Arts and Collections Volume 1 2020

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arts &



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arts &



Cover image: photo by Dennis Leupold from RIHANNA, published by Phaidon



As Phaidon’s mighty photo-biography of the singer lands, we talk to the photographer, designers and stylists involved in this massive publishing project


Box Galleries presents some of the hottest artists in the contemporary world. Owner Emma Moir gives us her unique insight into the current art scene and the names to watch for


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With Asian art increasingly coveted by collectors, we get the viewpoint of Henry Howard-Sneyd, Sotheby’s’ Chairman of Asian Art, Europe and Americas




Beyond the cultural losses in the fire at Notre-Dame de Paris, there are burning questions about who pays for the restoration. We get some insight from insurers Sedgwick



Arts & Collections visits the hottest exhibition in London for a close-up look at the glitering tomb treasures shedding new light on the majesty of ancient Egypt




Law-breaking graffiti artist, art world disruptor, or housewives’ favourite? Could enigmatic street artist Banksy be all three?

images © dennis leupold/phaidon, sotheby’s, wikimedia, simon annand, pest control


The financial side of art collection can be challenging—so where do you go for advice on tax, imports, inheritance, provenance and all the other issues surround art and money?


Given unique access to actors in the minutes before they step on stage, photographer Simon Annand has produced an insightful collection of portrait photography




If you are looking for an alternative investment which can also bring great pleasure, you should think about wine—expert Peter Shakeshaft of Vin-X Ltd tells us why


Just because you’re not a US citizen, doesn’t mean the US tax system might not make a grab for your assets. Iain Younger of advisors Frank Hirth reveals the facts

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With its spectacular natural beauty, abundant wildlife and luxurious, relaxing hotels, Iceland has everything to offer the adventurous traveller

Is your hectic modern lifestyle is damaging your mental balance? Luxury clinics can now offer a path to peace and wellness

From the Turner Prize to climate change protests, is the art world wrong to allow itself to become mired in politics?

The historic tradition of British furniture-making has not been lost by companies combining design skills with high standards of craftsmanship

Leather is traditionally associated with quality, durability and luxury, but how are new accessories combining these values with modern utility?

Combining architectural taste, artistic decoration, an appreciation of history and the highest standards of comfort and service, these are the London hotels leading the world













Bite-sized facts summarising this issue’s contents in an easily digested numerical form

With the floods in Venice imperilling the world’s cultural heritage, our Editor considers what must be done to protect our future as well as our past

All the biggest exhibitions, shows and events worth seeing into 2020, starting with the bounteous Brussels Art Fair, BRAFA, and moving on to the marvellous Met and sculpture in London

From a stunning watch to a tiny book, and a sensuous painting to an armoured car, all the top lots to come under the hammer this season are gathered here

Architecture, women’s art, hi-fi, Old Masters, young masters, fashionistas and protesters all feature in our roundup of op titles or your coffee table or bookshelf

The most fabulous, artistic, indulgent, amazing and amusing collectables you could ever want to buy for someone special—or just for yourself



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It Figures...

DamsonMedia Publisher & CEO Kevin J. Harrington Editor Chris Jenkins Sub Editor Elika Roohi Design Jason Craig Features Writer John Renwick

Arts & Collections has partnered with over 120 of the world’s finest luxury and boutique hotels to provide the highest quality coverage of global art and cultural events, as well as auctions of interest and the latest developments in the global art market. It is this blend of interesting and informative editorial that is most appealing to guests at these premier hotels, who have a great interest in admiring and purchasing fine art and collectables.


The record-breaking amount in pounds paid for a Patek Philippe watch at a charity auction

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The hammer price in pounds of a Qianlong vase sold by Sotheby’s in 2010

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Editorial Assistant Robyn White Production Director Joanna Harrington Production Coordinator Severine Eidem Office Coordinator Adam Linard-Stevens Editorial OFFICE Arts & Collections Suite 2 143 Caledonian Road London N1 0SL United Kingdom Telephone: 020 7870 9090

images: © patek philippe; phaidon; sotheby’s; wikimedia; aston martin

CHICAGO OFFICE Arts & Collections 29 East Madison, Suite 809, Chicago, IL 60602, USA

The opinions expressed in this magazine should not be considered official opinions of The Publisher or Editor. The Publisher reserves the right to accept or reject all editorial or advertising matter. The Publisher assumes no responsibility for unsolicited manuscripts, photographs or artwork. IMAGES are sent at the owners’ risk and the Publisher takes no responsibility for loss.

© 2020 Damson Media All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part of any text, photograph or illustration without prior written permission from the Publisher is strictly prohibited. Printed in the UK.

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Arts & Collections’ dedicated website,, features detailed information on each of the 120 luxury hotels promoting the publication in their exclusive rooms and suites.

29.7m The number of Instagram followers our cover star Rihanna has

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All of the exclusive previews, reviews and expert commentary pieces that appear in the pages of Arts & Collections are also available to view on In addition, the website provides news of auctions by Sotheby’s and other top auction houses, plus exhibitions and popular cultural events, keeping visitors fully informed, as well as providing a comprehensive resource area for collectors and connoisseurs.

Arts & Collections is published quarterly and is available on subscription for €40 (Europe) or €45 (worldwide) per annum including post and packaging. Please email for further details regarding subscriptions.


The age of the cathedral of Notre-Dame de Paris, engulfed in flames in April 2019

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Output in brake horsepower of the Aston Martin Rapide E, the brand’s first all-electric car

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The number of objects from the tomb of Tutankhamun on show in the Treasures of the Golden Pharaoh exhibition

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Saint Mark’s Square, Venice in flood.

enice, one of the most important landmarks of world cultural heritage, has suffered its worst floods in half a century. A two-metre tide surge resulted in the flooding of St Mark’s Square and other famous sites, and threatened irreparable damage to historic buildings such as Saint Mark’s Basilica. Venice is used to periodic flooding—what the locals call acqua alta (high water). In fact up to 60 floods can be experienced throughout autumn and winter. But the situation seems to be worsening; of the six times Saint Mark’s Basilica has flooded in 1,200 years, four have been in the last 20 years. The city’s mayor, Luigi Brugnaro, estimated that the current bout of flooding has already caused more than $1 billion in damage. The flooding threat is not new. It has long been recognised that Venice, built as it is on soft terrain, is sinking by about a millimetre a year. For the last 40 years, the British charity Venice in Peril has been raising money to restore Venetian monuments, buildings and works of art. The rate of sinkage may not sound like much, but as restoration expert Pierpaolo Campostrini explained in Rolling Stone magazine, for centuries, when new buildings were built in the city, they were built on top of the pillars and foundations of old buildings, which steadily raised the city above the level of the water. “They were not sentimental about the past” he said. “They did not worry about preserving old buildings. They just built new ones on top of the old ones. And the city kept rising. But of course, we can’t do that anymore. Now, there are cultural constraints. We don’t want to lose the beautiful

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Renaissance architecture we have here. Knocking it down and building on top of it is not an option. We have to find another way to save it.” Apart from the unsuitable terrain, the erosion of the barrier islands known as barene by the construction of an oil terminal, an increase in the pumping of groundwater for industrial use, and of course climate change, have contributed to the threat to Venice. Earlier this year it was announced that massive cruise ships would be rerouted away from the centre of Venice to ports such as the outlying Fusina and Lombardia terminals. A more effective long-term solution may be the system of 78 storm gates installed at the Lido, Malamocco, and Chioggia inlets, able to isolate the Venetian Lagoon temporarily from the Adriatic Sea during acqua alta high tides. MOSE (MOdulo Sperimentale Elettromeccanico, Experimental Electromechanical Module, or ‘Moses’ if you appreciate the Biblical reference), has been under construction since 2003; plagued by cost overruns, corruption scandals, and delays, even it is not guaranteed to solve the flooding problem. Architect Niall Patrick Walsh says on ArchDaily: “The city could also look to other regions for inspiration, including pioneering Dutch methods in water management, prioritizing the ethos of ‘living with water.’” Venice is possibly the most culturally significant area to be threatened by the climate so far, but of course it is not the only one. We must recognize that inaction could threaten not only our future, but also our past.  Chris Jenkins

Image: © shutterstock


Venice in Peril

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collections // events

Happenings Bringing you an eclectic mix of artistic, cultural, historical and essential events approaching 2020


Below: BRAFA at Tour & Taxis Saturday 25 January 2020 by invitation only Public days Sunday 26th January to 2nd February 2020 Free Art Tours 3-4pm daily supported by Hiscox

The 65th BRAFA (Brussels Art Fair) takes place from Sunday 26th January to 2nd February 2020 at Tour & Taxis, a spectacularly renovated industrial site in the heart of Brussels. There will be 133 galleries in total, the same number as last year, with some new names and several returning galleries. Staying true to its roots, BRAFA 2020 will once again offer a diverse range of artworks of the highest quality from the strongest collecting traditions. Thanks to a stringent vetting process, which is regarded as one of the strictest in the sector, the art fair has maintained the highest expectations of collectors and art lovers for 65 years, as well as sharing a visual history of art across its many different periods and disciplines. BRAFA relies on a panel of 100 independent experts, checks by the Art Loss Register, and the services of a scientific laboratory specialising in the analysis of art objects, cultural and archaeological heritage, to perform various analyses onsite if the experts request this. 

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Events // collections


Above: Didier Claes Gallery, Kota reliquary, Gabon, early C20th Wood, copper, brass, H 58 cm Private collection, Belgium


Images © courtesy of brafa and the exhibitors

BRAFA, which covers twenty art disciplines ranging from archaeology to contemporary art, also strives to maintain an internal balance between each of these very diverse specialities, to ensure the art fair is as representative as possible. While the number of modern and contemporary artworks at this art fair, which has traditionally focused on ancient art, has definitely increased in recent years, ancient art is still very well represented and has a prominent presence at the fair. Just under half of the newcomers this year specialise in this category, including classical archaeology, old masters, furniture and artefacts. This reality is also indicative of the organisers’ intention to maintain a strong and competitive ancient art offering.  Right: Helene Bailly Gallery, Moïse Kisling (Krakow 18911853 Sanarysur-Mer) Les deux Baigneuses, 1917 Oil on canvas, 81 x 100 cm Signed and dated lower left: Kisling 1917

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BRAFA is becoming more international than ever. Initially a gathering of Belgian art dealers, the art fair has since become a more international event. The pace of transformation was stepped up in the past twelve years since its relocation from the magnificent Centre for Fine Arts by Victor Horta to the vast industrial warehouses of the Tour & Taxis site. This year, Brafa welcomes 50 Belgian galleries including Gokelaere & Robinson, and 83 international galleries, including French, British, and Swiss. BRAFA also welcomes more galleries from Italy and the Netherlands. New galleries attending this year include Antiquarium Ltd. (New York – archaeology); Paolo Antonacci (Rome—European paintings from the 18th and 19th C.); W. Apolloni Antichità (Rome—furniture, paintings and art objects from the 17th C.-19th C.); Callisto Fine Arts (London—masterpieces of European sculptures and art objects); CLEARING (New York / Brussels—contemporary art); Nardi (Venice—jewellery); Rueb (Amsterdam—modern and contemporary art); and Dalton Somaré (Milan—African and Hindu-Buddhist ancient art).  Right: Gokelaere & Robinson, Alvar Aalto (Kuortane 18981976 Helsinki) Tea Trolley, 1937 Birch and linoleum 56 x 90 x 46 cm Manufactured by Oy Huonekalu-ja


Among many exhibitors returning to BRAFA including Helene Bailly Gallery of Paris will be ten galleries returning to the fair after an absence of a year or more: Bruil & Brandsma Works of Art (Amsterdam—antiquities and art objects from the 14th C.-18th C.); Galerie Jean-François Cazeau (Paris—modern paintings and sculptures); Chamarande (Brussels—antique jewellery); De Jonckheere (Geneva—old and modern masters); Douwes Fine Art (Amsterdam—old masters); Francis Janssens van der Maelen (Brussels—silverware); Adrian Schlag (Brussels—tribal art); Studio 2000 Art Gallery (Blaricum—Dutch paintings from the 20th Century); Galerie Tanakaya (Paris—Japanese prints and antiquities); and M. F. Toninelli Art Moderne (Monaco— modern art). 2020 is an important anniversary for BRAFA as this is the 65th year of the much anticipated European art fair, which will be celebrated with a unique and original event. 

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(Left) Face of Stillness I, 2018 Emily Young (British, Born 1951) Bronze with green patina Height: 30 1/8” (76.5 cm) Edition 1 of 9, plus 3 artist’s proofs


(Above) Celestial globe with clockwork, 1579. Gerhard Emmoser (German, active 1556–84). Partially gilded silver, gilded brass (case); brass, steel (movement). Gift of J. Pierpont Morgan, 1917


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The Making Marvels: Science & Splendor at the Courts of Europe event at the Met museum will showcase treasures of the European royal families from 1550 to 1750. Lavish public spending and display of these precious items was considered an expression of power, and many princes also believed that the possession of artistic and technological innovations conveyed status, so these objects were often prominently showcased in elaborate court entertainments characteristic of the period. Making Marvels will explore the complex ways in which the wondrous items collected by early modern European princes, and the contexts in which they were displayed, expressed these rulers’ ability to govern. Approximately 170 objects—including clocks, automata, furniture, musical instruments, jewelry, paintings, sculptures, print media, and more—from both the Met collection and over 50 lenders worldwide will be featured. Visitors will discover marvelous innovations that engaged and delighted the senses of the past, much like 21st Century technology holds our attention today—through suspense, surprise, and dramatic transformations. The exhibition runs from 25th November 2019 to 1st March 2020 at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1000 Fifth Avenue, New York. 

Emily Young, born in 1951 and described by the Financial Times as ‘Britain’s leading living stone sculptor’, is exhibiting her latest works at the Bowman Sculpture Gallery in St James, London, from 21 November 2019. She says of the exhibition: “All the pieces in this next show speak to the future: the stone is always born from the deep geological history of the planet Earth, and they are many hundreds of millions of years old. Some stones are even billions of years old. They carry the marks made by a short lived human contemporary sculptor, which will then travel on into the future, and endure for many more millions if not billions of years, telling something of our present feelings for the planet.” Her grandmother was the sculptor Kathleen Scott, a colleague of Auguste Rodin and widow of the explorer Captain Scott of the Antarctic, and Young is a former muse of Pink Floyd (supposedly the song See Emily Play was written about her). Young currently resides in a monastery in Tuscany, and is regarded as one of the world’s most prominent environmental artists, the majority of her pieces being heavily inspired by the climate crisis. Last year an environmental art project in which she placed giant sculpted heads on the seabed to prevent illegal fishing made world headlines. The exhibition at Bowman Sculpture Gallery (6 Duke Street, St James) runs indefinitely. 



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news // collections

HIGHLIGHTS By robyn white

We present record-breaking, outstanding and unique items from the world’s leading auction houses this season Parsonage Pleasure An extremely rare Charlotte Bronte miniature book, written by the author when she was just 14, was bought at Drouot’s auction in Paris for €600,000 by the Bronte Society. The book will join the other surviving four in the miniature book series at the Parsonage museum in the Brontes’ hometown in West Yorkshire. The books tell the story of a fantasy world imagined by Charlotte for her toy soldiers. 

Two-Faced TIMEPIECE This unique model made specially for the annual Only Watch charity event raised a world record for any timepiece, CHF 31 million (around £23m). The Grandmaster Chime, Reference 6300A, is the most complicated wristwatch in the current Patek Philippe catalogue, boasting an astounding twenty complications including five acoustic functions. For the first time since the model debuted in 2014, this Grandmaster Chime features a case in nonprecious metal: stainless steel. In addition, it showcases a double-face case with a guilloched hobnail pattern and a patented reversing mechanism. On one side, there is a rose gold dial, and on other side, a black dial. All in all, it measures in at a hefty 47.7mm. The model is topped off with the inscription The Only One on the subsidiary alarm time dial at the 12 o’clock position. 

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Death becomes her A newly identified canvas painting by the famous 17th century painter Artemisia Gentileschi called Lucretia, fetched £4.1m at auction in November. This set a new record for the artist’s work at a sale at the Parisian auction house Artcurial. The painting depicts a Roman noblewoman, moments from committing suicide. The painting dates from between1630 and 1640 and had been kept unrecognised in a private collection in Lyon for 40 years. 

Lord of the Rings Despite slight deficiencies in one of the sapphires and diamonds, this Cartier bracelet, circa 1930, sold for £106,250 on an estimate of £60,000-£80,000 at Sotheby’s Fine Jewels in London in June. In the “Art Moderne” style, designed as a graduating series of nine octagonal step-cut sapphires, accented with calibré-cut sapphires, alternating with panels pavé-set with circular- and single-cut diamonds, inner circumference approximately 160mm, signed Cartier, French assay marks, case stamped Cartier. 

