In Brief: RIP Dennis Hopper, Louis Vuitton in London, Design Moves

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By Stephanie Murg Comment

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  • Director, actor, and artist Dennis Hopper died Saturday of complications from prostate cancer. He was 74. The 1969 film Easy Rider, directed and co-written by Hopper (with Peter Fonda and Terry Southern), “catapulted [Hopper] into the pantheon of countercultural celebrities that included John Lennon, Abbie Hoffman, and Timothy Leary,” wrote Peter Biskind in his 1998 book Easy Riders, Raging Bulls: How the Sex-Drugs-And-Rock ‘n’ Roll Generation Saved Hollywood. A comprehensive, Julian Schnabel-curated survey of Hopper’s artistic career opens July 11 at the Museum of Contemporary Art Los Angeles.

  • While U.K. regulators deemed its craft-touting advertisements potentially misleading, Louis Vuitton busied itself with the launch festivities for its 16,000-square-foot, four-level London megastore. Designed by Peter Marino to be “the most luxurious Louis Vuitton store to date,” the New Bond Street maison features artworks by Gilbert & George and Takashi Murakami, a book store, an LED-studded glass staircase, and a second-floor VIP “apartment” (here a Koons, there a Basquiat). The Wallpaper* tour is almost as good as being there.
  • Costume jewelry king Kenneth Kay Lane, who makes a mean faux Schlumberger bangle, announced at a benefit last week that he is donating $100,000 to Pratt Institute. That will buy a lot of floss.
  • The Museum of Modern Art has found a worthy successor to Klaus Biesenbach in independent curator, author, and lecturer Sabine Breitwieser, who has been appointed chief curator of the Department of Media and Performance Art. Breitwieser, who from 1988 to 2007 served as founding director and curator of Vienna’s Generali Foundation, will begin her new position on October 4. “I’m thrilled to expand MoMA’s engagement in media and performance art and to enlarge the collection with significant new acquisitions in the coming years,” she said in a statement.