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Issue SIXTY EIGHT JANUARY 2017

Scott Eastwood Luxury • Culture • People • Style • Heritage


HauteHaute Joaillerie, Joaillerie, placeplace Vendôme Vendôme sincesince 1906 1906

DUBAI:DUBAI: The Dubai TheMall Dubai - Mall Mallof- Mall the Emirates of the Emirates ABU DHABI: ABU DHABI: The Galleria The Galleria Al Maryah Al Maryah Island 800-VAN-CLEEF Island 800-VAN-CLEEF (800-826-25333) (800-826-25333) ABU DHABI: ABU DHABI: Etihad Towers Etihad Towers +971 2 681 +9711919 2 681 1919 www.vancleefarpels.com www.vancleefarpels.com


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Contents JANUARY 2017 : ISSUE 68

EDITORIAL Editorial Director

John Thatcher Editor

AIR

Chris Ujma christopher@hotmediapublishing.com Sub-Editor

Thirty Eight

Fifty Two

Methodical heart-throb rather than gritty gunslinger, Scott Eastwood is carving his own acting careeer path

The Doors’ self-titled debut album, released in 1967, ensured their place at the head table of music royalty

Forty Four

Fifty Eight

As French fashion reaches its yearly zenith, Stéphane Rolland is at the forefront of the annual revolution

Zen mama Teresa Palmer is a social-media sharer who bares her soul on the silver screen. Is there anything left to know?

Go East

Emma Laurence

ART Art Director

Andy Knappett Designer

Emi Dixon

C’est Magnifique

Illustrations

Vanessa Arnaud

COMMERCIAL Managing Director

Victoria Thatcher Group Commercial Director

David Wade

david@hotmediapublishing.com Commercial Director

Rawan Chehab

rawan@hotmediapublishing.com Business Development Manager

Rabih El Turk

rabih@hotmediapublishing.com

PRODUCTION Production Manager

Muthu Kumar

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Night Divides The Day

Good Vibrations


JW MARRIOT TÂŽ MARQUIS DUBAI

Elegance Without Pretence at the world's tallest hotel. The stunning JW Penthouse Suite and Marquis Penthouse Suite present two levels of impeccably designed spaces. The suites are contemporary with a touch of traditional Arabic design. PENTHOUSE SUITE FEATURES 624sqm in size set across 2 floors consisting of: 1 master bedroom with a walk-in wardrobe, 1 twin bedroom, 1 living room, 1 kitchenette, 1 study, 1 dining room, 1 majlis foyer area, 1 private spa room where in-room spa treatments are available upon request and 3 bathrooms with integrated steam sauna. GUEST SERVICES Complimentary return airport transfer in private limousine Private check-in inside the Suite 24 hour butler service upon request Access to 24 hour Executive Lounge and 24 hour Concierge services For reservations or inquiries, please visit jwmarriottmarquisdubai.com or call +971 4 414 0000

Sheikh Zayed Road, Business Bay, PO Box 121000, Dubai, UAE | T +971 4 414 0000, F +971 4 414 0001 | jwmarriottmarquisdubai.com JW Marriott Marquis Dubai I @JWDubaiMarquis I jwmarriottmarquisdubai


Contents JANUARY 2017 : ISSUE 68

Eighteen

Thirty Four

Sixty Eight

The adrenaline-fuelled 24H Series returns to Dubai, with an endurance-fest to test your limits

Richard Mille’s women’s collection is without compromise: visual grace meets technical supremacy

What’s in a name? When the name is Ferragamo, everything. Peek into the family’s new foodie venture

Twenty Four

Sixty Four

Seventy Two

Francis Bacon harnessed controversy, and a new exhibition of his drawings further stokes the inferno

We attempt to tame the insane power of The Beast – otherwise known as the Mercedes-AMG C63 S Coupé

On a secluded private estate, the cluster of villas at Iniala Shores is an opulent addition to the Phuket luxury scene

Radar

Art & Design

Timepieces

Gastronomy

Motoring

Travel

Twenty Eight

Jewellery

AIR

Curious origins pulse through the VanLeles story; we introduce a New Bond Street atelier with intrigue

Tel: 00971 4 364 2876 Fax: 00971 4 369 7494 Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission from HOT Media Publishing is strictly prohibited. HOT Media Publishing does not accept liability for omissions or errors in AIR.

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NOW OPEN ON PEARL JUMEIRA

Nikki Beach Resort & Spa Dubai, a lifestyle destination for those who set the trend. The resort introduces 132 keys comprising 117 rooms and suites, 15 villas with private pools as well as 63 private residences boasting top-line facilities. Host of unique food and beverage offerings including the world-famed Nikki Beach Restaurant & Beach Club. Relaxation and wellness are key elements of the resort where you can enjoy the choice of pools, sundecks or a more relaxed environment at Nikki Spa.

For reservations or more information please contact reservations.dubai@nikkibeachhotels.com Pearl Jumeira, PO Box 8286, Dubai, United Arab Emirates T: +971 4 376 6000 F: +971 4 376 6333 NIKKIBEACHHOTELDUBAI

NBRSDUBAI | NIKKIBEACHHOTELS.COM


Nasjet JANUARY 2017 : ISSUE 68

NASJET is the first private-charter company in Saudi Arabia, providing bespoke aviation services for the most discerning clients and institutions in the world since 1999. Currently, the group operates more than 67 corporate aircraft, making us the largest and most experienced private-jet operator in the region with a managedfleet value exceeding USD2 billion. NASJET, part of NAS Holding, employs over 1,700 industry experts, operating 24/7 from our state-of-the-art flight centre in Riyadh and across the world – delivering a superior level of safety, service and value. At NASJET we have the expertise and international experience to operate corporate aircraft worldwide. Every hour of every day, we are moving planes, crews and inventory across continents. We give you peace of mind when it comes to your private or commercial operations. As a Saudi company we are backed by some of the most prominent shareholders in the world. We are established.

Welcome Onboard JANUARY 2017

We currently operate and manage on our Air Operator Certificate (AOC) the following aircraft: • Hawker 750 Aircraft, which can seat up to eight passengers and fly for up to four hours nonstop. • Citation Excel, which can seat six passengers and fly for up to three hours nonstop. • Legacy 600, which can seat 13-14 passengers and fly for up to five hours nonstop. • Gulfstream GIV-SP and G450 Aircraft, which can seat 13-14 passengers and fly for up to eight hours nonstop. • Gulfstream GV, which can seat 16 passengers and fly for up to 12 hours nonstop. NASJET is also pleased to offer you the following services: • Aircraft Purchase and Sales. We have aircraft available for sale and management, or we can manage the purchase or sale of other aircraft. • Aircraft Acquisition, Acceptance, Completion and Delivery. We can find you the right new aircraft that suits your needs, customise it to your liking, monitor the build of the aircraft at the manufacturer, and supervise the entire final delivery process to ensure a smooth and rewarding private-aircraft experience. • Aircraft Management, where we are responsible for your aircraft from all aspects to provide you with the highest safety standards, the best service and the most economical management solutions. • Block Charter, where we provide you with charter solutions sold in bulk at discounted rates. • Ad-Hoc Charter, where we can serve your charter needs where and when you need us on demand. • With the new GACA rules and regulations having come into effect as of 1 March 2016, NASJET has taken the lead to establish itself as the first to market our Private and Commercial AOC services. We welcome the opportunity to serve you and look forward to seeing you on one of our private jets.

Ghassan Hamdan CEO

Contact Details: clientservices@nasjet.com.sa nasjet.com.sa T. +966 (0)11 217 2070 13


Nasjet JANUARY 2017 : ISSUE 68

‫األنظمة والقوانين‬ ‫الجديدة للهيئة‬ ‫العامة للطيران‬ ‫المدني‬

New Saudi Arabian GACA rules & regulations Consolidating its leadership role in the Saudi Arabian aviation sector, NASJET, the largest private-aviation operator and management company in the Kingdom, has announced its decision to extend compliance support to the local aviation community, with a proposition that will allow aircraft owners to operate their aircraft on a NASJET Private or Commercial Air Operator Certificate (AOC). The welcome move comes on the back of the introduction of new General Authority of Civil Aviation Regulations (GACAR), which came into effect on 1 March 2016 and are applicable to all aircraft based in Saudi Arabia regardless of the aircraft’s country of registration. NASJET currently manages a diverse fleet under its AOC, including Boeing Business Jets, Airbus Corporate Jets, and Gulfstream, Falcon, Legacy, Hawker and Cessna Aircraft. By operating their aircraft on NASJET’s AOC, owners will also benefit from exclusive discounts on fuel, handling and insurance, which can help reduce their aircraft operating costs by 25%.

“As a leading player in Saudi Arabia’s aviation sector, we are committed to catering to the needs of the aviation community as a whole and our decision to offer compliance support comes as part of our continued efforts to offer advisory and a range of specialised services to aircraft owners. To make the transition to the new regulations as smooth as possible, we will also be providing consultations to help owners understand the full scope and impact of the new regulations, as outlined by GACA,” says Yosef F Hafiz, chief commercial officer, NASJET. The new General Authority of Civil Aviation Regulations (GACAR) stipulated that aviation companies in Saudi Arabia submit a comprehensive plan by September 2016, stating their decision to operate their aircraft on either a Private or a Commercial AOC. Failure to comply with the new rules and regulations may result in severe consequences, including restrictions on annual landing-permit renewals or refusal to provide a one-time landing permit, which can lead to the grounding of the owners’ planes.

NASJET Sales Team Tel: +966 11 217 2070 Email: sales@nasjet.com.sa Web: nasjet.com.sa 14

‫ أكبر شركة خاصة‬،‫أعلنت شــركة ناس جت‬ ‫لتشــغيل وإدارة الطائرات في المملكة العربية‬ ‫ عن دعم جهود شركات الطيران‬،‫السعودية‬ ‫المحلية لالمتثال لمعايير التشــغيل من خالل‬ ‫شــهادة ناس جت الخاصة أو التجارية للتشغيل‬ ‫الجوي؛ وذلك في خطوة تعزز من مكانة‬ ‫الشركة ودورها الريادي في قطاع الطيران‬ .‫الخاص بالمملكة‬ ‫وتأتــي هذه الخطوة التي القت ترحيب ًا عقب‬ ‫إصدار لوائح الهيئة العامة للطيران المدني‬ ‫في المملكة العربية السعودية والتي تم‬ ‫ ويجري تطبيقها‬،2016 ‫ مارس‬1 ‫تفعيلهــا بدءاً من‬ ‫على كافة شــركات الطيران الخاص التي تتخذ‬ ‫مــن المملكة مقراً لها بغض النظر عن بلد‬ .‫التسجيل‬ ‫وتقــوم ناس جت في الوقت الحالي بإدارة‬ ‫أسطول متنوع بموجب شهادة التشغيل‬ ‫الجــوي بما في ذلك طائرات بوينغ وإيرباص‬ ‫وغلف ستريم وفالكون وليغاسي وهوكر‬ ‫ ومن خالل تشغيل الطائرات بموجب‬.‫وسيسنا‬ ‫ ستحصل‬،‫شهادة ناس جت للتشغيل الجوي‬ ‫الشركات المالكة للطائرات على خصومات‬ ‫حصرية على سعر الوقود وأعمال المناولة‬ ‫ وهو ما سيســاعد بدوره في خفض‬،‫والتأمين‬ .%25 ‫تكاليف تشغيل الطائرات بنسبة‬ ‫ رئيس الشؤون‬،‫وقال يوســف فيصل حافظ‬ ‫ «كشركة رائدة في‬:‫التجارية لشــركة ناس جت‬ ،‫قطاع الطيران بالمملكة العربية السعودية‬ ‫تلتــزم ناس جت بتلبية احتياجات مجتمع‬ ‫ ويأتي قرارنا بدعم شركات‬.‫الطيران ككل‬ ‫ في‬،‫ فيما يتعلق باالمتثال للمعايير‬،‫الطيــران‬ ‫إطار جهودنا المستمرة لتقديم العديد من‬ ‫الخدمات االستشارية والمتخصصة للشركات‬ ‫ ولكي نجعل تطبيق اللوائح‬.‫المالكــة للطائرات‬ ً ‫الجديدة أمراً سه‬ ‫ سنقوم أيض ًا‬،‫ال وممكن ًا‬ ‫بتقديم االستشارات لمساعدة تلك الشركات‬ ‫في فهم اللوائح وأثرها بشــكل عام وفق ًا لما‬ .»‫أقرته الهيئة العامة للطيران المدني‬ ‫وتنــص اللوائح الجديدة التي أصدرتها‬ ‫الهيئة العامة للطيران المدني على ضرورة‬ ‫تســليم شركات الطيران في المملكة العربية‬ ‫السعودية خطة شاملة بحلول سبتمبر‬ ‫ توضح ما إذا كانت ســتقوم بتشغيل‬،2016 ‫طائراتها بشهادة تشغيل الطائرات الخاصة‬ ‫ وقد يؤدي اإلخفاق في االلتزام‬.‫أم التجارية‬ ‫باللوائح والقوانين الجديدة إلى تداعيات من‬ ‫بينهــا فرض قيود على تجديد تصريح الهبوط‬ ‫الســنوي أو رفض منح تصريح الهبوط المؤقت‬ ‫لمرة واحدة؛ األمر الذي يمكن أن يتســبب في‬ .‫حظر الطيران‬


