debt – end 2021 https://textile-future.com/archives/91869

Swiss Producer and Import Price Index rose in May by 0.9 %

Opinion

Does 2022 = 2000? https://textile-future.com/archives/91687

Hunger

Feeding hungry people and building climate-resilient communities – Nestlé enters new partnership with World Central Kitchen https://textile-future.com/archives/91892

Inflation

IMF: DMD Kenji Okamura Remarks at the Three Seas Initiative (3SI) – “Monetary Policy in a New European Reality” https://textile-future.com/archives/91641

Intellectual Property

Draft texts on WTO response to pandemic, IP response sent to ministers for https://textile-future.com/archives/91697

New Products

Trützschler Man-Made Fibers presents OPTIMA systems for industrial yarns https://textile-future.com/archives/91762

Personalities

Alpine management appointments https://textile-future.com/archives/91700

Success Stories

Environmental pioneer relies on GREENDYE https://textile-future.com/archives/91840

Trützschler presents T-SUPREMA – modern solutions for  needle-punched nonwovens  https://textile-future.com/archives/92121

Sustainability

Lenzing partners with TfS to build global sustainable supply chainsEco conscious values united https://textile-future.com/archives/91833

Switzerland

Ukraine: Swiss Federal Council adopts new EU sanctions against Russia and Belarus https://textile-future.com/archives/91558

Swiss Federal Councillor Guy Parmelin attends 12th WTO Ministerial Conference in Geneva https://textile-future.com/archives/91724

Combating terrorism: Coordinated arrests and searches in Switzerland and in Germany https://textile-future.com/archives/91818

USA

U.S. Retail Sales Declined 0.3 % in May 2022 https://textile-future.com/archives/91900

Wine

Why Côtes du Rhône Is the Wine to Drink Right Now https://textile-future.com/archives/91590

Worth Reading

BASF: New publication grants insight into the mechanical recycling of PE/PA multilayer films https://textile-future.com/archives/91541

Issue 213 of Textile Outlook International has now been published https://textile-future.com/archives/91578

WTO

Members urged to demonstrate the WTO can deliver for international community https://textile-future.com/archives/91720

Ministers’ statements published as MC12 kicks-off in Geneva https://textile-future.com/archives/91737