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Vulture Magazine /Sep 2012

Issue 01: Basic Space

FILLING THE VOID W. Iris Van Herpen Rad Hourani Dr. Michio Kaku Gabriel Garcia Marquez Zaha Hadid Gerry Johannson Baartmans and Siegel Zhang Jingna


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Editor-in-Chief Nabil Aliffi nabil@vulture-magazine.com Managing Editor Clifford Loh clifford@vulture-magazine.com Managing Associate Vanessa Fong vanessa@vulture-magazine.com Art Director Leonard Wee Russell Seah Designer Andraditya Dhanu Respati Contributing Editor Melanie Chua Editorial Associate Muhammad Sadikin Creative Strategists Eriin VULTURE Digital Linda Hao linda@vulture-magazine.com Lionel Bobo Deng Vishnu Menon Contributors Aran Atsuo, Zhang Jingna, Shawn Chua, Mikael Wardhana, Kate Carnegie, Melissa Gan, Deana Saechang, Jean Francois, Gerry Johansson, Felix Wong, Skye Tan, Donald Hicks, Mathieu Lehanneur, Michel Zoeter, Raudha Hanafi, David Chan, Sharlene Lee, Kenia Ave, Randolph Tan FRONT COVER by Clifford Loh featuring Burberry London, BACK COVER by Jean Francois

Editorial Enquiries For advertising and sales, please email us at contact@vulture-magazine.com VULTURE Magazine Pte Ltd 113 Somerset Road Singapore 238165 Published & Distributed by Allscript Pte Ltd With Special Thanks to Ryan Wong from Vue Photography Studios & Ave Management

Š 2012 All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means without permission from the publishers. The views expressed in VULTURE Magazine are those of the respective contributors, and are not necessarily shared by the magazine or staff. VULTURE welcomes unsolicited contributors, but cannot accept responsibility for any possible loss of damage of the submitted material.


Contents 3

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12

18

Editor’s Note

The Insurrection of Voracious Spaces

New Wave

Perfume

FEATURE

FEATURE

COLUMN

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24

28

34

Rad Hourani

Architectural Wonder: Iris Van Herpen

Neotribalism

Concrete

EDITORIAL

EDITORIAL

FEATURE

FEATURE

40

44

46

56

Hundred

Sweden

Traces

INTERVIEW

PHOTOGRAPHY

Hymn to the Immortal EDITORIAL

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PHOTOGRAPHY


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66

70

78

Tomorrow Is Another Day

As a Matter of Fact

Ghost

Darked Eyed Gentleman

ART

FEATURE

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88

90

92

Factory Girl

Time Structures

EDITORIAL

FEATURE

Travel Essentials for the Modern Man

Zaha Hadid, An Introduction Overdue

SHOPPING

FEATURE

EDITORIAL

EDITORIAL

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100

114

Virtual Wars

A Star is Born

Stockist

EXCLUSIVE

FEATURE

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Editor’s Note The world is changing and it is time to recalibrate our bearings. The migration from the physical to the virtual is a growing phenomenon. Geographical boundaries and nationalities are rendered obsolete in this seamless virtual reality. Hierarchies are dissolved. Societies become more linear. Even the way we choose to organize ourselves has morphed. We convene to form pockets of social networks like virtual tribes contrary to the single entity that we often imagine ourselves to be. This is the mark of a new landscape. As we embark on our first issue, we too are entering a blank space, a former void that will soon bear the impressions and reflections of its inhabitants. We invite our readers to enter a dialogue with the metaphysical, to explore the empirical relationship between man and space as to equip them to create a world in their image.

Nabil Aliffi

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The Insurrection of Voracious Spaces A MANIFESTO Text  Shawn C  Photography  Jean Francois

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e can no longer afford to starve spaces. The dire emaciation of spaces is approaching a critical limit. Their corporeal vitality has been desiccated by the accelerated processes of deterritorialisation, the transnational flows of globalisation, the hyper-efficient circulation of media images in a digital age. The materiality of landscapes have been shortcircuited and rendered obsolete by the ubiquity of virtual pathways. Spaces have mutely endured this subjugation of their corporeality. Now is the time to foment the insurrection of voracious spaces that have starved for far too long. The voracious space is not a passive, inert, geometric vector pliant to the whims of its human colonizers; it is a dynamic, volatile, living organism fulminating against the forces that seek to conquer it. The voracious space is not abstract; it has real affects and materiality, real moods and characters, real hunger and appetite. The voracious space is anthropophagic: it

is not us that consume space but it is space that consumes us. It is time that we embrace these digestive landscapes, and nourish these voracious spaces with ourselves. The concept of anthropophagy was articulated by the poet Oswald de Andrade in the 1920s as a strategy to critically absorb and appropriate European modernism while fortifying the cultural identity of Brazil. Anthropophagy is rooted in traditional Brazilian culture, specifically amongst the natives of the Aimorés tribe who cannibalize the strongest of their enemies to assimilate their desirable traits. This practice became mobilized as a political metaphor of syncretism: it metabolizes the cultural legacy of the colonizer into a source of energetic nourishment, incorporating content from a foreign oppressive power into an empowered local body. Anthropophagy similarly subverts the hierarchy of colonizer and colonized in the

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context of voracious spaces. The voracious space challenges the assumed order of man as the sovereign ruler and oppressor of space. The fundamental disorientation of this hierarchy allows for the generation of new perceptions of landscapes and spaces. By reversing the order - subjectivizing space and objectifying man - we can discover innovative ways of relating to spaces and restore to landscapes the primacy of its corporeality through elaborating the physiological imagery of digestion. The hunger of spaces gestures towards an absence. It only becomes momentarily complete when it is satiated and full. Yet, the persistent hunger of all living organisms is also an insistent reminder of the continuous transformation that entails the biological process of metabolism. The living organism can never be completed, except in death. It can never “be”; it is always becoming. Becoming is the state of being alive. In this way, the voracious


space, like the living person, is always an emergent phenomenon, partial and incomplete. But when these voracious spaces digest us, they not only consume us but they momentarily become consummated with us. This consummation is only achieved through a mutual engagement. In the process of digestion, space incorporates us, “becoming-us”, as we are simultaneously assimilated into space, “becoming-space”. The moment of consummation fundamentally problematizes the distinction between our corporeal bodies and the material environment of voracious spaces, and collapses the distinction between subject and object. That leads us to the core of Merleau-Ponty’s Phenomenology of Perception. Merleau-Ponty asserts that the body and what it perceives cannot be disentangled. The corporeity of the body is the medium of experience and it is intimately intertwined with the environment. This begs the phenomenological question: can we ever resist being digested by these voracious spaces? Heidegger’s “being-inthe-world” implies a basic complicity with voracious spaces, in engaging space but also in becoming engaged by space. A body can never be outside of space, but it can determine how actively and in what ways it chooses to engage with the space. Conversely, the appetite of the voracious space