‫‪Nasjet‬‬ ‫‪JANUARY 2017 : ISSUE 68‬‬

‫ناس جت تحقق‬ ‫أهدافها لهام ‪2016‬‬

‫وتزيد حجم أسطول‬ ‫طائراتها وتتوسع في‬ ‫عملياتها برغم الظروف‬ ‫االقتصادية‬

‫أعلنت شركة ناس جت‪ ،‬الشركة الرائدة‬ ‫في حلول الطيران الخاص‪ ،‬عن زيادة حجم‬ ‫خدمات جديدة لعمالئها‬ ‫أسطولها وإضافة‬ ‫ٍ‬ ‫ومالك الطائرات الخاصة ‪،‬وذلك في خطوة‬ ‫تطويرية تهدف إلى الوصول ألكبر عدد من‬ ‫الراغبين باالستفادة من خدماتها‪.‬‬ ‫حيث زادت الشركة حجم أسطولها عبر‬ ‫إضافة طائرتين من طراز ‪ Gulfstream GIV‬و‬ ‫‪ Legacy600‬إلى برنامج إدارة الطائرات‪ ،‬وذلك‬ ‫استجابة لرغبة عمالئها والمزايا التي تقدمها‬ ‫الشركة لمالك الطائرات‪.‬‬ ‫وقد حققت ناس جت أهدافها التجارية‬ ‫والتشغيلية لهذا العام حسب الخطة‬ ‫التطويرية طويلة األجل ورغم الظروف الصعبة‬ ‫التي يمر بها سوق الطيران الخاص في ظل‬ ‫التحديات االقتصادية والسياسية في المنطقة؛‬ ‫إال ّ‬ ‫أن شركة ناس جت حققت أهدافها من خالل‬ ‫برنامج إعادة الهيكلة‪ ،‬وما تتمتع به الشركة من‬ ‫خبرة متميزة وفي ظل استراتيجيتها الجديدة‬ ‫القائمة على التركيز على إدارة الطائرات الخاصة‬ ‫وتوفير الرحالت العارضة وتأجير الطائرات‪.‬‬ ‫وفي تعليق للرئيس التنفيذي لشركة‬ ‫ناس جت األستاذ غسان حمدان‪ ،‬قال فيه‪»:‬‬ ‫حققت ناس جت خالل العام الجاري تطورًا‬ ‫على مستوى زيادة األسطول وتحقيق األرباح‪،‬‬ ‫وبتوقعات لتحقيق نمو أكبر مع نهاية‬ ‫العام‪ ،‬رغم الصعوبات والظروف االقتصادية‬ ‫والسياسية التي تشهدها المنطقة مؤخرًا‪،‬‬ ‫باإلضافة إلى سعينا في تعزيز تواجدنا في سوق‬ ‫الطيران الخاص بالشرق األوسط وتقديم كل ما‬ ‫هو جديد ومناسب لكسب رضا وراحة عمالئنا‪،‬‬ ‫وذلك من خالل توفير مجموعة متكاملة من‬ ‫الخدمات المالحية التي تشتمل على مبيعات‬ ‫الطائرات وتجهيزها والخدمات االستشارية‬ ‫وإدارة الطائرات والدعم التشغيلي للرحالت‬ ‫والطيران العارض ‪ ،‬والدعم الفني والصيانة‬ ‫للطائرات الخاصة»‪.‬‬ ‫حديث عن‬ ‫كما أضاف غسان حمدان في‬ ‫ٍ‬ ‫األنظمة الجديدة للطيران الخاص‪ ،‬حيث قال‪»:‬‬ ‫ّ‬ ‫إن األنظمة والتشريعات الجديدة التي أصدرتها‬ ‫الهيئة العامة للطيران المدني تعتبر خطوة‬ ‫تطويرية مميزة لهذا القطاع‪ ،‬وتقدم لنا الفرصة‬ ‫لزيادة أسطول طائراتنا وإضافة خدمات تساهم‬ ‫في الوصول إلى ما يطمح إليه مالك الطائرات‬ ‫في إدارة طائراتهم الخاصة مما يساهم في‬ ‫تطوير قطاع الطيران الخاص وتمكينه من لعب‬ ‫دو ٍر أكبر في نمو االقتصاد الوطني»‪.‬‬ ‫‪15‬‬


Welcome to NASJET


CABIN ALTITUDE: 1,003 M* • PASSENGERS: UP TO 19 • PANORAMIC WINDOWS: 16

PHILOSOPHY of COMFORT The Gulfstream G650™ gives you the most comfortable, relaxing and technically advanced cabin offered in an ultralong-range business jet. Panoramic windows, 100 percent fresh-air replenishment and intuitive touch-screen controls enhance your overall travel experience. Gulfstream’s philosophy of comfort is just a part of making the G650 The World Standard™.

ALLAN STANTON | +971 50 653 5258 | allan.stanton@gulfstream.com | GULFSTREAMG650.COM *At the typical initial cruise altitude of 12,497 m


Radar

AIR

JANUARY 2017 : ISSUE 68

So you’ve an all-powerful GT in your auto stable yet have never really allowed it to fly, confined by legal speed limits, correct? This isn’t a therapy session; there’s actually a tangible solution – the 24H Series. Created for ‘amateur and gentlemen drivers’, it’s an opportunity for touring cars to stretch their legs in endurance race events held at fascinating circuits all over the world (such as Mugello, Silverstone and Circuit of the Americas). The curtain raiser for 2017, 24H Dubai, roars back into the UAE for its 12th edition from 12 to 14 January. It’s three days of 24-hour endurance tests, held on the challenging track of the 5.39km-long Dubai Autodrome. Over 100 competitors will line up on the starting grid, ready to pit their skill and stamina against the clock, as well as unleash the potential of their fourwheeled GT or touring dream machine. 24hseries.com/24h-dubai

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Critique JANUARY 2017 : ISSUE 68

Film Fences Dir: Denzel Washington An adaptation of August Wilson’s Pulitzer Prizewinning drama about a baseball player-turnedgarbage collector AT BEST: “Can you tell it’s a play? Absolutely. Does that mean a damn thing? Not when the writing is this… evocative, and the cast… soars with it.” The Wrap AT WORST: “You… get closer to the performances, but it still feels like a live reading.” We Live Entertainment

Underworld: Blood Wars AIR

Dir: Anna Foerster Kate Beckinsale reprises the role of Seline, whose quest to stop the eternal war between the Lycans and Vampires continues AT BEST: “It’s unlikely to convert many new fans to the cause, but for the sizeable army of existing devotees, it delivers admirably on every front.” The National AT WORST: “An exercise in series continuation that struggles to conjure up any chapter-specific intrigue.” Arts Hub

Paterson Dir: Jim Jarmusch The daily routine of a bus driver highlights the triumphs and defeats found in daily life, and the poetry evident in the smallest details AT BEST: “Once you realise not a lot is going to happen, it’s rather lovely to [just] bask in its… slightly melancholy charm.” Daily Mail AT WORST: “A mild-mannered, almost startlingly undramatic work that offers discreet pleasures to longtime fans of the New York indie-scene veteran.” Hollywood Reporter

100 Streets Dir: Jim O’Hanlon The interwoven journey of an intriguing trio in crisis: an ex-rugby player, his former-actress wife and a criminal on community service AT BEST: “There isn’t enough space to dig deeply into these stories, but a classy and committed cast make it work.” Daily Express AT WORST: “[The cast leads] one to hope that this drama set in… Battersea might be gripping. Instead the film feels like a slice of a soap opera, dredging up every London cliché.” The Times 20


Critique JANUARY 2017 : ISSUE 68

Theatre

Tim Key, Rufus Sewell and Paul Ritter in Art

“T

hree friends and a white painting. It hardly sounds like the stuff of scintillating drama,” proffers Culture Whisper of Art, at London’s The Old Vic until 18 February. “But, as this revival will reveal, the disagreements sparked by modern art make for enduring entertainment… The appeal lies partly in the pertinent, shrewd subject: [playwright Yasmina] Reza exposes the conflict between inflated values and artistic worth. The play follows Serge, who splurges on a literal blank canvas that he defends as modern art. His friend Marc doesn’t see the value. Yvan tries to play peacemaker, but ends up getting caught in the crossfire.” Time Out London says of Reza’s celebrated satire, “The three friends’ friendship is tested when one of them buys an expensive painting that’s all white, with a few white lines. Art [originally] ran for eight years and became a West End fixture; there seem to be no such high hopes but a certain element of nostalgia to Warchus’ own 20thanniversary revival, which will reunite Art’s ‘entire original team’” – Tim Key, Paul Ritter and Rufus Sewell. Official Theatre adds, “The trio are using the

canvas in a relentless battle that highlights each other’s failures and their friendship comes under fierce scrutiny. A ridiculous comedy, Art tends to highlight issues that remain relevant [in the industry] today.” With the microscope on politics seemingly more than ever, This House (showing until 25 February at the Garrick Theatre, London) offers a chance to muse over the cyclical nature of political power. “Largely set in the Tory and Labour rival whips’ offices, [it] highlights the passion, commitment and skullduggery of those on both sides as they fight a four-and-a-half-year ‘war of attrition’ from the hung parliament of 1974 to the dawn of Thatcher… For all the apparent dryness of its subject, the play is rich in humour and sentiment… [It] is a reminder of the forces underlying it [and] brilliantly shows that, though fashions and technologies change, human frailties across the political spectrum will always remain,” writes Theo Bosanquet for Time Out London. “Some members of the audience are seated on or above the stage, and a live rock band punctuates the action with snatches from songs of the 21

era… This is a fascinating account of the mechanisms of parliamentary democracy, symbolised by the innards of Big Ben looming over all,” details Ian Shuttleworth in the Financial Times. Michael Billington at The Guardian gives it the full five stars, saying, “It has taken four years for James Graham’s enthralling play to make it from the National [Theatre] to the West End. It has been worth the wait because it enables us to see the work from a fresh perspective… The whole ensemble contributes to a thrilling play that both relives history and transcends it.” This month sees the final print run of The Front Page, at Broadway’s Broadhurst Theatre – it closes on 29 January. “Ben Hecht and Charles MacArthur’s 1928 evisceration of the newspaper racket is a summit of American screwball comedy, and Nathan Lane, John Slattery and two dozen other actors climb it and plant their flag. It’s strange to feel so invigorated and refreshed by a spectacle of rampant cynicism in which love, truth and loyalty are systematically demolished. But see this brutally brilliant masterpiece, and you’ll be inoculated against the viciousness of the world,” writes David Cote for Time Out New York. Ben Brantley for The New York Times gives an historic perspective: “‘Loud, rapid, coarse and unfailing entertainment,’ Brooks Atkinson wrote in The New York Times 88 years ago, when the play opened. He did have a caveat: ‘The authors have such a picturesque yarn to spin that their insistence upon thrusting bespattered conversation down the throats of the audience is as superfluous as it is unpleasant.’ The mud still flies in this tale of the frenzy surrounding the imminent hanging of a police killer, although some of its nastier ethnic epithets have been modified… The show is pointedly and self-consciously funny, savouring its own raucous wit, which paradoxically means that it just isn’t as funny as it should be… The play is diverting, but don’t stop the presses.”


