Issue FIFty seVeN FEBRUARY 2016
THE STYLE ISSUE SS16
Luxury • Culture • People • Style • Heritage
Haute Joaillerie, place Vend么me since 1906
DUBAI: The Dubai Mall - Mall of the Emirates ABU DHABI: The Galleria, Al Maryah Island 800-VAN-CLEEF (800-826-25333) ABU DHABI: Etihad Towers +971 2 681 1919 www.vancleefarpels.com
Poetry of Time Exhibition The Dubai Mall February 8 - 22
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Contents February 2016 : ISSUE 57
John Thatcher Group Commercial Director
email@example.com Commercial Director
firstname.lastname@example.org Business Development Manager
Rabih El Turk
Chris Ujma email@example.com
Andy Knappett Features Editor
Annie Darling Designer
Then and Now
With an aura that cemented his fame and legacy, ‘The Lookbook’ James Dean defined a generation
Cindy Crawford may be the Queen from a golden era of the Catwalk, but at 50, she’s as stunning as ever. How?!
Celebrating a century of Condé Nast’s iconic British fashion magazine, that isn’t merely ‘en vogue’. It is Vogue
Into the mind and motives of Erdem: a designer who constructs an intricate world for his creative muse
Strike a Pose
Andrew Thorpe Production Manager
The King of Cool
Who’s That Man?
Contents February 2016 : ISSUE 57
Enter the fantasy-like world of haute couture with Cathleen Naundorf and her New York exhibition
The price tag only tells half the Richard Mille story. They’ve made the most of their time in the spotlight
Private jet-ready Singita Lebombo Lodge in South Africa is a slice of luxury amidst natural wonder
Maximo Riera takes chairdesign to wild levels and London’s Saatchi Gallery celebrates in style
Before achieving style, first you need a concept: these 1970’s Italian supercars rewrote the design rulebook
AIR lusts after beautifully oversized gold leaf statement necklaces and rubyembedded tiger bracelets
British-born, Michelinstarred chef Theo Randall knows a thing or two about rustic Italian food
Art & Design
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Nasjet FEBRUARY 2016 : ISSUE 57
Welcome Onboard FEBRUARY 2016
Greetings and welcome aboard your personalized NASJET flight where you will enjoy relaxing in luxurious comfort and experience the impeccable service for which NASJET is renowned. To meet the increasing demand for private aviation and further enhance the wide range of choices available to our esteemed clients, we have added five more aircraft, bringing the NASJET fleet to a total of 81 fixed wing aircraft. The new additions include a long range Gulfstream GV based in Riyadh, which can fly 12 hours non-stop, and a Gulfstream G450 based in Dubai, which can operate Dubai to London. The other new aircraft are two Embraer Legacy 600 aircraft with one based in Riyadh and the other based in Jeddah, both of which can carry more than 25 bags in the baggage hold, and a Cessna Citation Excel based between Jeddah and Riyadh which is ideal for short flights within three hours. With the addition of these aircraft, the company now has a total of fifteen aircraft available for charter on the NASJET Part 135 Air Operation Certificate with bases varying between Riyadh, Jeddah and Dubai, thus significantly expanding our reach within the Middle East, where since 1999 NASJET has been the first and biggest player in the private aviation market. As another recent activity, NASJET sponsored the Saudi Aviation Club 2015 which was a very successful event. Held for the second year running, the Saudi Aviation Club aims to support and encourage public and private aviation, not only in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia but also in the GCC. In closing, let me reassure you that your safety is our highest priority and at every stage NASJET operates according to the highest international standards implemented by fully qualified aviation specialists and flight crews who are dedicated to ensuring you enjoy a safe and comfortable journey to your chosen destination.
Saad Al Azwari CEO
Contact Details: firstname.lastname@example.org nasjet.com.sa T. +966 (0)11 217 2070 13
Nasjet FEBRUARY 2016 : ISSUE 57
NASJET signs international handling agreement with Jet Aviation At EBACE 2015 in Geneva, NASJET signed a Fixed Base Operation (FBO) global service agreement with Jet Aviation. Under the agreement, Jet Aviation is to provide handling services through its global network of FBOs to the fleet of NASJET aircraft
As the largest and fastest growing private jet operator in the Middle East, NASJET operates a diverse international fleet of more than 70 aircraft. Jet Aviation currently manages 19 premium FBO facilities across Europe, the Middle East, Asia and North America. The two companies signed an agreement at EBACE 2015 in Geneva to have Jet Aviation provide seamless handling services to the NASJET fleet. “We are always looking for strategic partners with whom we can ensure our customers receive personalized service and end-to-end support wherever they may be,” said NASJET CEO Mr. Saad Al-Azwari. “Jet Aviation shares our values and our commitment to excellence and we look forward to a long and successful partnership with them.” “Our goal is to secure the greatest comfort and convenience for our 14
customers by anticipating their needs,” said Monica Beusch, general manager of Jet Aviation Zurich and head of FBO Services in EMEA & Asia. “We look forward to welcoming the NASJET fleet throughout our network and to adding value to their operation by assuring smooth travels on the ground.” Jet Aviation’s fixed base operations provide customers with executive VIP terminals, conference rooms, business services, passenger and crew lounges, snooze rooms, crew showers, weather and flight planning services. The company offers private aircraft handling and full FBO services, including domestic and international flight handling, line maintenance services, refueling, immigration and customs services, passenger and crew transportation, as well as catering, hotel and local transport arrangements.
FOR SALE: 2010 Falcon 7X (SN 82) on exclusive with NASJET/TJB aircraft sales This Falcon 7X has the latest stateof-the-art EASY II cockpit which enables pilots to monitor and control the progression of the flight using Dassault’s highly optimized version of Honeywell’s Primus Epic digital flight deck. This one owner from new aircraft has always flown privately, with its own dedicated and experienced crew. It can fly non-stop from New York to Riyadh; Riyadh to Perth; and Abu Dhabi to Tokyo. It can land at airports with restricted runways, such as London City. The luxury 14seat cabin boasts multiple options including high speed broadband enabling passengers to stay
connected while relaxing at 41,000 feet. It also includes Satellite TV that can be watched throughout the cabin ensuring you never miss your favourite TV show. If you find yourself stressed at the end of a busy day then you can unwind listing to music through the multiple ipod docks while the EMTEQ Quasar full spectrum lighting system relaxes with mood lighting of your choice. The Dassault Falcon 7X is also a very strong competitor in the market place due to its much 15
lower fuel burn (7X burns 380 GPH and Gulfstream’s G450 GPH) and lower maintenance costs (2.62 SAR maintenance hours per flight hour compared to 5.74 SAR for Gulfstream’s G550). The aircraft is also enrolled on Falcon Care and ESP platinum elite engine and APU pay by the hour programs providing peace of mind that all schedule and unscheduled future maintenance is budgeted for. For further information please email email@example.com
Nasjet FEBRUARY 2016 : ISSUE 57
Our Services A host of services await you when flying with NASJET AiRcRAFt sAlEs Buy from the best. As a world-class owner, operator and manager of private aircraft in the middle east since 1999, we offer real-time market pricing analysis, aircraft financing with preferred lenders, aircraft inspections, sales and marketing collateral, and assertive price negotiation.
stress away and give you peace of mind knowing that an established and experienced international operator is able to manage your asset efficiently. NASJET has in excess of 70 aircraft under management. Aircraft owners gain many privileges and financial benefits by being within a NASJETmanaged fleet, including economy of scale on fuel, fleet insurance, training and maintenance.
Benefit from our experience. We have the advantage of a close working relationship with many of the leading business jet manufacturers, including Boeing, Airbus, Gulfstream, Bombardier and Hawker Beechcraft. Over the years, the team has successfully completed over 45 new aircraft deliveries, working with owners to ensure their aircraft is completed to the highest specification and within budget.
Access a fleet of jets – with guaranteed availability. With the NASJET fractional program you buy a share in a jet, ranging from an eighth to a half. You can have all the advantages of aircraft ownership for a fraction of the cost. Your share guarantees you a certain number of flight hours per year in your jet or in a comparable aircraft. Fractional ownership costs are pre-agreed and fixed annually – no end-of-year financial surprises, just seamless international access to a fleet of aircraft. You can also enjoy all the benefits of the fractional program without the long-term commitment, with the 12-month lease program.
Have the experts do all the work. Owning a private jet is certainly a pleasure, but it’s also a major undertaking. NASJET can take that
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the principal’s crew or an internal corporate flight department can access a menu of services provided by the NASJET flight centre.
gRoUnd sERvicEs in 2013 nAsJEt, and their partner ExecuJet, launched ground services for private aircraft flying into the Riyadh private aviation terminal, Saudi Arabia. The collaboration builds on the two partners’ reputation for providing a superior and competitive level of service.
on-dEmAnd cHARtER the best option for ultimate flexibility without the commitment. Chartering with NASJET gives clients access to the largest and most closely-managed fleet in the region. We are focused entirely on safety, service and value. By owning many of our aircraft, we are able to make an immediate decision on aircraft availability. NASJET’s dedicated 24/7, 365 days a year charter department, based in Riyadh, are able to provide instant competitive quotations. The NASJET block charter program has all the benefits of ad-hoc charter but with guaranteed availability, flexible payment terms and billing based on your actual flight times. Visit nasjet.com.sa for more information
CABIN ALTITUDE: 1,172 M* • PASSENGERS: UP TO 19 • SIGNATURE OVAL WINDOWS: 14
ARRIVE in STYLE Style is personal. That’s why the Gulfstream G550™ offers a variety of seating and sleeping options that accommodates up to four living areas and still has room for the largest, fully accessible baggage area in its class. Every aspect of the exquisite interior is designed to maximize the comfort of ultralong-range travel, so you can arrive feeling like you just left home.