can only be whetted if it is engaged by the body, and it is only energized if it is nourished by the body. The voracious space will ossify into the passivity of geometric space if it is not engaged by the body. The activation of the voracious space is therefore also an opening up of possibilities between body and space which may transcend the preconceived limits imagined by either. This dynamic engagement produces a resulting atmosphere that neither belongs just to the material space nor to the body that appears to emanate them. Atmospheres are not purely objective like the properties of geometric space but they articulate the character of voracious spaces through its materiality. Atmospheres are not purely subjective as mental states of the mind, but they are affectively sensed by the people present. The atmosphere therefore cannot be reduced to being a property that is objective or subjective, belonging to either that of the space or the body, but it is rather a phenomenon that “becomes” and permeates both when the body is digested by the voracious space. I have offered the insurrection of voracious space as a corrective to the assumed passivity of spaces, and to stimulate a shift of emphasis towards the primacy of physical experience of both the body and

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space. I do not seek to exclude meanings which generate from and which infect the experience of space. The experience of space is not simply a physiological response but a generative one that may trigger memories and recall contexts which may then charge the resulting atmosphere that is produced. The digestive process of voracious spaces lends primacy to the materiality of landscapes and reveals the physicality of the experience as an entrypoint in the engagement of space. Digestion is finally an event, a happening to be performed not “in” a space, as if it was a neutral, geometric vector, but “with” a voracious space. In being digested we may simultaneously become aware of the corporeality of our own existence and experience the space as a living organism as we exchange dynamically with the environment. Digestion: An Event to be Performed with a Space. Enter the mouth of a place Let the place chew you Let the place swallow you Let the place digest you Let the place breathe through you


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CJ Yao Wood Be


New Wave THE UPCOMING DESIGN TALENTS Writer  Deana S

KOONHOR “Fashion is slightly elusive” A marriage of audacious and understated sophistication, Koonhor’s signature pieces is where form and function interplays. Synergizing textures, proportions and silhouettes, Koonhor’s latest Fall/Winter collection embodies the duo’s potent blend of bold masculinity and feminine allure. The collection’s clean refined silhouette is underscored with subtle bursts of energy, while still projecting a sense of wholeness. This nebulous duality, layered with Koonhor’s precise craftsmanship, translates to what the designers termed as ‘elusive luxury’. The Koonhor woman moves confidently forward. From introducing a mix of wild textures to incorporating digital prints of shattered mirrors to create a trompe l’oeil effect, the ingenious pair gives some bite to their designs. It is no surprise that Koon and Catrine have been sought after by fashion press across the world, including Vogue.it. Koon Lim and Catrine Thé came together to birth Koonhor in 2009. Having studied, at the New York Fashion Institute of Technology, the pair flourished in their areas of specialty – Koon was recognized for his production management with the prestigious Derek Lam Critic’s Award while Catrine specialized in graphic and technical design.

Koonhor is available in specialty boutiques in New York and California, and online at Shopthemag.com in Singapore, and Zozovilla in Japan.

Her skilled craftsmanship, creative foresight and boldness awarded her first runner-up at the Asian Young Fashion Designers Contest during the Singapore Fashion Week. CJ’s collection is available upon pre-order.

CJ Yao “Each piece represents my personal impression of an ideal woman. These women “wood be” the arrogant and limpid poets.” “Wood Be” is an organic architecture of wearable art which represents CJ Yao’s personal impression of the ideal woman – one who “wood be” the arrogant and limpid poets. The London-based fresh graduate of Central Saint Martin drew her inspiration from ancient musical instruments to portray a subtle conflict between boldness and inhibition. In this graduate collection, CJ adopts the most treasured way to communicate with nature through the refined traditional craftsmanship of wood and fabric. Playing around with permutations of creating tubes, lines, fringes and waves, she transferred her inspiration into forms of knitting and crochet. CJ creates contemporary architectural clothing through the exaggerated silhouettes and unique shapes of her collection. The earthy tones from natural alternative elements such as wood, and wool create a sense of raw provocativeness in her pieces.

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Andreia Chaves “Expression. Individuality. Change. Technology x Craft.” Raised in the bustling metropolis of Sao Paulo, Brazil, Andreia Chaves is a talented shoe designer with exquisite craftsmanship. Dabbling with unique and unusual materials, she pairs them with the latest design technologies that are rarely used in the fashion industry. This curious exploration brings out the dynamics behind Chaves’ shoe collection, one that truly reflects beauty in the midst of chaos – just like the city she grew up in. With a footwear and accessories degree at Polimoda International Institute in Florence, the Milan based designer fuses the mastery of traditional shoe making with innovative design approaches. Each shoe design is an expression of her interests and explorations. Her latest collection, “The Invisible Shoes”, is crafted with mirrored surface to create a deceptively obscured


Baartmans and Siegel Cuban Crab Catches

Andreia Chaves The Invisible Shoe


KOONHOR


Pasionae


EACH PIECE REPRESENTS MY PERSONAL IMPRESSION OF AN IDEAL WOMAN. THESE WOMEN “WOOD BE” THE ARROGANT AND LIMPID POETS.

optical effect with every step taken. Like a chameleon, it blends in seamlessly with its busy surroundings. Chaves is influenced by intellectual designers such as Maison Martin Margiela, Rei Kawakubo, Yohji Yamamoto and Issey Miyake, whose clever designs shatter the common perceptions of fashion. Some of her previous designs experimented with uncommon materials such as wood, metal, and velcro. And with each new collection Chaves continues to win over a strong following. Chaves’ full collection is available for viewing and purchase on Solestruck.

by a “strange natural phenomenon that happens each spring in Cuba - ‘Crab invasions’ - where millions of red and blue shelled crustaceans emerge from the surrounding bays of Cuba, taking over the island to find their partners,” shared the designers. The nostalgic hues of the mixed cultural retro styles in Cuba meshed with the myriad of maritime cool whites and aqua led to a subdued pallet of soft rainbow hue of the sea. Baartmans & Siegel is fast-becoming a brand to watch as they continue to gain the support of fashion’s elite. They have been recently featured as part of Esquire and Colin McDowell’s 7 Brilliant Brits, in addition to having presented their past two collections with Lulu Kennedy’s Fashion East at the Men’s Day of London Fashion Week.