Smells Like Teen Spirit

IMAGES: © only watch, drouot’s, artcurial, sotheby’s, juliens auctions, barratt jackson

Despite being stained, cigarette-burned and unwashed in nearly three decades, one of Kurt Cobain’s cardigans sold for $334,000 (£260,000) at Julien’s Auctions. The Nirvana singer wore the button-up during the band’s Unplugged MTV performance in 1993. It has not been washed since. This is reportedly the most expensive sweater ever sold at an auction. 

Armourgeddon This stunning 1937 Cord 812 Custom Beverly, supposedly commissioned by Huey Long, never transported the notoriously corrupt politician, who was assassinated before the car was delivered. With its armour plating, extended wheelbase, coffin nose, front-wheel drive, independent suspension and 125-horepower V-8 engine, it might have saved his life. Instead it served as a VIP transport for the US Coastguard, and has now been fully restored and is up for auction by Barratt Jackson in January 2020, with no reserve. 

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news // collections

Bottle of sunshine One of two “Genesis” releases bottled in 2018 to celebrate the opening of the brand new Macallan distillery, this spectacular Genesis Decanter is the oldest Macallan single malt ever bottled, distilled in the 1940s, in a period of post-war optimism both in the whisky industry and the world as a whole. Having matured for 72 years, this was bottled in a year Macallan themselves described as a “new dawn”. The Lalique decanter and its presentation are designed to evoke and celebrate the architecture of the new distillery. Designed by Burgess Studio, it was handcrafted by Royal Warrant holding cabinet makers, NEJ Stevenson. One of only 600 offered, this sold for £80,000 at Whiskey Auctioneers. 


Our series highlights a single item of artistry or craftsmanship that is both rare and exquisite

IMAGES: © whiskey auctioneers, wallace chan


allace Chan’s exquisite porcelain jewellery was highlighted in his first ever London solo show at Asia House in September 2019. Showcasing 20 intricately designed pieces of jewellery, alongside 10 titanium sculptures, the exhibition Shapeshifter: The Multiverse of Wallace Chan was introduced by the master speaking of his boyhood in China and Hong Kong and the development of his unique ceramic technology. Over the last 45 years, Wallace Chan has innovated in art and science. His superstrength porcelain is claimed to be five times harder than steel, and his Wallace Cut carving technique creates an illusion in transparent materials by combining faceting and intaglio into three-dimension engraving. His patented jade brightening technique enables the green refractions to magnify each other and sharpen the colours, and his titanium techniques bring new possibilities to the use of the lightweight metal in jewellery. Chan’s diamond claw setting method allows diamonds to function as claws, holding other diamonds and gemstones in place. The “inner mortise and tenon setting method” adopts a Ming-style architectural joining technique, in which the setting materials are

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given a special cut to form a mortise and tenon joint, so the materials become a perfect fit without a claw. In the ‘Secret Abyss’ technique, which took 10 years to perfect, Wallace Chan captures emerald clouds within a single piece of rutilated quartz. In one piece a yellow diamond is set on a 6.5mm opening, through which Chan emptied the stone from within and set inside 1,111 emeralds. The rutilated quartz creates a dreamlike feel, a secret abyss of gleaming, meandering clouds. “I express my life through gemstones” says Wallace Chan, “It’s about a pursuit of freedom.” Smothered with a glittering blanket of gems including yellow diamonds, emeralds and tsavorite garnets, as well as two Padparadscha sapphires for eyes, the piece called Hera seen here is a peacock-inspired brooch, but the large opal at the base of the design, surrounded by projecting pearl-tipped prongs, can be detached and worn as a ring. “I wanted it to be as realistic as possible,” said Chan, “And as abstract as it can be – like a dream you carry from your sleep into your waking world.” For an introduction to his work, view the film at

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The Only Girl

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In The W rld How do you celebrate the career of one of the world’s most famous women? For photographer Dennis Leupold, only Phaidon’s massive art book RIHANNA would do BY CHRIS JENKINS

INTIMATE “We are excited and proud to publish this incredible book by this extremely talented and influential woman,’ says Phaidon’s CEO, Keith Fox. “Rihanna is such an important and groundbreaking artist, style icon, and entrepreneur.” A visual narrative with a freewheeling, roughly chronological thread, the book takes an exclusive, inside look into Rihanna’s world, from her childhood in Barbados to

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her worldwide tours, from quintessential fashion moments to private time with friends and family, showcasing intimate photographs of her life as a musician, performer, designer, and entrepreneur. Arts & Collections asked photographer Dennis Leupold how it felt to have his work presented in such a monumental format. “It feels amazing to be able to collaborate with such an inspirational and talented artist like Rihanna over a long period of time (seven Years),” he told us. “The book is a beautiful collection of memories and really shows her journey over the years as a musician to becoming a mogul with so many successful businesses. The book is one of my proudest moments of my career so far and the imagery has helped shaped my entire career as a photographer.”

AMBITION But is it hard for a photographer to create memorable images when we’re surrounded with the flood of material from the internet? “I think the flood of images on the internet actually makes the book even more unique! Back in the day, print publications were our only access to imagery and every publication was a very curated and produced project. “I think the book is a stark contrast to the Instagram age, where we are accustomed to swiping through thousands of small images a day. Just the size and quality of the book alone makes it very unique and special. Social media helps us take in massive amounts of information in a very short time, but there’s also a disadvantage of never seeing the images printed in full size. The most artistic and unique moments tend to get lost and drained out by very loud and bold images that scream for attention.”

Above and left: RIHANNA by Phaidon; Turks and Caicos, 2018. Photographs: Dennis Leupold

Fulfilling a long-held ambition to work with Rihanna, the book gave Leupold the opportunity to shoot the star everywhere from backstage in Miami to holidays in the Turks & Caicos islands. “Many of these images trigger a lot of emotions for me because everyone on the team is like family and we’ve experienced a lot together. Jay Brown (Rihanna’s manager) gave us complete freedom for the project, there was no set timeline and it was a very organic process from start to finish.” “My approach to shooting is always to be a quiet observer and capture the real moments that are not staged or altered. I try not to insert myself into situations, but rather be a ‘fly on the wall’ without making people feel uncomfortable. It’s a fine balance to be engaging and social, but at the same time not to forget your assignment and always be ready to take a picture at the right moment.” But Leupold’s photos, of which there are over 1,000, form only part of the package; London creative studio Barnbrook had the huge but highly enviable task of designing the interiors, typography, and cover for the

IMAGES: © dennis leupold/phaidon


ow do celebrate the life and work of someone with thirty million Instagram followers, a $600m fortune, and careers in music, fashion, cosmetics, movies and philanthropy? Only with a photographic biography which is a work of art in itself; a tome so weighty it drops like a falling star. Rihanna, published by Phaidon, does just that; marks the 10-year career of singer/ actress/fashion mogul Robyn Rihanna Fenty in a massive photographic biography. Rihanna has sold 60 million albums, launched her beauty line Fenty Beauty in 2017, her lingerie line Savage X Fenty in 2018, and most recently her luxury fashion line Fenty with LVMH in 2019. She is perhaps best known for her visual image; the constantly changing hairstyles, the opulent Met Gala costumes, the distinctive tattoos—notably the Goddess Isis on her chest and the tribal markings on her hands. There have been books about Rihanna before (2010’s Rihanna: The Last Girl on Earth featured photographs by British artist Simon Henwood), but nothing quite like Phaidon’s; a 504-page tome with 11 inserts, including a removable poster, and seven gatefolds. The cover features a stunning colour photograph and wrap-around cloth binding and the book comes in a printed black carrying case.

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Above and right: En route to Christian Dior show, Paris, 2014; Safari, Johannesburg, 2013. Photographs: Dennis Leupold Below left: Rihanna: Fenty X Phaidon, special edition featuring tablestand by the Haas Brothers

The hardcover book is portrait format, bound in a bespoke black fabric with a matte black, laser-cut, steel logo inset into the front cover. Additional features include three paper stocks, seven single- and double-page gatefolds, nine bound-in booklets, a tip-in sheet, and a double-sided, removable poster (35-3/8 x 26-3/4 inches). Endpapers feature a custom design by The Haas Brothers in spot gloss on a rich, black paper stock.

I’ve always thought her hands were very important. She’s got iconic hands – Simon Haas, The Haas Brothers

Jonathan Barnbrook said: “The pacing of the book was dictated by Rihanna’s life. She is right in the middle of this crazy universe and she is this incredible energy attractor so the book and the design had to reflect where she is at.” Marwan Kaabour added: “You can tell a story in a variety of ways. And the sheer scale of this book, and the number of images, allowed us to tell a very detailed, and very intimate story. The words are there to kind of tap into one memory, or one location or one event. And, in addition to that, there are all these inserts that provide an anecdote here and there, so there is a lot to go through.” And how did Barnbrook deal with the design demands of new types of media? “I think the typography was certainly a response to that” says Jonathan. “It had to be quite robust and strong to go through all these different viewing platforms. Current technology means that things have to work in different kinds of media—from the lowest common denominator to the highest. “For record covers and books now, we

look at the cover quite small to see how it might work. Because a lot of people just see the end product at postage stamp size— they don’t see the real thing. They don’t go into a record shop or a book shop.”

LIMITED In addition to the large-format edition of Rihanna published at £120, Phaidon and Rihanna have collaborated with The Haas Brothers on three limited editions. Twin brothers Nikolai and Simon Haas from Austin, Texas often explore aesthetic themes related to nature, science fiction, sexuality, and psychedelia. The Rihanna: Fenty x Phaidon edition features a Haas Brothers designed steel tabletop bookstand called This Sh*t Is Heavy, inspired by Rihanna’s hands and finished in matte, powder-coated green and mirrored silver chrome. Price of this edition is £140. Then there’s a third edition of the book limited to only 1,000 copies. Rihanna: Luxury Supreme featuring Drippy + The Brain is signed and numbered by Rihanna and the Haas Brothers. The book for this edition is bound in a custom-made black fabric with an inset, matte black, laser-cut steel logo inset into the front cover and completed with a castresin tabletop bookstand covered with a bespoke black vermiculated fabric. The book and stand together weigh 126 pounds.

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large-format book. Barnbrook (founded by Jonathan Barnbrook) is one of Britain’s most well-known and highly regarded independent creative studios, recognized with a retrospective at the Design Museum in London in 2007.


The imagery has helped shaped my entire career as a photographer – Dennis Leupold

Drippy + The Brain, the custom castresin tabletop bookstand measures 57 x 43-1/2 inches and is plated in an 18-carat gold colour with mirror-finish, topped with a cushioned platform made from high-density, laser-cut foam covered with a bespoke black vermiculated fabric. Price of this edition is £5,175.00. (There’s also an Ultra Luxury Supreme Edition—limited to 10 copies and already sold out at $75,000—featuring Stoner, a custom marble pedestal designed in collaboration with The Haas Brothers, hand-carved in Nazaré, Portugal from a unique piece of solid Pele de Tigre marble with a soft, eggshell finish. The book, pedestal and packaging together weigh almost 2,000 pounds).

little bit like a splash, and it has a pillow on it that is covered with a vermiculated material. Vermiculation is something that we do that is basically two layers of fabric that are sewn together in a very specific pattern, and one of the layers is shrunk. One of my favourite parts is the endpapers in the book, which have a print of the vermiculation pattern in clear gloss over black paper. It shimmers almost like a spider web. And it has her name hidden in it. It’s really beautiful.”

Above left: Dead Sea, Israel, 2013. Photograph: Dennis Leupold Above and below: Drippy + The Brain and Stoner table stands by The Haas Brothers

The Rihanna Book is available now, online at and in bookstores 

BEAUTIFUL The Haas Brothers told Artspace’s Loney Abrams about their work on the project. Simon Haas said: “The bookstand for the Fenty x Phaidon edition is based on Rihanna’s hands and her tattoos. The hands are open and the book rests on them, so it’s like she’s handing the book to you. I’m a huge fan of hers, and I’ve always thought her hands were very important. She’s got iconic hands.” “The second stand, for the Rihanna: Luxury Supreme edition, is gold-toned, and it’s got little flanges that Niki sculpted. We based it on Doctor Zoidberg from [the animated television series] Futurama. It’s one of the shapes that we return to a lot. It looks a

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ArtFully Barbados How Barbados’s Burgeoning Artistic Community Depicts The Essence of The Island Nation.

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nown for its breathtaking beaches and beautiful landscapes, Barbados brims with a rich and vibrant artistic heritage. The birthplace of musical icon Rihanna and cricketing legend Sir Garfield Sobers, this 166 square mile jewel of the Caribbean is a treasure-trove of creatives, whose talents are reflected within its shores, but who have also made waves around the globe. While culturally Barbados was born out of a blending of West African and British influences, other ethnic groups have contributed to what makes it diverse and colourful today. From art to cuisine to culture, Barbados boasts a variety of seasonal events that celebrate “Barbadiana” through the year. In November, when the country celebrates its independence, Barbadians from every walk of life showcase their talents across the spectrum of art at NIFCA (the National Independence Festival of Creative Arts). During this cultural extravaganza, those who excel are presented with gold, silver or bronze awards of achievement, top amateur awards and awards for professionals, with the highest being the Governor General’s Award of Excellence. In 2016, 100 artists came together for an exhibit called We Pledge Allegiance, where over 400 pieces of art in varying media were displayed for the nation’s 50th Anniversary. Out of this was born Artist Alliance Barbados, which hosts pop-ups monthly to give artists more visibility and create more prosperity within the visual arts. Currently, there are close to 20 art spaces across the island and artists have just launched

More information from

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Artists Studio Tours 2020 - Discover Barbados Discover Art, which will take place in February and March. Many Barbadian artists have been commissioned by patrons of the arts globally and their works grace the walls and homes of people around the world. Often referred to as the culinary capital of the Caribbean, Barbados’s restaurant offerings are the answer to a gastronome’s prayers. Many of Barbados’s chefs and mixologists have achieved international recognition and won gold awards in competitions globally. Every October the culinary arts take centre stage during the Barbados Food and Rum Festival. For a week, local chefs and mixologists show their mastery of local fare and tantalise the taste buds of Bajan foodies and those who fly in for the experience. When it comes to design, one can hardly overlook the stunning architecture that blankets the landscape of Barbados. There is a mixture of traditional and modern styles which creates a charm that is uniquely Bajan. The architectural design heritage of Barbados can be traced from early 17th century Jacobean great houses, enchanting 18th century churches, 19th century chattel houses to contemporary villas and office buildings that have evolved from a rich history of design. There are also architectural delights that are crafted in intricate detail on many of the traditional houses by local artisans. It is through media such as these and in every other area of art and creativity, that the rich stories of the vivacity of Barbados’s people and culture are being told. ✦

All images of the Chummery Estate, St. James BarbadosJames, Barbados


06/12/2019 17:30

Style & Sophistication at your Private Retreat

The Chummery Estate, originally built for the chairman of Macy’s, is the epitome of sophisticated and casually elegant island living. Features of this 5 acre, 5 bedroom, 5 bathroom property include a drawing and dining room overlooking the Junior Olympic size pool, adjacent to a gourmet kitchen. The family room offers ample space as an office, a media room, or a cooling retreat on a warm summer day. The best way to appreciate this space is on a private tour, which can be arranged by contacting us at or 1.246.432.5050.


Property: Chummery Estate Each office is independently owned & operated.

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Thinking Inside

the Box

Box Galleries in Chelsea is the go-to London destination for contemporary art collectors. Arts & Collections asks owner Emma Moir for her unique take on the market By John Renwick


ince its foundation in 2012, Box Galleries has become a reliable source of recognised investment artwork, as well as works by emerging talents in the contemporary art scene. Emma Moir, owner of the King’s Road, Chelsea gallery, has built up an impeccable reputation for having access to artwork by some of the biggest names in the art world, including Damien Hurst, Roy Lichtenstein, Russell Young and Andy Warhol. Arts & Collections asked Emma for her unique insights into the contemporary art market— starting with the history of Box Galleries. Emma said: “I started Box Galleries in 2012, having worked in a large commercial gallery and being given enough autonomy to have the belief I could do it myself! Although I studied law I always had a creative side, and at one point, was an artist myself, so I felt I understood both sides of the fence of business vs. creative. I wanted to set up a gallery that was in between a commercial print-orientated chain and the very high-end intimidating galleries, where you have to ring a bell to enter.”