ALLAN STANTON | +971 50 653 5258 | firstname.lastname@example.org | GULFSTREAMG550.COM *At the typical initial cruise altitude of 12,497 m
FEBRUARY 2016 : ISSUE 57
© Cathleen Naundorf / Courtesy Edwynn Houk Gallery, New York & Zürich
The fantasy-like world of haute couture is the topic of Cathleen Naundorf’s exhibition at New York’s Edwyn Houk Gallery. Running until February 27, on display is a selection of Naudorf’s beautiful fashion photographs inspired by one-of-a-kind clothing from the likes of Dior and Valentino, and derived from her longstanding mentorship with the legendary Horst P. Horst. Hallmarks of Naundorf’s technique include the painstakinglyconstructed settings, and her own development process, whereby she manipulates a photograph’s inherent textures and colour variations to add atmosphere to her prints. houkgallery.com 19
Critique FEBRUARY 2016 : ISSUE 57
Film The Witch Dir: Robert Eggers The first Puritan settlers in North America leave England to pursue their strict religious doctrine. AT BEST: “A jaw-droppingly bold gift from God, The Witch is a major horror event… haunting doesn’t even begin to describe it.” Time Out AT WORST: “This movie may be too slow and verbose… but its focus on themes over plot is what elevates it.” The Guardian
13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi AIR
Dir: Michael Bay A gripping true story about six elite ex-military operators who defend a U.S. compound in Libya. AT BEST: “War is gritty here, not glamorous. Result: characters, stakes and emotions feel authentic – all the more so thanks to terrific actors.” New York Daily News AT WORST: “Abhorrent politics aside, it’s also a terrible movie. The dialogue is atrocious, the performances rote.” The Guardian
Martyrs Dir: Kevin and Michael Goetz This horror film begins with ten-year-old Lucie fleeing from the isolated farmhouse in which she’s been held prisoner… AT BEST: “The lush cinematography… is impressive, especially during a gorgeous tracking shot of a candle-lit church.” Indie Wire AT WORST: “It all feels terribly monotonous and familiar… it’s literally a rehash of something that’s been done before.” Hollywood Reporter
Mojave Dir: William Monahan A burnt-out film star and violent drifter play a cat-and-mouse game in the Hollywood Hills. AT BEST: “The robust stings in Andrew Hewitt’s score anticipate a thriller than never quite transpires.” Variety AT WORST: “Both over-written… and absurdly under-conceived, this confused brawl of macho egos trips over itself.” A.V. Club
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eter Quilter’s riveting new play, 4000 Days, runs until February 13 at the Park Theatre in London. English impressionist Alistair McGowan stars as Michael, a man who suddenly wakes from a three-week coma and shockingly realises that 4,000 days – a total of eleven years – of his memory have been completely erased. What an appalling situation, or is it? Ironically, Michael’s much happier and feels younger. He’d once been an innovative painter, but abandoned his gift to earn his keep in insurance. Now, thanks to an unexpectedly beneficial blood-clot in the brain, he’s recovered his artistic passion. However, not unlike the majority of medical dramas, there’s one slight snag... He’s no recollection of his partner of ten years. His lover must fight to bring Michael’s memory back, while the protagonist’s proprietorial mother, Carol, fights to keep him from Michael’s memory completely. The Telegraph’s Dominic Cavendish writes that McGowan “exerts a strange, magnetic appeal. “The emotional intensity… is felt on ether side of him, in a protracted, psychological tug of war.” Fiona Mountford of the Evening Standard said: “Despite a somewhat comatose first half, this play shares some brutal truth-telling about how we too often behave in long-term relationships.” She further explained: “The second half of Matt Aston’s production flares into life, in large part thanks to a rich performance from Daniel Weyman as Paul, a character who morphs and reflects — and regrets.” Meanwhile, the enduring Canadian circus, Cirque du Soleil, is on at The Royal Albert Hall until March 6. “Cirque du Soleil arrives in London every January to remind us that we’ve eaten far too many mince pies and it’s time to get back to the gym,” an article in the Evening Standard jokes. The renowned performance tends to divide audiences into lovers and haters. Some adore the
jaw-dropping displays of acrobatic ingenuity, whereas others deplore the excessively glamorous spectacle. Claire Allfree of The Telegraph commented: “This latest new show, marking the company’s 20th year at the Royal Albert Hall, is neither big on wow factor nor as polished and faceless as some of their previous productions. It’s likely to leave neither camp particularly satisfied with the end result. “Amaluna is loosely based on The Tempest, although in truth Shakespeare’s last play is little more than a springboard for the company to indulge their penchant for kitsch exotica.” She summarises that the circus is “experiencing an identity crisis” and that the performance is, “far from bad, but it’s also far from amazing.” The Stage’s Neil Norman agrees with Allfree’s assessment, and said: “The Tempest is strong on spectacle 22
and individual acts but ultimately underwhelming.” However, playwright Ira Levin’s Deathtrap is running until February 20 at Sierra Madre Playhouse in Los Angeles. The production became the longest-running thriller in Broadway history. The central character, Sidney’s a writer of thrillers who had one great hit, followed by a series of substandard stories. To make things worse, he’s just been sent a near-perfect murder mystery by a former student of his, which bears a startling resemblance to the play we’re watching. The Stage Raw’s review was mostly positive, and said: “Director Christian Lebano has assembled a top-notch cast and put together an impeccable production... He emphasises the melodrama, making the murders so over-the-top that they’re funny rather than gruesome.”
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arking 60 years since surrealist Joan Miró’s studio was founded in Majorca in 1956, St James’ Mayoral gallery has recreated Miró’s atelier in an immersive exhibition. 25 paintings and drawings by the artist, in addition to a variety of archive material, have been brought together to reproduce the surrealist’s quirky workspace. Complete with furniture, painting materials and household items, the duplicate runs until February 12, offering visitors an intimate insight into the everyday working life of this renown avantgarde painter. “At the back of the gallery there’s a reproduction of a stone wall that gave the modernist studio a rustic touch,” writes Jonathan Jones of The Guardian. “Miró’s collections of seashells, photos, newspaper clippings and a Punch-like puppet are spread around the place to suggest – along with pencils and, of course, brushes – the creative, poetic, fantastical atmosphere in which Miró worked in his final decades.” The Catalan architect Josep Lluís Sert designed Miró’s grand studio – a large, private space where he happily worked until his death in 1983, aged 90-years-old. Miró was unusual in that he lived way beyond the age of surrealism. He even developed his own revolutionary way of painting; his own language of enigmatic signs and geometric shapes. Jones describes Miró as a “hero of freedom”, but acknowledged: “You can’t really claim his final works are as cutting edge as this exhibition wants them to be. Miró’s Studio is magical, but a bit too cosy. Maybe great art needs to be hungry.” Ben Luke of the Evening Standard gave a similar opinion, commenting: “They are not masterpieces but they are significant in that they capture the energy of the artist’s activity and the burst of creativity that followed the studio’s completion”. He concluded: “Flawed though it is in places, there’s much to learn here.” Meanwhile at Calvert 22, a new
Left: Soviet poster from 1920 featured in Red Africa, part of the Wayland Rudd Archive. Courtesy of Yevgeniy Fiks Right: French poster featured in Les Actrices (1900 - 1918). Courtesy of Fondation Jérôme Pathé-Seydoux
exhibition titled Things Fall Apart examines the relationship between Africans and the Soviet Union. As part of the new seasonal programme, Red Africa, Things Fall Apart runs from February 4 to April 3, 2016. An almost forgotten history is explored through 1930s posters, many of which are designed to entice Africans and African-Americans to communism. Steve Rose of The Guardian describes the exhibition as “fascinating,” and wondered: “Could it be that these posters – and the state-enforced anti-racism behind them – papered over the cracks of Russia’s underlying race problems? Or could it be that racism has risen anew as a consequence of all individualist post-Soviet landscape? Maybe it’s capitalism’s fault after all.” Rose explains that the exhibition tells the story of Wayland Rudd: “An African-American actor who, frustrated by the racism of the US entertainment industry, emigrated to Moscow in 1932.” He likens Rudd’s grievance to modern-day celebrities, such as Will Smith and Tyrese Gibson, who are frustrated by this year’s allwhite Oscar nominations. “Workers from all countries and oppressed colonies raise the 24
banner of Lenin!” extol the slogans. During the twentieth century, Soviet propagandists manipulated the continued presence of European colonial powers in postwar Africa, providing military and governmental support, as well as inviting African students to study at Moscow’s Patrice Lumumba University. Elsewhere, in conjuction with the ongoing Femmes Force Irrésistible screening, Fondation Jérôme PathéSeydoux has organised a popular Parisian exhibit that celebrates pioneering actresses in the early twentieth century. Les Actrices (1900 - 1918) runs until February 20, and features fifteen or so original posters from its in-house collection. Visitors see how actresses such as Mistinguett and Jane Renouardt were glorified. “With their sharp contours and bold features, such works are firmly anchored in the emerging trends of the time (art nouveau, art deco), representing profiles of the stars in faded pastel blues and numerous shades of ochre,” writes Time Out’s Céline Astorg. “The radiant elegance of such glamorous personages is brought to life through stark chiaroscuro and a meticulous attention to detail.”
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he setting has a postapocalyptic feel, with savaged machinery, orphaned urchins squatting in shacks built on a bridge, and generators that run on wood scraps, but it also has the timeless provinciality of a village in a fairy tale… [It’s] a deceptively simple story whose plot could be taken as a symbolic representation of an aspect of humanity, as big as an entire society and as small as a single soul”. So writes Kirkus about This Census-Taker, the latest novel by self-proclaimed “weird fiction” writer China Miéville. Tor.com delves further; “[It] packs a lot of challenging ideas into a slim story…There is a hypnotic, nightmarish feel to the loose events contained herein, which is as appropriate as it is harrowing as we watch the narrator’s traumatic story unfold.” Of this tale of isolation and identity, the reviewer at Slate felt an affinity with the writer, if not with the literature as a body of work itself. “For all my frustration with this opaque novel, I came to its end understanding that Miéville’s obscurantism serves one of his career-spanning themes: one that
is more evident here than in many of his more crowd-pleasing books. A political scientist by training, [he] imbues his stories with a deep distaste for state-sponsored power”. To a more real realm: Dominic Ziegler takes his reader on a mesmerising trip down the majestic river Amur, which divides Russia and China, in his adventure epic Black Dragon River. “As he travels, Ziegler stirs up an enthralling mix of purple prose travelogue, history and anthropology. It is often not pretty, the depopulated villages and depressed urban landscapes as grim... But the overwhelming impression is of towns which have spent centuries hanging on to the frosty soil by their fingernails,” writes Richard Spencer of The Telegraph. This beautiful rendition, of the culture and geography of a forgotten world, caused Jean Zimmerman at NPR Books to urge that, “we might wish to follow in his footsteps before the land he describes mutates beyond recognition… In this over-examined world, it’s nice to know there are outer reaches that we can discover afresh. ‘As the long reel of the river’s 26
story turns,’ [he] writes, ‘many peoples flicker in and out of view as they move along the Amur’s banks or float upon its waters.’ The Amur, in other words, means life.” Elizabeth McKenzie’s work of fiction The Portable Veblen is an electric tale of an abstract brand of love. “Once, love stories led up to a ring, [this book] begins with one: ‘a diamond so large it would be a pill to avoid for those who easily gag’. The metaphor speaks for itself. Veblen Amundsen-Hovda, who has just been proposed to by her boyfriend, has mixed feelings about marriage,” writes The Financial Times. They believe, though, that the writer could benefit from more sure-footedness; “Moments of tenderness — and there are plenty — lift the novel and offset its hyperactive eccentricity, the sense of a writer trying to fill her book with every possible notion and oddity.” Publishers Weekly was enamoured with her engaging protagonist. “McKenzie writes with sure-handed perception, and her skillful characterization means that despite Veblen’s quirks... she’s one of the best characters of the year.”