Baartmans & Seigel “Classic elegance with modern masculinity” The future of menswear might just lie in the hands of Wouter Baartmans and Amber Siegel. Their winning formula is simple: fusing the nodes of classical elegance with the raw edge of modern masculinity. These fresh graduates of the prestigious Menswear Fashion Design and Technology BA and MA courses at London College of Fashion champion the modern man, one who is well aware of his own personal style, sees the value in details and is subtly decadent. Their latest Spring/Summer ’13 collection, titled “Cuban Crab Catchers” was inspired

Baartmans & Siegel is available in major retailers in the UK such as Harrods, Daniel Jenkins and Luna & Curious.

Pasionae “l’art pour l’art” Primarily inspired by multi-cultural New York, Pasionae is a collection of wearable art which adopts the modern aesthetics and contemporary jewellery design. Created based on the concept of passion, as the name suggests, the New York based jewellery line carries uniquely hand-craft-

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ed pieces that portray different passions through each design. Using the raw, natural forms of precious stones and nature elements such as emerald and wood, Pasionae experiments with alternative forms and shapes to depict diversity, giving each accessory its own unique personality. Pasionae’s design balances the collection’s aesthetics and functionality to stay true to its concept of l’art pour l’art. Tapping into the rich natural form, shape, texture and colour of the materials, each ring portrays a certain mood, and gives off a certain energy vibe, just like the different types of people in the streets of the Big Apple. The bold and dramatic statement pieces not only claims the focal point of an outfit, but also makes a great conversation starter. Pasionae is available online at www.pasionae.com.


Perfume PERFUMES THAT BEST RECREATE A PLACE AND TIME Text  Aran A

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atrick Suskind’s Perfume opens with one of the most vividly depicted settings in modern literature: 18th century Paris, teeming with stench and aromatic chaos. When we think about a place, we usually first conjure up its image, and then perhaps its sounds; but as Suskind, it seems, understood, scent informs our perception of a locality much more than we consciously realise. Our sense of smell is the only sense that is transmitted to and processed directly in the limbic system, the same part of our brain that generates emotion and memory.

With that in mind, it is easier to comprehend how a single drop of perfume can transport its wearer to bygone times and distant places. Indeed, many perfumes are created with precisely that aim- to recreate the singular smells of specific, singular places. Presented here are five of the most extraordinary, perfumes forged from unforgettable memories and brilliant imagination.

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MANY PERFUMES ARE CREATED WITH PRECISELY THAT AIM- TO RECREATE THE SINGULAR SMELLS OF SPECIFIC, SINGULAR PLACES.

7:15am IN BALI

hillside town with a turbulent history of conquest and struggle, Mystra presents a haunting vision of life in the Byzantium era.

Kenzo Perfumer/Year: Unknown, 2006 Notes: Labdanum, frankincense, mastic in addition to having presented their past two collections with Lulu Kennedy’s Fashion East at the Men’s Day of London Fashion Week.

Sambac Jasmine, a flower associated with divinity by the Balinese Hindu, forms the heart of this fragrance, its gentle sweetness supported by notes of fresh passionfruit, orchid and vanilla. This travel-exclusive offering from Kenzo evokes with great clarity the experience of waking up in Bali, as sea breeze carries the aroma of exotic flowers and fruits through an open window. Light but lasting, it lingers like a dream. Perfumer/Year: Daphne Bugey, 2008 Notes: grapefruit, sambac jasmine, orchid, passionfruit, vanilla.

PG16 JARDIN DE KERYLOS Parfumerie Generale Parfumerie Generale’s 16th scent brings its wearer the gardens of Villa Grecque Kerylos on the Cote d’Azur. While the best preceding fig scents celebrated the creamy sweetness of ripe fig, here the central fig note is decidedly unripe and intensely astringent. Sappy woods and clean musk round out the fresh, transparent composition. Sophisticated and full of vitality, Jardin de Kerylos is a glorious aromatic interpretation of life along the French Riviera.

WILD HUNT CB I Hate Perfume No matter if you’ve never before set foot in vegetation, a sniff of Wild Hunt acquaints one with the wet forest floor. Known for his ability to capture and recreate specific olfactory experiences, this is Christopher Brosius at his best, conjuring with great intensity damp earth, fecund plants and the subtle pungency of wild mushrooms.

Perfumer/Year: Pierre Guillaume, 2006 Notes: Fig, grass, sycamore wood, musk.

Perfumer/Year: Christopher Brosius, 2007 Notes:Torn Leaves, Crushed Twigs, Flowing Sap, Fallen Branches, Old Leaves, Green Moss, Fir, Pine, Tiny Mushrooms.

ZAGORSK Comme Des Garcons Named after the spiritual centre of Russian Orthodox Christianity, Zagorsk opens with a freezing plume of frankincense and crisp pine. In time, birch bark and subtle flowers emerge, lending depth and structure to its ethereal top notes and enhancing the impression of coldness and asceticism. An eternal world of falling snow and rising smoke.

MYSTRA Aesop Mystra is no ordinary perfume—its simple structure of just 3 separate notes manages to feel both luminous and terribly ancient. Bittersweet and earthy, but balanced with the herbal, resinous coolness of mastic. Inspired by Mystras, a now-quiet Peloponnesian

Perfumer/Year: Evelyne Boulanger, 2002 Notes: white frankincense, pine wood, pepper, violet, pimento berry, iris, hinoki cypress, cedar, birch.

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Images by Michel Zoeter


Rad Hourani “I STARTED IMAGINING CLOTHES THE SAME WAY I STARTED CREATING IMAGES: WITH A SENSE OF CURIOSITY AND INNOCENCE DRIVEN BY MY-NO BACKGROUND BACKGROUND,” SAYS MULTITALENTED FASHION DESIGNER, STYLIST AND MODEL SCOUT” Text  Deana S

A

believer of transcending the conventions of fashion, style and design, Rad Hourani reinvents fashion through designs that surpass conventions in his unisex Couture collection. Holding close to the idea of “a world that we could live and shape by ourselves, only by observing”, Hourani deems his collections as clothes that have erupted from his world. In palette of blacks, and shades of timeless colors, Hourani’s asexual, aseasonal couture collection exudes a sense of discreet chic and the essence of timeless style. Since his first show during Paris Haute Couture week in July 2012, Hourani has become the first designer to present a unisex Haute Couture show in history. Born and raised in different parts of the world, his exposure to various cultures from his rich Jordanian-Syrian heritage

and the multiple cities that he has lived in translates in his holistic design approach. Previously a model scout and fashion stylist, Hourani has bloomed into a designer and an artist. He describes himself as a self-thought designer driven by a passion for modernity. Hourani creates a unisex luxury that is changing the face of men’s and women’s fashion. His work encapsulates his vision of a world without any boundaries be it the physical, mental, or gender-based. Hourani’s philosophy behind his genderless, seasonless, timelessness vision stems from his curiosity and innocence driven by his “no-background background”. The non-conformist is well known for his bold experiments with new forms, textures, fabrics. In explaining his design process, Hourani starts with a form rather than thinking about clothes first. This has