WELCOMING So what was different about Box Galleries? “My aim was to be able to showcase emerging artists alongside investment artwork in a welcoming environment, where clients can buy their first original, to collectors building an investment collection. Box Galleries’ place in the current art scene is as a bespoke, consultative, approachable gallery with access to higher-end artwork”. Box Galleries now offers services ranging from investment advice to leasing schemes for hotels, show homes, members’ clubs

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“I think clients are broadening their assets and wanting to put their money into something tangible that they can enjoy” - Emma Moir, Box Galleries.

INVESTMENT With events including a signing of the book King of Style by Michael Jackson’s personal dresser Michael Bush, a diamondthemed event featuring Andy Warhol works, a solo show by Lauren Baker and a showcase for celebrity portraits by renowned photographers Terry O’Neill, Doug Kirkland and Andy Gotts, Box Galleries certainly covers a wide field. But how does this reflect the state of the art investment market? Is contemporary art seen as a good or a risky investment? “The art market has been booming for years”, says Emma, “with some of the biggest auction sales happening even despite financial/political turmoil. Personally I think clients are broadening their assets and

wanting to put their money into something tangible that they can enjoy. It depends on who you talk to as to whether it is a good or risky investment—but I have had clients make up to 30 percent profit in a year through artwork, and not many industries or products can offer this. It really depends on the profile and strength of the secondary market for the artist, and the time the client allows to be tied into the artwork.” But is the gallery system not being undermined by the rise of online platforms? Is it not now easier for artists to represent themselves, rather than going through the gallery system? “It is, but a lot of true collectors want me to bring the artwork to their house or office or for them to come into the gallery or a physical space to view the artwork. This is important because of factors such as size, texture, framing and provenance, and having the reassurance that they are being advised by Above and right: MUSE by Mark Demsteader

IMAGES: © box galleries

and offices, giving companies the flexibility of rotating artwork as well as a more financially sensible way of showing quality artwork without having to purchase upfront. There’s also a home approval service so clients can “try before they buy” by viewing the artwork in the space in mind, together with advice on positioning, framing, installation and security. But central to all these is of course the selection of artists promoted by the gallery. “As well as having continuity in showcasing some established and well-known artists such as Lauren Baker, Terry O’Neill, Mark Demsteader and others, we are constantly changing our exhibition programme, taking on new talent and offering a diverse range of interesting artwork and collaborations. I try to offer interesting events at the gallery such as wine tastings, charity events with schools, dinner parties, breakfast clubs, and recently even a charitable dog event!”

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and our relationship to animals; and the Connor Brothers, pseudonym for British art dealers James Golding and Mike Snelle, who put a unique slant on popular paperback artwork. “I have worked with Lauren for a number of years and have held two sell out solo shows, with another one planned for 2020” says Emma. “Her consistency of creativity and quality and the combination of neon works, prints with soulful and positive mantras allow for really interesting progression and she has been gaining worldwide recognition.”


Photo: Mark Thomas Photography

a reliable art consultant. Although it is a good start to look online, in my opinion, the online market is saturated, and it is far more difficult to differentiate quality and worth there.”

ACCESSIBILITY We asked Emma whether the status of ‘professional’ artists was being undermined by another aspect of technology—such as the accessibility of cameraphones and digital image editing. “I actually think it’s the opposite”, she argued, “particularly in the photography market. Now that it’s so easy to take so many photos and filter immediately, the photography Box Galleries sells such as Terry O’Neill, Douglas Kirkland and Helmut Newton become even more precious. Terry O’Neill for example only had 24 exposures per film in order to get that one shot, mostly rushing behind the scenes of filming, so he had to make that work. In some ways the accessibility of smart phones and the sharing of images makes artwork less exclusive, but generally it benefits the gallery and artist, as it’s easier to have a wider reach through social media for example.” So is there a trend away from conceptual art, back to traditional aesthetics, and can visual art still be ‘cutting edge’ when it’s challenged by other genres such as video and performance art? “I do believe there has been a trend back to the skilful traditional aesthetics, especially when looking at the reemergence of the popularity of figurative art”

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Above: Michael Bush signing The King of Style at Box Galleries Below: Lauren Baker, You Are Pure Magic

says Emma. “For example, our current show MUSE by Mark Demsteader showcases an unimaginable level of skill in capturing the human form and a Victorian depiction of female beauty but with an abstract twist. It explores time, identity and movement and ignites a pre-Raphaelite renaissance in a world obsessed with conceptual art.” Other artists promoted by Box Galleries include Lauren Baker, whose neon kinetic sculptures explore themes of conservation

But do some artists take an easier route, simply recycling ‘found’ celebrity images to satisfy a seemingly insatiable public? “Ever since Andy Warhol used celebrities and pop culture in his artwork, this has become a focal point in the contemporary art scene, and I don’t see that changing anytime soon!” says Emma. So how should a collector or investor begin to build a portfolio? Is it better to buy what you like, or what you think will be a good investment? “It depends on the reason for purchasing, but I would say it’s mixture of passion and investment” Emma decides. “Some of our clients buy solely based on investment which would mean finding an art consultant that you trust (preferably Box Galleries!) and then basing the decisions on the trajectory of the artist in mind with auction results, their position in the market currently and future potential. But most clients purchase what they like, and the investment potential is an added bonus.” 

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Art // Sotheby’s

In the first of a series of interviews with experts from the world’s largest art business, Sotheby’s, Arts & Collections speaks to Henry Howard-Sneyd, Chairman of Asian Art, Europe and Americas


s we reflect on the success of Sotheby’s Asia Week in September 2019 in New York and look forward to London’s Asian Art season, what better time to speak to a world-renowned expert on the Asian art market? Henry Howard-Sneyd worked for Sotheby’s in Hong Kong at a time when the market was expanding rapidly and in New York where he managed the Asia division, and since 2015 has been Chairman of Asian Art, Europe and Americas and lead auctioneer globally in Asian art. But what drew a biochemist to the Asian art market in the first place?


By Chris Jenkins

of the Imperial Southern Song Dynasty held in the Percival David Foundation Collection,” Henry told us. “This was enhanced by my being asked to work on another piece of Imperial ‘Guanyao’ that we were researching for sale in Hong Kong in the summer of 1988 and that made HK$22m— an astonishing price at the time. Although I was researching it in the books, I never actually saw the pieces until many years later when it was on loan to the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco. It was a moment of great fulfilment to me when I finally held it in my hands thanks to the collector who had bought it in 1988, more than 20 years later.” “In terms of highlight sales, there have been many extraordinary moments on the rostrum but perhaps the highlight for me was our sale of the final pieces from the collection of the famous New York dealer JT Tai that we won for sale in New York, but sold in Hong Kong in October 2010 in a sale that felt like one long celebration of high drama, competition and record prices.

Rising in the East

“I originally studied at Pembroke College Cambridge as a biochemist but found my love of art overwhelmed science and changed to art history. Joining Sotheby’s on the Graduate training program and aware that I wanted to travel and explore, I asked to spend time with the Chinese department, fell in love with the ceramics at the Percival David Foundation, now at the British Museum, and that started me off on the specialist track in the Chinese team. “I soon started working not just on London auctions, but also travelling to Hong Kong and New York to help with those which led to my global outlook. This was further enhanced by my becoming an auctioneer and holding auctions bilingually in all locations.” Henry’s current role still entails a good deal of travelling to visit clients, study their collections, and officiate at auctions. But as the art market has become increasingly multinational, the demands of the job have become greater: “I enjoy different cultures, countries, cities and cuisines, but I have to admit that jetlag has become, perhaps, my greatest challenge as it undermines your health and performance!” In a distinguished career, was there a piece, we asked, which particularly ‘hooked’ him and persuaded him that Asian art was his field? “That would be the famous ‘Guanyao’ Bottle

Influences “We sold what at that time was the world record price for Porcelain in lot 2126, the yellow ground double-gourd vase that used to sit in a cabinet by his front door, for a hammer price of HK$225m. I had marshalled the collection from first contact to bringing the final hammer down in a ‘white glove’ sale and felt deep satisfaction in completing the whole journey with such success.” Since then, of course, the Asian art market has expanded greatly, with demand from both local and national collectors growing greater as the depth and historical resonance of the field has become clear. “The market never stands still,” says Henry. “There are always influences and winds of change, sometimes subtle such as the growing wealth of a country, and sometimes dramatic such as the appearance of SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome, a contagious

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Sotheby’s // Art


This magnificent yellow-ground famille-rose double-gourd vase with seal mark and period of Qianlong was sold in Sotheby’s Masterpieces of Qing Imperial Porcelain auction in Hong Kong on October 7, 2010 for HK252,660,000, (£24.9m), a world record for any Chinese work of art or porcelain at auction

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ART // SOTHEBY’S An imperial spinach-green jade ‘Wulao Yu’ brushpot from the collection of Robert Napier, First Baron Napier of Magdala (1810-1890). Qing dynasty, Qianlong period Estimate £300,000-£500,000 Sold in Sotheby’s Important Chinese Art auction, November 2018 for £706,000


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So finally, we asked how the Asian art market worldwide is likely to develop, and how the budding collector might enter the field? “Asian art has always had the widest international appeal, so I don’t think you can characterise it as potentially having more appeal into the future, but the biggest single trend that I am observing is expatriation of mainland Chinese clients, many of whom are moving to the international cities that they choose to live in around the world such as London, Paris, New York and Los Angeles. “These clients are more and more able to buy at International events such as Asian Art in London as they are less tied to their home country. This will, I think, continue to drive the interest in the field.”

TASTE and sometimes fatal respiratory illness which first appeared in China in 2002), the attacks on the World Trade Centre on September 9/11, and now the demonstrations in Hong Kong. However, the strength of the art itself proves to be the most resilient, and where one pressure is in particular direction there are often counter pressures from elsewhere. “Fundamentally, the market follows the money. During my career that started with Japan before the bursting of the bubble in the late 1980s, we have seen growing strength in Hong Kong and Taiwan, the reappearance of major collectors in the USA and more recently the inexorable rise of interest and buying power from mainland China itself.


IMITATION “Westerners have long admired Asian art, imitating it through Chinoiserie and Japonisme, collecting it, studying it and forming major collections that adorn global museums. The only resistance from ‘Western Collectors’ is the rapid rise in price that has largely eclipsed all but the deepest pockets.” As an example of how western collectors have embraces Asian art, the Asian Art in London group now holds hugely popular events each year. “I was part of the original founding committee back in the 1990s as London responded to the challenge posed by the Asian Art Fair being held annually in New York,” explains Henry. “I have always believed that it is important to work together as a group in this field to promote the extraordinary strengths that London and the UK have to offer. “Our museum collections both in London

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and around the country, our strength of expertise in the various Asian art fields, the energy and knowledge of the many dealers, restorers, academics and professionals is largely unrivalled and Asian Art in London has been imitated in New York, Hong Kong and Paris at the least—imitation is the sincerest form of flattery! “This year appears to be a vintage year and so I expect a wide range of activity at auctions and in galleries across every category. “Perhaps the most striking element of change is in the increasing focus by galleries in contemporary Asian art—though that is a very different one from the ‘Antique’ art world with a very different dynamic and not a field I focus on!”

“But ‘Asian’ Art is a huge concept, so the first question for the budding collector is what you actually like. There are few better cities in the world than London to visit museum collections to explore your own taste, to attend lectures and classes on fields of interest to learn about the art, and with such a strong and diverse group of world renowned dealers, galleries and auction houses to visit to handle pieces in the flesh and study the market. “The Asian Art in London website and guidebook is as good a place to find that information as any. There is no replacement for good old hard work, but equally, there is no replacement for an individual than their own ‘eye’. “Identify your own taste, train and develop that taste and you will then know what you should start to buy. Almost anyone in the field will tell you to buy the best that you can afford in that chosen field. Don’t be afraid to ask questions, and don’t forget to enjoy what you are doing! 

Above: Henry Howard-Sneyd fielding bids for an exceptional Xuande ‘Fish Pond’ Lobed Bowl, sold for HK$229m/US$29.5m in Hong Kong, April 2017 Left: An imperial silk and metallic thread carpet, Qing dynasty, 19th century, sold by Sotheby’s at the Important Chinese Art sale in October 2019 for £38,902


06/12/2019 12:46


Saving The Treasures of Notre-Dame de Paris The fire at Notre-Dame de Paris sparked concern throughout the world as one of the most historic landmarks in Europe went up in flames. But how much is truly lost, and what precious artefacts were saved by careful planning?



n April 15th 2019, one of the most devasting fires ever to be seen at a heritage site broke out at Paris’ beloved Notre-Dame cathedral. The 850-year-old gothic masterpiece is both an inspiration to artists worldwide and a repository for some of the most revered religious and artistic artefacts. Beyond the tally of what was lost and what was saved, hard questions have to be answered about responsibility for the costs of insurance cover and restoration work. The French state acts as its own insurer for religious buildings and for much of the


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contents—but what of Les Trésors de NotreDame? This collection of almost 2,000 artefacts is at the core of the responsibilities of Michel Honoré, Directeur Branche Fine Art et Fraude of insurance specialist Sedgwick.

EVACUATION Cathedral staff had long established an evacuation process starting with the most important relics, moving them first to the Paris Town Hall, then to the Louvre. As firefighters tackled the blaze, a human chain entered the cathedral with one aim: to save

the items that could never be replaced. Priority was given to the most precious and significant pieces, removed by firefighters risking their own lives. Among the pieces the human chain saved are the three relics which are sacred to Christians all over the world. According to three of the Gospels, the woven Crown of Thorns was worn by Jesus during his crucifixion. Making its way from Jerusalem to Byzantium, it is thought to have been in France since 1238, when it wss offered to King Louis IX, and it has been at Notre-Dame cathedral since the French

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consequence of the sustained use of firehoses and the increased risk of contamination from melted lead on the roof.”


Revolution. Now kept in a gold-decorated crystalline reliquary designed in 1896, the Crown consists of thorns from the jujube tree, plaited with rushes. The reliquary said to contain a fragment of the cross on which Jesus was crucified, as well as one of the original nails, was also saved. The nails were thought to have been passed to France in the year 799 by St Helena. Other religious treasures saved include the tunic of St Louis, a simple garment said to have been worn by the saint when bringing the Crown of Thorns to Paris during the 13th Century.

Good fortune But a great deal was saved by sheer luck; 16 three-metre tall copper sculptures of the 12 apostles and four evangelists had been removed from the top of the cathedral for cleaning a month before the fire. Fortunately, the stone flying buttresses and the main structure of the nave seem to have protected much of the cathedral from the ravages suffered by the timbers. Despite the collapse of the spire, the statue of the Virgin and Child known as Our Lady of Paris luckily escaped unscathed (see Michel Honoré’s photo, right). Less likely to have survived intact are 17th and 18th-century paintings depicting religious scenes, including Visitation by JeanBaptiste Jouvenet, which may have been irreparably damaged by smoke and water. As for Le Trésor (literally, the ‘Treasure’) of Notre-Dame, held in the sacristy at the

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southern end of the aisle, it was far removed from the seat of the fire. Nonetheless there were concerns about the possibility of smoke and water damage. The day after the fire, in response to a formal assignment, Michel Honoré of Sedgwick assembled a team of specialists in sculpture, stained glass, fabrics, paintings and ancient musical instruments to assess the state of the treasures within the church. Honoré reported that although 90 percent of the irreplaceable treasures were saved, masterpieces within the cathedral have been damaged, if not lost altogether. He said: “In the end, because of vital safety work on the cathedral’s vaulted ceiling, transept and apse, it was eight days before a selected group of seven were authorised to enter.” His first impressions on entering the building were promising; he reported “Whereas most surfaces after a fire of such intensity would be covered with black soot, here they had been rinsed clean of all traces by water cascading down inside after firefighters had concentrated on saving the structure of the edifice re and controlling smoke levels... (we had) the distinct impression that the disarray inside the building was limited when just the opposite might have been expected”. Michel Honoré continued: “Our ongoing work consists of examining and checking the works of art now being stored at the Louvre museum in Paris city centre. “Concerns about their condition in storage continue owing mainly to the damp atmosphere that prevailed in the cathedral as a

Facing page: The reliquary of the Crown of Thorns Top: Notre-Dame in flames Above: Michel Honoré’s photo showing the unscathed Virgin and Child

IMAGES: © wikimedia; michel honorÉ, vincent callebaut architectures

More obvious damage was done to the structure of the cathedral itself, with the massive timbers of the attic and the spire suffering the most. Perhaps the most heartbreaking moment of the fire was the collapse of the 91.44m (300 ft) spire, which was added in the 19th century. The Grand Organ is probably the most famous church organ in the world. With five keyboards and almost 8,000 pipes, it traces its origins to the 1400s, though the current organ is mainly from 1868 and had been added to and improved many times. Though it survived the fire substantially intact, it was covered in layers of soot and may be difficult to restore.