Critique JANUARY 2017 : ISSUE 68

Art

AIR

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ustot Gallery Dubai has brought a truly world-class photography exhibition to the UAE – Nick Brandt’s revered Inherit The Dust series, which makes a don’t-miss appearance at the Al Quoz art venue until 28 February. The Guardian has pored over the “grandly apocalyptic photo series”, summarising, “Brandt built life-size panels depicting Africa’s great creatures and placed them in scenes where they used to roam. The resulting photographs serve as a potent reminder of what poaching, habitat loss and climate change put at stake.” Art critic Vicki Goldberg adds, “Brandt’s astonishing panoramas are a jolting combination of beauty, decay and admonishment. The result is an eloquent and complex ‘J’accuse’, for the people are as victimised by ‘development’ as the animals are… The breadth, detail, and incongruity of [his] panoramas suggest a collision between [Brussels-based economic think tank] Bruegel and an apocalypse in waiting.” Even respected film director Kathryn Bigelow has lent her expert eye – and opinion – to the captivating images, saying, “The wasted lands in Inherit The Dust were once golden savannah, sprinkled with acacia trees, where elephants, big cats and rhinos roamed. These now dystopian landscapes – as Brandt’s unvarnished, harrowing but stunning work reveals – bring us face to face with a crisis, both social and environmental, demanding the renewal of humanity itself.” Remaining close to home, Migration Stories by Farzad Kohan is just one of a veritable feast of current showings at the city’s Ayyam Gallery, in the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC). In this latest collection of work by the Los Angeles-based artist, explains My Art Guides, “[Kohan] records the experiences of migrants who have resettled in the United States or Europe, mostly from the Middle East. Detailing their stories with text-based paintings that are written in American Typewriter font, the artist adopts the role of a

Wasteland With Elephant by Nick Brandt, 2015

documentarian… The complexities of resettling in a foreign country are further chronicled in form as Kohan uses oil- and water-based media that separate upon contact. As the artist attempts to bring together these materials, he provides an apt metaphor of the difficulties that are faced by millions who must resettle and reestablish the concept of home in a new place… Kohan paints biographical portraits of uprooted lives.” Maeshelle West-Davies, writing for The Leipzig Glocal, explains Kohan’s methodology as follows: “He sent out a call and got replies via email, Instagram, Twitter and Facebook. Though the questions were the same – ‘When did you move? Why did you move? What have you learned?’ – the answers were different. Because of the nature of the final work, he asked for no more than two lines. What he got back was much, much more… Kohan left Iran when he was 18… Perhaps listening to so many people of various ages, birthplaces and destinations, and walks of life, gave him greater insight into his own story.” The exhibition runs until 23 February. A long-running landmark retrospective of 140 Cy Twombly works, which can be viewed until 24 April, is in full flow at the Centre Pompidou in Paris. Sarah Hyde lavishes plenty of love in her Art Net review, writing, “The hanging of the 22

exhibition is broadly chronological, and blissfully uncrowded; It is remarkable how powerfully these early works pulsate and vibrate with the intense energy that the artist invested into them almost 70 years ago and it is easy to see why his professor, Robert Motherwell, said ‘there is nothing to teach him’… Looking at these magnificent works it is hard to believe that when they were exhibited at the Leo Castelli gallery in 1964 they were subjected to fierce criticism by Donald Judd and rejected by contemporary critics. They were all unsold and achieved an almost cult-like status by their conscious absence.” Writing for The Guardian, Jonathan Jones crystallises the curiosity by asserting, “These paintings are, let’s be clear, very strange. Are they even paintings? They are very large and done on canvas, but technically they are giant drawings. That’s the least odd thing thing about them. Twombly occupies a unique and bizarre place in the story of modern art. His paintings – let’s call them that – refer in a visceral, unmistakable way to the human body, but have nothing in common with figurative art. Neither are they abstract, for their fields of organic suggestiveness break every purist abstract rule going – and that’s even before you get to the words written on them. No wonder it took him decades to be even partially understood.”


Critique JANUARY 2017 : ISSUE 68

Books “T

he Siren temptress Anne Boleyn. Bloody Mary Tudor. Virgin Elizabeth. Mary, Queen of Scots. And the bulldog queen mother of France, Catherine de Medici. The stories of these charismatic 16thcentury royals have long had our bookshelves groaning,” writes Sarah Dunant in The New York Times. “Enter the British journalist-turned-historian Sarah Gristwood. Her [book] sets out to widen our vision… 16th-century Europe was violently torn asunder by the birth of Protestantism. Male rulers often favored cutting out the ‘gangrene’ of heresy. Women, for a while at least, tended to err on the side of tolerance. The Roman Catholic Catherine de Medici and the Protestant Jeanne d’Albret of Navarre might have been enemies in faith, yet they did their best to keep the peace… Elizabeth famously chose not to ‘open windows into men’s souls’.” According to Literary Review, Gristwood’s “sweeping survey of the careers of numerous royal women amply justifies the nod to Game Of Thrones in the title: it features enough dynastic conflict, violence and sexual intrigue to satisfy the most hardened addicts of the series. Rather than make the link explicit, she maintains that the game she has in mind is chess, at which many of the book’s female protagonists excelled. She handles multiple narrative strands with tremendous finesse, dexterously synthesising the stories of women who, in many cases, never met but whose lives intertwined in manifold ways”. “‘Gil Coleman looked down from the first-floor window of the bookshop and saw his dead wife standing on the pavement below.’ This provocative sentence opens Claire Fuller’s second novel Swimming Lessons, and an intriguing epilogue ends it; in-between is the story of a woman’s failed marriage,” says Publishers Weekly. “When Ingrid Coleman disappears from a Dorset beach, her years of swimming alone in the sea are presumed to have caught up with her, but her body is never found. Neither are her letters to Gil recounting their years together,

tucked within the pages of books in his library… Fuller successfully creates two discomfiting narratives, a strong backdrop for the story’s essential mystery.” Adds Booklist, “Fuller proves to be a master of temporal space, taking readers through flashbacks and epistolary chapters at a pace timed to create wonder and suspense. It’s her beautiful prose, though, that rounds this one out, as she delves deeply to examine the legacies of a flawed and passionate marriage.” For Kirkus Reviews, “The most compelling parts of this novel unfold in Ingrid’s letters, in which she chronicles the dissolution of her 16-year marriage… [It’s] eloquent, harrowing and raw, but often muddled by tired, cloying dialogue… Simmering with tension, this tragic, albeit imperfect mystery is sure to keep readers inching off their seats.” This month marks the paperback release of the intriguing Reporting Always: Writings From The New Yorker by Lillian Ross. Asks Pamela Erens in The New York Times, “Do we need this new volume? Emphatically yes. The most recent anthology of Ross’ major work was published in 1981 and is out of print… Her work remains… a model of what patient observation, 23

deep listening and stringent craft can achieve.” Linda Simon in the Star Tribune adds, “Her ear serves her well for the many celebrities she profiled: the young Julie Andrews… best friends Judi Dench and Maggie Smith… Ernest Hemingway, who spoke in telegraphic grunts, the better to appear gruff and manly, and Robin Williams – who dipped in and out of accents and imitations… Ross is a keen observer of fashion, always including details about what her subjects wore: Edward Albee’s brown suede jacket and beige turtleneck, Coco Chanel’s natural-coloured straw sailor hat and ropes of pearls.” Concludes The Huffington Post, “To have written for this celebrated magazine for 60 years under its famed and awesome editors, and to have begun there more or less by serendipity surely qualifies for a charmed writer’s life… Ross’ capacity to observe and make the reader a part of the moment is quite remarkable… what emerges is discovering once again that what makes for great writing is less the actual subject and more the passion and skill of the writer. Lillian Ross has had an abundance of those qualities and the exceptional capacity to sustain them for decades.”


Art & Design

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JANUARY 2017 : ISSUE 68

Face Your Fear Francis Bacon knew how to stir up a commotion, and his latest visual sizzler in Treviso is no exception. A curated exhibition of his drawings from 1977 to 1992 has ignited wild controversy, and comes armed with radical aesthetics plus the baring of a tortured soul WORDS : CHRIS UJMA

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id Francis Bacon draw? Long before Francis Bacon: A Journey Through The Thousand Faces Of The Modern Man was even being considered as an exhibition, this was the primary contention that needed to be addressed. A batch of 600 drawings emerged after the master of grotesque’s death, which had allegedly been created and gifted by Bacon to a close friend over a 15-year period. It was the fierce art-world debate about their authenticity – not an affinity for the art itself – that drew Italian lawyer Umberto Guerini into the eye of the storm. 24

Right and next pages: Untitled drawings from the exhibition Francis Bacon: A Journey Through The Thousand Faces Of The Modern Man


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Bacon’s poetry is expressed in a more direct and essential way in his works on paper than in a large part of his paintings

“In 1997,” he explains, “I started to follow the case of these drawings and to study in depth the life and the works of this great artist who has been part of my journey since then.” Guerini would go on to represent the owner of the works, Cristiano Lovatelli Ravarino, who is resolute that the hoard of pictures was given to him during a relationship that endured until Bacon’s passing. Says Guerini, “Since 2009, the drawings of the collection have been displayed in museums and art galleries all over Europe, Latin America and Asia. Their showcase is usually accompanied by the publication of documents, including legal deeds, which represent and demonstrate their story so that every person can feel free in evaluating them. Art historians and critics at any level did talk about them: some of them were sceptical while others – very few, to be honest – rejected them in a biased way. Some of the latter group think that Francis Bacon deserves to be placed inside a temple and worshipped accordingly; [the exhibition’s curator] Edward Lucie Smith defines these people as ‘groupies’.” I mention the rumblings about the drawings’ authenticity not to undermine the power of what is an enrapturing exhibition; merely to spotlight the due diligence being committed to honouring artistic integrity. For this collection, expert inquiry led to The Challenges Of Authenticity: Francis Bacon, A Case Study, which was presented at the Courtauld Institute of Art in London. In Guerini’s opinion, “Regardless of how you may qualify them, the answer remains the same: culture and arts are free. That is why we will continue to display these works. We will also continue to carefully consider the opposing opinions that are expressed; we would like our opponents to do the same thing because, in front of the historical, documented, critical and scientific evidence we gathered and published, they continue to provide their trite biases. They act as guardians of a temple that Francis Bacon would have certainly destroyed.” To the art itself, as this is not about what Bacon could tear down, but what he could create. Guerini (whose capacity is now that of the lengthily titled Chairman of FBC – The Francis Bacon Collection 26


of the Drawings Donated to Cristiano Lovatelli Ravarino) explains that this exhibition’s title theme is key “in understanding the show itself: a journey through ourselves, accompanied not so much by reason but by what [art philosopher] Gilles Deleuze called ‘the logic of sense’. A path without filters that gets into the soul of visitors, leaving them alone in front of the self-portraits and images of both Bacon’s friends and society icons.” Lucie Smith believes all the ‘classic’ themes of Francis Bacon’s arts are represented here, on paper: “The artist seems to look back at his first production, the one that made him famous, wondering if he could have done any better, if he could have been more radical. The walls along the exhibit path are painted in dark colours, so that the pieces on display can shine under an innovative light, explained by labels that quote some topical phrases of the thinkers Francis Bacon particularly loved.” What artistic evolution can be observed here, exactly?“[His] drawing progressively became a style completely independent from painting, thus expressing more directly and effectively the artist’s soul. The use of collage and, as [Italian art historian] Maria Letizia Paoletti correctly states, the papier coupé of Picasso inspiration shows how Bacon wanted to try a three-dimensional effect in these drawings, something that cannot be found in his paintings,” Guerini responds. “I am a lawyer and not an art historian – however, in my view, the poetry of this great artist (who is also a refined and cynical intellectual) is expressed in a more direct and essential way in his works on paper than in a large part of his paintings.” On my own Bacon Scale of Bleakness (where ‘1’ is his mild Study For Self-Portrait and ‘10’ is The Black Triptychs, through which he exorcised the sense of loss he felt after his long-term lover’s tragic suicide), this exhibition sits at a 6.5 – polarising sketches for a friend, from the hand of a methodical maelstrom during some relative downtime. “His creations from this period were dominated by the triptych, but the figures grew calmer and were set against flat expanses of colour,” says Guerini, adding that since the exhibition opened it doors, “Visitors have been 27

amazed by [these] striking works, which open up horizons, taking them in a journey through the hell and heaven that we all experience in our lives. They may decide to accept the suggestions and references made by the curators, or to follow their own eyes and look at the drawings and pastels on exhibition alone; it’s a journey that will unveil many pleasant surprises.” It’s a slice of Bacon’s anxiety about the modern condition, and as for the “mysteries” compelling art lovers to visit the Treviso exhibition, “They are manifold,” Guerini confesses. “But one is to follow the ‘logic of sense’ on an open journey through the drawn efforts of one of the great masters of modern art, who did not make concessions to anybody – not even himself – always looking for his face and his soul, staring at people with his eyes, that reflect ours.” Francis Bacon: A Journey Through The Thousand Faces Of The Modern Man is at the Casa dei Carraresi museum in Treviso until 1 May. For more information, visit bacontreviso.it