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Art & Design FEBRUARY 2016 : ISSUE 57
Do Not Feed The Chairs The seats so intriguing, that Mรกximo Riera deserves a standing ovation
WORDS : CHRIS UJMA
t started with a charcoal-hued Octopus (his personal favourite). Then came a procession that Noah himself would have been proud of aboard the Ark: the 115kg mighty Rhino; a morphometrically accurate, 125kg Asian elephant; a sectionlessdesigned Hippopotamus; a baroquestyle Toad… Alas, being exclusive, limited-edition pieces, they are unlikely to ‘go two-by-two’. Yet in an aesthetic sense these dynamic chairs and sofas from the Animal Collection stand alone, each a beautiful tribute to the respective mammal, reptile or insect. “By exposing people to these creatures in a realistic fashion, we increase our familiarity with them, thus developing our empathy and connection with the animal kingdom,” Máximo Riera says of his design ideology. In the wild, these are show-stopping beasts that ensure the best of evolution is on parade. Put that same towering Blue Whale’s tail or long-tusked Walrus as the focal point of your living space – as Maximo urges with his captivating high-back chair and Chaise Longue – and you’ve achieved interior-design dynamite. “Considering the basic functionality of the chair, I wanted to bring it to life, and create a stronger link between the spectator, the piece and the surrounding space,” the Spanish painter, sculptor and artist reveals on his website. From a design perspective, his work pulsates with clear influences from abstract expressionism and the Pop Art movement. But what exactly is under the skin of these extraordinary, innovative creations? High-density polyurethane gives a sturdy base as solid as wood, while the composition is reinforced with an internal metallic frame. A differing texture to the ‘skin’ is achieved with fine leather finishing on the seat. Explains the visionary chairman, “every piece is manufactured to order, taking approximately 9 weeks to produce. Each needs an average of 190 hours of machinery and 170 hours of workmanship where it is assembled, sanded and painted by hand – the elements that make them unique.” While his original ‘Animal’ pieces, released back in 2011, were Henry Ford-esque ‘any colour you like, so long as it’s black’, the new collection sees the deployment of true-to-nature tones,
In the wild, these are show-stopping beasts that ensure the best of evolution is on parade evoking an added layer of realism. “This collection gives us an option of admiring what nature is capable of; this is the main reason why from the beginning I wanted to be faithful to the animal’s physique. This series is an homage to these animals and the whole animal kingdom which inhabits our planet, and is an attempt to reflect and capture the beauty of nature in each living thing.” They are conversation pieces, without doubt. But also conservation pieces, too; “I combine both of my biggest joys: nature and art, and I normally channel this focus to endangered species for my creations. I want to point out how special these animals are. I hope we all realise this before it’s too late.” Unearth Riera’s collections in both Dubai and KSA at Cities, the luxury home-design product boutique. Visit zoom-cities.com 30
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Who Runs The World? Over the centuries, female artists have sought to better the world through their efforts to incite change toward gender equality
ver thirty years ago, the Guerilla Girls – an anonymous collective of activists who use humour to expose gender inequality in the art world – surveyed the most influential galleries in Britain and found that most exhibited little to no work by women. The world’s come a long way since then, from a time when a woman’s career was largely limited to typing or teaching. Men have been encouraged to get involved and help enact this change, however women continue to have fewer opportunities for economic participation. Globally, no country has fully attained gender equality, so when the term ‘feminist’ comes up in 2016, is it really possibly to shrug dismissively? American artist Julia Wachtel doesn’t think so, and neither does the Saatchi Gallery, which opened its first all-female exhibition, Champagne Life, on January 13, to mark its 30th anniversary. The title has been taken from one of Wachtel’s works on display, which is inspired from a song by R&B singer Ne-Yo, who sings about a luxury life of high aspirations and celebrity.
“In Ne-Yo’s song and the music industry generally, champagne is celebrated as a symbol of success,” explains Wachtel. “This interests me because I’m fascinated by the mass media and how perceived image, particularly on the Internet, has an impact on society, psychologically.” She adds: “Although this item is widely considered as extravagant, you can obtain it relatively cheaply. You don’t have to be a millionaire to enjoy such luxuries. Despite this, it continues to be associated with success and, consequently, social validation.” The East London chapter of the Fawcett Group, which campaigns for gender equality, found that out of 134 commercial galleries in London, representing 3,163 artists, only 31% of these were women. Furthermore, nearly a third of galleries had no solo shows of female artists at all. Champagne Life celebrates the work of female artists and facilitates reflection on what it means to be a woman in society today. The Saatchi Gallery is renown for its commitment to supporting the artwork of women, 32
Image courtesy of the Saatchi Gallery, (c) Stephen White, 2015
WORDS : ANNIE DARLING
having previously propelled niche artists such as Tracey Emin and Paula Rego into the spotlight, and the mainstream. Wachtel agrees that the gallery has “proved itself to be extremely important in promoting the work of female artists.” Adding that she’s “very happy to be associated with such an inspirational exhibition.” Despite its name, Champagne Life challenges the perception that successful artists live a life of prestige and affluence. Its international group of 14 female artists thrive in the irony of the exhibition’s title, which contradicts the long and often-lonely life spent working in the studio. “The Saatchi Gallery has been very clever in the way they’ve incorporated the title of my artwork,” Wachtel smiles. “On the one hand, this exhibition celebrates the 30th anniversary and using the word ‘champagne’ in the title draws on our general perception of glamour and success. However, they’re also using it ironically because the exhibition reflects the hardships that women face worldwide, in addition to the alienation they endure from society’s male-dominant culture.” Champagne Life doesn’t claim to represent an untapped group collective of artistic practice; nor does it presume to state that there is such a thing. Instead, the exhibition hopes to challenge issues of the glass ceiling that applies to the art world as much as to the world at large. Of the top 50 contemporary auction lots by living artists sold at Christie’s and Sotheby’s in China, New York and London last year, only four were by women – a mere 8%. The highest price paid at auction for work by a living female artist is $7.1m, which was for a Yayoi Kusama painting. In comparison, the highest male equivalent is $58.4m, for a ‘balloon animal’ sculpture by American artist Jeff Koons. “Every society and culture suffers from gender inequality,” argues Wachtel. “This is an indisputable fact. The art world is no different; it’s just a smaller subset of the greater world. Regardless of their wealth, background and profession, all women suffer from the same issues relating to disparity between the sexes.” Champagne Life runs at London’s Saatchi Gallery until March 6 33
Jewellery FEBRUARY 2016 : ISSUE 57
American Heritage AIR
Elizabeth Taylor adored his opulence, Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis compared him to Cellini, and the Duchess of Windsor said he was today’s Fabergé. David Webb is the go-to jewellers for society swans and Hollywood stars WORDS : ANNIE DARLING
ew York City’s diamond district is an enigmatic territory of undisclosed laws, covert spending and real-estate chicanery. The frontier of unassuming traders that make up this city’s precinct has long been the subject of seductive stories about underground passageways and unassailable workshops. Reinforced steel vaults brimming with precious gemstones, mother-of-pearl wristwatches and priceless family heirlooms are fortuitously discussed without confirmation. It’s a separate world whose impenetrable surface sets it noticeably apart from the rest of the city. Almost 80% of the world’s diamonds are sold in New York and the district’s irresistible intrigue, in addition to hushed gossip about million-dollar deals, have made it an exclusive privilege of the rich.
“David Webb first opened for business in 1948, in a small walk-up with just a few employees around the corner from New York’s diamond district,” co-owner Mark Emanuel tells AIR. “By 1950, when David was just 25-years-old, he reached his first fashion summit: the cover of Vogue magazine.” To have his elegant earrings featured on Vogue’s cover, merely two years after starting his own company, was an astounding coup. Webb’s alluring jewellery was forthright, fresh, stylish, and diverse. He was particularly inspired by classic motifs such as fleur-de-lis and Indian paisley, which he endlessly adapted with the use of oversized pearls, gold chains and rock crystal cuffs. “Even in those early days,” muses Emanuel, “David was the creative visionary behind every piece of 34
magnificent jewellery made in his quaint workshop. “The thousands of sketches and handcoloured renderings he left behind remain the foundation of the company, and continue to direct the efforts of the David Webb craftsmen and women.” After his remarkable success in the 1950s, Webb continued to gain popularity during the cultural revolution of the ‘60s and ‘70s. It was during this period that he solidified himself as a beacon among American heritage jewellery brands. “Our exquisite jewellery is handmade and the vision of one man: David Webb,” reveals Emanuel. “David’s original design archive is the lifeblood of our company today. All designs in production now stem from ideas and renderings realized or conceived within the period of 1948 to 1975. With that
being said, it was always in David’s nature to adjust designs according to customer’s whims or current zeitgeist, so we too often take liberties and experiment with different scales, stones, colors, and materials all in the name of David’s inherent creativity.” Considerable fluctuation exists in the number of meticulous man-hours required for each individual piece. Similarly, the materials and gemstones
An extraordinary selection of carved emerald, yellow sapphires, opals and abalone shell used are carefully chosen and based on the desires of each customer, resulting in time disparities. David Webb’s notorious for its history of catering to a client’s specific request when it comes to design accommodations, and Emanuel admits that particularly notable pieces have “been born from collaborating with private clients”. Since purchasing David Webb with connoisseur Robert Sadian in June 2010, Emanuel’s fought to preserve Webb’s legacy and importance as an iconic American jewellers. He explains that Webb’s distinctive fine jewellery has “always looked its best on the stylishly dressed”, including clients Elizabeth Taylor, Barbra Streisand, Helen Mirren and Beyoncé Knowles. In 2013, Emanuel and Sadian were instrumental in the publication of a major monograph on the company to coincide with its 65-year anniversary. Commenting on the book, Emanuel said: “The David Webb customer is typically a confident and self-assured woman. During the creation of David Webb: The Quintessential American Jeweller, we interviewed a great customer who adored the brand. She said: ‘A woman who wears David Webb jewellery must have courage.’” Webb’s design voice is a melting pot of influences, from the South of his boyhood in North Carolina to his explorations of faraway lands and ancient cultures. He excelled in his use of declarative yellow gold, often insisting “the more barbaric the better”. At the height of his career, he operated
two workshops with 200 master jewellers and 50 setters, who’d embrace his spectacular art deco and heraldic form of enamel jewellery. “Here at David Webb, we’re known best for our animal bracelets, which are always more assertive than cute,” Emanuel explains. “David Webb studied art and owned books on a wide range of topics, including children’s books on how to draw animals. He also collected traditional Chinese objects and Regency furniture.” Emanuel claims that Webb’s “subliminal motto”, ‘always modern’, gives the company “continual fashion currency”. Today, working from the company’s vast archives of over 40,000 original drawings, sketches and production records, Emanuel is spearheading new initiatives, including the re-launch of the iconic Tool Chest Collection. Created for both men and women in 1971, David Webb adapted the common nail as his creative canvas, turning it into a variety of 18K gold bracelets and rings. The spring collection, which features
an extraordinary selection of carved emerald, yellow sapphires, opals and abalone shell will be on display at the renowned Doha Jewellery and Watch Expo in Qatar, 22-27 February. Commenting on the event, Emanuel said: “The Doha Jewellery and Watch Expo is a wonderful platform for David Webb to share our astonishing jewellery with UAE customers who appreciate impeccable design, high luxury, and assertive personal style. It has consistently been a wonderful source for us to expand our brand globally and to meet clients who grasp the value of a singular design voice.” Big, bold and beautiful. Webb always understood that women want oneof-a-kind pieces in bold shapes and exuberant colour. His signature animal bracelets and rich jewellery, all set in the warmth of his favourite yellow gold, has attracted a vast and impressive clientele over the decades. David Webb continues to tempt women and men throughout the world and there’s no doubt that the spectacularly opulent spring collection will to do likewise.