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allowed his vision and creativity to flow freely to take its natural form. Dubbed a fashion visionary, Hourani’s avant-garde unisex designs resonates a sense of ambiguity and versatility that has captivated many. As a designer who started off designing for himself, Hourani describes his unisex designs as a representation of his point of view, his style and the epitome of the values of freedom and unisex elegance. His collection also conveys versatility, allowing the wearer to shape and form each piece in any way they deem fit. At the young age of 19, when Hourani worked as a stylist, he had access to the world’s most sought-after collections. He describes these five years as training for his


WHEN IT COMES TO HIS DESIGNS, HE DOES HIS BEST TO STAY FOCUSED ON HIS OWN AESTHETICS AND SEES IT MORE AS A QUEST FOR SOMETHING TIMELESS AND ANONYMOUS 22


dream venture as he preps for his launch. Fashion has always been a part of Hourani’s life. Since he was a child, he spent many hours accompanying his mother at the seamstress. This sparked his interest in fashion as he started to realize that he never wanted to wear anything that the other kids were wearing. He soon came to realize that he was often drawn to things that are different, something that has an aesthetic that doesn’t belong.

His experiences working with various artists such as MYKITA for a line of 3D inspired eyewear; Melissa Matos and Andrew Gordon MacPherson on an installation for Arnhem Mode Biennale 2011; and men’s wear label JOYCE have also shaped his perspective over the years. Now, working closely with photographer Marco Van Rijt, and fashion stylist Sonny Groo, his surroundings and circle of friends play a role in design sensibility.

Hourani’s greatest influence has always been himself. “It’s just a feeling... doing what I want to wear, it’s a continuity of all of that. My references are always the same: architecture, graphic design... it can be an image, a movie, a person - it can be anything. There are no specific influences. I always make clothing that I would like to wear myself,” said Hourani in an interview with Dazed Digital.

In understanding what makes his unisex collection so captivating and original, Hourani explains, “very often when looking at collections from a given season, you realize that there is a sense of cohesiveness, of consensus among the majority of designers. You can actually pinpoint the main trends of the season – shape, colors, lengths, etc.” Hence, when it comes to his designs, he does his best to stay focused

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on his own aesthetics and sees it more as a quest for something timeless and anonymous. Hourani’s has since grown his business to consist of two lines – Rad Hourani and a subsidary line, Rad by Rad Hourani. He continues to show the ready to wear unisex line Rad by Rad Hourani in New York, and will continue to present his namesake unisex Haute Couture collection in Paris.


Architectural Wonder FOR A SMALL-TOWNER WHO OPTED AWAY FROM THE FASHION CAPITALS OF THE WORLD, IRIS VAN HERPEN HAS CAUSED QUITE A COMMOTION. Text  Melanie C

T

he Dutch fashion designer graduated from the prestigious ArtEZ (Hogeschool voor Kunsten/ ArtEZ Institute of the Arts) in Arnhem in 2006, and started her own label the following year. She was then nominated for the prestigious Createurope and named a member of the exclusive French Trade Association of Haute Couture (Chambre Syndical de la Haute Couture). The Groninger Museum is now showcasing her first large-scale solo exhibition, a retrospective of her work. The twenty-eight year old has been called the “Alexander McQueen of tech geeks”. Incidentally, she did an internship with him, and renowned textile artist Claudy Jongstra. The nifty label picks up her manipulation and marriage of art and technology. “I’m more of a math person

and there’s a lot of math and science here and I like these endless puzzles.” That doggedness has materialised in some of the groundbreaking methods of constructing clothes, and imagining silhouettes. ‘Crystallization’ cemented her highly conceptual aesthetic. Five architectural pieces presented a fusion of the digital and handmade. Launched at the Amsterdam Fashion Week in 2010, the central piece was a woman’s shirt - repeated shapes exploding into volume over shoulders in a controlled cascade. Working with .MGX by Materialise and Daniel Widrig using rapid prototyping and computer modelling, this was a collaboration bridging science and art that would become a signature of her works. Van Herpen is a true egalitarian with materials: leather,

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synthetic boat rigging, Plexiglass and whalebones from children’s umbrellas make an appearance and are secondary to their function. Her prior collections focused on the same hyper organic materiality that can be achieved via technology. ‘Escapism’ (2011) was inspired by artist Kris Kuski in its obsessive geometry. The sensual ultra-glamour is a runway lab experiment. Water, ice and vapour give a metaphor for organic and chemical forces. Van Herpen manages to reveal a sexiness in the mechanical, and inject a life to futurism. ‘Crystallization’ was named by TIME Magazine as 2011’s 50 Best Inventions.


VAN HERPEN IS A TRUE EGALITARIAN WITH MATERIALS: LEATHER, SYNTHETIC BOAT RIGGING, PLEXIGLASS AND WHALEBONES FROM CHILDREN’S UMBRELLAS MAKE AN APPEARANCE AND ARE SECONDARY TO THEIR FUNCTION.

Björk on the cover of her Biophillia album could have been Van Herpen musically manifested. The intricate gold masterpiece of a dress, which also appears in the music video for ‘Moon’ as a harp-belted half-organism, reflects her futuresque otherworldliness; if ‘her’ is vague, the point is made. Van Herpen recently created the ‘Fang’ with footwear brand United Nude. Each 7.4-inch heel is marked with four different types of hand-cut gemstones: Labradorite, Tiger’s Eye, Leopard Jasper and Moss Agate. Each of the ‘Thorns’ is moulded in carbon fibre and fibreglass in the same carefully modulated 3D printing process. Huffington Post called it “the scariest shoes you’ve ever seen”. Where Couture is the height of fashion, the runway perhaps remains the last bastion unsullied by technology. Van Herpen’s genius comes in tearing down the dichotomy of science as dead, and in acknowledging leaps to come that can only be made transcending circumscribed boundaries of fashion, art, science, and well, of being. “When I collaborate with an architect, for example, it isn’t only the techniques I learn but also a new way of thinking and approaching design. It can

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be a relief to see different ways of working, to step outside your routine.” ‘Capriole’ (2011) perfectly relates this. This time with architect Isaie Bloch for the 3D prints, strips of plastic seared by a selective laser sintering machine are then painstaking arranged by hand. Sculptural with a discreet theatricality, the effect is more than a little startling. Whether we are encountering a mannered alien, or a transhuman, the result gives off the fearsome awe of a live voltage wire. Her latest collection “Hybrid Holism” is inspired by architect Philip Beesly and his vision of ‘living technology’. Jewel browns and metalesque sheens are the main colours of the 2012 Autumn/Winter collection. Alongside United Nude, Iris van Herpen also collaborated on this collection with designer Stephen Jones, artist Bart Hess, architect Isaie Bloch and graphic designer Tara Doughans. Each collection sees her work more refined, shooting sharp turns at the future of clothes-making and imagining - and imaging - the self. “It’s really important that fashion keeps dreaming,” van Herpen says, “If you don’t dream, what perspective do you have?”