Jewellery JANUARY 2017 : ISSUE 68

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Legends Of Africa Sustainably sourced gems, an atelier on prestigious New Bond Street and a Portuguese founder with Guinea-Bissau roots: VanLeles high jewellery knows exactly where it’s from… and illustrates the exact tastes of the wearer it graces

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nitial conversational inroads with Vania Leles, the creative director of the eponymous(ish) VanLeles brand, stray down a familiar pathway: her place of birth. When the driving force of a haute-jewellery atelier hails from Africa, it’s a rare and interesting talking point, irresistible to seize. However, she says, “The memories I have from my childhood have really galvanised my collections but coming from Africa wasn’t the driving force for me going into jewellery design. My passion for jewellery really started when I lived in New York, above the Bulgari store on Madison Avenue and

66th Street. I have always wanted to pursue a creative career – solo – and one day the penny dropped.” That day came after an illustrious run of form: Leles studied gemstones at the Gemological Institute of America before working for Graff Diamonds, De Beers and ultimately Sotheby’s, in the jewellery department. Did we mention she had a stint as a model, too? “Upon graduating, I relocated to London and worked for the most esteemed names in the industry, so without a doubt my time in the city served as a huge source of inspiration. I developed an unerring eye for rare, beautiful diamonds and 28

gemstones, and, due to London’s rich culture and diversity, have friends and clients from all over the world, which has really pushed me creatively.” Any one of those career stops might have been enough to satiate even the most ambitiously career-minded, but Leles wanted to put her own indelible mark on an industry that’s in her blood. “Having witnessed first-hand consequences of the illegal diamond trade while growing up in GuineaBissau, I am passionate and committed about ethical sourcing and remain personally involved in sourcing all our diamonds and gemstones. I feel it’s my


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Previous page: Legends of Africa Gemfields Emerald necklace and earrings Left: Dancing Butterflies rubellite earrings and pendant 30


I love the bravery of women in places like Dubai. They push me – they’re true trendsetters duty to ensure that people at every level in the process be fairly treated, be they the miners or the people finishing the piece in Europe. For me it’s a moral duty,” she explains, with solemnity. To ensure integrity, Leles adds, “We source our gemstones from responsible gemstone miners, whose approach centres on facing up to the very real challenges of mining in countries where bribery and corruption, land rights, environmental impacts and sustainable development are either endemic or require extremely sensitive handling.” She cites Gemfields as one such bastion of fairness. “These mines have long-term, sustainable and integritydriven licences to operate. Their strategy follows five core dimensions of responsibility – environmental, societal, human rights, labour and product. I always ensure that we have export certificates for any gemstone we buy. The certificate of export assures me that local taxes have been paid. So in my small way, I make sure that I am contributing to the local economy.”

For Leles, it’s “probably the Gemfields collection” that best encapsulates her design philosophy. “It combines my passion and moral ethos for ethically sourced gemstones and fair-mined gold, and shows my feminine but confident aesthetic.” And in terms of the gemstones and precious metals she communicates her designs through, Leles has “always been drawn to the vibrancy and play of light of diamonds” but, she says, “I am increasingly drawn to the depth of colour and varied hues of sapphires, rubies and emeralds. That said, pearls also have a very special place in my heart as I was married in some family pearls, so they will always remind me of the most personal happy times of my life. Recently I have fallen in love with natural pearls from Bahrain and the Gulf region, and I have plans for a capsule collection using natural pearls from Bahrain – it involves working with a local family of pearl merchants who have been trading for 170 years. I’m excited about this venture, because it also focuses on suitability, and the ethical farming of pearls.” There are hints of a VanLeles appearance at the Doha Jewellery and Watches Exhibition next month, and it’s likely, when you consider Leles’ affection for the region. Of the ideas sparking from the UAE glitterati, she says, “The Middle East has a unique culture that fascinates me, and our clients there have a deep understanding, particularly of pearls – which is always really interesting, given the fact that they have been trading natural pearls for centuries. I love the bravery of the women in places like Dubai; when it comes to 31

jewellery they aren’t afraid to wear larger-scale jewels and their pieces are historically more opulent than would be typical for Europe so I embrace the challenge of marrying my ultra-feminine creativity with their expectations. They push me, as they are collectors and break all boundaries – they’re true trendsetters.” Home – or Creative HQ, at least – is the UK capital. “Our New Bond Street atelier provides an influential backdrop to discover something truly unique. A lavish and intimate enclave in the heart of London’s fine-jewellery district, it’s the perfect environment to discover a rare piece or discuss bespoke commissions,” Leles explains. Of her delicate creations, one particular standout is an eye-catching pair of statement earrings called the Legends of Africa – shaped like the continent, they’re filled with sapphires, emeralds and tsavorites, plus vibrant pinks and reds created by rubies and tourmalines, a visual rainbow of geography. And while Africa shaped a particular strand of her curios, Leles is a globetrotter, on the adventure hunt far and wide for stones, and jet-setting on the haute-jewellery summit trail to showcase her resplendent wares. For a relatively new bespoke jewellery house, hers has all the credentials to carve out a niche. ‘Ethically sourced, passionately crafted’, VanLeles neatly says, and it could make that a triumvirate by adding ‘proudly worn’. Conscientious consumers, more aware of brand ideals than ever, will see their own values reflected in these gems, while catching the attention of others. After all, provenance will never cease to be a conversation starter.


OB JECTS OF DESIRE

OBJECTS OF DESIRE

Master craftsmanship, effortless style and timeless appeal; this month’s must-haves and collectibles


OB JECTS OF DESIRE

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AU DE M A R S PIGU E T

D I A M O N D F U R Y W AT C H

When only a fistful of diamonds will do, opt for a (far more tasteful) wristful. Every millimetre of Audemars Piguet’s haute-joaillerie cuff watch, from the striking case to the sleek dial, is paved with brilliant-cut diamonds – almost 5,000 of them in total, weighing in at over

25 carats. A futuristic departure for the luxury horologer, the appropriately titled Diamond Fury is an explosion of angular lines and unrestrained glamour, perfectly packaged in 18ct white gold. Signed off with a pair of blackened gold hands, the effect is dazzling – literally. 1


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M E R C E D E S - M AY B A C H

S650 CABRIOLET

Meet the S650, the first cabriolet from the Mercedes-Maybach marque – part machine, part trophy and… part luxury yacht. It doesn’t float (that we know of) but it does boast all the ambience of the Mercedes-Benz Arrow 460-Granturismo vessel that inspired its porcelain-

hued interior. Add to that the dynamic silhouette of the S-Class, and a raft of perfectly coordinated features that are all its own, and the sum of its parts far exceeds its literal power (taken care of by a 6L V12 Biturbo engine). With only 300 being released, exclusivity is assured. 2


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N AT H A L I E T R A D F O R R U P E R T S A N D E R S O N

ISSEY PUMPS

Each of Rupert Sanderson’s impeccably crafted shoes is named after a daffodil, that beaming yellow bloom synonymous with English springtime. But for his latest pair, the London-based designer has joined forces with a star of the Middle Eastern design scene: Beirut-born, Dubai-based

Nathalie Trad. Taking its name from the Saint Issey Narcissus flower, this new take on Sanderson’s Issey pump (available in black suede or silver leather) marries his graphic cut-outs with Trad’s trademark black agate mother-of-pearl – spliced into a geometric heel that’s perfect for dancing. 4


OB JECTS OF DESIRE

DIOR

L ADY DIOR

Instantly recognisable, always iconic. That’s been Lady Dior’s modus operandi ever since it launched, its oversized top handles, gold-plated charms and Napoleon-inspired cannage leather motif winning it the title of Dior’s (and the late Princess Diana’s) favourite bag. Now, it

can add ‘unmistakably yours’ to the list. The new, petitely proportioned cruise 2017 edition boasts a selection of pop-chic ‘Lucky Pins’ that can be clipped to its strap – from star, heart, bee and rose charms to your choice of initials – to put your own personal twist on an undeniable classic. 5


OB JECTS OF DESIRE

ROGER DU BU IS

E X C A L I B U R A U T O M AT I C S K E L E T O N

Kuwait-based fans of Roger Dubuis’ pioneering skeleton calibres are in luck this month, as it’s the only place on Earth you can take ownership of the haute horologer’s latest limited-edition model. Fittingly, the timepiece is itself a tribute to the country, its red star-shaped bridge

combining with subtle green hour indexes and a hand-stitched black alligator strap to recreate the colours of the Kuwait flag. Stamped with the prestigious Poinçon de Genève, each of the 25 pieces is a proud national emblem crafted with Swiss technical prowess. 6


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VA N C L E E F & A R P E L S

L A D Y A R P E L S P A P I L L O N A U T O M AT E

At first glance, this glittering curio from Van Cleef & Arpels’ Enchanting Nature collection is captivating enough. But slip it onto your wrist and the watch comes to life, as the delicate butterfly poised within its diamond, sapphire and mother-of-pearl face appears to take flight, fluttering its

wings beneath the glass. The timepiece is no less weighty for its whimsy – an exclusive automaton module powers the plique-à-jour-enamelled papillon, which beats with the wearer’s movement, or on demand via an ergonomically placed white-gold push button. 7


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CHANEL

SUNGLASSES

There are many things to love about Chanel’s new eyewear collection: the rich, retro palette of glossy grape reds and olive greens; the equally nostalgic oversized frames and kaleidoscopic mirrored lenses… But our favourite feature? The elegant arms, inset with engraved panels

evoking the house’s signature quilting, made famous by the 2.55 bag. Not only is the detail a stylish nod to a famous Chanel visual cue, the arms themselves are positioned so that the frames sit lower than usual on the cheekbones – offering the wearer a whole new perspective. 8


Timepieces JANUARY 2017 : ISSUE 68

Nerves Of Steel TArIq MALIk

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ith the price of gold sitting at over USD1,100 per ounce and the comparative price of stainless steel at under USD100, it’s logical to wonder why a watch manufactured from stainless steel would command a higher price than one made of gold. Not only that, but how could a stainless-steel watch break the world record for the most expensive sold at auction? The answer deserves explaining, especially in the light of recent events. In late 2016, those attending the Geneva Watch Auction: Four got to see a dramatic 13-minute bidding war for a very special watch. For Aurel Bacs – the man wielding the gavel and probably the best-known name in luxury-watch auctions – the event was a personal milestone. “Throughout my career, I have been longing for the day when I would be entrusted with the sale of a Patek Philippe reference 1518 in steel,” he says. “Many collectors [have] long awaited this occasion.” The 1518 has been called ‘mythical’ by some collectors – and the fact that it’s made from stainless steel actually makes it more desirable than its gold counterparts. On the same day, two other reference 1518s were sold – one in pink gold and one in yellow gold. Although they acheived satisfactory selling prices – around USD1.4 million and USD600,000 respectively – they came nowhere close to the stainless-steel version. It sold for USD11,136,642, shattering the previous world record for any watch sold at auction. Why such a disparity? In the bigger picture, steel, graded as 316LS, is the benchmark for material used by

high-quality watchmakers. But there are many other grades – rolex, for example, produces unique metals in its own foundry, one of which is rolesium, a combination of 904L stainless steel and 950 platinum. Stainless steel is normally an alloy of iron, chromium and nickel, making it highly resistant and malleable. It’s also known for its inability to be tempered and incredible polished finish – still, it’s not gold, so there must be more to it. The Patek Philippe 1518 was introduced in 1941, the firstever perpetual calendar with a chronograph. It was to become a milestone in horology: the watch that put the brand at the top. Today, these timepieces are highly coveted by serious collectors as fewer than 300 of them were made, and the vast majority were produced using yellow gold, with roughly 20% in rose gold, and only four in steel. All four belong to private collectors. What appeals to watch connoisseurs – especially those looking to buy a supreme trophy piece in this price range – is the immaculate complexity of the watch, and the contrast with the humble and simple 33

material. Of even more importance is the rarity of the watch. The Patek Philippe perpetual calendar chronograph is an icon for collectors, and taking into account the provenance and condition of the watch, it starts to make more sense. Yet this is not the only stainless-steel watch to have achieved fantastic results at auction. Last year at the Geneva Watch Auction: One, a Patek Philippe reference 130 became the most expensive vintage stainlesssteel watch ever sold (at the time), coming in at just shy of USD5 million. A stainless-steel split-seconds chronograph, reference 1436, was sold in 2015 for USD3,301,000; another stainless-steel chronograph, reference 1463, sold at the same auction for USD1.21 million. At the upper end of the market, style and rarity, together with provenance, are the factors that determine a watch’s value. So ironically enough, if you’re looking to invest in a trophy watch, stainless steel may ultimately be a better investment than gold. Find Tariq’s co-founded vintage-watch boutique Momentum in Dubai’s DIFC; momentum-dubai.com