Timepieces FEBRUARY 2015 : ISSUE 57
Haute Horlogerie Goes Big at SIHH TaRIq MaLIk
ast month’s Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie (SIHH) in Geneva, was bigger than usual, for more than one reason. Traditionally, brands that form part of the Richemont Group take centre stage at the event. Cartier, Piaget, Vacheron Constantin, Jaeger-LeCoultre, IWC Schaffhausen, Panerai and Montblanc are all on the elite list. Events like this one tend to bring out the best that each manufacturer has to offer – and duly did so – but this year there were nine new wildcards attending, the so-called ‘Independent’ labels. The ‘Carré des Horlogers’ (Watchmaker’s square) was a brand new and welcome addition to the event, with the avantgarde new brands shaking things up. Lesser-known names like De Bethune and Urwerk displayed their unique, fresh and modern styles of watchmaking alongside the more traditionally-styled timepieces from brands like Cartier. Many of these independent brands were launched by great watchmakers from major brands that went in their own direction. But the number of watchmakers at the event was not the only thing that proved SIHH is getting bolder with every iteration. There was one more ‘big’ surprise. For me, a particular highlight of this year’s event has to be the latest offering from historic Swiss watchmakers IWC Schaffhausen.
Vacheron Constantin Overseas Ultra-Thin Perpetual Calendar
IWC Big Pilot’s Heritage Watch
It’s a throwback to the 1930’s and 40’s when IWC made a particular style of wristwatch for the German Luftwaffe pilots during the war years. The oversized design was intended to provide optimal visibility during inflight manoeuvres. The dials are giant – in fact the IWC ‘Big Pilot’s Heritage Watch 55’ measures in at just that – 55mm: ensuring it is the largest watch dial IWC has ever created. It’s a unique piece in many ways, and not the type of thing you can wear everywhere, or with just any outfit. The goal with this design is clearly not comfort. This is for the collector wanting something special. The design is very true to the inspiration for these watches – the original ‘B-Uhr’ Navigation watches for the German airforce during war times. Even the strap is capable of fitting over a jump-suit, just like the orginal, and the leather strap design, with its double bow and clasp clip, looks very authentic. The IWC caliber 98300 movement which powers the watch has many of the features of the original 1930s models. The large black dial with very clear beige markings, coated with Super-Luminova for night visibility, give it a distinctively antique feel. Only 100 were made, and they’re priced just under $15,000. Most of the brands, though, stuck with more traditional dial sizes and designs. Vacheron, for example, had a particularly eye-catching range on display. With its Overseas Perpetual Calendar, no need for timeadjustment until the year 2100, and ultra-thinness, while their Métiers d’art Fabuleux Ornements collection features immaculate artwork and is inspired by Ottoman architecture, Chinese embroidery, Indian manuscript, and French lace. With the delicate dimensions of 37mm by 8mm, these are a little easier to wear, on a day to day basis! audemars Piguet, meanwhile, took SIHH as the chance to unveil a modern, golden homage to their avant garde, octagon-bezelled icon, the 1972 Royal Oak. With SIHH having been bigger, better, and more interesting than ever before, I’m excited to see how this year turns out for Haute Horlogerie. Discover Tariq’s co-founded vintage boutique at momentum-dubai.com
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Chronograph
Parmigiani Fleurier Kalpa Tourbillon Cyclone
Timepieces FEBRUARY 2016 : ISSUE 57
Richard, The Lionheart Triple-decker cases, curved surfaces and robust movements; Richard Mille watches are all-conquering WORDS : CHRIS UJMA
tasteful designs, headline-snatching million dollar pricetags, and incredible technical prowess. It is widespread appreciation of which they are proud. “Our clients have an intense fascination with watchmaking that accepts no compromise and fits in with 21st century expectations of mechanical design and technology. When Richard introduced his first watch in 2001, he didn’t want to be constrained by cost limitations.” Harrison believes they command the spotlight because, “people want to find their own identity within the realm of luxury. Richard Mille creates limited editions that are different, keeping a clear and coherent identity to avoid losing their essence. Our technical and jewellery pieces stand out from the crowd, and our approach is to create cutting-edge timepieces, which is
rise for the three kings of Richard Mille’s business philosophy: to achieve ‘the best in technical innovation, the best of artistry and architecture, and the best of the heritage and culture of fine watchmaking with hand finishing.’ Peter Harrison, CEO of Richard Mille for Europe, the Middle East and Africa, elaborates. “The client who comes to our boutique appreciates us as a company that pushes engineering and design boundaries. They are daring and forward-looking. They appreciate each new direction in watchmaking we take. The Richard Mille wearer possesses a certain mindset which is the appreciation and enjoyment of sophistication.” Firmly in the consciousness of aficionados and collectors alike, the brand gained traction through flamboyant yet 40
Motoring FEBRUARY 2016 : ISSUE 57
It’s traditional watchmaking with futuristic materials and high-end technology
something we’ve certainly stayed true to from day one.” Each ‘RM’ has dared to push the boundaries of wrist adornment. In the (imagined) Richard Mille Hall of Fame you’ll discover emblematic treasures like the pioneering RM 001 Tourbillon, 2014’s impact-resistant RM 35-01 Rafael Nadal, an RM 039 Tourbillon Aviation E6-B Flyback Chronograph (with no fewer than 1,000 moving parts), and many more, like aesthetic watches that feature a Panda, the defiant Phoenix, a haunting Red Skull… even a collaboration with Boucheron containing pieces of a Jupiter/Mars belt meteorite. These are not creations to be consigned to the safety box as guarded works of art, though. “The watches have three-dimensional design, form and elegance, despite in essence being functional items to show the time, developed for every day wear in most cases and above all, very comfortable,“ the regional CEO enthuses. Since the company burst onto the luxury scene post-Millennium, the watchmaker’s ascendency has been nothing short of meteoric. Peter believes they have a formidable foundation for the success. “As the founder, Richard’s F1 and aerospace knowledge was our backbone, and this has been constant inspiration: to create ‘extreme’ timepieces that combine the best of traditional watchmaking with futuristic materials and highend technology. A huge amount of
research and development takes place, as the core of what we create is nontraditional design; bold architecture with innovative materials. Using new materials such as light and ultradurable NTPT carbon, ‘armoured’ titanium carbide and carbon nanofiber baseplates, we’ve changed the perception of many materials, allowing them the recognition they deserve.” ‘Recognition’ is a powerful word to use around this brand. It is something they have achieved with defiance, not by slotting into the industry but rather carving out their own slab of it. Their wealth of eye-catchers have been fantastically engineered to appeal to both sexes, and to perform in situations from the red carpet to the tennis court, the polo field, and beyond. “We collaborate with experts in their particular discipline, and the personal aspect is very important to us in nurturing relationships. In our sporting partnerships especially, it is important to learn from the watches being used in real life situations, subjected to factors like stress, abuse, and heat, to analyse structural details and the impacts on the mechanism – which lead to future developments. Our partnerships continue to inspire the creative process of the brand.” They’re dubbed ‘racing machines on the wrist’ for a reason, with each iteration performing in a way that is all but guaranteed to quicken the pulse of the avid horologist. 42
Previous Pages: The beautiful RM 63-02 This Page: The inner workings of the RM67-01 43
WORDS : ANNIE DARLING
In a tragically short Hollywood career, James Dean established the phenomenon that is tortured teenage angst. In honour of the late actor’s birthday on February 8, AIR explores how Dean’s style repertoire propelled him to a new stratosphere of fame 44
f a man can bridge the gap between life and death, I mean... if he can live on after he’s dead, then maybe he was a great man.” James Dean has, poignantly, proved the truth of his own words. 60 years after his death, he lives on as an eternal teenage heartthrob. He’s the epitome of cool: the embodiment of teen angst in a series of emblematic ensembles, which have repeatedly acted as blueprints for lookbooks. For some, life and legacy continues long after death. In Dean’s case, it seems that his career only took off after the unprecedented car accident that tragically claimed his short life. Through the decades the what-mighthave-been mystery he left behind has grown greater than his celebrity ever could have. On 30 September 1955, Dean crashed his Porsche Spyder en route to a road race in Salinas, California, in which he was scheduled to compete. The driver of the other car, 23-year-old California Polytechnic State University student Donald Turnupseed, was shaken but, miraculously, uninjured. Dean’s passenger, German Porsche mechanic Rolf Wütherich was violently thrown from the wreckage. He was seriously injured but survived. At just 24-years-old, Dean’s premature death came months after
his first bout of Hollywood success. His time in the limelight was brief and intense. Only one of his films, East of Eden, had been released before the car accident; Rebel Without a Cause and Giant opened shortly afterward. His enduring influence and popularity morosely emerged in the wreck’s aftermath. He was “barely a celebrity” at the time of the accident, according to a 1956 story in TIME, which went on to explain he’d gained more acclaim posthumously than most living actors. For fashion historians and enthusiasts, Dean is a key figure: an icon whose clothes epitomised the first decade in which young people’s style was distinguished from their parents’. In the words of actor Martin Landau,
He was ‘barely a celebrity’ at the time of the accident a close friend and contemporary of Dean’s: “Jimmy represented something that was happening in the States after the Second World War. Until that moment in time, grown-ups – adults – set the styles for clothing, set the styles for music, set the styles for everything that was going on.” There’s no doubt Dean was the right star, in the right role, at the right time. 46
All images shown ÂŠ Dennis Stock/Magnum Photos
After the severity of the economic depression and difficulties surrounding the Second World War, many American adults craved stability and structure. The affluent middle-class moved into new suburban developments in an effort to recapture a time of prosperity and innocence. After decades of turmoil, the ‘50s are wistfully remembered as trouble-free and optimistic. Whereas in reality, these attitudes brush off the relentless fear of communism, the atomic bomb and polio. Is the American Dream really what it seems? Nobody was more suspicious than the country’s young adults. During an era immersed in Hollywood glamour, Dean championed wardrobe classics – the white T-shirt and worn denims, primarily Levis and Lee 101 Riders. His rough-andready approach to fashion resulted in casual, ready-to-wear trends that left an indelible impression on the decade. His rebellious look marked a perpetual departure from predominantly preppy and buttoned-up mid-century fashion. He popularised the vest and resurrected the collarless dinner jacket, both of which he wore with heavy work boots and an air of contempt. Having grown up on his family’s farm in the pie-eating, corn-stubbled outback of Indiana, Dean never
He was a man of few words, a myth... the King of Cool abandoned his country-style and cowboy roots. His perfect quiff and celebrated red blouson jacket from Rebel Without a Cause became one of his most influential looks. Bob Dylan reportedly became obsessed with the film and even bought a similar lightweight jacket to match Dean’s. “James Dean was the embodiment of cool at the time, with his slicked back hair and leather jackets,” asserts fashion designer Kristina Fidelskaya. “It was amazing how he was able to convey different and conflicting emotions through his style and fashion – and that translated perfectly onscreen, too. James Dean was edgy but accessible, vulnerable yet masculine. “He represented the decade’s youth and they could easily relate to him.