NEO

TRIBALISM PHOTOGRAPHY  FELIX WONG  STYLING  KENIA AVE HAIR & MAKEUP  CARMELLE DA ROZA  MODEL  MARLA B

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WHITE SHIRT  PINK COBRA  HARNESS  ZANA BAYNE NECKLACE  THE LEATHER ATELIER  SKIRT  PINK COBRA BANGLES VINTAGE

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LEATHER CROP TOP PINK COBRA  NECKLACE & BELT THE LEATHER ATELIER  SHEER DRESS PINK COBRA SUNGLASSES VINTAGE PANTS VINTAGE GIANNI VERSACE  BANGLES TOPSHOP, VINTAGE RINGS STYLISTS OWN


DRESS PINK COBRA  NECKLACE THE LEATHER ATELIER SKIRT TOPSHOP  BRA SUBSUME CLOTHING BELT THE LEATHER ATELIER  SUNGLASSES VINTAGE BANGLES JOE FRESH  RINGS STYLISTS OWN


DRESS JEAN PAUL GAULTIER  NECKLACE THE LEATHER ATELIER JEANS CHEAP MONDAY CUSTOMIZED  RINGS STYLISTS OWN BANGLES JOE FRESH, TOPSHOP


WHITE SHIRT  PINK COBRA  HARNESS  ZANA BAYNE NECKLACE  THE LEATHER ATELIER  SKIRT  PINK COBRA BANGLES VINTAGE


CONCRETE

PHOTOGRAPHY  ZHANG JINGNA STYLING DONALD HICKS HAIR & MAKEUP  GEORGI SANDEV MODEL TATIANA KRASIKOVA PHOTO ASSISTANTS  ARISSA HA & JESSICA DEAN

DRESS LAQUAN SMITH NECKLACE & RING PAMELA LOVE BANGLES BEN AMUN

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DRESS LIE SANG BONG BRACELETS BEN AMUN SHOES RUTHIE DAVIS


DRESS LIE SANG BONG NECKLACE PAMELA LOVE BANGLES BEN AMUN

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JACKET LIE SANG BONG RING PAMELA LOVE

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Hundred MAKING RIPPLES IN THE INNER CREATIVE CIRCLES OF PARIS, IT IS HARD TO SAY WHETHER IT IS JÉRÉMY TRAN’S RELENTLESS COMMITMENT OR HIS SHEER VERSATILITY THAT MAKES THIS ARTIST’S WORK SO COMPELLING. Text  Ling X

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t 19, Jérémy can claim to be muse to photographers like Romain Le Cam and Quentin de Ladelune. He started classical dance at 8 before he moved on to train under Dominique Desessart at Coservartoire de Lille at 16. To date, he has a triple gold medal from Confederation Nationale de Danse and a silver medal from Federation Francaise de Danse among others. But perhaps what is most riveting isn’t his accolades but the enigma that surrounds Jérémy. Beneath his languid demeanour and quiet disposition, fierce passion broils with belying intensity.

settings. The photography and videos [that I produce] serve as medium to purvey this multi sensory experience. It’s a rupture of moral and social codes, an invitation to wonder and think out of the box. I hope to be multi-disciplinary. What’s the significance of Hundred? Tell us the story behind it. Why Hundred? When I started my work - the photography, the videography, the paintings and the literature - in 2007, I was looking for an artist pseudonym. Hundred occurred to me quite obviously; this is a number that has always fascinated me. That is part of the reason behind the name. The rest of is for me to know! But really, Hundred is more of a concept than a mere alias.

We speak to the artist to find the source of this. Could you give us an insight into what your work is about and what you hope to express? My craft is a mix of contemporary dance, classical dance, photography and film. I’m interested in exploring the notion of humanity; Man’s battles, his intimacies, and his solitudes. I express this through physicality, through timeless, intense yet universal imagery. My contemporary dance quickly transcends mere physicality or its [often] panoramic

What are you influenced by? What drives you to create, and what sustains that creativity? The human condition is my greatest source of inspiration; our emotions, our demeanour. I am very much enthralled by grand landscapes, nature… Life inspires

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I AM HERE TO FLOURISH AND HOPEFULLY GAIN THE RESPECT OF OTHERS. I’M HERE TO MAKE PEOPLE DREAM, TO PAVE THE WAY TO AN ALTERNATE UNIVERSE. THAT’S MY JOB, THAT’S MY PASSION.

me, Death inspires me. I look up to Hedi Slimane, Alfred Cheney Johnston, Sarah Moon, Jiri Kylian, Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui, Antoine Pevsner, Yiqing Yi, Francois Sagan, Rainer Maria Rilke, Damir Doma, Saycet and the list just goes on. What drives me on is the passion, the passion for dance, for photography, for art, for the collaborations, for the relationships forged thereafter and for the sheer pleasure of sharing.

malignant and such but that is part of the game. One just has to be careful and press on. Do you have a role model? I don’t quite have a fixed role model. I generally admire people who work a lot, who have a mission and an ambition. When you’re not busy working, what are you busy with? When I am not working, I go out with my friends, go to the mall, prepare for my future projects. I read, I collect a lot of music, photos and films that would inspire me. I love going to Paris – the parties, the restaurants. French and Asian cuisines are the best!

Your works contain a strong theatrical element. Have you collaborated with any thespians? I have done plenty of collaborations with numerous photographers, cinematographers, musicians, dancers, stylists but I have yet to work with a true blue thespian. Though I’m working on a new project with one, I can’t wait!

Many artists are driven to create by sorrow and/or pain. What about yourself? I think that it’s normal, trials and tribulations help in creation, but I think it’s important to know how to create in the spirit of jubilance as well as in melancholy, not just in sorrow.