Timepieces JANUARY 2017 : ISSUE 68

Ladies First AIR

The bespoke women’s collection from Richard Mille is no act of chivalry. These technical masterpieces have reinvented horology’s feminine side – think elegance and mechanics for the most demanding scenarios, and most discerning clientele WORDS : CHRIS UJMA

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hen Richard Mille unveiled its first women’s watches seven years ago, they accounted for less than 5% of the brand’s sales; in 2016 they represented around 25%. This beautiful collection is no vanity niche, but a crucial part of the plan for dominance. And when you hear CEO Richard Mille explain the intricacies of the RM 19-02 Tourbillon Fleur (pictured here), you acquire a sense of the technical depth behind the pretty aesthetics. “The Fleur is an exceptional mechanism, executed with great poetry and expertise. A magnolia flower, with handcrafted and hand-painted petals, embraces a flying tourbillon. It opens and closes on demand thanks to a pusher located at 9 o’clock, or in passing. When fully open, the flying tourbillon and its diamond-set ‘stamen’ rise by 1mm, like a flower blossoming. The mechanism, at the heart of the titanium tourbillon movement, combines five levers surrounding the hidden sides of the petals. A dedicated barrel provides the necessary energy to the automaton mechanism,” he explains. The daring Fleur is merely one of an impressive bunch, which debuted with the RM 007 Ladies’ Automatic. The brand’s first foray into this realm was motivated by the belief that “an absence of women in the world of Richard Mille was totally inconceivable”. What they conceived has set a new benchmark for women’s watches, and they’ve given this collection the very best R&D. The RM 07-02 Pink Lady Sapphire, for example, broke the million-dollar barrier in part because the machining of sapphire crystal cases was the brand’s “toughest challenge yet”. In this instance it required almost 800 hours to properly machine, due to the toughness of the material and the necessity of achieving the distinctive, curvaceous barrelshaped tonneau case.

What sets them apart from other women’s watches is the combination of beauty with elite technical prowess An arresting aspect of Richard Mille watches is how robust they are; they are visual delicacies but not delicate, able to withstand the rigours of Formula One racing, for example. Why does the company inflict so much torture on its timepieces? “Because when launching the brand, I felt it was important to show that fine watchmaking could break free of its somewhat off-putting appearance and its rather pompous, pseudo-esoteric narrative… I have always thought that haute horlogerie should open up to the fields of sport, art, women’s tastes and lifestyle, and I love the combination of extreme complexity together with a resolute lifestyle product. These are not watches you keep in a safe; they are made to be worn in any and every circumstance,” the CEO confided to World Tempus. Each new unveiling from the brand’s female-centric portfolio garners headlines, both for price point and mechanical complexity. The watches stand alone, but links are naturally drawn with the men’s line. Says Mille, “There are numerous aspects shared between the men’s and ladies’ lines; even the high-end jewellery timepieces have very technical hearts. The same torque screws on the case and movement, the same approach to 36

materials, movement layout and design, etc. I would say that they essentially differ only in terms of colour, size, stone setting and similar aspects. Having said that, I also see women buying large chronographs – the same that men usually buy – and men who buy stone-set pieces. So the line [of distinction] between ladies’ and men’s watches is not always as clear as one might first think.” Perhaps the other reason for this comparison is a lack of peers in the segment. Feminine hallmarks and thoughtful storytelling aspects are present in design details such as flowers, a panda (in the RM 26-01), pink and green serpents (RM 026), tigers and dragons (RM51-01 Michelle Yeoh), a delicate spider in its web (RM19-01)… Yet what sets them apart from other women’s watches is the combination of this beauty with elite technical prowess – the above examples are all tourbillons. Torque-limiting crowns, free-sprung balances, a barrel pawl with progressive recoil, and spline bridge screws in grade-five titanium are among the assortment of masterful workings within the noted models. These timeless pieces are graceful yet deliciously complicated, built with the horology aficionada in mind.


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A FISTFUL OF TALENT Blazing his own Hollywood trail, Scott Eastwood is not the entitled celebrity’s son; bringing his own persona to lead roles, he’s more ‘making my own way’ than ‘make my day’ WORDS : CELIA WALDEN

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n the sitting room of a luxury condo high up in the Hollywood Hills, Scott Eastwood is naked – but for the smallest pair of Hugo Boss briefs. The stylists and assistants surrounding him have flushed faces and giddy laughs, calling to mind an early scene in 2015’s The Longest Ride, when the camera pans slowly over Eastwood’s face as the country singer Miranda Lambert croons, ‘I feel a sin comin’ on.’ It’s hard for any woman not to echo a similar sentiment when looking at Clint Eastwood’s 30-year-old son. The one-time Abercrombie & Fitch model described by People magazine as ‘Clint’s finest work’ has been dealt a royal flush in terms of both his looks and his parentage. But he is ready to break away from both – having garnered positive reception for his role in Brad Pitt’s Fury. His first major studio lead was in the adaptation of the Nicholas Sparks novel The Longest Ride in 2015, and he succumbed to pressure that same year to gunsling in his first Western, Diablo. His turn in Oliver Stone’s Edward Snowden biopic earned rave reviews, and 2017 will see him on the silver screen in Fast 8 – the next instalment of the auto-action series. “There’s no ‘get successful quick’ miracle plan in this business – whoever’s son you are,” Eastwood says with a shrug, clothed now and relaxing on a ‘shabby chic’ patio chair in the garden. Having a Hollywood deity as a father has its perks, of course, “but actually you have to work twice as hard”. It was with these pressures in mind that Eastwood – the product of Clint’s affair with Jacelyn Reeves, a flight attendant with whom he fathered two children while still in a relationship with the actress Sondra Locke – decided to start his acting career a little more than a decade ago under the name Scott Reeves. “Everyone wanted me to go ‘Eastwood’,” he explains, “but I said no.” The family has always been tightknit, if a little unorthodox (“I can’t even remember how many siblings I have,” he jokes of his younger sister, Kathryn – also an actor – and five half-siblings from Clint’s relationships with four other women), and it wasn’t until after roles in his father’s 2006 Second World

There’s no ‘get successful quick’ miracle plan in this business – whoever’s son you are

War film, Flags Of Our Fathers, the indie films An American Crime and Pride (both 2007), and a cameo in Clint’s drama Gran Torino (2008) that Eastwood finally took the family name. His father had always wanted him to, he admits, and proving to himself that he could carry on Clint’s legacy, rather than distancing himself from it, had become more important to him. With his physical similarity to his father so glaring, Eastwood’s early efforts to stand alone would, in any case, have proved futile. The features may be less rugged and the gaze a little less intense, but with the same square jaw, squinting smoulder and ironic lip curl as his father in the 1960s classics A Fist Full Of Dollars and The Good, The Bad And The Ugly, it’s hard to tell him and Clint at his age apart. Eastwood is at ease with the physical comparisons; it’s the professional ones he is keen to avoid. Which is why, he explains, he has so far made a conscious effort to turn down the kinds of roles his father played. “For years I’ve been approached to do Westerns. People trying to remake The Good, The Bad And The Ugly with me in my father’s role – but it has always felt so cheap. So yes, I’m cautious.” He pauses. “I remember watching Unforgiven for the first time as a boy. I hadn’t realised until then how big a star Dad was, how good he 40

was, and how many people loved him.” He’s known for his polished looks, but would he de-prettify himself for a lead part? “Heck yeah. If I needed to for a role I’d happily shave my head or pack on the pounds. I don’t know about losing the pounds, though.” He frowns. “I talked to Matt Damon and a bunch of other people who did that for their careers and they got really sick, because it’s actually very dangerous to emaciate yourself like that and my health is important to me.” Although good looks can often count against you where character acting is concerned, Eastwood adds, “It can also be held against you that you’re not pretty enough. There are going to be roles that I’m not going to get because I look a certain way and roles that I’m going to get because of the way I look. That’s just the reality.” Given the number of lingering closeups we were treated to in The Longest Ride, in which Eastwood played a bull rider named Luke, I’m thinking his physique didn’t count against him. He was, however, convincing – moving, even – as an ambitious young man forced to choose between the two loves of his life: city girl Sophia, and rodeo. With all the traditional failsafe ingredients of Sparks’ bestselling novels and blockbuster film adaptations – the star-crossed lovers, inspirational


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It’s a great thing if you get the chance to fall in love. Love is the most powerful thing in the world

old man (played by Alan Alda), unearthed love letters and poignant flashbacks – The Longest Ride did exactly what it said on the tin. It had a similar emotional resonance to the author’s most famous adaptation, The Notebook. “I cried every time I saw that,” Eastwood says, laughing, when I tell him how efficiently his new film reduced me to tears. “And trust me: I saw it more than once. I’m a sucker for movies like that and Forrest Gump. Movies that make you think about life and how short it is. Sometimes we get caught up in this rat race and we forget to pick up the phone, call the people that we love, and tell them we love them,” he goes on – sounding more than a little like his Longest Ride character. “Nicholas Sparks movies always make me feel that way,” he says. “You walk out of the theatre and you want to call your mum.” It’s hard to imagine his father emoting so openly in an interview; hard to imagine the elder Eastwood talking about the “long-winded love letters” he wrote 10 years ago to one of his first loves. “It’s a great thing if you get the chance to fall in love,” Eastwood says with a sigh. “Love is the most powerful thing in the world.” Unnerved by this modern male and anxious to bring some testosterone back into the discussion, I ask whether Eastwood is enjoying his single life. “I am,” he says, and the raffish grin is back. “I like the fact that I can do whatever I want when I want.” For Eastwood – who grew up going between his mother’s home in Hawaii and his father’s estate in Carmel, and now lives a low-key, bohemian existence in a San Diego beach house, rising with the sun to surf – the number one turn-off is materialism. “I was dating this chick,

just casually, and when she came to my house all she could talk about was money. It was so unattractive and I remember thinking, ‘I don’t want you here any more.’” So how did he end it? “I just didn’t call her again,” he says. “All that material nonsense is so bogus. You have all this stuff,” he says, spitting out the word, “and then what? You die and people get your car and your jeans and what does it all mean?” After one of Eastwood’s closest friends, The Fast And The Furious star Paul Walker, died in a car crash in 2013, he helped pack up his belongings. “Paul was like a brother to me.” he says. “He had a lot of money and all this stuff… and none of it was real. What was real was the valuable advice and the memories he gave me. What’s real is you and me sitting here right now.” As someone who loathes clutter, Eastwood will give away or return most of the clothes that he is gifted – “I feel guilty about it all because all I ever wear is Levi’s and T-shirts” – and limit himself, in terms of technology, to the iPhone placed on the table before him. “I’ve only got two apps,” he tells me, “ForeFlight, which is for helicopter flyers like me [he got his licence a year ago] and will tell you what the flying conditions are, and Shazam, which is just brilliant.” A “real adrenaline junkie”, Eastwood also likes to skydive, bungee jump and take his surfboard to the Mexican coast, where the waves are bigger. “Flirting with death makes you feel more alive, you know?” His rodeo scenes in The Longest Ride may have been done by professional stunt riders (“We went through quite a few of them because they kept getting hurt”), but Eastwood is now keen to try the extreme sport himself. “There’s a 50% 43

buck-off rate, so every time you get on a bull you’re tossing a coin: are you going to manage to stay up there for eight seconds or are you going to get bucked off and trampled? Fox wouldn’t let me do it but I’m going to anyway.” He winks. “I’m not even going to tell them.” Many of the Hollywood sons and daughters I have met are an unappealing blend of entitlement and complacency. Eastwood, however, is sweetly and palpably excited by the idea of honing the craft he set his sights on as a schoolboy. “I hate watching myself back, because sometimes they’ll use a take that you think you could have done better, but I know that I will get better if I work at it,” he says. “My dad always used to say, ‘Show up, don’t complain, listen and learn.’” The modelling was never creatively challenging enough for him, he says. “I certainly never considered it a career. Of course the reality is that all actors are models to some extent, because we’re all putting on clothes and getting in front of the camera. Leonardo DiCaprio still happily models watches, doesn’t he? And he’s got the most covetable acting career of all time.” Eastwood is not his father. He is grateful for the dedication the 86-yearold actor instilled in him (“My dad was always clear that anything I did, I should do well”) but it is his mother’s insistence that he shouldn’t rely on “this acting thing” – that he go to college and get a communications degree – that he values above all else. “I may be getting the love now,” he says earnestly, “but it could be a whole other story next year. There are plenty of talented dudes out there, so I like to have back-up plans.” Commendable as that is, something tells me he won’t be using them.