If you ask me, he really was a rebel without a cause.” Dean quickly became a cultural figure of social estrangement. His characters openly defied their parents and questioned American values. An ever-present cigarette, wounded stare and bad boy reputation made him a cult hero for many future generations. “In my opinion, Dean’s look hasn’t necessarily evolved over time. Instead, I’d say it’s been maintained. It’s stayed relevant and true to its simplicity,” explains Fidelskaya. Dean’s off-duty photographs have also become famous fashion templates. Shots of him in beaten leather jackets, as well as Breton sweaters, are now synonymous with classic American style. A series of moody, black and white, photos taken by Magnum photographer Dennis Stock depict an insecure star, collar turned up, low on self-confidence, walking through a freezing Times Square. The striking images have fuelled menswear moodboards for years. “These photographs of James Dean perfectly captured his essence through the use of raw and pure photography, mostly in black and white. Of course, this was before the use of image altering techniques and technology. They kept it simple, which is how James Dean was. He was raw, fresh and real. 51
“Dean’s look has influenced modernday fashion in its simplicity,” says Fidelskaya. “Channeling masculinity with just a pair of jeans and a leather jacket showed men that they could easily look fashionable with what they already had available in their closet. His minimalist, but impactful, look has influenced a lot of renowned fashion brands.” Fidelskaya argues that photographs of Dean, especially the ones taken for Life Magazine by Stock, are fascinating because they show a young man struggling to find himself, rather than the icon Dean has since become. “Fashion photography pushes the viewer, as well as the photographer, to be daring and to challenge what is commonly accepted, in pursuit of something aesthetically beautiful.” James Dean was a man of few words, a myth before he was even known as an actor: the King of Cool. There are few things more romantic than a premature death: the purity of early achievement, all that potential unrealised, with none of the indignities and disappointments that come with age. His effortless style remains strong and instantly recognizable. However, despite this enduring legacy, his untimely death ultimately means that he, and we, will never find out whether he was more than just a myth.
TALE OF THE CENTURY
100 years ago the first edition of British Vogue was published. In the century that has passed, the magazine has printed all of fashion’s most memorable images, shot by photography’s biggest names. The pick of these iconic images are on display at London’s National Portrait Gallery from this month, shown together for the very first time. Annie Darling meets the exhibitor’s curator Robin Muir
This Page: Vogue 1972, model holding cigarette
n 1927, 19-year-old art student Lee Miller was nearly killed when she stepped into oncoming traffic in Manhattan. The man who saved her was none other than media mogul Condé Montrose Nast, the founder of Vogue. She – quite literally – fell into his arms amid shrieking cabbies, blaring horns and gawking bystanders. Nast was struck by her delectable blue eyes, honey rose lips and lithe figure. Enthralled by Miller’s elegance, he launched the blonde-bobbed beauty as a Vogue cover girl and she quickly became one of New York’s top models. Miller’s life was as remarkable as her photographs, regardless of whether she was behind or in front of the camera. The high-fashion model turned seminal war shutterbug, consequently becoming the only female combat photojournalist in Europe during the Second World War. She waded through Buchenwald and Dachau, photographing scenes of desperation and destruction: glassyeyed Holocaust victims; severely beaten S.S. officers. Perhaps most famously, LIFE photographer David E. Scherman snapped a portrait of Miller sitting in Adolf Hitler’s bathtub at his Munich apartment, on the same day the Führer committed suicide: April 30, 1945. All these images, and more, were sent to British Vogue, which has published some of the most powerful and horrific photographs from the war. “This is all reported in what’s essentially a female fashion magazine,” reminds Robin Muir, contributing editor to British Vogue. “The Second World War takes the magazine into a dimension that nobody ever thought possible.” To mark the centenary year of British Vogue in 2016, a major exhibition opens this month at London’s National Gallery, at which visitors will be able to admire 280 prints from the magazine’s vast archive. Curated by Muir, the exhibition will explore, decade-by-decade, Vogue’s unfaltering position at the forefront of fashion. “Without question, the most fascinating decade for me is between the years 1939 and 1949,” he enthusiastically reveals. “The Second World War was the most extraordinary time for British Vogue. “It’s an incredible decade. In the ‘40s you see the emergence of Christian
Dior and his iconic New Look. Despite limitations imposed by rationing, fashion really takes off again. A hell of a lot happens in those ten years.” American Vogue was first published in 1892, 17 years before Condé Nast Publications acquired the magazine. In 1916, when the First World War made transatlantic shipments impossible, British Vogue was born. It was an immediate success, but heavily influenced by its American parent. “By the time of the Second World War, that’s stopped completely,” says Muir. “British Vogue comes into its own.” The glossy fashion magazine was allowed to continue publishing despite extreme paper shortages. Government ministers recognised its usefulness as a conduit for delivering key messages about domesticity and consumerism to Britain’s well-heeled women. There were also genuine fears among the political elite that axing the publication would’ve had a devastating effect on public morale. “It’s most extraordinary what British Vogue managed to do within the constraints of wartime.” Although conceived as a high society style guide for sophisticated women of taste, Muir believes Vogue’s “never just been a fashion magazine”, but rather
In 1916... British Vogue was born. It was an immediate success a “living and breathing” work of art. Well-researched editorials on culture and politics, in addition to a remarkable range of photography, were introduced early on. “British Vogue’s promoted all kinds of figures throughout the years from politics, the arts and literature,” recalls Muir. “It’s been at the forefront of photography and has nurtured the great names of world cultural history.” In the early twenty-first century, says Muir, over 200 articles relating to the Bloomsbury Group – including five essays by prolific feminist and novelist Virginia Woolf – were published in British Vogue. He explained: “The magazine has an incredible history, culturally as well as intellectually.” Over the past five years, Muir’s pored over 1,500 issues of Vogue, awash with exquisite vintage prints 54
Previous Page: Anne Gunning in Jaipur by Norman Parkinson, 1956 © Norman Parkinson Ltd This Page: David Hockney, Peter Schlesinger and Maudie James by Cecil Beaton, 1968 ©The Condé Nast Publications Ltd
and groundbreaking photographs. He believes that the exhibition’s selected few have “real historical relevance” and are extremely varied, specifically in regard to size, due to the exclusivity of each individual portrait. “Alexandra Shulman [editor-in-chief to British Vogue] and I didn’t want to line the gallery with an endless stream of blackframed prints,” explains Muir. “We wanted to find the original copies that were initially used.” The exhibition includes work by many leading twenty-first century photographers, including Cecil Beaton, Irving Penn and Snowdon. More recent work by celebrated names such as David Bailey and Corinne Day will also be featured, reinforcing British Vogue’s keen editorial eye for commissioning world-class photography. These great moments in fashion, beauty and portrait photography are celebrated in a fully illustrated book written by Muir. Embellished with over 300 beautifully reproduced photographs, some wellknown and others less familiar, this large-format hardback will accompany the exhibition. A second paperback
Awash with exquisite vintage prints and groundbreaking photographs publication will also be available to purchase exclusively from the National Portrait Gallery. In many instances, each photographer was approached individually so that they could print and tweak their own images. “We went straight to Nick Knight and Tim Walker and asked them to make one-off prints for the exhibition,” Muir reveals. “The care and attention that goes into the postproduction of these images is immense. It’s very time-consuming. “We found the only existing print by Nick Knight of Lily Donaldson covered in pink dye for Dior. It took Nick over two years to perfect the image to a level where he was eventually happy with it. Although researching and sourcing vintage prints was very time consuming, the contemporary images were just as painstakingly selected.” 57
Vogue has always been invested with what Muir describes as a “greater commitment to high-quality photographic reproduction.” In 1932, American Vogue began replacing fashion drawings on each cover with full-colour photo illustrations. It was an innovative move for the time and consolidated Vogue as a “frontrunner in graphic design, as well as printing and reproduction.” Many of the faces that have shaped the cultural landscape of the twentyfirst century will also be included in the exhibition, from Lucian Freud to Damien Hirst, and Fred Astaire to David Beckham. Fashion designers that have defined looks of the century will also be featured, including Saint Laurent and Alexander McQueen. Muir explains that the prevailing prerequisite when selecting each image was the photograph’s quality, rather than the subject. Nonetheless, it was important that several high-profile individuals were featured, including Princess Diana. “She had a very, very big connection with the magazine,” he smiles. “After all, it was British Vogue that changed her from a somewhat gangly upper-middle-class girl to a fashion superstar. She’s an icon and British Vogue success story.” It was equally important, concedes Muir, to acknowledge and give credit to the subject of each print. “I was very keen to try and emphasise a more personal aspect of Vogue’s photography,” he says. “We try to name the model wherever possible. We haven’t always succeeded. I think there’s maybe two or three people who we just can’t find out who they were.” Although predominantly a fashion magazine, British Vogue’s assumed a fundamental role on the cultural stage. In more than 2,000 issues, the magazine’s successfully placed fashion in the context of the larger world in which we live. Not only does Vogue chronicle the life of beautiful people, it leads, informs and inspires its chichi readers. Thought-provoking, consistent and forever influential, Vogue has unquestionably defined the twenty-first century woman. Vogue 100: A Century of Style opens February 11 and runs until May 22 at London’s National Portrait Gallery, sponsored by Leon Max. npg.org.uk
FEBRUARY 2016 : ISSUE 57
Proud mother and model Cindy Crawford turns 50 this month, and tells AIR about the pressures of aging WORDS : Alex Bilmes
t 49, (50 this month) Cindy Crawford is quite stupendously attractive. She’s tall, slender and glossy, with that cascading chestnut mane, chocolate eyes and almost perfectly symmetrical features but for her one, famous flaw: the mole, at the corner of her mouth on the left side of her face. She’s also, like only very famous people can be, immediately familiar, so that even though I’ve never met her before I feel I know her already. This is the woman whom photographers Avedon, Penn and Newton made famous on a thousand fashion magazine covers; whom Herb Ritts photographed for Playboy, twice; who graced, alongside Linda, Naomi, Christy and Tatjana, the famous 1990 British Vogue cover still credited with launching the supermodel phenomenon; who steamed up George Michael’s Freedom! ’90 video; who was the original host of MTV’s House of Style; who Prince named a song (Cindy C) for; who modelled for Gap, Revlon, Pepsi, Maybelline, Clairol and Versace; who released bestselling swimsuit calendars and fitness videos; who married and divorced Richard Gere; and who played a significant 59