Ideally, whom would you choose to work with? My dream is to work with Tilda Swinton, Ezra Miller, the company DV8, Jasmin Vardimon and great designers such as Damir Doma. How do you feel about your role as a performer? I am here to flourish and hopefully gain the respect of others. I’m here to make people dream, to pave the way to an alternate universe. That’s my job, that’s my passion. Do you commonly face any struggles in your work? Plenty! I work non-stop and this takes a toll on the body and mind. The best dancers, photographers and artists in general are those that persevere. There will naturally be people who are envious,

Jérémy’s full body of work is available on www.HNDRD.com

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AVAILABLE AT THOROCRAFT.COM 43


FALKENBERG, 2004


SWEDEN Photography by Gerry Johansson


Left to Right: HALMSTAD, 1995 AVESTA, 2001 NORDMALING, 2001 46


Hymn to the Immortal Photography  Mikael Wardhana  Hair & Makeup  Steph Lai Model  Katerina Chang All Clothes Featuring  Natalia Grzybowski

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TOMORROW IS ANOTHER DAY

M ATHI EU L EH ANNEUR Text  Aran A

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athieu Lehanneur’s work encompasses and blends art and architecture with various forms of design (industrial, interior and product). Born in Rochefort and now based in Paris, he has become known for his ability to create iconic works, equally practical and magical, that effectively “summarise a time, a place, or a brand”.

the image created is simultaneously ethereal and hyperreal. It functions as a crystal ball of sorts, allowing viewers to “elude the course of time” and preview life a day ahead of reality. But this preview is by no means definite - ultimately it is built upon approximation and deduction. Lehanneur seems to be reminding us that even a thoroughly scientific prediction contains elements that are so hazy and abstract. That our lives, like the weather, are subject to so many volatile factors that they are impossible to perfectly forecast, and should instead be taken each unique day at a time.

Demain est un Autre Jour (Tomorrow is Another Day) is an installation made from LED screens, honeycomb polycarbonate, a PC and an acrylic lens. Weather forecasts are constantly downloaded from the Internet, data then synthesised to produce an image and diffused through the honeycomb structure screen. The result is an impressionistic depiction of the following day’s sky. Different every day but always tranquil and luminescent,

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Image by The Douglas Brothers


As a Matter of Fact ON 14 MAY 2012, A TWEET WENT VIRAL: “GABRIEL GARCÍA MÁRQUEZ DIES. I RECEIVED THE NEWS NOW FROM NEW YORK.” THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNER WAS ONLY THE LATEST CELEBRITY VICTIM OF TWITTER KILLINGS. BOTH THE NEWS AND THE ACCOUNT LINKED TO ITALIAN AUTHOR AND ACADEMIC UMBERTO ECO WERE FALSE. Text  Melanie C

I

n a lecture in Cartagena, Colombia, Jaime García Márquez told students that his older brother has senile dementia and can no longer write. He calls him on the telephone to ask basic questions. Jaime is the only family member to have commented on the fiercely private Márquez. In a strange mirror of Márquez’s tales, a hole had been ruptured in the public universe as media began lamenting the loss of the legendary writer; a bubble had burst even while everyday continued the same. In 2000, Márquez himself was forced to deny such rumours while battling lymphatic cancer. La Republica, a Peruvian newspaper, had published “The Puppet” under his name. The poem, superimposed on his image, suggested his impending

death. News spread, the uncharacteristic sentimentality of the prose notwithstanding. Mexican ventriloquist Johnny Welch later proclaimed his indignation at losing his byline. The 85-year-old Colombian is considered one of the most important writers of the 20th century. He stands alongside Jorge Luis Borges, Carlos Fuentes, and Mario Vargas Llosa as rare giants of Latin American literature, which has always suffered the shortsightedness of the West. His name is synonymous with surreal imagination. They call him Gabo, affectionately. His masterpiece One Hundred Years of Solitude tells the tales of a family

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unable to care for their senile grandfather. It first appeared in Buenos Aires in 1967, becoming an instant classic in the Spanish-speaking world. Márquez says everything was “copied” from stories told by ordinary people in the north coast of Colombia. It has sold more than thirty million copies, and been translated into over thirty languages. His other novels include Love in the Time of Cholera and Chronicle of a Death Foretold. His titles, equally expansive-one short story was titled “The Handsomest Drowned Man in the World”. His parents were strangers to him until he moved to live with them at nine, when


MÁRQUEZ’S GREATEST CONTRIBUTION AS A WRITER WAS IN EXPOSING TALES AS TRUTH. JOURNALISM REMAINED HIS BEATING CONSCIENCE.

his maternal grandfather died, he had objected to his parent’s courtship. The former was a liberal who told the boy horrifying accounts of civil wars, instead of fairy-tales; his father was a conservative, and rather a ladies’ man. Márquez credits his grandmother as the source of all beliefs supernatural, which would suffuse his tales. The world would term this delicious disjunct ‘Magic Realism’. Márquez began writing by drawing cartoons. At the university in Bogotá, his circle of friends drew him towards contemporary writers. He recounts Franz Kafka fondly in interviews, “The first line almost knocked me off the bed. The first line (in Kafka’s Metamorphosis) reads, ‘As Gregor Samsa awoke that morning from uneasy dreams, he found himself transformed in his bed into a gigantic insect...’ When I read the line I thought to myself that I didn’t know anyone was allowed to write things like that. If I had known, I would have started writing a long time ago.” On 9 April 1948, political leader Jorge Eliécer Gaitán was shot, sparking riots and a decade long unrest that still lingers. Colombia’s El Bogotazo branded in Márquez a social and national consciousness, and perhaps responsibility. The writers of the American Lost Generation kept him down to earth. A moral hopelessness, born of the world’s First War, spurred a turn away from Victorian

florid prose. His old stories now appeared flaccid. He began sieving from his own life and surroundings, and determined to keep his writing clear and precise. His first novel Leaf Storm in 1953 was inspired after returning to his birthplace after twenty-two years, though it wasn’t until 1967, after five of his eight books, that he received any money for his writing. Born in plantation-region Aracataca, Márquez used the houses, the people, and memories with great vividness in his novels. It became the fictional village of Macondo in his novels. Márquez’s greatest contribution as a writer was in exposing tales as truth. Journalism remained his beating conscience. He said, “I’ve always been convinced that my true profession is that of a journalist. What I didn’t like about journalism before were the working conditions.” He has maintained that there is no difference between journalism and novels, although “In journalism just one fact that is false prejudices the entire work. In contrast, in fiction one single fact that is true gives legitimacy to the entire work.” This reveals the sociological irony of Márquez. Gabo stretches across lands and time. His works explore solitude, but reflects the voices of multitudes. “It always amuses me that the biggest praise for my work comes from the imagination, while the truth is that there’s not a single line

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in all my work that does not have a basis in reality. The problem is that Caribbean reality resembles the wildest imagination.” Márquez has avoided the tendency other writers have of falling into the role of critic or theorist; he could never understand them either. He is a rare figure. In a time when both were severed from each other, he introduced the notion of magic as every day, and imagination as real as fact, although perception will always remember him for the former. His memoir Vivir para contarla (Living to Tell the Tale) was published in 2003. It seems unlikely he will complete the second part.