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Sedgwick France.pdf 1

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Sedgwick France.pdf 2

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Yet the Rose Windows, perhaps the most iconic features of Notre-Dame’s interior, remain untouched. The oldest, situated at the front of the church, dates back to 1125, although none of the original glass remains in the frame. Even before the fire was extinguished, promises of donations to rebuild the icon started to pour in, with €850 million being raised in the first 48 hours after the fire, much of it from France’s luxury goods conglomerates. The irony was not lost on staff and supporters who had long been struggling to raise funds for urgent repairs and long-term restoration.

SAVED From The Ashes?

Above: A reliquary from Saint-Chapelle; the tunic of St Louis Above right: Proposal for rebuilding Notre-Dame by Vincent Callebaut Architectures, Paris

Since the fire in April 2019, President Macron has set an ambitious target of restoration in five years, and architects have rushed to propose plans for the gothic masterpiece. Many have been traditional, others wildly inventive and perhaps intentionally unrealistic. One plan included converting the cathedral into a sanctuary for the homeless with a roof greenhouse, while another suggested a stained glass roof, complete with matching stained glass spire. Philippe Villeneuve, the architect in charge of the restoration of Notre-Dame, said: “For me, not only must you redo the spire, but you must recreate it exactly. We’re bound to the Venice Charter, which requires that we restore historic monuments in the last known state”. He told broadcaster RTL: “Either I restore it identically... or they make

a contemporary spire and it will be someone else [doing it]”. A vote in the Senate in May supported this view, but General Jean-Louis Georgelin, in charge of reconstruction, is in favour of a contemporary design, and said the chief architect should ‘shut his mouth’.

national heritage Yet restoring the structure identically presents seemingly impossible challenges; the wood used for the now-destroyed roof and frame, which also supported the standing of the spire, was over a thousand years old. The enormous timbers came from trees thought to be 400 years old in 1160, making them the oldest in the cathedral. No similar trees now exist, so replacing the beams is simply not an option, according to Bertrand de Feydeau, vice president of preservation group, Fondation du Patrimoine—indeed, in the words of The Goon Show, ‘you just can’t get the wood’. Michel Honoré of Sedgwick concludes “Beyond actual management of the claim itself, it is taking part in the conservation of our national heritage that makes us most proud. For the Sedgwick Fine Arts team and our love of fine objects and culture, it is an adventure that gives real meaning to our profession.” Whatever the outcome, the cathedral and its precious cultural and religious contents will undoubtedly remain as significant a treasure of world culture as ever. 

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The Glittering

World of the Pharaoh

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collections // HERITAGE

Treasures of the Golden Pharaoh may be the last chance to see Tutankhamun’s cultural hoard in the UK. Arts & Collections visited the Saatchi Gallery exhibition to see what may become the most popular exhibition of the decade By Robyn White


lmost a century ago in November of 1922, during his last funded dig in the Valley of the Kings, British archaeologist Howard Carter and his sponsor Lord Carnarvon broke into a tomb. Carnarvon asked if Carter could see anything. “Yes!” Carter cried, “Wonderful things.” Six fruitless years of searching had not seen Carter succeed in the search for Tutankhamun. Artefacts bearing the noble name of Tut had turned up in the Valley of the Kings on the west side of the Nile, yet the tomb itself was nowhere to be found until Carter and his workman discovered a narrow step which led to the underground world of the lost Egyptian Pharaoh, Tutankhamun. The resting place of the great pharaoh of the 18th dynasty, who came to power at the age of around nine or 10, was adorned with glorious artefacts designed to guide him on his journey through the afterlife, considered by the ancient Egyptians to be even more important than life itself. Now more than 150 of these treasures are on show at London’s Saatchi Gallery in Tutankhamun: Treasures of the Golden Pharaoh. After a world tour they will return to Egypt to be housed in the new Grand Egyptian Museum in Cairo, opening on the centenary of the excavation, and supposedly will never leave again.

Journey to the Afterlife More than 5,000 items were found in the tomb, miraculously intact and well preserved over a period of 3,000 years. The entire story of the excavation was covered in great detail by The Times of London, but it was not long before the news was a worldwide sensation, hailed as ‘The discovery of the 20th century’ and marking the beginning of the world’s enthrallment with the Pharaoh’s story. Rival newspapers went so far as to invent the story of a ‘curse’. Carter famously said, of the moment of discovery: “At first I could see nothing, the hot air escaping from the chamber causing the

candle flame to flicker, but presently, as my eyes grew accustomed to the light, details of the room within emerged slowly from the mist, strange animals, statues and gold – everywhere the glint of gold.” Certainly the Saatchi gallery’s most spectacular exhibition yet, Treasures of the Golden Pharaoh reflects the life of wealth and splendour of the young ruler, and underlines the unimaginable strangeness of the culture of the time. The exhibition aims to take visitors on the journey through the course of the Boy King’s life, telling a story through the order in which the treasures are displayed.

Tutankhamun on his journey to the afterlife in his quest for immortality.” The exhibition starts with telling the story of the Book of the Gates, an ancient text explaining how the deceased must pass through twelve gates that guard paradise with aid of supernatural creatures. For this reason, Tutankhamun is buried with weapons that will ensure his safe passage. Decorative gold shields depict the king warding off his enemies under foot, and brilliantly decorated boomerangs are still amazingly intact, there for the purpose of protecting the king on his perilous journey.

Gates to Paradise The managing director of exhibitions at the Saatchi Gallery, John Norman, said: “Nothing can replace the unique power of standing in front of an authentic object rooted in ancient history. “This unprecedented collection transports visitors to Ancient Egypt where they accompany

Left: Gold inlaid canopic coffinette dedicated to Inseti and Isis Above: Wall painting thought to depict Nefertiti

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HERITAGE // Collections

Ancient wonders There is a reason why Carter and Carnarvon declared that they had found ‘Aladdin’s cave’—this tomb was the most complete Egyptian tomb ever found, and the collection of treasures immense. Jewels buried with the Pharaoh are displayed looking as complete as they day they were placed on the mummified body. Regal even in death, he was buried with some of the finest jewellery in the kingdom. Perhaps the most glittering treasure is the face of the exhibition itself; the miniature canopic coffin which once contained the pharaoh’s mummified stomach. The intricate detail on the coffin features exquisite decorations of Egyptian blue lapis lazuli, among glittering gold. The perhaps more famous ‘death mask’ is not included in the exhibition—after being damaged in 2015 it has been deemed too fragile to transport—but nonetheless this is the largest Tutankhamun exhibition to have left Egypt. In 2020 the treasures will come to rest in the 650,000 square foot Grand Eqyptian Museum in Giza, on the outskirts of Cairo, the world’s biggest museum dedicated to a single civilization, displaying the entire contents of Tutankhamun’s tomb together for the first time. A glass wall will provide visitors with a view of

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the Great Pyramid of Khufu, the only remaining Wonder of the Ancient World.

Mysteries Despite the knowledge these objects give us about the 18th dynasty and the life of a worshipped pharaoh, the exhibition also highlights mysteries that puzzle us to this day. World-renowned archaeologist Dr Zahi Hawass said: “There is gold, yes, but also intrigue—how did this small boy rule a kingdom? What was his life like? How did he die? And above all else, humanity. This young boy is suddenly thrust to rule a thriving and powerful kingdom. The people around him who cared for him and honoured him with some of the most magnificent objects your eyes will ever behold.” Despite the clues given by the many treasures excavated from his tomb, there is still no certainty as to the cause of the Boy King’s death at the age of around 19 in 1324 B.C. However, the exhibition represents a new era of discovery and inspiration. John Norman said: “This exhibition causes people to think about the difference one person can make. Had it not been for Howard Carter’s passion and determination, the boy king’s name—and treasure—might have been lost for all eternity.” 

Above left: Gold fan with scene of ostrich hunting Above: Gold ornaments inlaid with jewels; ceremonial crook and flail; gold wesekh collar

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06/12/2019 12:50


How Banksy Broke the Mould of

British Art

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We expect certain artists to sell for millions at auction, but would we ever have thought that a vandal would become one of the biggest names in contemporary art? by Robyn White


In the 1990’s, Banksy was part of the underground ‘Bristol Scene’, a cultural movement which drew influence from the city’s multiculturalism, political activism and emerging genres of music. (There’s a persistent rumour that Banksy is Bristol Cathedral School student-turned-graffitiartist Robin Gunningham, born in Yate, 12 miles from Bristol). In the depths of underground Bristol, Banksy found a voice among the graffiti art scene and along with it, his niche for creating pieces that presented alternative aspects of politics.

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Does it matter if it isn’t painted by Banksy? Of course not. With Banksy we are dealing with a sloganiser, not a technician – Art critic David Lee

The Banksy Effect In 2006, journalist Max Foster coined the term ‘The Banksy Effect’ to describe an increased interest in street art. New artists, such as The Rebel Bear based in Scotland, emerged with similar styles of street art, popping up around the world and employing a satirical, anti-establishment theme. Banksy had become not just a pioneering artist, but the unintended head of a movement. He cemented his reputation in 2015 with Dismaland (“The UK’s most disappointing new visitor attraction”), a popup curated exhibition of the works of 58 artists in Weston-Super-Mare. It was not long before the world of galleries and auction houses moved in, with for example Keep it Spotless selling for $1.87 million in 2008 at a New York auction. Opposite page: Banksy, Choose Your Weapon, 2010 Above: Banksy, Toxic Mary, 2003 Left: Banksy, Flying Copper, 2003

IMAGES: © pest control/SOTHEBY’S


His first known mural The Mild Mild West appeared in the late 1990’s on a wall in Bristol, acting as a response to police action unleashed on party goers at unlicensed raves in abandoned warehouses. What originally started as ‘just graffiti’ caught the attention of the city, then the rest of the world. Suddenly, there was a voice for contemporary art lovers who lived in urban environments. Art could be appreciated from the city rather than the gallery or the auction house, making it more accessible to those in all walks of life. A study conducted by MyArtBroker showed that 77 percent of people loved Banksy because his artwork was easier to understand and explain than other artists, and 90 percent said that he had made art more accessible. Banksy had become the people’s artist. City dwellers claimed that ‘they were Banksy, and Banksy was them’. But he wasn’t without his critics—in 2006 satirist Charlie Brooker wrote of Banksy in The Guardian, “...his work looks dazzlingly clever to idiots.”

he pseudonymous artist known as Banksy has disrupted the art market yet again, with the recent sale at Sotheby’s of the painting Devolved Parliament (which depicts MPs as chimps in the House of Commons) for £9.9 million, five times its estimate. It was a world record for a sale by the Bristol-born graffiti artist, who was rated Britain’s all-time favourite in a poll conducted by Home & Antiques magazine. By creating works of ‘public art’—spraypainted graffiti, usually with a pointed political message—Banksy has bypassed all conventions of the art market, gaining enormous publicity with the appearance of each work, yet initially at least retaining little control over its legacy. Indeed, there’s often an unseemly scramble for profit whenever one of his works appears on a previously anonymous wall. His own commentary on this—the selfdestruction of the print Girl With Balloon, which shredded itself as it was auctioned at Sotheby’s for $1.4—raises questions of the value and ownership of art. As Banksy himself said on an Instagram post, quoting Picasso, “The urge to destroy is also a creative urge.” While the likes of Monet, Krasner and Koons have fetched gigantic sums at auction, perhaps none stand out as much as the anonymous Banksy. So how exactly has Banksy risen from the street to the salesroom?

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SHREDDING While Banksy’s guerrilla art continue to make regular appearances, in 2018 he made the ultimate statement of his ethos with the selfdestruction by shredder of a print of Girl With Balloon. While the action underlined Banksy’s rejection of the commercial art world, ironically, the new owner is thrilled—the work has been retitled Love In The Bin, certificated by Banksy’s authentication body Pest Control, and valued even higher than the selling price. “When the hammer came down and the work was shredded, I was at first shocked, but gradually I began to realise that I would end up with my own piece of art history,” said the new owner. In a similar act of defiance, Banksy recently opened a shop in Croydon, London to make a stand for his artistic rights. GDP (Gross Domestic Products) never opened its doors— all products were sold online. The window display featured anti-establishment art typical of Banksy, including ‘disco balls’ made from police riot helmets, and welcome mats from life vests salvaged from Greek detainment camps. Banksy explained the move was intended to establish copyright of his name after a greetings card company challenged for the right to use it. Certainly the public nature of the majority of Banksy’s art makes it difficult for him to establish ownership. Indeed, there’s a sense of bitterness to his comment on the sale of Devolved Parliament, “Shame I didn’t still own it”. Ironically, there are suggestions that Banksy may have commissioned but not painted the work—he refers to having ‘made’ rather than ‘painted’ it, and the 14-foot oil painting is

certainly not in his familiar style. Substantially repainted since it first appeared in 2009 as Question Time in the Bristol Museum, it has been claimed it could be the work of another anonymous artist, ‘Mason Storm’. Art critic David Lee said ‘It’s probably too finely worked to be by Banksy… It’s hardly unusual for artists who can’t paint ‘properly’ to commission someone else to do it for them. But does it matter if it isn’t painted by Banksy? Of course not. With Banksy we are dealing with a sloganiser, not a technician.” Sotheby’s rather coyly commented “There is no evidence to suggest it is not by Banksy: it is signed and dated by the artist, and accompanied by a certificate of authenticity.” Another conflict broke out when artist Andy Link claimed ownership of Banksy’s sculpture The Drinker, which Link had taken from its original site off Shaftesbury Avenue. Mysteriously ‘liberated’ from his lock-up, the sculpture come up for auction at Sotheby’s, only to be withdrawn over Link’s complaint.

DISRUPTING So how has this artist who seems so opposed to the principles of the established art world become one of its darlings? Sold for £32,500 at Christie’s in September 2019, one of Banksy’s works, titled I Can’t Believe You Morons Actually Buy This Sh*t, might (or might not) describe Banksy’s feelings towards his buyers. Steven Lazarides, art dealer and formerly Banksy’s agent, spoke out


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on the state of the corporate art world in 2019. “All of Banksy’s main pieces are in private collections. There has never been a significant work come up in an auction because the auction houses do not understand it.” Lazarides suggests that art auctions trade art for gigantic sums in endless circles, stating: “The only way for [auction houses] to keep going is from secondary market sales and there’s only a finite number of people who can be flipping Warhols and Basquiats.” “I worked with [Banksy] for 11 glorious years, during which time we broke every rule in the art rule book along with a fair few laws,” he said. “However nowadays it’s got to the stage where [the gallery world] is about nothing other than monetary value.” But whether his work belongs in the auction house or the street, Banksy continues to disrupt the art world’s expectations. His appeal to younger audiences (for instance customising a stab vest costume for headliner Stormzy at Glastonbury) could make him the ultimate people’s artist. For an anonymous artist, Banksy’s popularity is certainly a first, but as he once said himself: “If you want to say something and have people listen, then you have to wear a mask.”  Above: Banksy, Devolved Parliament, 2019 Left: Banksy, Girl With Balloon, 2004

06/12/2019 11:21

Read the


Fine (Art) Print An art collection can be more than a cultural treasure, it can also be a valuable investment asset. But where do collectors go to make sure that their legal and financial requirements are covered? By John Renwick

PROVENANCE For instance, when Leonardo da Vinci’s Salvator Mundi sold for $450m in 2017, it set a new world record for art sales; but since then, the provenance of the painting has been mired in controversy and it has been withdrawn from public display. Even if your art investments are on a much smaller scale, you don’t want to make that sort of mistake. Figures for global art sales reached $64b

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in 2017, and though this marked a decline in sales of works priced at up to $1m, sales of works valued over $10m were up over 100 percent on the previous year. According to Art Economics, the US is the location of over half the world’s top collectors, though this figure is declining in comparison with China and Asia. Needless to say, dealing at that sort of level requires more than just artistic advice, and it’s now possible to find advice not only on which artists, styles and periods to collect, but also on how to restore, transport, store, display, secure, exhibit, insure and curate collections. Also available is advice on how to manage legacies and bequests, and, an increasing popular form of finance, how to

go about securing loans against art assets. Sometimes there’s a sense that living artists feel this approach can put barriers between them and collectors. Rachel Ara, artist in residence at London’s Victoria and Albert museum, was quoted in the Telegraph as saying that the real question is whether collectors enjoy the art work; “You’ve got all these people in private banks as this is where the money is. It’s a commodity, it’s nothing to do with art. Buy what you like” she said. Nonetheless, whether you regard your art collection as an end in itself or as an investment opportunity, in a market as unregulated as art, it’s always important to read the fine print—or, more to the point, to have someone qualified to read it for you. 