role in fashion’s move from minority interest to mainstream pursuit. She is, arguably, the first model ever to successfully market herself as a brand, at the same time as lending her image and allure to others. We met in London, where she was on publicity duties. “You know, I honestly think that London on a sunny day is the most beautiful city in the world,” she tells me over tea — Earl Grey, with milk — in a suite at The Berkeley hotel near Hyde Park Corner. She is in a white
She is, arguably, the first model to ever market herself as a brand shirt and black slacks, with her feet jammed into those fluffy white slippers you find in smart hotels. “Usually I’m taller and more intimidating,” she says drily, when I remark on the footwear. I don’t doubt this is true, although actually she seems less intimidating than simply old-school grand, in the way one expects an original supermodel might be. There is security on the door and a publicist in the corner and Crawford’s
manner is polite but professional: let’s get down to business. For the most part we get on like a warm breeze and a roaring fire. Only once does a chill briefly take hold, as if someone had quickly opened and shut a window, allowing a shock of icy air to penetrate the room. This is when, after a discussion of ageing and the pressures on women to remain ever youthful — especially women famous for their great beauty — I ask, tentatively, if she’s ever had cosmetic surgery. “No,” is the answer. Has she considered it? “When I was 25, I used to say I’d never do that,” she says. “Then, as you start getting older, things change. I mean, I never thought I’d have to go have my hair coloured every month either. So, I don’t know. The jury’s out.” We move on, and gradually the sun comes out again over SW1. You might think Crawford, a long-time resident of Malibu, with a second home on the beach in Los Cabos, Mexico, would be discomfited by the London winter, sunny day or not. Actually, she points out, she’s a Midwestern girl from a small town 60 miles outside Chicago, and the winters there are brutal enough to make the British wind chill feel like a warm caress. Crawford’s blue-collar, all-American pedigree was from the start an intrinsic part of her appeal. She’s the second of three daughters born to Dan, an electrician and glazier, and Jennifer, who worked at a hospital and later a bank. They split when she was a teen. (She also had a brother, Jeff, who suffered from leukaemia and died, aged four, when she was ten). “It was a great place to grow up,” she says of DeKalb, Illinois. “It felt very safe and wholesome, innocent: Fourth of July parades, picnics and softball. It gave me a great foundation, a great work ethic. The trick is trying to pass those Midwestern values on to my children.” Which must be tough, I venture, given that Presley, 15, and Kaia, 13, her son and daughter with the nightlife entrepreneur Rande Gerber, whom she married in 1998, are growing up in LA among some of the most glamorous people in the world. Harry Styles is an occasional house guest and the Crawford-Gerbers are BFFs with the Clooneys. “What I’ve learned from parenting,” Crawford says, “is that
kids really don’t listen to what you say but they watch you. So they learn just by watching the way my husband and I are: how to treat people, how to be respectful, how to be philanthropic.” Her husband is from Long Island, New York. His background, she says, was “slightly more affluent” and sophisticated than her own. “His parents went to Europe. My father had not been to Europe until last year when he came here with me. There’s so many great things about growing up in the Midwest, but a sense of exploration I would not say is one of them.” This is not something that ever hindered Crawford. She was first spotted by a newspaper photographer in 1982, aged 16. The following year she was a finalist in the Look of the Year contest held by Elite Model Management, one of America’s top agencies, and from 18 she spent two years modelling in Chicago. Having graduated top of her high school
Crawford’s bluecollar, all-American pedigree was from the start an intrinsic part of her appeal class, she won a scholarship to read chemical engineering at Northwestern University, but abandoned her studies after a term, moved to New York in 1986 and had her first American Vogue cover that summer, aged 20-yearsold. That was followed in short succession by multiple covers of every leading international women’s fashion magazine, and global celebrity. “It was like the stars were in alignment,” she says of the supermodel moment. “The reason supermodels could come into being was because Hollywood actresses wanted to be taken seriously. They didn’t want the red carpet to be a catwalk, which it has now become. And the models were like, ‘We’ll do that!’ And all of a sudden fashion wasn’t just about Vogue and couture, there was an explosion of coverage and we were the rock stars of that.” It couldn’t last, of course. The dominance of the supers was relatively short-lived and has not, so far, been repeated. After Cindy and Naomi and 61
the others, “There was Kate [Moss] and Gisele [Bündchen],” she says, “but they were one-offs.” Today’s models have it harder than she did, Crawford reckons. They have never been as visible as they are today, thanks to social media. But then no one’s ever been as visible as they are today, thanks to social media. As a result the biggest models of the moment — ‘money girls’ — have huge followings on Instagram, but much lower public profiles. Doutzen Kroes and Adriana Lima are hardly household names. “I feel like I lived through the heyday of modelling,” Crawford says. “Models are not really getting covers now, and they’re not getting the big cosmetics contracts and that’s where the money is. It’s actresses and singers and maybe reality TV people…” I tell Crawford that I was invited at the 2014 Victoria’s Secret show and was struck by the oppressive uniformity of the models, and the fact that, despite working in magazines, I couldn’t put a name to a face, or any other body part, apart from those belonging to the singer Taylor Swift, the real star attraction. Crawford says that both her kids watched that show on TV. I wonder how she feels about her daughter idolising those girls. Cindy and co were improbably attractive, of course, but they were glamazonian — athletic and womanly — rather than the carbstarved, six-packed undiehorses on the Victoria’s Secret catwalk. “It’s tricky,” she concedes. Her solution is to lead by example. “If my daughter sees me accepting my body the way it is and not denigrating myself because I’m not stick thin, or only eating lettuce with no dressing… If she sees I enjoy food, but I also exercise. I mean, I don’t sit around with a pint of ice cream watching TV, but at the same time if we all go out for ice cream as a family, I order some. A kiddie-size one, but that’s the way you do it. I’m very conscious that I want [Kaia] to get the right message because what you see in the magazines and on the runways, it is a very thin image.” Would she encourage Kaia — who looks “exactly like me, except she doesn’t have the beauty mark” — to become a model? “I wouldn’t encourage her, but nor would I discourage her. She’s been around it enough to know that it’s work. And she is definitely
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smitten with the idea, but also I keep explaining to her, ‘Kaia, it’ll be there for you when you’re 16, 17.’” Last year Kaia was photographed for Teen Vogue. “I let her get her feet wet,” says her mother, “but there’s not that much worth doing when you’re 13. Look, if she really wants to do it, it’s a good job: you get to travel, you get money. I always say it’s like a good finishing school. And I feel I could help steer her in the right direction. But I try to be neutral on it. I don’t want to push her either way.” Were Kaia to pursue a successful modelling career, her mother could also provide counsel on the pressures and pitfalls of celebrity. She has had her own tabloid moments — the marriage to Richard Gere (1991-95) was at least partly played out in public — and, more recently, a ringside seat as one of the few attendees at the celebrity event of 2014. From the outside, I tell her, the Clooney wedding looked like a circus, with the bride and groom and their close friends — including Crawford and her husband, who co-owns a tequila brand with Clooney — pursued through the waterways of Venice by a paparazzi cortege. “I think George decided — and Amal, too — which I thought was smart of them, typically, that either you spend all this time and energy trying to make it secret or you just go, ‘You know what? We’re getting married in Venice and we’re going to have this great party and we’re going to do exactly what we want.’ So that’s what they did and I really respected them for it.” As for what it felt like on the inside looking out: “You were aware of the interest, sure. I mean by the end we were even talking to the paparazzi because we knew one of them from LA — it was so random — but it was just a great thing: everyone was there celebrating their friends. And I’ve tried to live my life this way. I don’t ever want to change my plans or what I want to do based on the worry of if there’s going to be paparazzi there.” This is how we arrive at a discussion of ageing. I ask if it might not be more difficult for her than for others, being photographed off duty and against her will, given the need to maintain a certain standard of unblemished glamour, for business reasons if nothing else. She tells me about her book (Becoming, published by Rizzoli),
a retrospective of photographs from her past, plus new essays on lessons learned throughout her career. “Part of the reason I did it is I’m turning 50. It was either embrace it or dread it. I feel like the book helped me celebrate it. Like, ‘Yeah, I’m older but look at all this wealth of work and this knowledge I’ve gained.’ But you have to remind yourself of that all the time because it’s so easy for women, particularly, to obsess over [getting older]. You have to evolve.”
I’m turning 50. It was either embrace it or dread it... A few years ago she posed nude for the first time in a long time, for the American fashion magazine W. “In some ways I’m more vulnerable now,” she says of the experience. “But I also know how to work it better. I’m a better model, and I feel stronger. I’ve had two kids. I’m more in my body.” She concedes she has to devote considerable time and effort to physical maintenance, but “at least I can say it’s part of my job. The bar is set just as high for women who are working in an office. It is a lot of work and guess what? Each year you have to pile on more and more work. But that’s the reason this whole beauty industry exists, including fashion, because when you feel good about the way you look, 62
that comes across. I know if I have a cute outfit on or my hair colour looks good, or whatever, I can present myself better, I’m more confident. That’s why it matters. Otherwise it doesn’t matter at all.” Crawford still models occasionally but she increasingly devotes time to other concerns. Since 2004 she has been partner in a range of anti-ageing skincare products, Meaningful Beauty, with the Parisian cosmetic doctor JeanLouis Sebagh. She also has a furniture business, Cindy Crawford Home, which grosses $240m annually. “It’s nice working with people who aren’t fashion people,” she says. “And also that business allows me to age. I don’t have to be last month’s cover girl. It’s more about who I am today as a mother.” She is, clearly, an astute manager of her brand. The early image — sexy but somehow wholesome (“Women didn’t hate me,” she says) — has developed into today’s Cindy Crawford: hot housewife, credible businesswoman, model of healthy living, supermum. Few people in her position, I think, talk as directly about what they represent as a public figure, and a business. “I never saw myself as the trendiest person,” Crawford says, “but I come from the world of fashion. So I have a fashion sensibility with-out being trendy. There’s an accessibility, which is where I think companies like Revlon and Pepsi were comfortable.