“Then he made one last effort to search in his heart for the place where his affection had rotted away, and he could not find it.� - One Hundred Years of Solitude


G H O S T

Photography  Skye Tan Styling Randolph Tan Hair  Andy Razali using Design Pulse by Matrix  Makeup  Melissa Yeo using Dior Model  Irina S (AVE Management)  All Clothes Featuring  Etro 70


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EYED GENTLEMAN Photography  Clifford Loh Styling Nabil Aliffi Grooming  Andy Razali using Design Pulse by Matrix Model  Stan S (Mannequin)   All Clothes Featuring  Burberry

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Photography Skye Tan Styling Nabil Aliffi Styling Assistant Raudha Hanafi Hair Sha Shamsi using Loreal Professional   Makeup Beno Lim using M.A.C. Cosmetics Model Dahlia I (Ave Management) Featuring Chopard and H&M


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Time Structures TIME PIECES INSPIRED BY THE PIONEERS OF MODERN ARCHITECTURE. Text  Kelly H

Alvar Aalto Momento Watches Born in Helsinki, this Finish designer, best known for his experimentation with wood during his mid-career, paved the way for a less purist Modern architecture. Today, the experimentation with wood, not just in buildings, but also in product design, has become a Scandinavian vernacular. These Momento timepieces best echo the organic wooden accent that is typical of Aalto’s designs. The elegant shell that comes in South African Sandalwood and Chinese Maplewood frames the understated design of the watch itself. The face is made of hairline finish 204 Stainless Steel and alloy while the two hands Citizen quartz movement is by trusted Japanese company, Miyota Co. Alvar Aalto is available at selected stockists worldwide. Visit momentowatches.com.

Tadao Ando Moonwatch His “Church of Light” stands ceremoniously against natural landscape in his hometown, Osaka. The backdrop of the altar is simply four spaced out concrete blocks that convene in the center to make out a silhouette of a crucifix, illuminated by natural light from the outdoors. A deceivingly simple design that is both profound and poignant. Incidentally, it’s also the piece that best depicts his concept of ‘critical regionalism’, a term coined by

Francesco Del Co to describe how Tadao strongly engages with the geographical context. Moonwatch by The Emotion Lab goes beyond that to explore a user-cosmic interaction. The watch keeps track of the lunar cycle with a dial that reflects the shape of the moon. The design firm wishes to establish a relationship between the moon cycle and a person’s emotional states. It’s a new concept of time based on nature that reminds us of Tadao Ando’s ‘critical regionalism’. Moonwatch is available at theemotionlab.com.

Thomas Heatherwick QLOCKTWO W When it comes to design, Thomas Heatherwick is arguably a national hero to Great Britain. This is fathomable given his clever design of the Olympic Couldron at the recently concluded London Olympics. This follows his slew of internationally acclaimed works that include the Seed Cathedral, Britain’s Pavilion at the Shanghai World Expo in 2010. Regardless of the object he designs, Thomas always challenges our pre-conceived notions of everyday objects and presents something completely out of the box. We thought this QLOCKTWO W watch by Biegert and Funk expresses just that sort of genius. Who would have known that spelling out the time could add so much value? This German design is sleek, simple

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yet rather unexpected, revolutionising the user experience. QLOCKTWO W is available in English, German and French in Black or Stainless Steel this fall. Visit qlocktwo.com to be placed on the waiting list.

Simone Giostra Touch Skin Watch He may not be one of the founding fathers of Modern Architecture but his work is definitely noteworthy. Simone is best known for his GreenPix Solar Powered LED Art which turns the solar energy it collects in the daytime into Beijing’s coolest after-dark digital screen in parallel with a day’s climatic cycle. This LED façade of the building is the biggest in the world and plays canvas to the works of artists like Xu Wenkai, Michael Bell Smith, Takeshi Murata and Varvara Shavrova. Touch Skin watches by Niels Astrup runs on a similar state-of-the-art LED technology. The watches are designed with a super slim dial that is all but second skin. The genius lies not just in its zen-like minimalism but also in its interactive function. With a touch screen display, the face of the watch can be personalised according to the user’s needs and preferences. What’s more, custom designed skins can be downloaded onto the watch, leaving the possibilities endless, much like the blank canvas that is Simone’s LED wall. To purchase, visit nastrup.dk.


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Travel Essentials for the Modern Man KEY ITEMS FOR YOUR TRAVEL KIT Text  Kelly H

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or the modern gentleman, travelling light is increasingly becoming a mantra. Where mobility means freedom - to board and disembark from a plane without the hassle of excess luggage - it helps to edit down your suitcase to the bare yet indispensible essentials.

05. Uniform Wares 250 Series Steel Wristwatch, USD 803, available at www.mrporter.com

We rounded up a few of our favourite travel companions this fall/winter, bearing in mind ingenuity of their designs in meeting both the practical and stylistic needs of today’s Man of the World.

07. Dapper Gentleman’s Toiletries Kit from Aesop, USD 231, available at www.mrporter.com

06. Gregory Peck Polarised Acetate Sunglasses by Oliver Peoples, USD 521, available at www.mr.porter.com

08. Armando Cabral Rubber-Sole Leather Oxford Shoes, USD 477, available at www.mrporter.com

01. Cavalier No. 98 in Chestnut Leather from Ghurka, USD 1,195, available at www.ghurka.com

09. Smythson Crocodile-Embossed Leather Notepad, USD 281, available at www.mrporter.com

02. Polyuerathane Coat from 3.1 Phillip Lim, USD 954, available at Club 21 Men

10. Parrot Zik by Starck Noise Cancellation Wireless Headphones, USD 399.95, available at www.parrot.com

03. NN. 07 Rocky Crew Next Sweater, USD 297, available at www.mrporter.com

11. A.P.C. New Standard Striaght-leg Selvedge-denim Jeans, USD 215, available at www.mrporter.com

04. Tennessee-Hill-inspired Topo Gentleman’s Whiskey Flask from Eastman X Ziba’s, Price available upon request at www.eastman.com

12. Moleskine Luggage Tag, USD 9.95, available at www.moleskineus.com

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Zaha Hadid, An Introduction Long Overdue A QUICK LOOK AT ONE OF THE WORLD’S MOST ACCOMPLISHED ARCHITECTS AND HER BUILDINGS THAT NEVER GOT BUILT. Text  Melanie C

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hether these speak of bad luck or questionable talent have long been a point of contention. For the cognoscenti however, her brand of deconstructive expression revels in exciting new dimensions. All jutting angles, or none at all, hers is a forceful dynamism that echoes her personality.

the international design competition to design Singapore’s OneNorth master plan. In 2004, she received the Pritzker Architecture Prize, architecture’s equivalent of the Nobel Prize. She picked up the Stirling Prize two years running, for MAXXI – National Museum of the 21st Century Arts, Rome, and the Evelyn Grace Academy, London, which was lauded as a masterpiece alongside Rome’s ancient wonders. She is only the third Briton, and first female and Muslim to win the award. Her London Aquatics Centre was one of the centrepieces of the London 2012 Olympics, and called a “triumph” by The Telegraph, gratifying nods from the country that once called her a “foreigner”.