IMAGES: © Shutterstock


here would you go for advice on art investment? A gallery, a museum, an art dealer? In fact, more and more art collectors are turning to financial advisors, or even banks. Why? Because these are the people who understand that the art business is a complex one, where matters such as tax liability, import/export laws and provenance can make all the difference to the sort of advice necessary. A 2017 survey by an American investment bank estimated that 35 percent of high net worth individuals (HNWIs) were active in art and collectables markets, and that their combined wealth would be worth $106tn by 2025. That’s a lot of money available to spend on art—but with prices also rising, it means that good advice is essential. This is where the investment specialists would step in. They are savvy enough to realise that it’s worth employing art specialists as advisors, because the art world doesn’t always reflect the relative certainties of other investments. The perceived value of a work of art can change almost overnight, say by the death of the artist, the work being included in a particular exhibition, or questions beig raised about its provenance.

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Advertorial ART // INVESTMENT

DOING DILIGENCE Art investment can be a minefield, but financial experts can help you navigate a safe route. We ask Hugo Smith, partner at BDB Pitmans, for some guidance.


important considerations when purchasing an artwork is to understand what you are buying. The well-established principle of “caveat emptor”, or, ‘buyer beware’ attributes responsibility to the buyer to carry out their own due diligence before purchasing the item. Should a buyer not carry out their own due diligence, they must face the consequences of this failure” says Hugo Smith.

AUTHENTICITY “A number of auctioneers, including Sotheby’s, include an authenticity warranty within their sale terms, which allow the purchaser to cancel the sale. Such warranties are rarely included with dealers’ and private sales. However, do check the contract of sale as a well drafted agreement may well include it.” BDB Pitmans advises all sorts of clients from wealthy individuals who are new to collecting, to inheritors of collections of historic importance, trustees, and families of

public figures, on matters relating to archives, charity governance, anti-money laundering compliance, loans of works to institutions, and tax matters. But one matter which arises commonly is the issue of inheritance tax. ”At its simplest, a tax charge arising on the death of an owner may require an art work to be sold” says Hugo Smith. “For those clients with historic collections, the art works may be subject to a “conditional exemption” from tax this means that on a death many years ago tax was deferred, but it will fall due for payment on the current values if the work is ever sold, or taken out of the UK.” It’s this sort of issue, along with wealth structuring, estate planning and offshore investment, where BDB Pitman can help. “We have been advising owners and collectors of art for generations” says Hugo Smith. “Clients trust BDBP to deliver clear and discrete advice which is less jargon, more real world, pragmatic solutions.” ●

Image: © shutterstock

ith big-ticket art sales becoming the norm and complex tax issues affecting investment and inheritance matters, it pays to get advice from experts. But the most common issues, we’re told by Hugo Smith, partner at BDB Pitmans, arise when sales are made privately rather than through the auction room. “The most common issues which arise include whether the seller has good title to the artwork, are there a number of intermediaries with a financial interest in the sale, the level of premium being paid to the dealer/adviser, the source of funds used to purchase the art work or that the buyer is using for the artwork, appropriate advice regarding provenance and authenticity, location of the art work and whether tax or export issues arise as a result” he tells us. But often questions of authenticity arise before the transaction gets to the point of sale. “It might sound obvious, but one of the most


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NAVIGATING AN UNREGULATED MARKET The art market is the largest unregulated market in the world, where there is no single proof of title and transactions are often still conducted on the basis of a handshake. As a result, the art and cultural property group of BDB Pitmans frequently advises clients on transactions that have run into difficulties, where with proper advice at the outset and throughout the transaction, problems could have been avoided.

Over the last 18 months we have been advising a collector through a sale and a purchase and at each step of the way we have had to help him avoid potential banana skins. On holiday our client had met a dealer and mentioned he was thinking of selling his wonderful Francis Bacon. On his return, the dealer contacted him to say he had found a buyer and could represent our client in the transaction and sent our client a contract to sign to appoint him. While the contract would allow our client to set out the parameters for any final deal, it specifically prevented our client seeing the final contract between the dealer and the buyer, giving the seller no control over the warranties and disclosures made in the contract for which they would be liable, or even knowing the identity of the buyer. The dealer would decide on the due diligence to establish the source of the buyer’s funds, and the funds would pass through the non-UK bank account of the dealer’s newly formed BVI company.

and at a price £1 million less than first offered to us. Further due diligence then revealed that the painting, having been unsold at auction, had remained with the auction house who were selling it privately. A third sale contract arrived from them, at an even lower price. Faced with three different contracts, at three different prices from three different sellers, for the same painting, our client, unsurprisingly, lost interest and walked away. The purchase of art is often an emotional, rather than commercial, decision and the legal issues and due diligence required are often downplayed or overlooked in a way that would not happen with other assets of equivalent value. While we, as solicitors, cannot opine on the authenticity of the work in question, nor on the appropriate value, BDB Pitmans’ art law group can assist with the due diligence and tax advice required and ensure that appropriate terms are written into the contract, enabling our collector clients simply to enjoy their acquisitions.

We advised our client not to proceed and instead introduced him to another dealer who was happy to disclose the contract as it was negotiated with the buyer, who was represented by a reputable London law firm. This allowed appropriate due diligence on the buyer’s source of funds, with staged payments held in a solicitors’ client account and the artwork held in agreed storage. There was also a signed letter of release addressed to the storage firm held by the solicitors until the final payment was received. Not put off by that experience when selling, our client then found another painting to buy. He met a dealer who offered to sell it to him and sent us a contract for sale. We advised our client to undertake due diligence, not only on provenance, but on value. That identified that the painting had been unsold at a major auction house a few years ago when offered at less than half than the current asking price. Out of the blue another sale contract landed on our desk for the same painting, but from a different agent

Contact the art and cultural property group: Hugo Smith, Partner T +44 (0)20 7783 3752 E Susan Johnson, Consultant T +44 (0)20 7783 3539 E © BDB Pitmans LLP 2019 Cambridge | London | Reading | Southampton |

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06/12/2019 14:16

COLLECTIONS // Photography


Of The Stage F

or the last 35 years, London-based photographer Simon Annand has been capturing the honest moments and serene contemplation of actors during the half an hour before a theatre performance. Now the latest incarnation of his long-running exhibition, The Half, held in the Lawrence Batley Theatre in Huddersfield, showcases some of the most thought-provoking photographs of famous names in his career.

Behind the curtain ‘The Half’, as it’s known in theatre circles, is the half hour before actors emerge from behnd the stage curtains and step out of themselves and onto the boards. Actors who present themselves in all manner of ways have been photographed by Annand being somebody that we rarely see: themselves. “I hope to show the different ways in which an actor prepares for performing live in a theatre production,” Annand told Arts & Collections.

“Over the 35 years there are many memorable moments connected to different generations, different styles of performance and the fun actors engage in. As many actors will tell you, the more serious the text of the play, it is likely the more fun occurs backstage.”

Emotional and Raw At a production of Charlie’s Aunt in 1982, Annand witnessed what would provide the inspiration for the exhibition. “The idea came from seeing the difference in energy between the ebullient character that Griff Rhys Jones was playing on stage in the farce of Charlie’s Aunt and the atmosphere in his dressing room, which was more melancholic than I expected,” said Annand. More often than not,’the half’ is an emotional journey where actors and actresses set about forgetting about their day and their real lives. Chief Executive and Artistic Director of the Lawrence Batley Theatre, Henry Filloux-Bennet said: “The Half is one of those rare exhibitions

A photographic exhibition in Huddersfield reveals the secrets behind the curtain as actors get ready for the spotlight By Robyn White

that allows people not only to see behind the scenes at the theatre, which holds a huge amount of intrigue for people, but also to see some of the most famous faces in the world outside of their normal comfort zone.”

Honesty While the photographs in the exhibition seem to show actors in their intimate moments, Annand explains that his aim for the exhibition was not to be ‘candid’. “The Half is not an attempt to be a fly-on-thewall point of view. The actors have accepted an invitation from me to see their preparation through my eyes. Neither the camera nor the photographer is hiding,” said Annand. Instead, Annand and the actors have a mutual understanding and a level of trust. He has previously described his photography process as ‘feeling first before worrying about lenses’, wanting to capture something that is more raw than prepared. Annand has always hand-picked the actors

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Photography //COLLECTIONS

he photographs, allowing the casting to be absent of compromise. He selects actors who have the ability to show an honest interpretation of human nature in all its forms.

The value of live Annand describes how the theatre allows for a level of photogenic images that would not be possible on the set of a film. In a live performance, there is a level of tension that is dispersed on a film set, where the actors have to wait around for hours before being called, making the end result less immediate and less photogenic. While many of the actors that Annand has photographed specialise in film, the theatre allows a different viewpoint. “Great actors are men and women who have the authority to shape and interpret aspects of human nature as presented by the stories they tell. The power of the actor has increased significantly in the last 40 years. “In the absence of religion and other forms of instruction, actors have become increasingly useful in helping people to confront moral crises, whatever the context is soap opera of classical drama. “Each member of the audience who sees the play will perceive it in a unique way. All forms are equal. To perform Pantomime or to dance and sing in a musical requires as much skill as it takes to interpret Shakespeare. “What makes someone photogenic is the relationship that person has with themselves inside their own head. An actor, at this point

of preparation for performance, is doubly photogenic as they are also constructing what they think about a fictional character” says Simon Annand. The Half commends the idea of theatre as live performance; an experience never to be repeated in exactly the same way, a concept of increased value in the digital age. In an age where theatre faces new challenges from new and emerging digital platforms, Henry Filloux-Bennet hopes that The Half will pay homage to tradition. “If theatre is relevant and exceptional, new and existing audiences will seek it out. We owe it to our local communities to ensure that our offer and organisation reflects the people we’re working for and with.”

ON THE ROAD Henry Filloux-Bennet said: “The exhibition allows us to put photography as an art form front and centre and that’s certainly an angle we’ll be looking at going forward.” “Local and regional theatre should by definition be an experience that allows for everyday culture. In a world where the most high-profile art and theatre is routinely the preserve of either London or the very few major cities, we’re aiming to disrupt the expectation.” The Half exhibition will be in Hudderfield until late February 2020 and entry is free. Like any good actor, it will then go on the road; there are plans to take it other major centres and a book based on the collection will be published in 2020. 

Opposite page, L-R: Cate Blanchett, Gillian Anderson, Stephen Fry: photos by Simon Annand Above: Simon Annand’s exhibition The Half Below, L-R: Meera Syal, Anthony Hopkins, Phoebe Waller-Bridge: photos by Simon Annand

Above right: Michael Bush, Dressing Michael Jackson book signing at Box Galleries Below left: Lauren Baker’s You Are Pure Magic

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IMAGES: © simon annand


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collections // WINE

A Vintage

Investment By CHRIS JEnkins

Fine wine, when treated as an ‘alternative investment’, has a reliable track record of delivering stable growth – Peter Shakeshaft, Vin-X Ltd

IMAGES © shutterstock; vin-x


Is fine wine best enjoyed in a glass, or stored away as an investment? Arts & Collections asks Peter Shakeshaft of wine investment advisors Vin-X for a taste of his insider knowledge

n these days of economic and political upheaval, it would be good to know of a reliable investment available to anyone with a little specialist knowledge. But does fine wine qualify? We asked Peter Shakeshaft, Founder and Chairman of Vin-X Limited for some expert advice. First and most obviously, is fine wine in fact a good investment? How does it compare with more recognised alternative assets? Perhaps surprisingly, it can turn out to be a better bet than gold. “Fine wine,

when treated as an ‘alternative investment’, has a reliable track record of delivering stable growth which has outperformed shares and commodities such as gold over the long term” says Peter. “Its price performance does not generally correlate with financial markets and, therefore has the ability to diversify and strengthen an investment portfolio. As an example, when looking at five year performance at the end of September 2019 the key Liv-ex 100 index had grown 31.5 percent, compared to the

FTSE 100 11.9 percent, and gold 23.9 percent.” So is familiarity with Liv-ex, the global online marketplace for the wine trade, essential for the potential investor? “A fine wine investor should certainly seek to work with a specialist fine wine investment broker or merchant who is a registered member of Liv-ex to ensure they are benefiting from market information and accessibility to their global trading platform” says Peter. “Key Livex benchmarks for investors to monitor are

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the Liv-ex 100 and the broader Liv-ex 1000”. Of course, most of us would need the inside knowledge of a specialist such as Vin-X to know what to go for—“As a general rule, investors should plan to hold fine wine for the long term to optimise returns, however there are instances when individual wines and market trends can deliver significant shorter term growth.”

ASSET Another incentive to invest is that fine wine is categorised as a ‘Wasting Asset’, so does not generally attract Capital Gains Tax, and if stored in a Government bonded storage facility will not incur VAT or Duty payments until removed from bond. If the advisor understands the investor’s interest in fine wine, level of experience, and amount of capital available, they should be able to provide proper guidance—but there can be pitfalls. “It is important to remember that fine wine is unregulated and therefore protections afforded by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme do not apply” says Peter. “The Wine Investment Association (WIA) was established in 2013 to introduce selfregulation through adherence to a Code of Practice the Association established to protect investors in fine wine. Vin-X is a founding member of the WIA.” An advisor can help with questions such as provenance, storage and insurance, and of course historical performance, regional trends and current market information. Ten years ago, 90 percent of the options available might have been chosen from the very best wines of Bordeaux—now there is a much wider choice including Burgundy, Champagne, Rhone, Italy, California, Spain and Australia, with Bordeaux representing around 60 percent of trade on Liv-ex. Still, there are only around 70 producers globally whose wines command the global profile and quality to attract investors.

BLUE CHIP Of the ‘blue chip’ investments, Bordeaux First Growth names such as Chateaux Haut Brion, Latour, Lafite Rothschild, Margaux and Mouton Rothschild still dominate, while top performing Bordeaux Right Bank wines include St Emilion’s Chateaux Ausone, Cheval Blanc, Pavie and Angelus, and Pomerol’s Le Pin and Petrus. Record sales of single bottles of top Burgundies including Domaine de la Romanée Conti (DRC) wines, have fuelled a broadening market in the top wines of this region. At

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auction in October 2018 two individual bottles (75cl) of extremely rare 1945 DRC, Romanée Conti sold for US$558,000 and US$496,000. Other wines currently enjoying growth include Champagne’s rare vintages of Krug, Cristal, and Dom Perignon, Rhone’s top Guigals, Italy’s five Super Tuscans, iconic Californian cult wines including Screaming Eagle and Opus One and Australia’s Penfolds Grange. Vin-X’s Guide to Fine Wine Investment will tell you more - it’s available at As Peter explains, it is essential to have some insight into these values, and the significant differences between the risks of buying in bottle or en primeur (which can be likened to acquiring an investment ‘future’). “The benefits of buying wine en primeur are to guarantee supply of rare wine and ideally at the lowest possible market price, but investors

should be aware that en primeur release prices have risen since 2011, so in-bottle investments can offer better value”. With only one percent of global wine production rated as investment-grade, Peter says it’s worth investors educating themselves at wine clubs, events and vineyard visits. So finally, when is it a good idea to drink it, rather than store it? Peter Shakeshaft has definite views. “Ultimately there is finite supply of these wines which reduces over time as they are consumed, and a growing global market for them which supports a long term growth plan. Should you decide to ‘drink your investment’, fine wine critics such as Neal Martin, Jancis Robinson, James Suckling and Robert Parker Jnr., who established the Wine Advocate, provide guides on drinking windows for optimum enjoyment!” 

Above: The investor’s choice is to buy in bottle or en primeur Left: Optimum enjoyment— in the vault, or in the glass?


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From the wonders of Leonardo to the look of modern houses, and the appeal of hi-fi to the art of politics, our selection of essential titles brings you the most compelling and beautiful books for your coffee-table or bookshelf

ATLAS OF MID-CENTURY MODERN HOUSES Dominic Bradbury I Phaidon, £100 I A comprehensive, global look into one of architecture’s most perennially popular styles, MidCentury Modern celebrates open plan living, swimming pools, conversation pits and rubblestone fireplaces. Regarded as the golden age of architecture particularly in the West Coast of America, this style influenced interiors worldwide. Organised geographically into nine global regions, the 440-page, 340x240mm hardback features nearly 400 houses by 290 architects, from Phil Johnson’s Glass House in New Canaan, Connecticut, to Alvar Aalto’s Muuratsalo House near Helsinki, Finland, a fine example of Scandinavian ‘soft modernism’. As some of the houses have been demolished this is a ‘last chance to see’—though others are fortunately now heritage listed.