Becoming by Cindy Crawford is out now, published by Rizzoli.
e spend a lot of the phone conversation talking about a woman. She is stylish and sophisticated; a well-travelled jetsetter with flair and aplomb. What does she wear? Whatever the season advises: she’s in tune with the harmony of modern design. She shops in a styled boutique in London’s Mayfair, though she is an international citizen. She walks to the beat of her own drum, independent and strong. To dedicate the first words of an article about designer-extraordinaire Erdem to this woman is not doing the man a disservice: he would agree that the overarching style-story which themes his work is not about him, but about her. Because the lady in question is Erdem’s woman, his female muse. In a poetic sense this is a fictional inspiration-figure that the Canadianborn designer dreamt up to fuel his creativity, but be under no illusion: her persona surges with life, and her world is immensely tangible. The intricate narratives behind every collection bring her to life, toothoughtfully composed to warrant a rewrite. His Spring/Summer 2016 line-up description, for example, was woven thus: ‘In the late 19th century European emigrants pushed into the great plains of America’s west. These new frontiers were vast and open; landscapes so endless and empty that winds roar like screams. Leaving behind civilization with only their wagons for shelter, the intrepid folk clung to their sanity in the face of such raw wilderness. “Prairie madness”, as it became known, claimed many victims. And it’s on this brink that we find Erdem’s woman in the Spring/Summer 2016 collection. Referencing Willa Cather’s Oh Pioneers! (1913), Dorothy Scarborough’s The Wind (1925) and contemporary paintings by American artist Andrew Wyeth, Erdem’s ‘prairie madness’ is brought to life in a moment of tension. There is a sense that she is on the verge of coming undone. It is the point at which she wanders into the night desperate for freedom from the open landscape with nowhere to hide.’ Immense. It is hypnotic prose about displacement, and illuminates the creative logic of Erdem’s refined mind. Let’s savour another: this was the angle for the romantically-dark designs he’ll show at London Fashion Week.
MAN F MY EY
Erdem sets the sensational scene, ahead of his tenth London Fashion Week WORDS : CHRIS UJMA
‘Erdem’s Pre-Fall 2016 woman is sitting for a portrait. She is a woman who belongs to many periods. And there is something of each of them in her and she has the soft focus formality of a Sargent painting. She has the romance of a Visconti heroine, with a darker side beneath the surface. She has the regal air of a 1980s Snowden portrait; society and propriety with a dash of irreverence on the edges. She is sitting for a portrait in all these times and many more. What she brings of herself to the canvas is a beguiling strength and a rogue complexity, at contrast with the fragile prettiness of her picture. There is a sense that she may be wearing her mother’s couture to sit for her portrait. She wears it almost perfectly. But it’s in the attitude of how she wears it (and what she brings of herself) that her true beauty lies.’ Well he certainly makes life easier for a writer with a word count. But wit aside, respect is due: Erdem’s composed, evocative, and immersive scene-setters strike a chord, and to the observer they ensure that fashion means something more, shedding light on the shadows of design-motive. The synopses transcend the pieces from being feminine silhouettes and imaginatively-shaped cloth, to depicting the kind of heart that beats underneath the fabric, ensnaring the soul and complex motive of the wearer in a vial of vocabulary. This is style that moves you. “You begin the season by thinking ‘Who is she?’, ‘where is she going to?’, ‘what is going to happen to her and what will she see?’ You remove yourself from the equation, in
It’s hypnotic prose that illuminates the creative logic of his refined mind a way, and it propels my work to look at contrasts, and view matters out of context,” he shares. 2016 will springboard off a very successful 2015 for Erdem Moralioglu. Last September marked the opening of his flagship bricks-and-mortar store on South Audley Street in London, which puts the protagonist in her natural habitat. Designed collaboration 67
Designed in collaboration with Hikari Yokoyama, the locale is a ‘little Mayfair pied-à-terre’ for the Erdem woman; “I love the idea that it includes clues to the furniture that she would sit on, the art that she would collect such as a David Hockney photography collage, and sketches from Jean Cocteau or Andy Warhol, combining to create a space that feels very much about her.” For clientele, this is no minimalistic boutique with a clinical, intimidating aura and sparse racks. It is inviting and comfortable with soothing hues, sofas, sprinklings of lush flora, and plenty of clothes to try on. “Those who have visited seem comfortable in the boutique, and we’ve observed that they seem to spend a lot of time there. There’s an informality to place, comfort in a luxurious way, so the customer does not feel ostracised or as if they are sitting in a cold gallery.” The store is a platform that complements the sensation of seeing the designs in person, such as at London’s Fashion Week, of which Erdem has been a mainstay for a decade. Both scenes give him an adrenaline rush; “There’s something really wonderful about creating the story on the runway, and that moment before all of the models walk out, with each in their ‘look’, it is like your sketchbook has come to life. It’s a wonderful moment. Yet it is equally pleasurable, six months later, to see that collection in-store, put in its context, and with real women wearing the designs and enjoying them.” It would be remiss not to mention another outlet for attaining your Erdem-fix: the online portal Boutique1.com, which has proven to be an “excitingly successful” enterprise. “It has evolved a lot, and continues to grow. What has been fascinating to me is that it appeals to a truly international audience from Europe, the Middle East such as Saudi Arabia, Dubai and Kuwait, or further afield to Brazil, L.A. and Hong Kong.” Awards and accolades tail this designer as though a comet, yet considering he basically hits a home-run with every ready-to-wear collection, occasional one-off piece and catwalk creation he painstakingly constructs, Erdem is down-to-earth and seems unaffected by the hype. (“This year I want to become a better
swimmer”, he proffers. “Off a yacht in the Mediterranean?” I cheekily fish into his lifestyle. “More like at my local public swimming pool”, he concedes. He’s polite, courteous, grateful. (Error: diva status not found). A conversation, though, is far different from being in the intense moment of design. He is known to be a fiercely
That moment before all of the models walk out... it is like your sketchbook has come to life demanding perfectionist, both of his admittedly complex creative process and the results it yields; there is trusty needlecraft and embroidery, lace, tiers, buttons and ruffles, yes, but also technical hurdles to overcome, met with the use of cutting-edge fabric technology and specially-designed machinery that puts the best of England’s manufacturing (as well as Erdem’s hunger for a challenge and lateral thinking ability) on show. His other goal for 2016, he says, is “to be more mysterious…“ Through interview quotes, he’ll likely deliver. But Erdem’s passion, verve, and seemingly innate ability for inspired, precise and playful design are impossible to conceal. Perhaps Erdem’s woman will also assume an air of mystery? Immersed in her story, it is intriguing to see where she’ll go next. 68
Previous Pages: SS16 on show at London Fashion Week These Pages: Fall 2015 at London Fashion Week
Motoring FEBRUARY 2016 : ISSUE 57
n 2016, the concept of the Concept treads the boards of fantasy; you’re likely imagining a futuristic-looking, sleek, tech-loaded, (environmentally-conscious) beauty, rotating under brilliant lights at an international auto show … that never sees the light of day, commercially. Peter Stevens, influential professor, consultant, and once Chief Designer for marques such as Jaguar and Lamborghini, said that, “it used to be that concept models were used to either test the market or steer public taste towards an unusual new vehicle typography, but most recent show cars would seem to owe more to sales and marketing pressures than to a desire to push forward their company’s design thinking.” The halcyon days of 1970s supercar blueprints gloriously encapsulated the former. A Golden Age in Europe for pushing the auto design envelope, it was those bastions of style, the Italians, who spearheaded the revolution with their coachbuilders or carrozzeria, crafting daring, experimental automotives that captured the imagination of observers. The adventurous approach to angles has a familiarity when viewed back through the retro looking glass, but at the time these seductive wedgeshaped supercars were nothing short of revolutionary, commanding gasps and curious stares when unveiled. Reactions roared past superlatives at speed; radical, powerful, bold, angular, artful, classic, shocking. You might even add ‘confusing’ to that list. All the greats were vying for centre stage. In Italy specifically, brands such as Ferrari, Fiat, Alfa Romeo, Maserati and Lamborghini sat with fellow creative powers like independent car designers Pininfarina, Turin-based manufacturer Lancia, the once mighty
Gruppo Bertone and the prolific ItalDesign. Respected designers such as Giorgetto Giugiara, Marcello Gandini, and Fillipo Sapino were the individual names on the lips of those asking ‘who thought of that?’ Their concepts collectively breathed new ideas into the industry. Wide yet low-slung profiles, scissor-doors, pop-up headlamps, rectangular wheelcutouts, distinctive window shapes, and razor-sharp edges turned the design world exotically upside-down. In terms of millimetres from the floor, it became a battle of ‘how low can you go?’ Lamborghini’s agile Bravo clocked 40,000 test miles and it was Bertone that conjured up its traverse-set V8 engine, bare essentials interior, and a windscreen that continuously flowed to the side windows and into the rear-air intakes, creating a seamless glass frontage. The intriguing Fiat Abarth Scorpione 2000, meanwhile, had the fingerprints of Pininfarina’s Sapino over the design, evoking awe with its curved flip-lid roof, crisp edges, and engine overhang at the rear. He was also the mind behind the
These wedgy, edgy, cars captured yesterday’s dreams of the future ground-hugging, flip-up-canopy styled Pininfarina Ferrari 512S Berlinetta Speciale – which was an angular departure from the curves of previous Prancing Horse silhouettes. Gandini designed the Alfa Romeo Crabo that incorporated frontend lift at high-speed and upward hinging doors, providing inspiration for the scissor-doored, trapezoidal Lamborghini Countach, a name 70
Naught to Seventies Concept cars, from a decade when designers reinvented everything but the wheel WORDS : CHRIS UJMA
Previous Pages: The Bertone Lancia Stratos Zero concept These Pages: Pininfarina Ferrari 512S Berlinetta Speciale
that translates to ‘astonishment’ or ‘amazement’. The style-spirit of this model lived on until the 1990s, its cabin-forward composition enabling the accommodation of a larger engine, and it burst ranks by actually making it to production. The avant-garde Maserati Boomerang remained in the ‘didn’t make it’ collective, yet innovated with its 15-degree angled windscreen being the steepest rake designers could achieve while allowing ‘drivers’ to see out (a slightly crucial element). It was a movement that sparked action, with the lure of risk that could lead to potential reward. The only Iso Rivolta ever made was the fibreglass Varedo which debuted in 1972, but the company later fell by the wayside as a victim of the oil crisis. The compact Bizzarrini Manta, with its triple-seat arrangement, ‘folded paper’ look and eyecatching lime green paint job, was 28 year-old Giugiara’s first independent business move, to launch ItalDesign at the Turin Motorshow. If one dream car could epitomise the radical school of thought, the crown might arguably be bestowed upon the Lancia Stratos Zero. The construction kicks down the door of… well, nevermind, it doesn’t actually have any doors – drivers would have to hinge up the windscreen to enter the car. It had a triangle engine cover, Lancia V4 engine, and didn’t pack much horsepower. No matter: the point is that an abstract approach resulted in an intriguingly packaged all-round idea, that provoked, and is everlastingly adored in design. Okay, amidst our appreciation, let us at least have a moment’s acknowledgement of those who will legitimately object to the mention of these cars as ‘classics’ merely because they look good, and without regard to what is happening under the bonnet, 73