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When the newest haute couture gets unfurled at Paris Fashion Week, you can be certain that StĂŠphane Rolland will set the tone. A conversation with the man at the forefront of fashion gets you tantalisingly close to his design secrets WORDS : CHRIS UJMA 45


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he media are adept at establishing a quick hook to define the success of a society influencer. I’ll guiltily oblige some of Stéphane Rolland’s oft-repeated synopsis: at 20, his talent was recognised by Balenciaga; at 30, he was he youngest couturier on Paris’ Avenue Montaigne. I’ll add that at 40, he has been embraced by Chambre Syndicale de la Haute Couture – the elite Paris collective of 12, who are considered the fierce guardians of couture. But using only those bio points to package Rolland as prodigious suffocates all of the nuanced hard work he has poured in – it’s a disservice to decades’ worth of ideas, passion and excitement. Style cares little for history making or a concise CV – you’re only as good as your next design, and it is this premise on which Rolland has built a spectacular reputation, not on convenient word capsules pertaining to his meteoric rise. Peel back the layers and the inner workings of his mind are fascinating to analyse; in his seminal designs he is both artist and artisan. “The DNA of the house has always been tuned to art and every artistic expression,” he tells me. “[It’s the] reason why I always collaborate with artists, sculptors, painters, even chemists, in the process of design; maybe it’s the reason why my shows look more and more like exhibitions. I always picture in my mind dresses on steles and this gives the guests time to observe and understand my vision.” Sculptured gowns, minimalism and elegant silhouettes are just some of Rolland’s design concepts (not that he is at all predictable, but you are assured an elite level of class from every style avenue he darts down). It’s because, he explains, “Alatool is my keyword. I like to go straight to the goal, looking for clean shapes and then disrupting the lines with a rupture. This always constitutes a sculptural shape or an unexpected accessory. My joy has always been to make women more unique and as iconic as possible, [while] always honouring the rules of elegance that Parisian life has taught me.” One of the accomplishments I mentioned in his opening roll call validates the respect he garners, and that’s the acceptance of his house into

My Gulf clientele is the most aware about hautecouture philosophy, in that mothers pass it to their daughters, from generation to generation. It is the proof that haute couture is immortal

the powerful La Chambre Syndicale de la Haute Couture (or, more blandly in English, the trade association of high fashion). “The regulations of the federation are extremely strict and protect Parisian creativity and knowledge. Being an official member makes me one of only 12 couturiers worldwide, and, naturally, the media and commercial impacts are extremely important and give more strength to develop the image of the house. The day my nomination was announced to the media, the impact and reaction from the fashion sphere was immediate, and it makes you realise how Paris is unique and the image of French luxury is un-dethroned,” explains Rolland of the honour. The criteria for being part of this industry clique encompass details related to the workshop, the number of original models each season and such, not on being a vocal defender of the craft. However, Rolland is an admirable ambassador, and when prompted to survey the landscape, he ponders, with slight disdain, “Unfortunately, I’ve noticed that many of us no longer make the difference between real and the fake luxe; everything is about image and immediate consumption,” before defiantly adding, “Haute couture 46

has to fight against that factor. The longevity of haute couture is all about instruction, knowledge and respect of traditions. My Gulf clientele is the most sensitive and aware about haute-couture philosophy, in that the mothers pass it to their daughters, from generation to generation. It is the proof that haute couture is immortal. I’ve always been recognised as a creator and not a stylist. It means that my goal is to draw up a new aesthetic, melting modernity, strength and sensuality. Yes, everything has been seen and everything is always reinvented.” Don’t buy into an airbrushed fairy tale of his career rise: Rolland started his brand at the worst possible time, when the world was rocked by an economic tsunami that engulfed the global markets. “I opened my house at the beginning of the crisis, which turned upside down all our ideologies and rules. Despite that, I developed my image as well as the reputation of the house. Today, my style is clearly recognisable,” he says. The chaos provided him perspective and, he confesses, “I’ve learned to observe and analyse more and use time more serenely. Don’t you think everything goes too fast, at the cost of quality? Quality of the products but also quality


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The goal is to make people dream through movement and volumes, bringing energy to sensuality and solidity to fragility

of life! Indeed, the more I take care of myself, the better I work.” There is one element of the story where the romance is real: the celebrity infatuation with his material masterpieces. Beyoncé, Naomi Campbell and Rihanna are among those who count Rolland as their sartorial crush – he even created a custom form-fitting turtleneck silhouette for pregnant Ciara’s redcarpet appearance at the American Music Awards in November. He won’t be drawn on choosing a favourite, but almost a decade on from his eponymous debut collection I wonder if there’s a seminal design moment he has enjoyed creating the most? “I don’t like looking back but it’s true that some collections have a very special place in my heart,” he reflects. “After the SS12 and FW12 collections, something happened. A message was received. And SS13, very graphic, was a dazzling season. From that time the evolution has been constant, despite the variations of an oft-unstable business. My latest season [AW16] is an absolute commercial success while I’ve only presented 15 looks exhibited like masterpieces. There are no more rules and the shows’ systems struggle. Today, everyone should find their personal way and follow it; this will bring more interesting variety to the fashion world. Nowadays, competition is international but only creativity and quality resist time.“ Rolland does have a horse in that international race, though, and it is a pure thoroughbred that’s right on 49

this magazine’s doorstep – his first bricks-and-mortar venture is a lavish, marble-accented prêt-à-porter boutique at Etihad Towers in Abu Dhabi. Of the venture, the designer explains, “I wanted to be different and open in the UAE, as it is a luxury platform where my clients from all over the world pass by and intersect. It is one of the best spots where social life is still very active.” It was not merely a business chess move, but a link to his spiritual home, perhaps – back in 2013 he told The National newspaper, “I love Paris, but I’m sure I’ll finish my days in a tent in the desert. What’s difficult for me is not being able to live that now. I need it, deeply. I work a lot and travel a lot and I really feel like a Bedouin. I’ve never owned an apartment and I don’t have an appetite for material things.” In us he confides, “Since my childhood, I remember being attracted to the Arab world and its culture. As a teenager, I was fascinated by the strong charisma of HH Sheikh Zayed; years later, I was given the opportunity to meet some of his children, who became my first clients in the UAE. From that time my clientele in the region has become more numerous, though very selective.” As for which values of his house appeal to the Emirati, he observes, “Absoluteness, difference and rareness are the specificities women look for when they come to me, and I meet that expectation. Their approach is particularly intellectual and I love that.” The latest chapter in the saga of style’s reinvention will be the Paris


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Fashion Week: Haute Couture showcase later this month, when the capital raises the curtain on annual catwalk observances. Rolland teases about his next collection, saying, “While my inspirations often have the same start, the goal is to make people dream through movement and volumes, bringing energy to sensuality and solidity to fragility. It’s a perfect blend and hard to master. So the hautecouture spring/summer 2017 collection will be tuned to sculpture; close your eyes and transport yourself to the mythical atelier of the great Rodin, where his plasters are gathered like a white forest of bodies. The difficulty is to preserve the lightness of gowns that look like they’re sculpted from marble. It’s an almost angelic vision.” Of the accompanying buzz that punctuates preparation for a major show such as this, he opines, calmly, “In the build-up to a haute-couture showcase of mine, the most stimulating and exciting moments are the creative phases, from the first sketch to the first fitting to the presentation. Regarding the showcase, I need to feel my team are organised, working with serenity and calm, as it always gives the best results. Guests and journalists are always intrigued by this apparent tranquillity when they visit us in the days before the show. The stress should never be transmitted.”

In his opinion, then, is Paris the best of the catwalk weeks? My attempt to pry casts new angles through his prism of elegance: diplomacy, and confidence. “I don’t like to compare,” says Rolland. “Each capital has its own stamp. But Paris is the capital of haute couture, and Paris Fashion Week remains the most important fashion event in the world. The most influencers and creatives are there, as well as all the international fashion media. So presenting during this week remains a major asset. We have the exquisite chance to live in a city where haute couture and luxury lifestyle were born; from Marie-Antoinette creativity to Coco Chanel freedom, we had the most emblematic personalities.” The only part Rolland needs correcting on there is ‘had’ – with modern emblematic personalities such as he, the city is still the gatekeeper of couture. And in a nation dealing with turbulent societal times, the freedom of expression wielded in its high fashion is both a breath of fresh air, and one of many reasons that the Tricolour can flutter on, defiant and proud. Stéphane Rolland’s SS17 collection will debut at Paris Fashion Week: Haute Couture from 22 to 26 January. His prêt-à-porter creations can be found at the house’s Etihad Towersbased boutique in Abu Dhabi; stephanerolland.com 50


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MY As The Doors’ self-titled debut album turns 50, it’s time to spend a nostalgic evening revisiting Jim Morrison & Co’s soul kitchen

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he Forever 27 Club sounds like some smoke-filled, intimate, off-grid music venue where bands start out. It’s not. It’s not even an actual place; for this is where many a prominent rock star has ended, not begun – the name born of the odd propensity for popular (often hedonistic) musicians to die aged… 27. While prominent members of the tragic collective include Kurt Cobain, the Manic Street Preachers’ Richey Edwards and Echo & the Bunnymen drummer Pete de Freitas, the idea took flight during a two-year stretch: 1969 to 1971. It’s when the world lost the combined genius of Janis Joplin, Brian Jones, Jimi Hendrix and Jim Morrison, and the theory of a curse took hold. The latter of those names is especially resonant. The Doors’ vocalist – the Lizard King, the enigma – had a supernova-like impact on music and pop culture. ’67 would birth another iconic album in the shape of The Beatles’ conceptual masterpiece Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band (in June), but it was The Doors’ groundbreaking self-titled debut six months earlier that seismically changed listeners’ perceptions of life. While the curse of the 27 Club can be poohpoohed as a myth (the British Medical Journal went to great lengths to debunk it in 2011, though failed to dispel the fascination, despite presenting the stats), Morrison’s aura was tangibly real, legendary even, especially on stage. Before being signed to the Elektra label – which The Doors gave its first ever hit record – Morrison, keyboardist Ray Manzarek, guitarist Robby Krieger and drummer John Densmore were tearing up the live circuit in San Fran and LA. Bill Siddons, who went on to become the band’s manager, recounts, “I didn’t know who they were, ’cause they hadn’t had a hit yet. When [I was] offered a trip to San Francisco, I said, ‘Okay, I’ll go.’ We ended up sitting in the audience at this show at the Avalon Ballroom on 12 May 1967, watching this maniac. What I remember is Jim on stage. I wasn’t affected one way or the other by meeting him, but when I saw him on stage I was more emotionally gripped and moved and disturbed than I had ever been at any similar type of thing. I remember thinking, WHAT? What is he saying? What is he doing? I don’t get it. And then he said something about ‘Awkward instant/ And the first animal is jettisoned/Legs furiously pumping/Their stiff green gallop’ and I went, ‘This guy is completely out of his mind.’ But I was moved by it, I could feel it. It was the first time poetry had been a movie to me, the images were so strong that they came to mind in a photo form. I could see the horses jumping off the boat. I could see them drowning. So what was my first impression of Jim? He scared me to death.” Morrison, a synonym for hedonism and wildness, enraptured all. “The word was out