HI-FI: THE HISTORY OF HIGH-END AUDIO DESIGN Gideon Schwartz I Phaidon, £65 I Author Gideon Schwartz is a former lawyer who retired to devote time to his company Audioarts, which sells high-end audio designs. Never solely about outstanding audio fidelity, brands such as Bang & Olufsen, Mcintosh, Marantz and Zellaton have also brought exquisite design values to their equipment. This 272-page book celebrates them all, from the Edison Phonographs of the early 20th century to the exotic turntables, recorders, amplifiers and speakers of today.


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GREAT WOMEN ARTISTS Intro by Rebecca Morrill I Phaidon, £39.95 I Claiming to be the most extensive illustrated book of women artists ever published, this book with its tellingly emphasised title comes at an appropriate time for female empowerment in the arts and elsewhere. Part of Phaidon’s The Art Book series, Great Women Artists features the work of over 400 artists spanning 500 years, from Properzia de’ Rossi in 1490 in Bologna, to Tschabalala Self, born in 1990 in New York. Compiled by Phaidon coleagues and art experts globally, an including work by artists both lauded and ignored in their time, the book includes one artwork by each plus a short text written by an art expert.

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Virgin and Child with St. Anne c. 1507-16, oil on poplar, 661/4 x 44 1/2 in., Louvre, Paris Photograph (c) RMNGrand Palais (Musee du Louvre)/ Rene-Gabriel Ojeda

Martin Kemp I Callaway, $150 I Coinciding with commemorations for the 500th anniversary of Leonardo’s death, this landmark 192-page work of scholarship showcases state-of-the-art photography of the artist’s work, featuring hundreds of images and a gallery of the 27 known paintings. Martin Kemp’s narrative reflects on Leonardo’s world and his contemporaries, and his discussion of Salvator Mundi feeds into the current controversy surrounding the painting’s origin.


Mark Holborn, David Dawson I Phaidon, £150 I

Created in collaboration with the Lucian Freud Archive, this visual biography of one of the greatest portrait painters tells Freud’s life story through photographs, portraits, his own words and those of others who knew him. Following the release of Phaidon’s twovolume retrospective monograph Lucian Freud, the 250-page A Life includes family photos, some published for the first time, as well as images of Freud with some of his most famous sitters, including Queen Elizabeth II, Francis Bacon and David Hockney. Editor and designer Mark Holborn has worked with painter David Dawson, Freud’s studio assistant and a frequent model for his paintings.



Jo Rippon I Palazzo, £25 I Published in collaboration with Amnesty International and with a foreword by Anish Kapoor, The Art of Protest takes a visual journey through more than a century of social protest, from the early twentieth century through the touchstone 1960s and 1970s to the modern day. Over 100 iconic posters and ephemera from key campaigns including women’s liberation, nuclear disarmament, civil rights and climate change reveal artists who have given a voice to the marginalised and railed against authoritarianism, including Noma Bar, Micah Bazant, Alain Carrier, Seymour Chwast, Carlos A. Cortéz, Fierce Pussy, Justseeds, Marie McMahon, Favianna Rodriguez, Klaus Staeck and Annemarie van Haeringen.

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DIOR BY PETER LINDBERGH Peter Lindbergh, Martin Harrison I Taschen, £150 I The final book project of fashion photographer Peter Lindbergh, who died this year, is designed by his long-time collaborator Juan Gatt, and presented in two hardcover volumes in a slipcase measuring 28x37cm and totalling 520 pages. His vision—to showcase Dior’s finest designs against the bustling background of New York’s Times Square. Model Alek Wek glows in the immaculate 1947 Bar suit, Saskia de Brauw, Karen Elson, and Amber Valletta flit through crowds and scaffolding, and in the second volume, more than 100 of Lindbergh’s magazine photographs of Dior creations, from haute couture to ready-towear, are presented in stunning colour and monochrome images. A multilingual edition in English, French and German.


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of US Tax

International citizens often misunderstand the requirements of US taxes and how they might apply to them. We asked Iain Younger, Director at tax advisor Frank Hirth, to share some inside knowledge


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tax transparent, owns taxable US situs assets at death, then US estate tax may be relevant. Taxable US situs assets include real estate, shares, artwork, and cash. Savings accounts, US Government bonds, municipal bonds and American Depository Receipts (ADRs) are not normally subject to US estate tax. “If assets are held jointly, each individual’s contribution to the acquisition of the US asset should be carefully documented. If contribution amounts are not clearly understood, the IRS could operate a “worstcase scenario” approach and include 100 percent of the value of the asset within the estate of the first joint owner to die.” The current maximum rate of US estate tax is 40 percent, and there are very few exemptions. It’s a common misconception that assets passing to a surviving spouse

automatically qualify for relief–this often defers US estate tax liability rather than reducing it. Generally, exposure to US estate tax can be avoided by ensuring that the individual is not considered to own the US assets. This can be achieved through the use of certain corporate entities, partnerships or appropriately structured trusts. Planning is key, and consultants like Frank Hirth can provide a full range of compliance and advisory services relating to US estate tax. Iain Younger says: “Our in-house expertise also enables us to provide all corresponding UK services if relevant, and if another country must be considered, we can introduce and work with advisors from other jurisdictions to ensure joined-up, effective planning and accurate compliance.” 



iven the global nature of the US tax system and the attraction of the US for worldwide investors, it’s essential to understand the compliance requirements for non-US citizens. One of those issues continues to be the exposure to US Estate Tax in respect of US situs assets held by non-US individuals at death, especially with regards to US Real Property as well as intangible assets such as shares in US companies. Given the size of the US economy, it is likely that most global investment portfolios will have some US exposure, so US estate tax will be relevant for many non-US citizens. So when could US Estate tax be an issue for a non-US citizen or a non-US domiciled (NDA) individual? Iain Younger says: “If a non-US person directly or indirectly, through a structure that is considered to be US


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Do you have assets in the US? Are you thinking of buying property in the US or starting a business there? Get the right advice from the leading tax experts. From ensuring double tax relief to effective wealth structuring, we provide a holistic approach taking into account a client’s global tax situation. UK: +44 20 7833 3500 | US: +1 212 465 7800 | NZ: +64 4 499 6444 | This advert has been written for the general interest of our clients and contacts and is subject to our disclaimer: please see Š 2019.

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collections // TRAVEL

A Place and of Peace Puffins A trip to Iceland promises spectacular landscapes, wildlife adventures and maximum ‘hygge’ By Elika Roohi

Reykjavík For a short break, Reykjavík, the colourful capital city with a distinct small-town feel is ideal. You can enjoy the striking architecture of the geometric Harpa concert hall and the dramatic and austere Hallgrimskirkja church. For a bite to eat, drop by Forrettabarrin, where you can dine of parade of creative small plates featuring dishes like locally sourced hot smoked salmon and plump blue mussels. For such a small city, Reykjavík has a surprisingly rich art scene. Head to the i8 gallery, which regularly hosts exhibitions of major international and Icelandic artists. It’s also worth checking out Hafnarhus, the home of the Reykjavík Art Museum’s contemporary collections. If you’re still around in the morning, have breakfast at Mokka-Kaffi, a quiet coffee shop famous for its homemade waffles.

The space doubles as an art gallery with exhibitions rotating every few weeks, if you’re looking to enjoy more Icelandic art. After a day taking in Reykjavík, it’s time to hit the road—or even the sky.

By air, land or sea On a longer break we recommend getting into a single-engine plane to take in as much of the Icelandic landscape as possible. Leaving from Reykjavík Domestic Airport, you can see volcanic mountaintops, coastline, geysers and cyan thermal pools all within an hour. If you venture by car, take a 4X4 on the famous Ring Road around the island and see almost all of Iceland’s top landmarks including Seljalandsfoss Waterfall, Skógafoss (another famous and spectacular waterfall) and Þingvellir National Park, which lies on the geographic

IMAGES: © Shutterstock, blue lagoon hotel


rugged and green country filled with spectacular glaciers, waterfalls and volcanoes, Iceland consistently tops lists of the ‘World’s Happiest Countries’—in fact it’s exactly the sort of place you might choose to visit to seek refuge from the endless news cycle which is currently stressing us all out. And Iceland will welcome you at any time—while the tourist season peaks in the summer, it still holds open an invitation in the winter months, attracting visitors eager to see the Aurora Borealis or experience maximum hygge, the trendy Scandinavian concept of the sort of cosy contentment one finds from being under a blanket inside when it’s cold outside. Whenever you plan to visit, we’ve compiled all our top travel tips for this magical land of waterfalls, volcanoes and thermal pools.

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TRAVEL // Collections

divide between the North American and European plates. For a different experience entirely, sign up for a Northern Lights tour by boat. Available from September through April, this leaves from Reykjavík’s Old Harbour and takes you through the open waters of Faxaflói Bay, where you quickly escape the lights of the city and can experience the dancing display of the Aurora Borealis in all its splendour. In the summer months, when darkness is harder to come by, sign up for a whale-watching tour instead. For bird-watchers, ‘Puffin Central’ is the Látrabjarg cliffs, the most westerly point of Iceland; 14k long and over 400m high, they are home to colonies of puffins, guillemots, Northern gannets, auks and razorbills, best seen in summer—but be careful not to disturb the legendary local cliff troll.

Hot spots A trip to Iceland wouldn’t be complete without a visit to the hot springs and pools. Iceland sits on a geothermal hotspot, which means warm water bubbles up out of the ground everywhere. This has instilled a deep love of swimming and bathing in the culture—for centuries, Icelanders have enjoyed the warm mineral water in public baths, pools and springs. In fact,

swimming pools are considered one of the main spaces to socialise in Icelandic society, something further compounded by the nationwide alcohol prohibition that lasted until 1989. The Blue Lagoon, the most famous pool in Iceland, was named as one of the 25 wonders of the world by National Geographic and attracts an astonishing 700,000 people a year—twice the population of Iceland. Other hot spots include Mývatn Nature Baths, a stunning hot spring in the north of Iceland, and the Seljavallalaug Swimming Pool, one of the oldest swimming pools in the country that lies in a valley beneath the Eyjafjallajökull Glacier. Icelanders themselves also enjoy more contemporary pools, so for a more local scene it’s worth checking out the Laugardalur Swimming Pool in Reykjavík, which attracts families and tourists alike to its large water-park-esque amenities. And of course, the beauty of all the geothermal energy heating Iceland’s many hot springs means that it’s enjoyable to visit them in the summer or winter. At the moment, if you book a flight from Europe to North America with Icelandair, you have the option to add a stopover in Iceland at no extra airfare—just another incentive to visit one of the world’s coldest countries with the warmest welcome. 

Above: The Blue Lagoon is one of National Geographic’s Wonders of the World - image courtesy of The Retreat at Blue Lagoon Hotel Middle: Whale watching cruises depart from Reykjavík’s Old Harbour Below: Puffin spotting on the Látrabjarg cliffs

The Northern Lights are perhaps the most spectacular natural attraction of Iceland.

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A landmark of luxury Built into an 800-year-old lava flow in the heart of a UNESCO Global Geopark, the Retreat at Blue Lagoon Iceland was conceived and created to expand the horizons of the Blue Lagoon experience. Encompassing a subterranean spa, a mineral-rich lagoon, a luxury hotel, and a restaurant that honors and reinvents Iceland’s culinary traditions, the Retreat is a place where guests can leave the world behind and enter a timeless realm of relaxation, rejuvenation, and exploration.

The Retreat Lagoon: A breathtaking waterscape A breathtaking waterscape of mineral-rich warmth, the Retreat Lagoon is sourced from the same volcanic aquifers as the Blue Lagoon. With its lava canyons, hidden corridors, and terraced concourse, this ethereal body of water gives guests a more intimate, more entrancing experience of the Blue Lagoon’s storied powers. Encompassing an in-water service area, a location for in-water massage, and 900 square

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metres of mystical blue warmth bounded by centuries-old volcanic rock, the lagoon is rich with possibilities for privacy, enchantment, and wellness.

Moss Restaurant: A culinary journey Seated at a table in Moss Restaurant—the Retreat’s signature dining establishment which occupies the highest point at Blue Lagoon— guests can travel the island by way of the culinary

creations that emerge from the kitchen. With set menus that move effortlessly from the mountains, to the farmlands, to the rivers, to the oceans, each dish celebrates the living heritage and diverse delights of Iceland’s endless bounty of nourishment. Complemented by design and architecture calibrated to bring interior and exterior together, highlighting the ever-shifting colours and tones of the moss-covered horizon, Moss’s menus are likewise mercurial: changing with each season but

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The Retreat Hotel:

The Experience:

A sanctuary of serenity Encircled by the ethereal waters of the Blue Lagoon, the hotel’s 62 suites—arranged on two levels—erase the boundary between interior design and exterior enchantment. Incorporating colours, materials, textures, and furnishings calibrated to harmonize with the landscape, each suite becomes the foundation of an inspiring holistic journey, taking guests into unity with nature while catalysing a sense of profound wellbeing. On the lower level, the suites have terraces with hypnotic views of the frozen-in-time lava and the surrounding lagoon. Some of these suites even give guests direct access to the revitalising waters. On the upper level, the suites are endowed with unforgettable perspectives on the moss-covered vista— stunning panoramas that transform with the weather and the light.

forever transformative

The Retreat Spa: A spa of the volcanic earth Covering more than 4000 square meters and descending three metres into the volcanic earth, the Retreat Spa opens new dimensions of tranquility and transformation, giving guests the ability to commune with the natural wonders of geothermal seawater in a sublime, luxurious environment. Moving through underground realms of inspiring design, enchanting geology, and radiant wellness, the spa journey culminates with the Blue Lagoon Ritual, an exhilarating cycle of wellbeing where guests commune with the dynamic treasures of geothermal seawater—silica, algae, and minerals. Ultimately, the spa journey derives its power from the harmonic interplay of design, science, and the forces of nature, bringing guests closer to the wonders of the earth.

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Galvanized by the astonishing powers of the Blue Lagoon’s legendary waters, the Retreat experience unwinds the clock of modern life and unlocks the door to the timeless wonders of the volcanic earth. Regardless of the season, it is a journey endowed with majesty, serenity, and discovery. In summer, the glittering brilliance of endless light casts the moss-covered landscape in vivid, vibrant tones. In winter, the same vista transforms into an otherworldly white wonderland and the night sky becomes the stage for transcendent, unforgettable displays of the Northern Lights. But throughout the year, from season to season, from age to age, the water remains the same: forever revitalising, forever enchanting, forever transformative.

Tours & Adventures Located in the heart of a tectonic wonderland teeming with craters, fissures, mud pools, steam vents, hot springs, extinct volcanoes, and sprawling moss-covered lava fields—the Retreat can arrange tours and adventures that depart from the hotel’s doorstep.

The Retreat at Blue Lagoon Iceland

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SWISS PREMIUM REHABILITATION Your personalised way to freedom

CALDA Concept In the CALDA Clinic, we treat our clients according to the CALDA Concept. We place the focus on the consistent personalisation of medical care. This is why we are striking new paths for developing individual therapy programs. Wherever possible, we work without the use of psychiatric drugs. We treat the causes, not the symptoms. We dedicate our time and our entire expertise exclusively to one single client. The CALDA Concept is a holistic approach across multiple disciplines. It includes innovative treatment strategies for overcoming phenomena such as trauma, addiction,

stress, ageing, etc. In addition to the psyche, we also treat the body: Metabolic syndrome, liver steatosis, diabetes mellitus, obesity and much more. In the case of organ transplants, cancer illnesses or other individual, extensive challenges, we work closely and coordinate with the treating specialists. The CALDA Concept exists outside of health insurance schemes. Our clients are self-payers, which ensures that absolute discretion and secrecy are possible in the first place. If you would like to know more about the CALDA Concept, please contact us personally.