aerodynamically, or without being pitted long-term against the ‘true’ supercar greats. But to the purists: just look at these things! Pure seduction on wheels. What adds to the reverence is how the cars have been captured, such as in the timeless images on these pages; one simply must talk about the visual staging that gives these speedsters an extra edge. Acclaimed car photographer Rainer Schlegelmilch
The concepts breathed new life into the industry is the mastermind behind these particular photo time-capsules, and he orchestrated iconic photoshoots where female models draped across the respective chassis provided the perfect artistic juxtaposition: the human form, curvaceous and alluring, versus angular, sharp and quintessentially space-age machinery. Contextually, cars often reflect the emotional sensibilities (or craziness) of the decade from which they emerge. The wedgeolution fascinatingly echoed the sci-fi enthralled, anti-conformist, disco & decadence 1970s, and these driving machines indeed looked like they had been beamed down from a galaxy far far away, tearing up the rulebook and defying the status quo in the process. These wedgy, edgy, cars have their place in capturing ‘yesterday’s dreams of the future’, while often representing the design-road less travelled. And boy, is it worth the drive down memory lane. The coffee-table book 70s Concept Cars – a compilation of Rainer Schlegelmilch’s stunning imagery – is available from teNeues Publishing
Gastronomy FEBRUARY 2016 : ISSUE 57
Seasoned To Taste AIR
Theo Randall is celebrating the tenth year since he opened his eponymous London restaurant; Theo Randall at the InterContinental. To mark this milestone, the Michelin-starred chef speaks exclusively with AIR WORDS : ANNIE DARLING
or over a decade, head chef Theo Randall has been experimenting with exciting flavours from Italy in his award-winning kitchen at the InterContinental London Park Lane. Randall put his name to the independent venture in 2006 and ever since then discerning London diners have been enjoying his exquisite culinary creations at the prestigious No. 1 address. To celebrate the anniversary, Randall’s extensive menu of rustic Italian cuisine will be enhanced with new seasonal dishes, that’ll be served alongside his signature eats. The new menu is available from mid-February, when the restaurant reopens its doors following refurbishment. London’s diverse and illustrious restaurant scene features some of
the world’s finest dining outlets. Nonetheless, Theo Randall at the InterContinental is widely considered the capital’s leading Italian restaurant. Each course is crafted from the finest local ingredients, in addition to handselected Italian imports, which are cooked using an open-kitchen concept. Randall, who says that “having a successful business” is his greatest achievement, perfected his craft in some of the world’s best establishments, including Michelin-starred Chez Panisse in California and London’s River Café – where he was head chef for ten years. Reflecting on his work abroad, Randall reveals that he enjoys jetsetting. “Travel is extremely important as a chef because it teaches you about the different types of local food and 74
culture. After all, this is the basis for all cuisine,” he explains. His no-nonsense approach to backslapping food has seen Randall become a worldwide success. There’s no doubt acclaim will continue to come his way, the buzz generated by the recent opening of Theo Mio at the InterContinental in Bangkok proof of this. ” Randall’s passion for all things culinary began at an early age. He was encouraged to appreciate good food by his mother, who taught him how to prepare pasta. Regular family holidays to Italy and France were particularly inspirational; he recalls eating spaghetti alle vongole in Venice as a child, a popular dish he has since modified and incorporated into his London restaurant.
Randall appreciates the value of fresh vegetables and offers a vegetarian à la carte and set menu in his London eatery. He expresses a particular enthusiasm for artichokes, which are stealthy laced throughout his menu, making surreptitious appearances in both his Somerset lamb costata di agnello and truffle tagliarini recipe. Inspiration for the daily changing menu is taken from Randall’s regular trips to Italy, where he frequents bashful trattorias for fine-dining inspiration. “After many years at the River Café and a lot of trips to Italy, it’s quite natural that I specialise in Italian food. It becomes a part of you. I love visiting Italy and I always find new inspiration whenever I go. “A daily menu is almost like saying to our customers that everything we cook is fresh; here is what we picked, gathered and will be cooking today. Also kitchen and floor teams need to be stimulated and offering a daily changing menu, without a doubt, will always achieve this.” Authentic pasta dishes such as rich-yellow ravioli with butternut squash, marjoram, sage and butter are made fresh every day. Randall is
also used to working in restaurants with distinguished desserts, including the River Café’s infamous chocolate nemesis cake and his amalfi lemon tart at the InterContinental. Many of his easy-to-follow recipes can be found in his two cookbooks Pasta, which was released in 2006, and My Simple Italian, which was published last year. The latter took 18 months to complete and provides details on cooking from scratch. “I felt it was important to write a book that showed how important the ingredients are, rather than using lots of complicated techniques,” he explains. “I wrote every word, cooked all the food in the pictures and even did the washing up!” he laughs. “All the introductions are experiences and stories from my own life and career. The book’s extremely personal.” What’s your favourite dish? “That’s impossible to answer!” he chuckles. “There are so many recipes, but I must admit that I do love the fish stew.” Randall visited Qatar for the first time last month, where he showcased dishes from his new book at the Doha Golf Club. His signature dishes were served in the winner’s enclosure and 76
This page: Pan-fried squid with borlotti beans Next page: Wood roasted Sea Bass with spinach and fennel
He was encouraged to appreciate good food by his mother, who taught him how to prepare pasta
select hospitality lounges during the Commercial Bank Qatar Masters. “It’s always exciting to visit a new place and explore the food and culture there,” he says. “I’m also an avid golf fan so was really thrilled to be hosting and preparing the food during a live cooking session with the InterContinental Doha team. “Doha looks as though it’s going to emerge as a very promising area for gastronomy soon. I could foresee it becoming a major player on the global map of cuisine,” he predicts. Another region of the GCC which Randall foresees flexing its culinary muscles on the world stage is the UAE. Describing Abu Dhabi as “a great city with a real and growing hunger for innovative restaurants. “I’ve learnt over the years what the UAE market requires from a restaurant, as well as what is needed to deliver those requirements. It’s not about being complicated or fancy; it’s about quality and consistency. The produce has to be of the highest quality, even down to the olive oil on the table.” And with that he heads back to the kicthen, determined as ever to perfect such small details. 77
Travel FEBRUARY 2016 : ISSUE 57
journeys by jet
Singita Lebombo Lodge, South Africa WORDS : KATIE FEWKES
f you’re looking for your next adventure with your private jet, why not head south and go on safari? Offering an ideal contrast to the climate and landscapes of the GCC region, you can enjoy wild scenery, unforgettable sightings of wildlife in its natural habitat, and you won’t be skimping on comfort, either. South Africa has a superb selection of wonderfully luxurious safari lodges, offering the very best in game-viewing, service and beautifully crafted accommodation. One of the best is Singita’s Lebombo Safari Lodge, located on a private concession in the
Abundant wildlife and private safaris with expert guides Kruger National Park. Wildlife here is abundant and plenty of options to explore include gamedrives, guided walks and mountain biking, all accompanied by expert safari guides who will make sure you don’t miss a thing. Expect to encounter large prides of lion, leopards lounging in the boughs of trees, herds of elephant meandering through the bush, and both white and black rhino species. There’s also some spectacular stargazing to enjoy, and visits to the Singita School of Cooking where local students are trained to the highest standards to become chefs. The lodge is beautiful in its design, with fifteen loft-style suites dotted
around the cliff face. Each has a glass frontage to make the most of the views and a balcony with a sleepout bed to enjoy a romantic night under the stars. And if that’s not enough, there’s a swimming pool, spa and gym, too. Dining is always a real highlight on safari, and Singita Lebombo is no exception – the chefs will conjure up the most wonderful cuisine, served alongside Singita’s famously extensive grape list which comprises more than 200 labels. We can arrange for a private grape tasting experience in the cellar with the expert sommeliers, and if you find a bottle you can’t live without, the lodge can arrange for a case to be shipped home for you. Access is easy, too, despite the remote location. You’ll fly by private jet either into Johannesburg and transfer by light aircraft to the Satara airstrip near the camp, or fly directly onto their airstrip yourself (aircraft that can land here are King Airs, PC12s and Cessnas). A five-night safari staying at Singita Lebombo, based on flying directly to the lodge in your jet, starts from USD5,598 per person, including the cost of your pilot’s accommodation throughout. All meals, house drinks and shared safari activities with expert guides are included in the cost. For more information visit scottdunn. com. Katie Fewkes is Head of Tailormade Product at Scott Dunn and has worked in the luxury tailormade travel industry for ten years. Her passion is African safaris, having focussed on this area for eight years
What I Know Now
FEBRUARY 2016 : ISSUE 57
Rossano Ferretti founder, rossano ferretti hair spa
ven as a child living in Italy, I loved the concept of beauty. My grandfather, Renato, was a barber and my father a hairdresser. The best piece of advice I’ve ever been given was from the latter: never be late! However, my mother is the one person I admire most in this world. She’s incredible, always positive and friendly with everyone she meets. She smiles at everybody! I’ve always admired how she makes people feel at ease. She continues to provide our family with positive energy; she truly is an angel!
I remember when I was 11-years-old, my father told me that he could see I had something – a talent. A talent for creativity. He told me that I had to be careful. “We’re a very simple family,” he explained. “You’re a dreamer. Don’t let people take advantage of you.” Today my salons are known for our unparalleled, world-class signature method of hair cutting. The creation of my own styling technique, ‘The Method’, has revolutionised the industry’s understanding of hairdressing. This has been the greatest 80
achievement of my career so far. This concept is all about the natural fall of the hair, rather than new trends and complex beauty techniques. My salons and experiences have transformed the way we think about personality and body: the use of different colour; the client’s experience; the movement of each strand. I think it’s important that no matter what, you should be yourself. Never give up. Be honest. Be honest with yourself. Live this way and you’ll enjoy a much easier life.
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