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on the street that everyone had to see this lead singer because there had never been anything like him… With the unnatural grace of someone out of control… he looked like a Greek god gone wrong, with masses of dark brown curls and a face that sweaty dreams are made of… It was really mindboggling. There was no modern sexy American icon at that time and he instantly became that for me and all the girls I knew, and we never missed them. I saw The Doors play a hundred times,” confessed groupie Pamela Des Barres in her book I’m With The Band. For all the live roars, though, the album seems somewhat restrained. Side A comprised Break On Through (To The Other Side), Soul Kitchen, The Crystal Ship – to slow down the pace with a ballad-like comedown from the high – Twentieth Century Fox, the cover Alabama Song (Whisky Bar) – which was later covered by David Bowie – and the sizzling Light My Fire. Side B brought to the ears of the listener Back Door Man, I Looked At You, End Of The Night, Take It As It Comes and the fittingly titled, indulgent The End. “The key to the band’s appeal was the tension between singer Jim Morrison’s Dionysian persona and the band’s crisp, melodic playing. Keyboardist Ray Manzarek and guitarist Robby Krieger’s extended solos on the album version of Light My Fire carried one to the brink of euphoria,

They caught the sense of dread that hung in the air like gunsmoke, and did it with hypnotic cool while the 11-minute epic The End journeyed to a harrowing psychological state,” reviewed Rolling Stone. “They caught the sense of dread and menace that hung in the air like gunsmoke, and they did it with hypnotic cool,” wrote MOJO. In an age of instant tweets and social-media frenzy, it’s tough to think of a billboard ad being revolutionary. But, as Rolling Stone explains, it was exactly that with this album: “Jac Holzman of Elektra Records was the first one to try this advertising medium – for USD1,200 a month, he reserved a sign near the Chateau Marmont hotel, and inaugurated it with The Doors, who had been the house band at the Whisky a Go Go down the street. Holzman reasoned that LA disc jockeys would see the sign on their way to work, saying the billboard was ‘a calling card for the artist, but it was a very large calling card’.” It was in 1967, too, that the iconic black-andwhite images of Morrison emerged – a reel of bare-chested, brooding-eyes-that-stare-into-yoursoul photographs. The infamous pictures taken during the Young Lion photoshoot, as it became known, are indelible. Joel Brodsky, a young

Brooklyn-based photographer, was the one behind the camera. He’d go on to shoot defining album covers for the likes of Aretha Franklin, BB King, Carly Simon, Barry Manilow, Kiss and Iggy Pop. In ’67, though, he was under contract with Elektra to take pictures of its up-and-coming artists. Morrison was not as composed as he appears in the photo set, as Brodsky told the NME: “I always thought it was sort of funny that the pictures of Morrison from that session were the most used. Jim was totally plastered…so [much so] he was stumbling into the lights.” He added, with deeper reflection, “You know, Morrison never really looked that way again, and those pictures have become a big part of The Doors’ legend. I think I got him at his peak.” If the anniversary is not news to you and The Doors has been ever-present on your everyday playlist, here’s a seismic nugget to shake your existence: for decades, we’ve been listening to the debut album at the wrong speed. Nobody even noticed, until a scientist contacted sound engineer Bruce Botnick. He explained in a series of essays, “The most startling discovery was finding out that the album, as it has existed on the street for the past 40 years, is running slow and off-key – flat, to be exact. It came to my attention in early 2003 via an e-mail from Michael Hicks, professor of music at Brigham Young University. After much investigation and speculation, Professor Hicks came to the conclusion that something was not quite right… I determined the following: when the album was mixed at Elektra Studios in New York, either the four-track playback recorder was running slow, or the stereo two-track was running fast. In those days we recorded and mixed on Ampex & Scully tape recorders. The tension system was such that when a full reel of tape was on the left side of the recorder, known as the supply side, it would run at something approximating accurate speed. When the situation was reversed, where the large load was on the take-up side, the recorder would slow down because of the mechanical braking system, and this would cause the mix to progressively run slower. So, things could go flat or sharp depending on what part of the tape the mix came from.” The success rate of the record could never be warped, though. It became an album-shelf staple, one of the greatest releases of all time, and irrespective of the speed at which you’ve been enjoying the LP, you’ll agree it’s packed with lyrical deliciousness. My personal favourite is the verse – “I found an island in your arms/Country in your eyes/Arms that chain/Eyes that lie” – off Break On Through (To The Other Side). Yet it’s a more direct line that resonates on an anniversary re-listen; “Learn to forget,” Morrison repeats, mantra-like, on Soul Kitchen. Because 50 years on, try as they might, music lovers simply can’t. 56

Opening page: The Doors in 1967 Previous page: The band on tour in 1968 Right: Jim Morrison with model Donna Mitchell in Vogue, 1967


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HOLLYWOOD H LISTIC Chilled-out Teresa Palmer is totally Zen, and with her acting career harmoniously flowing, plus a settled family life, it appears the universe is on her side INTERVIEW : FRED ALLEN

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his Australian actress has the recent cinematic masterpiece Hacksaw Ridge under her belt, a doting husband, three adorable young children and a pet kangaroo called Cornflake. Things in the Teresa Palmer stratosphere seem to be content: “I have a beautiful home and family life that I’ve always been pointing towards,” she says. “My work is also a source of much greater satisfaction these days and I feel very blessed in life.” But really, there was no need to ask her if that is actually the case – she’s more than happy to show you. The 30-year-old doesn’t seem to have much in the way of a private existence; Palmer documents her daily doses of familial bliss on social media. If you follow her on Instagram, you’ll know that of late it’s been a visual pathway through the joys and strains of her second pregnancy. Unlike stars who hide behind smoke and mirrors, the actress has opened the door and welcomed fans into every aspect of her life – the highs and the lows – enabling the observer to see that (starring roles in movies and premieres in couture aside) she has the same goals and fears as the woman on the street. Palmer exudes red-carpet glamour but with none of the unapproachable airs and graces; take a quick skim through her Birthing Bodhi blog – which details her first pregnancy – and you’ll see she unapologetically pulls no punches. There’s zero fake Hollywood façade here, only sometimes charming, sometimes squirmy honesty. Whether you think the sharing equates to ‘too much information’ or not, you can’t deny she’s 100% human. She’s known for the ‘Zen mum’ persona that unfurls in front of a smartphone lens as much as for the characters she portrays in front of silver-screen cameras. And going from one film project to another has not been to the detriment of her reallife responsibilities – the opposite, in fact. Palmer capitalises on her hectic schedule, turning it into an opportunity. “I’ve taken our little boy everywhere with me,” she says. “I’d always dreamed of being a mum and I want more to have more children. When we’re travelling together and I’m working we try to create a very familyfriendly environment; I only use a

We need to find our happiness from within… It starts inside you and radiates to everything else in your life

nanny when I’m working but otherwise I really embrace the joy that comes from being around him and having him in our lives. With a little bit of planning you can always incorporate your child’s life into your own and I’m very happy to be able to work on a lot of interesting films of late and also be able to enjoy my time with Mark [Webber, her actor/ director husband] and our little family.” Despite her world being inextricably entwined with the entertainment industry (she co-wrote, co-produced and starred in The Ever After with her husband), she’s conjured an enviable work/life balance. “I think as long as your child is with you and is part of a loving family it doesn’t matter whether you’re working or travelling,” she says. “We try to live very happily and harmoniously wherever we are. I also feel that the stars somehow align when I’m offered the chance to do a film.” For example, “With Point Break I loved the idea of making it and getting to travel to places like Tahiti, Austria, Germany, and so on. I thought it was like getting to go on this great adventure just as my new life with my baby was beginning,” she says with delight. The 2015 remake about a thrillseeking criminal surf gang escaping 60

the FBI was enriching for the apples of her eye, too. “It was shot in 10 different countries on four continents – and there was a lot of emphasis on many different extreme sports, not just surfing. There was rock climbing, extreme snowboarding and a lot of other incredible extreme sports that we got to do, and meant the boys got to do a lot more than me.” The ‘boys’ (she is also stepmother to Webber’s son Isaac) gained a new addition in December – Forest Sage. Not that the family focus makes her in any way self-absorbed: Palmer’s desire for peace and love is set to a global frequency, breaking out beyond the four walls of her home. In June she launched Your Zen Mama with Sarah Wright Olsen, an extension of the philosophy behind her existing online portal Your Zen Life. “I founded the original site with actress Phoebe Tonkin; it’s a forum and platform for people to contribute their ideas and stories and advice to the wellness world. We are trying to support and inspire positive change in the world and we want people be able to share their thoughts and ideas with others and help each other to live more healthily and happily,” she explains. “I believe that we all need to


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There are limits you need to respect. You can’t go so far in the pursuit of your beliefs that it harms other people

take care of ourselves from the inside out. Wellness is something that is both physical and spiritual, and Your Zen Life is trying to help people empower each other and find healthy ways of living. My personal belief is that we need to find our happiness from within and not from external sources. I also know that for me, I am much healthier when I am happy. It starts inside you and radiates to everything else in your life: the way you work, the way you interact with others, even in the way you approach your nutritional and exercise habits. I love feeling very Zen and balanced, and that approach has been very liberating in every aspect of my life.” It’s not an overly forceful mission she is on, either: “It’s a good question: how far do you go in terms of your commitment to what you believe is essential to your cause? I think there are limits you need to respect. You can’t go so far in the pursuit of your beliefs that it harms other people. You can’t assume that your vision is so righteous that it gives you the right to do anything that you feel is necessary to your cause. That’s a line I could never cross, even though I have great respect and admiration for political and environmental activists.”

But is it possible for women to ‘have it all’? She confided in journalist Marcia Leone, who posed that very question, “I think perhaps society puts an unfair pressure on women [in that aspect] but that doesn’t mean balancing it all isn’t possible for those who want that. I have a desire to be a great mum, have a successful acting career, a blogging career, be philanthropic, have a wonderful relationship, be a good friend and be rooted in a deep spiritual practice. To me that’s the Holy Grail and why not strive to find balance in all the things we want to achieve?” Whether she has found that balance or is still on the hunt, Palmer is distinctly more settled following a turbulent transition (reviews-wise) Stateside from her hometown of Adelaide in the mid 2000s – perhaps it is this harmony that has contributed to the wave of praise for her last two roles (Hacksaw Ridge, and Lights Out before it). Whether playing Dorothy Schutte alongside Mel Gibson, the female protagonist in forthcoming movies 2:22 and Berlin Syndrome, or simply in her embraced role as an earth mother, Teresa Palmer looks at peace with her existence – which is both calmer, and karma. 63


Motoring JANUARY 2017 : ISSUE 68

Coupé de Grâce AIR

In the shape of its C63 S Coupé, Mercedes-AMG looks to deliver a fatal blow to its closest auto rivals. Has this finely tuned road great got the power it takes to leave them for dead? WORDS : CHRIS UJMA

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he whispered, “You’re driving The Beast.” She’d processed my documents – licence, insurance – with politeness and minimal conversational colour, but the AMG C63 S is exactly this kind of emotional elixir: it can elicit a response from all who encounter it (even the most reserved personality). The C63 S Coupé is MercedesAMG – ‘the house that speed built’ – conspiring to take over the market. ‘One man, one engine’ is the attentionto-detail ethos of the AMG arm of the

brand, and it operates on a formula of form following performance. The artisans at the Affalterbach assembly plant created a motoring athlete in the C63: it’s as though they’ve taken the DNA from winners across multiple Olympic track disciplines and created the perfect champion: speed, stamina, poise, presence of mind and plenty of heart. The ‘one man’ behind this four-litre V8 Biturbo engine was Tim Ebinger – and, in time-honoured AMG tradition, the creator has his signature on a nameplate atop the engine. 64

The coupé has a dedicated-built body, not merely a sedan with fewer doors – that’s not how AMG gets things done. The point of the fine-tuning division is to make any changes necessary to prime a car for speed. On the outside, the C63 appears finely shaped and smart, and there are little visual cues that echo the Mercedes-AMG GT series, all adding to the car’s aerodynamicism and distinctive brand ‘look’. Says AMG, “The exterior shows itself from its most imposing side here thanks to specific features exclusive to