The different CALDA programs that we offer: CALDA Full Program

CALDA Postpartum Depression Program CALDA Meets Africa Program CALDA Specific Phobia Program CALDA Orthomolecular Package

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Wealthy World,

Healthy Mind Art, the built environment and the power of nature are all being called on in the fight to restore mental balance and wellbeing. Arts & Collections looks at the luxury clinics treating the consequences of modern life


clinics is their understanding that surroundings are important to the process of treatment and recovery—particularly if the subject is used to a comfortable, not to say luxurious lifestyle. Many clinics, too, adopt so far as they can a drug-free approach to treatment. Finding that medication can lead to dependency and can mask the actual causes of imbalance by treating only the symptoms, they often adopt a more modern blend of psychotherapy, alternative techniques such as meditation,

and innovative styles of treatment such as art therapy and animal therapy. Don Lavender, Program Director at Camino Recovery in Andalucia and a clinician in the field for nearly 40 years, says: “Equine assisted therapy may have a role in addressing such addictions as love, sex and work. Horses are ‘prey’ animals and work in a herd. The horses can reflect the thoughts and emotions of those around them. By introducing the client

IMAGES © shutterstock; calda clinic; camino recovery

mid growing awareness of the negative effects of stress and the high pace of modern living, creative solutions to mental illnesses have been emerging at specialist clinics around the world. Many of these clinics specialise in treating high net worth individuals who find that money has not necessarily brought happiness—in fact, it can add stress and behavioural problems such as addiction to the other pressures of life. One of the most notable aspects of such


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‘freedom through change’

Changing perspectives, transforming lives TRAUMA, DEPRESSION, ANXIETY, EXECUTIVE BURNOUT and STRESS, ADDICTION, DUAL DIAGNOSIS. Tel no. +34 951107195

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correlating characterises of the environment with poor mental wellbeing, and a study from 2008 found that inequalities in society are far less pronounced in greener areas of the UK. Urban areas have been found to have happier citizens when there are more green spaces and access to nature. An example of this is Vancouver, consistently rated as one of the most popular cities to live in, where downtown building policies include views of the mountains, forest and oceans, as well as broad access to green spaces.


HAPPY BY DESIGN The surroundings in which therapy takes place are equally important. Architect Ben Channon says in Happy by Design: A Guide to Architecture and Mental Wellbeing: “Through advances in neuroscience and scientific research, we can now prove that buildings affect how we feel and how we act. For instance, brain scans show that when people are confronted with spaces that are cluttered, messy or disorderly, they are more likely to have a higher concentration of cortisol, the stress hormone. “At the other end of the spectrum, we know that bringing plants and nature inside buildings can have a positive effect on eating and sleeping patterns, as well as improving an individual’s sense of self-worth.” A report by the Royal Institute of British Architects in collaboration with the Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment emphasised the effects the physical environment has on health, directly

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Above: CALDA Clinic’s luxurious environment

Below: Camino Recovery’s lush surroundings

In the 21st century, culture will be what physical activity was for health in the 20th century

to ‘the herd’ the animal can reflect the client’s state. This allows a skilled therapist to access emotions and feelings quicker than normal talk therapy would achieve.” Dr Claudia Elsig, Director of the CALDA clinic in Geneva, explains that the clinic’s treatments incorporate complementary techniques such as yoga, meditation and art therapy, helping to uncover the subject’s true self, thus getting to the root of psychological issues which may result from childhood trauma.

– Nathalie Bondil, Montreal Museum for Fine Arts

As an example of the ideal surroundings for therapy, CALDA Clinic’s beautiful setting near Lake Geneva, and its luxurious interiors adorned with art and collectables, emphasise the way in which architecture and environment impact our mental wellbeing. And Camino Recovery in Andalucia, a facility specialising in addiction and behavioural problems, has an elevated position commanding panoramic views, and offers a level of tranquillity and comfort designed to enhance the recovery process. The luxurious suites all have private en-suite bathrooms and are individually designed and decorated, and facilities include terraces within serene walled gardens and an outdoor pool surrounded by palm trees. Another example of the surroundings contributing to the therapy process is the only licenced clinic for addiction treatment on Ibiza, Ibiza Calm. Treating no more than 10 clients at a time, it’s based in a 500-year-old farmhouse

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they expect quick results, but “You have to be strong when you tell them there are no quick fixes” says Flynn. Addcounsel lists a whole range of addictions it can treat, including to gambling, shopping, the internet, sex and love, gaming, pornography, exercise, hoarding or work; and recognises that with any addiction, various factors can contribute including personality type, genetics and medical history. Certainly, people suffering from behavioural addictions may share common personality traits; these can come to light in the initial assessment, for instance by scoring high on tests for impulsivity and pleasure-seeking, or low on tests indicating a disposition to avoiding harm.

RELATIONSHIPS surrounded by orange and lemon groves in eight acres of private land on the Mediterranean island. It describes itself as “An ideal place to retreat from the stresses of everyday life”, and boasts ample grounds for walking, relaxing and contemplation, while the organic fruit from the orchards contributes to the nutritious menu. Even in the hustle and bustle of the urban environment of London, the right sort of surroundings can create the ideal setting for therapy for a wide range of disorders, from alcohol and drug addictions to eating disorders and anxiety. In quiet streets in London’s exclusive Mayfair, Belgravia, Knightsbridge and Green Park enclaves, where the average house price can be £4m, private clinics offer treatment at a cost of £45,000-£150,000 a week. Installed in the most luxurious apartments the areas have to offer, patients seeking treatment for addictions, personality disorders and behavioural problems will find one-to-one treatment from specialists in the areas of psychiatry, psychology, nutrition, therapy and addiction. Paul Flynn, chief executive of Mayfair-based Addcounsel, says “We’re a new concept in the UK. Many of our clients come from the Middle East, but a lot live in London. For them the financial commitment isn’t the issue, it’s the personal commitment.”

and assessments of nutritional deficiencies and gut health, followed by a 24-hour regimen of treatment supervised by a personal recovery manager. Whether the patient’s problem is an addiction to prescription medicine, to alcohol, to videogames or to work, the treatment responds to the demands of the patient, typically men over 35 (though Paul Flynn says that patients have been as young as 16). As these patients often have ‘alpha’ personaliities,

There are also established relationships between various forms of addiction; for instance research shows that individuals with a gambling addiction are 3.8 times more likely to have an alcohol abuse problem. As elsewhere, the emphasis is on holistic treatment of conditions such as drug addiction; Addcounsel says “We understand that you and your disease are more than the symptoms of an addiction to drugs… it is imperative that we

Below: Exclusive areas of London play host to havens of therapy and recovery

Commitment And this commitment can be demanding; the patient’s fee covers a full health check including a CT scan, blood tests, ultrasound, liver check,

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The art of recovery Reconnect to life through art at our exclusive Mayfair treatment centre for addiction and mental health disorders.

Our service

Addcounsel understands the importance of therapies that allow our clients to access all forms of expression.

Complete Anonymity

As well as our expert medical, physical and pschological therapies, we provide art therapy and utilise other holistic methods - allowing individuals to fully express themselves during the recovery process. We believe that no healing journey is the same. In order to achieve a long-lasting and sustainable recovery, the whole person needs to be treated - not just the symptoms of their illness.

One Client at a Time 24/7 Medical Care Physical, Psycholigical and Medical Treatments Art and Holistic Therapies Private Accommodation Talk to us or visit our website:

We provide treatment for:

Dr. Farrukh Alam Medical Director

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Alcohol & Drug Addiction

Behavioural Addictions

+44 (0)20 3709 3967

Eating Disorders


Mental Health Issues


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“creative ageing.” Executive director of the National Center for Creative Aging (NCCA), Jennie Smith-Peers, defines this as “any opportunity for an older adult to be engaged in a meaningful opportunity to express themselves through art.”

examine the reasons and the function drugs have in your life. We are then able to treat the whole person… we believe that the person is a complex system of answers to their drug addiction.”

Feelings into Art Given an environment which is comfortable and conducive to therapy, many treatment clinics find that the clinical subject can also benefit from having a creative outlet. Art therapy for instance can be an important part of wellness treatment. Art participation projects have been found to be particularly valuable with older patients, offering insights into the way in which adults cope with the stresses of life. As the director of the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, Nathalie Bondil says: “In the 21st century, culture will be what physical activity was for health in the 20th century.” A study of 150 adults by the American National Endowment for the Arts showed that participants in arts groups reported fewer feelings of loneliness or depression, as well as higher morale in general. This is no coincidence. Psychologists suggest that the visual stimulation of art triggers positive thoughts and actions, such as improving cognitive function, and a recent

Self expression Singh’s course isn’t limited to the visual arts; “creative ageing” also encompasses theatre, dance, music and poetry. As Jennie SmithPeers says, “When you walk into a space that says, ‘Yes, you can—and we’re going to show you how,’ it’s a breath of fresh air.” Art therapy can involve written work too; often expressing themselves through writing their life story can help a patient reach important truths about the emotional effect of events throughout their lives. A realisation of these underlying causes and the sharing of them with a therapist can have a cathartic effect. Particularly for patients being treated for addiction, whether it be to drugs or behavioural patterns, the correct treatment environment can be an essential aid to recovery—and those who are lucky enough to be able to be treated in such luxurious surroundings can benefit from the most enlightened and progressive approaches to wellbeing in the modern world. 

report by the Art Fund, Calm and Collected, researched art and cultural consumption as a healthy lifestyle option. It found that those under 30 are twice as likely to visit a museum or gallery at least once a month in order to de-stress, and that these people turn to art in museums and galleries as therapy. Elsewhere, art groups such as the one run by painter Ebenezer Singh in Brooklyn teach artistic skills and techniques rather than art appreciation. Singh’s class at the Brooklyn library falls under the umbrella of

– Ben Channon, Happy By Design

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We know that bringing plants and nature inside buildings can have a positive effect on ... an individual’s sense of self-worth

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Swiss excellence in emotional wellbeing and recovery

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Clinic Les Alpes is an exceptionally private and secure retreat. Located in a setting of outstanding natural beauty in the mountains close to the town of Montreux, Switzerland. The Clinic has the added convenience of proximity to all major airports. This exclusive Clinic is fully medically licensed by the Swiss Department of Health and treats patients with recovery from substance abuse, behavioural dependency and other debilitating emotional and mental conditions such as burnout, anxiety, stress and depression. The Clinic provides a fully integrated approach to treatment and each patient receives a bespoke programme created together with the medical team for his or her individual needs and requirements. The expertise of an international, highly skilled, multi-disciplinary team of medical, psychiatric, psychotherapeutic and complementary practitioners is on hand and available 24 hours a day, seven days a week to be of service to patients and their families who are referred from around the globe. The Clinic is multilingual with the primary language being English. The Clinic is beautifully appointed with antiques and fine Persian carpets throughout the chateau and each of the private ensuite bedrooms has superb views of lake Geneva, the snow capped mountains and alpine meadows. Below the main chateau building, three floors have been excavated from solid rock housing state of the art medical and therapeutic facilities along with a complete floor dedicated to a full medical spa. The Clinic provides world class bespoke one-on-one treatment in a highly private, confidential, safe and peaceful environment offering the patient a truly holistic approach to stabilise their mental, emotional and physical health. Many services claim to deliver excellence. At Clinic Les Alpes they have clearly set their sights on defining it. +41 58 360 55 00

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Art and politics, win or lose

Are the politics of art threatening to disrupt sponsorship and competitiveness? John Renwick judges the judges

Image: © Stephen White


ll four artists shortlisted for the 2019 Turner Prize were named joint winners after they collectively argued that the judges should recognise the causes of “commonality, multiplicity and solidarity”. Lawrence Abu Hamdan, Helen Cammock, Oscar Murillo and Tai Shani proposed that the subjects of their works, on themes of migration, patriarchy, torture and civil rights, should not be pitted against each other by the judges. Is this a beneficial stance for the arts? Sunday Times art critic Waldemar Januszczak, while praising the themes of the works, wrote: “The use of the Turner as a propaganda vehicle for ultraLondony evening-class lectures has become seriously off-putting. People don’t go to art to be turned into better citizens. They go to art to have their eyes pleasured and their hearts touched.” There is some precedent for this mutuality Helen Martin and Theaster Gates have shared their prizes from the Turner, Hepworth and Arts Mundi awards with other nominees and in October, th judges of a major UK literary award, the Booker Prize, were widely criticized when for the first time the prize was awarded not to one winner, but two: Margaret Atwood’s The Testaments and Bernardine Evaristo’s Girl, Woman, Other. So is it now politically unacceptable to choose a competition winner? Do we have to judge a work of art by its theme, rather than on its own artistic merits? Surely while accepting that each work dealt with an important issue, the judges in these cases could have decided which did the best job? Should art be like a non-competitive school sports day where everyone gets a prize regardless of their ability? Who would want to sponsor a competition in which there is no winner? The issue might not matter if it weren’t for the fact that art is suffering crises both of financing and of conscience. Government funding is being

cut while institutions such as the Natural History Museum, Metropolitan Museum of Art and J Paul Getty Trust are being asked difficult questions about their founders’ associations with slavery, misappropriation and ruthless business practices. Arts sponsorship by big business is being challenged by protestors; both British and American arts institutions have severed their associations with ‘big pharma’ including the Sackler company, and actor Mark Rylance has resigned from the Royal Shakespeare Company over its sponsorship by oil giant BP. The Natural History Museum and National Portrait Gallery have experienced action by climate change protesters over their financial connections with petroleum companies. But as Hugh Eakin points out, writing in the Washington Post, where else can museums and galleries expect to get their money? He quotes

a 2018 survey by the American Association of Art Museum Directors showing that the largest museums spend an average of $63 per visitor, while receiving only $13 in revenue. “At the same time”, says Eakin, “museums have been virtually priced out of the art market. They depend on gifts from top collectors, which account for three-quarters of today’s acquisitions.” In the UK, government cuts in the public Art Fund will require more, not less, reliance on wealthy corporations and private donors. So where does all this leave the issues of competition and sponsorship? Probably in need of new approaches to funding and promoting the arts. If life is a competition, surely there must be winners and losers...  (Below) Oscar Murillo, Collective Conscience, 2019 Turner Prize winner. Photo: Stephen White

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Craft to the Table By JOHN RENWICK

FURNITURE // Collections

Modern British furniture manufacturing leads the world, with its design flair and traditional hand skills setting the highest standards. But what does it take to continue an illustrious history of furniture-making?

Davidson of London’s Howes table, named ‘Best Table’ at the International Design & Architecture Awards 2019

IMAGES © davidson of london


ritish furniture-making has always set the highest standards in design and manufacturing quality, and it’s fascinating to realise how much its styles and materials are influenced by world history. From the Restoration period of the 1660s-1680s, when the return of the king and his court from exile led to an age of ‘magnificence’, to the French influence of the “William and Mary” style in the 1700s, it has often been the tastes of royalty which have set British furniture trends. Equally influential

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in other eras have been the skills of the master cabinet-makers such as Chippendale and Sheraton, whose books The Gentleman and Cabinet-Maker’s Director and The Cabinet Dictionary influenced generations of craftsmen. While Victorian design often harked back to previous eras, with Norman and Gothic influences evident, with the coming of the 20th Century all bets seemed to be off—in Britain, Art Deco, inspired by the 1925 Paris Exposition Internationale des Arts Décoratifs

et Industriels Modernes, took off only when mass production and cheaper materials made the styles more readily available to the middle classes. Yet even as the demands of the mass market led inexorably towards Scandinavian minimalism and the tyranny of the flat pack, British quality furniture manufacturing maintained standards of skill and innovation. But, as Richard Davidson of luxury bespoke furniture company Davidson of London points out, “Not all furniture is created equally”.

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collections // FURNITURE


Experience To create the hand-carved panels for the Galaxy Drinks Cabinet, for example, Davidson calls on a wood carver who previously managed a team of woodworkers when ornate, Regencystyle furniture was in fashion. The company can also offer a bespoke service. “Fashions have changed the way in which people furnish their houses,” says Richard Davidson. “Previously, bedrooms might have featured an antique, freestanding wardrobe, or there’d be a separate, dedicated dining room. But an increasing number of homes are now open plan, which has driven demand for more fitted furniture.” Davidson also responds to changing tastes in other ways, offering for instance the colourful West Coast Collection, inspired by designer Anna Standish’s passion for American interior design from the 1970s. Another creative approach is to collaborate with interior design companies. The stunning

If you’re paying a lot of money for a piece of furniture, then people have every right to be demanding – Richard Davidson, Davidson of London

Davidson, based in Chelsea Harbour, London, was founded in 1986 by experienced antique furniture dealer Richard Davidson and his partner Dierdre. It remains a family business, with PR veteran Alexandra Davidson serving as Managing Director, and sister Claudia Davidson bringing her publishing experience to a directorship and PR role. The company maintains standards of hand crafting, attention to detail and luxurious quality, symbolised by a discreet plaque on each piece. “If you’re paying a lot of money for a piece of furniture, then people have every right to be demanding, so we have to come up to the mark,” says Richard Davidson. “Furthermore, if everything was made abroad and then shipped out to our customers, how would we assure that the quality meets our own standards?” “Our furniture is made entirely to order, which separates us from other ‘off-the-shelf’ makers and retailers. As a result, no two pieces are identical. Some will require coordination from numerous specialist outworkers from all around the UK, as well as our team of 20 expert cabinet makers and polishers. As well as our in-house experts, we work with external artisans and craftsmen throughout the country, including a firm of specialist gilders, carvers, woodturners and highly skilled metalworkers.” Modern techniques like laser marquetry and CNC machinery go alongside heritage crafts to help realise designs with precision.