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the S-Model. The AMG front apron with front splitter and the A-wing in highgloss black add to the coupé’s sense of width, while the radiator grille with twin louvres reinforces its sportiness.” Further features, it adds, include the “AMG rear apron with three diffuser fins… and AMG sports exhaust system with two chrome-plated twin tailpipe trim elements… Another striking characteristic is the imposing width. The distinctive, wider wheel-arch flares – 32mm at the front and 33mm at the rear – make the C63 S Coupé even wider than the sedan version, allow for wider tyres and make the vehicle even sportier than its predecessor”. The powertrain generates 510HP, which means you’re looking at 0-100 km/h in a pile-driving 3.9 seconds. It doesn’t look like it harbours such menace, does it? Perhaps it’s because there are plenty of white-hued cars on Dubai’s roads, and unless you’re looking head on (where its signature face shape is unmistakable), in the Diamond White Bright paint colour you might not instinctively pick it from the visual snowdrift. But boy will you hear it. You’re certain to develop a profound lust for the ballistic noise that it cranks – even at contained lower speeds of 80km/h. Power aside, there are three factors that herald this an amazing, mature drive. First is the torque: even at a low RPM you’ll hardly get your foot to the floor, as the accelerator pedal at half point is enough for an ecstasy-inducing blast. The gearbox (an AMG Speedshift MCT, with seven-speed sports transmission) makes for buttery smooth gear changes – this ‘one machine’ thinks as fast as the one human at the wheel. Third is a ceramic high-performance compound brake system (you’ll spot the distinctive red peeking through the wheel spokes). At the wheel… well, there’s a scene in the Batman movie The Dark Knight Rises where weedy business magnate John Daggett is berating 6ft-plus mountain-of-muscle bad man Bane, and barks an instruction of, “No! You stay here, I’m in charge!” Bane, who earlier snapped the caped crusader in two, passively places an open hand on Daggett’s shoulder and utters, “Do you feel in charge?” That’s the AMG C63 S. The technology, the handling, the ride settings… they all lull you into thinking

You’re certain to develop a profound lust for the ballistic noise that it cranks – even at contained lower speeds of 80km/h

the power lies with you; it’s via a Banelike censure during acceleration that you’re reminded of the hierarchy here. Inside, it’s a technology maven’s dream – seriously, you could spend an hour configuring your preferred settings before even getting out of park. Essentially, this car is impossible to crash* (*disclaimer: this article cannot be used as a legal defence); the vehicle seems to soft-ping at regular intervals – collision-prevention braking, radars to ensure lane-keeping assist, blindspot assist, and attention assist to warn of driver fatigue. These safety nets are all optional, turned off for your more daredevil days, and activated when you’re looking to tread the high wire yet placate an anxious passenger. The interior styling is nothing short of chic and there’s the feel of quality, from the cosseting heated seats to every tactile fingertip touch: a carbon-fibre centre console and dashboard, steering wheel in black nappa leather/dinamica microfibre and diamond-design seats with yellow topstitch are just some 67

examples of the opulence. There are a couple of interior bugbears that take getting used to. One – the drivingmode selector, placed on the steering column – helps the centre console stay gear stick-free and uncluttered, but it feels uninstinctive to reach for. (It’s akin to Apple doing away with the 3.5mm headphone jack – there’s a viable alternative, but it’s unfamiliar at first.) The idea is to keep everything within easy range of your hands. It’s a minor quibble. Overall, the C63 S Coupé is front and centre of the muscle-car vanguard, giving America a bold masterclass in style and how to put on a firework show under the bonnet. The tech, driving sense and ergonomic styling mean you’ll possess a vehicle that is both intuitive and intelligent. “Oh, you were driving The Beast,” he exclaimed, looking up from his checklist upon my return of the Mercedes to its lair. Yes, I did drive it. But tame it? Well it certainly felt as though I was in charge…


Gastronomy JANUARY 2017 : ISSUE 68

In Style & In Season AIR

The Ferragamo family name is synonymous with good taste. But it’s taste of a different kind that powers Brand Ferragamo’s newest offering, Il Borro Tuscan Bistro Dubai – a slice of Italy served up in the heart of the UAE WORDS : EMMA LAURENCE

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alvatore Ferragamo: two words that roll style and substance into one deliciously lyrical, perfectly designed package. The Italian empire that began in 1914 with a single shoe store in California and today counts Hollywood’s hottest property among its many fans is known and loved as much for its silk scarves and leather goods as its pioneering footwear. But the eponymous designer’s legacy reaches far beyond the realm of fashion, right into the beating heart of Italy: its food. In 1993, the Ferragamo family took over the ancient Tuscan estate of Il Borro, and set about transforming it into a luxury hotel complete with vineyards, olive groves, biodynamic farm and a trio of restaurants: Vin Café, Osteria del Borro and Tuscan Bistro.

Now, thanks to the late Mr Ferragamo’s grandson, also called Salvatore, and executive chef Andrea Campani, you can experience the latter some 5,000km away at the brand’s first international outpost, Il Borro Tuscan Bistro Dubai. From the rolling hills of Tuscany to the waterfront wonderland of Jumeirah Al Naseem, Dubai’s newest stay-andplay destination, the choice of location was natural, says Ferragamo: “Dubai in many ways is one of the capitals of the world – you have New York, London, Tokyo – but I think Dubai is becoming more and more the centre of the world.” The city is already home to gastronomic greats from all corners of the globe, but the Tuscan Bistro promises something special – a true taste of Tuscany rarely found outside the central Italian region. 68

“Tuscan cuisine is characterised by the variety of products the area offers. We are so lucky to be close to the Mediterranean Sea, the rich Apennine Mountains and lush forests at the same time, which are the best source of local produce,” explains Campani, who grew up just a stone’s throw from the original Il Borro, and is the creative force behind its expanding foodie offering. “Unlike French restaurants, where the plates tend to be much more elaborate, Italian cuisine is very simple,” adds Ferragamo, “so for us the success of the project is really in finding raw materials of top quality, like our extravirgin olive oil, which is superb.” It’s no less than you’d expect from a Ferragamo family venture – and raw materials don’t get any more


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Right: Executive chef Andrea Campani at the original Il Borro Tuscan Bistro

top-quality than those cultivated at the estate. Everything from the aforementioned olive oil to the freerange eggs, the millefiori honey to the award-winning grape, is produced organically, ethically and sustainably within the 700-hectare hilltop reserve. “It’s a win-win situation,” Ferragamo explains. “It’s important to me, for my generation and the generations to come – and for consumers, too, because the food tastes just as good if not better.” And, he says, “absolutely everything” on the menu at the new Il Borro Tuscan Bistro Dubai is flown in specially – from orto to table, via the clouds. “It’s a unique concept, bringing Tuscan food directly from the producer to the consumer,” he enthuses. “That is at the heart of our philosophy and it’s a very authentic philosophy.” When 70


it comes to the menu, it’s clear that authenticity is paramount. “We want to showcase simple, rustic cuisine that carries the unique taste of Tuscany,” explains Campani. “The menu features classic Il Borro dishes – such as the panzanella, a fabulous summer salad made with bread and vegetables, or our house-made fresh pasta featuring our signature sauces – but our concept is to cook seasonally, forcing us to align our selection of dishes with the seasons.” Freshness is the order of the day at the Dubai bistro, a fact proudly asserted by the gleaming display counter that greets guests with gusto on arrival, where the likes of creamy burrata and zesty tartares are prepared to order. The design of the place, too, bears those same hallmarks – all clean, crisp neutrals and washed woods with

an underlying air of Italian glamour (naturally) in the shape of marble and bronze. “It’s a very fresh, contemporary look,” says Ferragamo. “Soft lighting, combined with the traditional materials of Tuscany, all of which creates that very simple but yet elegant feel, which I think is important.” Simple yet elegant: words that could just as easily be used to describe Brand Ferragamo. And it’s a synergy that surpasses mere form; the restaurant echoes the rich heritage and artisanal craftsmanship synonymous with the fashion house. As Campani puts it, at Il Borro Tuscan Bistro Dubai “you can sample the true flavours of Tuscany prepared with the most traditional recipes that have a long history” – values that infuse everything under the (impeccably styled) Ferragamo umbrella. 71

While the restaurant may lack the verdant countryside surroundings of its Tuscan namesake, it is blessed with a clear view of the glittering Arabian Gulf from its Turtle Lagoon setting. “Our vision,” says Campani, “is to transport the original Tuscan atmosphere, with its rustic cuisine and warm ambience, to Dubai. We want to recreate a true piece of Tuscany and convey the philosophy behind Il Borro in the most authentic way possible. Our mission is to showcase the exceptional flavours of biodynamic produce and immerse guests in our passion for organic food. I am convinced that diners will understand the essence of Tuscan cuisine better when they visit Il Borro Tuscan Bistro Dubai.” Me too – but you know, there’s only one way to be sure…


Travel JANUARY 2017 : ISSUE 68

12 JOURNEYS BY JET

Iniala Shores, AIR

Phuket

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wathes of crisp white, hues of blue, light wood accents and palm-tree green. In a world of flashing adverts and competing visual noise, Iniala Shores is an escape to blissful minimalism – not that an uncomplicated, classic colour scheme in any way means an unsophisticated experience. Set on a private estate, this cluster of four deluxe villas sits beside the pristine Andaman Sea on Phuket’s mainland, and is just 400m away from the highly acclaimed Iniala Beach House, which opened its doors in 2013. The latest luxury addition to entrepreneur Mark Weingard’s brand portfolio was unveiled this month – just in time for a spot of luxury yacht shopping at the Phuket International Boat Show (5-8 January, Royal Phuket Marina). This selection of spacious five-bedroom properties is tailored for a family getaway (or group of likeminded friends with exquisite taste). The uber-elite clientele of the existing Beach House have been clamouring 75

for Iniala to up the ante, and ‘haven’ is an accurate word to apply to the new villas. For example, each highceilinged abode has its own private infinity pool, with uninterrupted views of Natai Beach. You’ve also an in-house private spa room, and a tempting menu of beauty, wellness and massage therapies in which to indulge. The prime locale means you’ll want to soak in the peaceful outdoors, and extensive outdoor sitting and lounge areas take full advantage of the beachside spot. With a choice selection of local fare to delight the gastronome and Phuket increasingly strengthening its claim to the title of emerging capital of Southeast Asian chic, here’s a new property that serves as a welcome retreat for mind, body and spirit. Oh, and exclusivity, as well. Phuket International Airport accommodates private jet landings, and guests are met by a dedicated Iniala representative who will facilitate private transfer to the property; iniala.com/shores


What I Know Now

AIR

JANUARY 2017 : ISSUE 68

Robert Ettinger chairman & ceo, ettinger

In a family business that has been passed down since 1934, you’re privy to some sage words of learned wisdom. Some simple early advice from my father was ‘if you enjoy your work you’ll perform to a much higher standard’. Above all else, always treat people with respect. I suppose this could be deemed good manners – but it has become crucial in today’s frequently mannerless society. I’ve seen how much business has changed since I started, and it’s mainly down to communication – and the speed of it – nowadays. Everything has

to be replied to so quickly and that can be a danger in itself. If in doubt, I wait an hour or two (or, if the luxury allows, a day or two), to make sure my reply is considered and correct. With hindsight everything is easier, but good decisions come from good experience and good experience comes from bad decisions. If an outcome isn’t plainly obvious, in business and in life, I always go by gut feeling. It has proved prudent on many occasions – particularly when dealing with people. We’re a proudly English company and our culture values hard work, but 76

I don’t think working very long hours is good for business. A work-leisure balance is vital for one’s physical and mental wellbeing, and often if I have a problem to solve, I get on my bicycle and ride for a while. More often than not it clears the mind, and the problem is solved. Having a vision and a dream are vital but I’ve had to be prepared to be flexible, and to listen to other people and take advice. Everybody has had different experiences, and digesting other people’s views and then picking the parts that feel right helps one make one’s own decisions.


Air Magazine - Nasjet - January'17  

• Scott Eastwood’s fistful of talent • Haute and mighty - designer Stéphane Rolland • Teresa Palmer, on Hollywood and inner harmony • Still...

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