Howes dining table, hand-carved and finished in beautiful grey pebble anegre with bronze inlay, is the product of a six-month collaborative process with Taylor Howes. The striking radial pattern to the anegre top and luxurious bronze riverbed relief were inspired by the nature of passing time. As Taylor Howes chief executive Karen Howes explains, there was also a more practical reason for the shape, so that no one would have to sit at the head of the table, making it feel less corporate. The result was a

piece of furniture that is as much a piece of art as a functional table. “We wanted it to be beautiful whether it was laid or unlaid,” says Karen Howes. The creation of the Howes table is typical of Davidson’s demanding process of hand construction, incorporating 40 individual pieces of exotic flame-figured veneer, which have to be neatly joined in the middle. All the timber work and riverbed bronze detailing are hand-carved, and, when it comes to polishing, each piece is individually lacquered before being assembled. Two semi-circular elements then form the base of the table in this time-consuming hand-finished design. Typical of the commitment of British furniture manufacturers to preserving and supporting the finest standards of craftsmanship, Davidson’s dedication to skill and quality in furniture manufacture should continue to create future heirlooms for generations to come. 

Above: Luxurious materials such as calfskin in Davidson’s Elliott chairs Left: Dark, quarter-sawn oak and brushed brass go to create Davidson’s Hamilton dining table

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Inspiring the world with outstanding British design and craftsmanship DESIGN CENTRE, CHELSEA HARBOUR +44 (0)207 751 5537 D AV I D S O N LO N D O N . C O M

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Leather is the most natural and durable material— and one of Man’s earliest luxuries. But how does the tradition of fine leather work fit in the modern market?


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Accessories // Collections

Left, right, below: Modern designs like Tusting’s backpacks and handbags draw on generations of leatherworking tradition

IMAGES © tusting & Co

Family business Leather working began as a ‘cottage industry’, usually kept within families, and of using hand skills to cut, prepare and sew, but it became largely industrialised in the 1800’s. As the resultant demand for leather increased, tanning techniques became more sophisticated. The oldest method of tanning, the process which makes animal hides more durable and less susceptible to decomposition, is vegetable tanning, an art know to date back to Hebrew tradition. Closely associated with animal rearing, early tanning and leather work relied on hard work and patience. The development of machinery to cut and sew leather allowed the leather-goods trade to boom, initially with increased demand for leather shoes. By the Middle Ages, guilds were established in London for the growing industry. These consisted of the Skinners, Cordwainters and Leathersellers. With the support of the industry and the London Livery Companies, the National Leather Collection in Northampton now cares for one of the largest collections of items and information relating to leather in the world. Embedded in the tradition of leather working for the last 140 years is Buckinghamshirebased company JR Tusting & Co Ltd, which

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Our bags needs to reflect the versatility and convenience required for life on the move – Alistair Tusting


he tradition of leatherworking appears to date back to the Stone Age, with Palaeolithic cave paintings depicting people wearing leather clothing and shoes and even building shelters out of animal hide. It was then adopted by the Greeks and the Romans, making leather one of the most significant and treasured materials to survive through the ages. But with synthetics offering modern alternatives, and automation replacing handworking, what is place does the tradition of leather working hold today?

draws on a history of five generations in the leather trade. Director Alistair Tusting is the great-great-grandson of founder John Pettit, and tells Arts & Collections: “When our great-great-grandfather and the company’s founding father started working with leather, it was already becoming an industry rather than just a trade. “The automation [which has replaced hand skills] happened in the latter half of the 19th century. The last hundred years have seen the process become cleaner, faster

and much more efficient, but the same basic processes continue to be followed.” The range from Tusting consists of luxurious and durable handbags and briefcases, as well as accessories which give a nod to modern requirements, such as cable tidies, key fobs, device cases and glasses cases. Despite the depth of the range, which includes handbags, backpacks, briefcases, shoulder bags, travel holdalls, messenger bags, tote bags, cabin bags, satchels and washbags, the tradition of hand-working, custom finishing and personalisation is retained, though of course with the help of precision machinery. “Leather goods machinery is split into three groups” explains Alistair: “Cutting, which is usually with metal knives on a hydraulic cutting press; Preparation, where we have machines to edge finish, split, skive and emboss the leather to prepare for sewing; and lastly, Sewing, were we using a range of different sewing machines to take the component pieces and sew them together to create the finished bag.”

COMPETITION But with the availability of durable synthetics, what’s the argument for continuing to invest in quality leather goods, and how does a modern leather goods manufacturer compete? Part of the answer lies in commercial arrangements such as Tusting’s partnership with Gleneagles Hotel, or with luxury car manufacturer Aston Martin, for

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collections // Accessories

Left: Tusting’s Hingham leather holdall combines contemporary style with fine materials Below: The Holly handbag reflects 1950s styling

“Leather can come in any colour, you can have simple colours but also two-tone effects, metallic, patent and suedes. The quality of leather is very subjective—what is good for shoes may not be good for bags. Leather has so many varied uses and almost as many qualities. It can be used for clothing, shoes, bags, harnesses, furniture, bookbinding and more, so what makes a perfect clothing leather would be the opposite of leather for the sole of a shoe (soft and supple versus hard and durable).” But there’s a sustainability angle too— genuine leather is a highly sustainable material, and premium quality hides sourced from cattle raised for beef would otherwise end up as landfill. Tusting favours tanning methods using classic vegetable dyes, which give good results and are biologically sustainable, and when leather treated with more modern tanning methods is chosen, the company adheres to the highest quality and environmental standards. Leather is of course repairable, unlike some synthetics, and Tusting will refurbish or repair its products to ensure they give good service for many years to come. Like leather itself, the secret of the success of the fine leather goods industry seems to be an ability to adapt itself to every situation – and a durability which distinguishes it in an era of the mass-produced and disposable.  whom it developed the Shuttle hard-sided wheeled cabin bag, designed to fit in the DB11. Tusting also has a strong relationship with export markets, particularly China and Japan, where the background to a product is considered as important as its quality. It does no harm that Kate Middleton, the Duchess of Cambridge, has often been photographed with her Tusting Explorer holdall. “The key is to keep up to date with what people are using their bag for, for example, as laptops have reduced in size to tablet size, or thereabouts, so briefcases have become smaller,” explained Alistair. “We keep updating the designs to accommodate modern needs. We know that people travel more, so our bags need to reflect the versatility and convenience required for life on the move.

“As an example, we include features such as a sleeve on the back of some of our bags so they can sit atop a trolley suitcase without sliding off. We also include padded laptop pockets and passport pouches.”

SUSTAINABILITY It’s this willingness to adapt to the demands of modern customers, as well as durability, heritage and fine craftsmanship that keep the luxury leather tradition on trend. “We have customers who collect Tusting bags, sets of luggage. A bag gets better the more well-loved and used it looks, and it is these bags that garner the most attention” says Alistair. And leather has qualities which synthetic materials can’t match—as Alistair explains,

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Where to


Arts & Collections gives you some tips on the most luxurious gifts you could buy your loved ones (or yourself) BY ROBYN WHITE

SIMPLY SPLASHING Does your swimming pool lack a little something? Danielle Anjou’s lifesize sculptures like Diver here will make a simply splashing centrepiece. Based in America, Danielle is a self-taught artist who admits she can’t draw— but boy, can she sculpt. The pieces including solo and duo sculptures and bespoke designs are available in a range of sizes and prices from £8,500 for smaller ones to £375,000 for the towering duo Alchemy, plus shipping of up to £5,000. www.charlton


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CuleM Watches like this Portal combine a passion for travel with the highest craftmanship. The Swiss-made watches are the first to correctly display 24 world time zones in both GMT and BST on an open case back. Each watch is delivered in a miniature elegant luxury travel trunk box. Only 300 pieces were made this year. Prices start from €1,499.



This Christofle Mood 24-piece cutlery set in stainless steel, silver-plated then gilded with 24 carat gold, includes six each of knives, forks, soup spoons and coffee spoons, all nestled in a stunning gilded egg with walnut wood interior. Ideal for any special occasion, at £11,380 it’s good to know that the set is dishwasher-safe. IMAGES © CHARLTON ISLIND, CULEM, CHRISTOFLE




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You’d jump out of bed bright and early too if you knew this Elektra Q1 Belle Epoque espresso coffee machine was waiting to serve you. Perfect for coffee connoisseurs, the Italian-style device is 95cm high (plus another 20cm for the eagle) and has a capacity of 12.5l. Copper and brass construction and retro design add to the charm, and electronic boiler control ensures precise adjustment of brewing temperature. Price is £13,200.

SNAP IT UP This Ethan K tote bag in genuine crocodile skin has a textured and glossy finish, decorated with a degrade colourway. The top handle silhouette zips open to a structured, pocketed interior that safety homes everyday essentials and offers its own handheld mirror, and features include a detachable strap. It comes complete with an Ethan K dustbag at £9,900.




TOWERING SOUND Lexicon’s SL-1 wireless floor-standing stereo speaker system looks like it will follow you around the room—well, using digital signal processing, the audio ‘sweet spot’ will, as you can set it anywhere you like using the connection-laden controller unit. Each speaker features 33 drivers and 23 amplifier channels, and has an output power of 650W. Cost of the system is around £40,000, or €43,000.


Would James Bond approve of the new Aston Martin? The Rapide E is the brand’s first ever all-electric car. First seen in concept in 2015, it’s powered by a two-motor 800V electrical architecture, and promises not to compromise the traditional horsepower of Aston Martin’s cars with its 602bhp output and acceleration of 0-60 in four seconds. Only 155 will be built and prices are available on application.

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Hotels With


Delivering the finest in hospitality and comfort, London’s grand hotels also offer an insight into the architectural heritage of the capital


hether you are visiting your capital city for the first time, or travelling from abroad, nothing beats the excitement of a stay in a five-star London hotel. Surrounded by opportunities to enjoy the signs and sounds of centuries of history and culture, London’s grand hotels deliver comfort, luxury and premier service in the heart of one of the greatest international cities. But each of these hotels has its own tale to tell, so Arts & Collections presents a selection of the most fascinating background stories.


♦ The Landmark London Situated opposite Marylebone Station, the Landmark London is most notable for its stunning eight-storey glass-roofed atrium, which contains the Winter Garden restaurant. Built as the proposed hub of a Channel Tunnel, the Hotel Great Central, as it then was, was designed by Col. Robert Eadis, whose previous work included the Prince of Wales’ ballroom at Sandringham. The hotel fell into decline with that of the railways, and served as a convalescent home during the Second World War, and later as the headquarters of the British Railways Board. Built around a central courtyard was a grand clock tower and two main entrances, it reopened as a hotel in 1993 as the Regent, and now as the Landmark London features 300 rooms over six floors, a Victorian-style Mirror Bar, a spa with a 15-metre heated pool, and eleven grand event spaces.


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♦ Sofitel London St James Complementing the architecture of the master plan laid down by John Nash for Regent Street 100 years earlier, the design of this building by E. Keynes Purchase was completed in 1923 to house the headquarters of Cox’s & Company. Later taken over by Lloyd’s Bank, the building was transformed into a 125,000 sq ft luxury five-star hotel in 2002. The building’s past is still very much reflected in its decorative paintings, photographs and bank memorabilia, though a recent revamp by French interior designer Pierre-Yves Rochon added a contemporary style combining the best of French and British. The entrance hall balances old-world allure and modernism, including specially commissioned works by contemporary French and British artists. In the guest rooms, vibrant, edgy British design is conveyed through striking use of colours and playful pop-style artwork. Moments away from the iconic historical buildings of Westminster and cultural hotspots including the V&A, Tate and Saatchi Gallery, the Sofitel St James is truly at the heart of London’s history and culture.

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hotels // LUXURY

♦ The Savoy The first purpose-built deluxe hotel in London, and the only one on the River Thames, the Savoy became a magnet for the wealthy, the famous, the glamorous, and even the notorious when it opened in 1889. The owner, impresario Richard D’Oyly Carte, studied American hotels for influences, and encouraged the likes of Sarah Bernhardt, Dame Nellie Melba, Marlene Dietrich and Tallulah Bankhead to make the hotel their London base. Innovations in the original design included electric lighting, hydraulically operated guest lifts and by the 1930s, air conditioning. The exterior was designed to look like a fashionable waterside Continental hotel, with long rows of balconies designed by premier Art Nouveau designer A.H. Mackmurdo running all the way up the façade along the river front. Collinson & Locke, the interior designers responsible for the Savoy Theatre, furnished the interiors with lavish decorative moulding and gilding in the public areas, and floral wallpapers in the guest rooms—classically Victorian, but also notably luxurious and comfortable.

♦ The Dorchester The 1792 house of the Earl of Dorchester gave its name to the modern building on Park Lane, but before that came an 1853 Italian palazzo-style house built by Robert Holford which at one time served as the American embassy. The modern building, created as his vision of the perfect hotel by Sir Robert McAlpine, was built in 1931 in a record-breaking 18 months, the first hotel to be constructed from reinforced concrete.

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♦ Mandarin Oriental Situated between royal parkland and the tourist mecca of Knightsbridge, originally built in 1889 as Hyde Park Court, an exclusive ‘Gentleman’s Club’, the building exterior consists of red brick and Portland stone in an eclectic Franco-Flemish style. It was damaged by fire in 1899 and was reopened in 1902 as the Hyde Park Hotel, featuring a Louis XV style ballroom. Bought in the mid-90s by the group behind the Hong Kong Mandarin and the Bangkok Oriental, , the Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park recently underwent a multimillion-pound restoration by internationally-renowned designer Joyce Wang, with new designs for all the rooms, suites and public areas, inspired by the natural beauty of neighbouring Hyde Park and the glamour of the 20th century Golden Age of travel. Highlights include the stunning re-imagining of The Spa, and the Mandarin Bar, directed by esteemed New York designer Adam D Tihany.

♦ The Ritz A Grade II listed 5-star hotel located in Piccadilly, the Ritz was opened in 1906 by Swiss hotelier César Ritz, eight years after he established the Hôtel Ritz Paris. It was one of the earliest substantial steel frame structures in London, the exterior both structurally and visually Franco-American in style, heavily influenced by the architectural traditions of Paris, while the interior is designed mainly in the Louis XVI style, and has been described as “one of the all-time masterpieces of hotel architecture”. Perhaps the most famous part of the Ritz is the Palm Court, which plays host to the famous “Tea at the Ritz”. This opulently decorated cream-coloured Louis XVI setting has panelled mirrors in gilt bronze frames, while equally notable is the Rivoli Bar, built in the Art Deco style, designed in 2001 by interior designer Tessa Kennedy to resemble the bar on the famous Orient Express train.

Favoured by royalty and celebrities in the 1930s and 1940s, the hotel was used by General Eisenhower to plan the D-Day landings in 1942, and achieved Grade II listed status in 1981. Major refurbishment work undertaken in 1990 was commemorated by Prince Philip. Gold leaf and marble remain distinct features of the public rooms of the hotel, including the restaurants, which boast features more reminiscent of an English country house than a hotel.

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The home of modern French luxury in London Sofitel London St James is located on Waterloo Place, on the corner of Pall Mall, close to the internationally recognised landmarks. The Grade II listed building represents one of the most prestigious hotel addresses in London. 2019 marks a new era for the five-star hotel with an innovative redesign from renowned French interior designer Pierre-Yves Rochon. Rochon’s update to his original 2002 design is a masterpiece inspired by the creative, dynamic feel of society and culture of 1960’s London. Vibrant, edgy British design is conveyed through the use of striking colours, modern pop art pieces and whimsical accents and accessories. Wild Honey St James, the hotel’s newest restaurant, combines classic French techniques with the finest seasonal British produce from Chef Anthony Demetre. A short set lunch, early evening menu and Café menu also operate alongside an à la carte selection of dishes. The wine list features approximately 100 bins, covering both new and old world, while there are four drinks available on tap – one red, one white, a Vermouth and a craft beer.

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“A blend of bold British design with contemporary French elegance” St James Bar is a cocktail destination in the heart of St James, redesigned to create a truly decadent and intimate space, day or night. Adjacent to the restaurant, the cosy hotel bar invites guests to relax and enjoy a cocktail from the new “Passport” menu that will take you on an inspirational flavour journey across the globe, in the comfort of the rich mohair velvet banquettes, warm lighting and antique mirror tables. The hotel is also home to The Rose Lounge, an ideal place to unwind and enjoy a traditional afternoon tea, the award-winning Sofitel Spa distributed over three floors and a large choice of conference and events suites for up to 180 guests.

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Sofitel London St James 6 Waterloo Place SW1Y 4AN, London Tel: +44 (0)20 7747 2200 E-mail:

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