Cardiff in 1995 represented her lowest point. Her plan for a futuristic opera house was rejected in favour of a rugby stadium. Hadid says simply, “The primary reason is because people were not used to (my ideas). Second, there is an element of prejudice and an element of resistance.” She does not hesitate to point at sexism, “Architecture is unnecessarily difficult. (But) the problem is that the professional relationship between men and women has never been normalised, so men don’t know how to behave with women.” Hadid is sixty-two this year, and finally turning in the rewards.

The Phaeno Science Center in Wolfsburg, Germany, built between 1999 and 2005 is regarded as one of her finest works. The suspended awkwardness of the shape hangs at an eternal transformation, while the space beneath allows, and integrates, the social fabric. It also represents Hadid’s evolution as she moves from fixed geometries to more fluid complexities. As one of her quotable quotes which has become her trademark du jour, goes, “There are 360 degrees, so why stick to one?”

Hadid grew up in Baghdad as the daughter of the then-leader of the Iraqi Progressive Democratic Party. Further educated in Switzerland, and a degree in Mathematics at the American University in Beirut. Later, she settled in London in the mid 1970s. She has not been back to Iraq in thirty years. “I was always able to go back, it was just difficult to leave. You had to get an exit visa.” Her principles for design are misleading in its simplicity. Buildings are “fundamentally about shelter”, but carry the weight of social and individual idealism. The space created should feed the soul.

Hadid has proven incorrigibly stubborn to criticism, and her aspirations remain grand. “It would be interesting to do a large project without looking backwards. A whole city!” She echoes that realisation when Iraq’s Central Bank has courted her to design its central headquarters. Characteristically, Hadid chooses to muse over theory, ”I really thought, at the time, that there was so much rebuilding and social structures to deal with. It wasn’t just about one building.”

2000 has seen her beginning to stake claims. Her projects include the unrealised Guggenheim Singapore, though in 2002 she won

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VIRTUAL WARS PRADA FANTASY LOOKBOOK Text  Kelly H

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iuccia Prada is often lauded as a ‘thinking designer”. What that entails is arbitrary but one can suspect it has to do with the way that she always delivers something contemporary that reinforces her reputation as a “Post-Modernist”. Her fall/winter 2012 collection immerses viewers in an augmented reality, where the suspension of disbelief invites us to suspend our preconceived notions of beauty and femininity, as strong regal virtual princesses marched down the runway. The Prada men this season are clad in power, vanity and strength of a similar vein. Modeled after the 19th Century tailoring, with the grandiose of the high collars and aristocratic embellishments, the menswear emanates a pedigree-esque masculinity that is only befitting. In this Vulture Magazine exclusive, we bring you the fantasy lookbook that takes you to the very virtual landscape that gave birth to the fall/winter 2012 collection.

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A Star is Born THE PERFECT ICONIC PUN REPRESENTS THE BIGGEST LEAP MANKIND IS YET TO FACE. Text  Melanie C

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ur destiny is to become like the gods we once worshipped and feared—it sums up the thrilling combination of an evolved future and dangerous free fall envisioned by physicist Dr. Michio Kaku.

New York, and loves practising twirls and glides in skating rinks, adding a Newtonian glimmer. His website sells T-shirts for him and her carrying his visage anointed in shooting stars.

One of the world’s leading theoretical physics professors, Kaku has authored several best sellers, hosts two radio programs, as well as the ‘Sci Fi Science’ TV show. He has appeared on network TV interviews, commenting on the BP oil disaster to the Japanese tsunami, and impact on Fukushima nuclear plants. Quantum physics is science’s most glamorous quirk, and the futurologist is its superstar who manages to straddle the polemics of popular science and alternative theory. He is both scientific intrigue and cultural diplomat.

Kaku gained fame as the co-founder of the string field theory with Prof. Keiji Kikkawa of Osaka University. Building on what Einstein had fraught over for the last thirty years of his life, the unified theory managed to finally combine general relativity and quantum mechanics, by using the mathematics of fields to describe the behaviour of sub-atomic particles.

Geekery has of course given the general sciences a second wind since it first crashed the mainstream world view during the Enlightenment. His silver hair and earnest eyes blend both an Einstein genius and the everyman appeal of Richard Gere. He holds the Henry Semat Chair and Professorship at the City University in

Let me break that down. The string field theory comes the closest to being the golden “theory of everything” by shattering the previous paradigm by re-imagining what we think of as ‘particles’ as tiny onedimensional loops that appear differently depending how it vibrates. Effectively, having been brought up on static neoncoloured models of atoms and molecules, this is the next modern mind flip since man thought the Sun revolved around the Earth.

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The implications were —and are still— unfathomable. Niels Bohr, the father of ‘orthodox‘quantum physics has assured us by saying, “Anyone who is not shocked by quantum theory has not understood it”. This covers Star Trek/Wars-type technologies: force fields, teleportation, telekinesis, mind-reading and invisibility. While these became simultaneously passé and far-fetched as they failed to explode into reality (by now), Kaku believes these will be part of our reality. In essence, and more importantly, the seismic shift challenges the reductionist worldview equated with ‘scientific thinking’ that has dominated society for over four hundred years. Kaku’s view of the future heralds the next era after Newtonian physics. One day we will wear the internet. The word ‘computer’ will cease to become relevant. “We’ll simply turn things on, (and) have DNA chips inside our toilet, which will sample our blood and urine and tell us if we have cancer


“WE PHYSICISTS ARE THE ONLY SCIENTISTS WHO CAN SAY THE WORD “GOD” AND NOT BLUSH”

maybe ten years before a tumour forms.” Imagine having Facebook in your contact lenses, with YouTube on the side. Barack Obama can skip the teleprompter. Forget dusty memories, or human foibles such as mystery or boredom. Kaku’s enthusiasm is perfectly encapsulated in his recent book ‘Physics of the Future’. It spans interviews with over three hundred scientists and foresees A.I. and nanotechnology to the dawning of a planetary civilisation in predicting what our world will look like in 2100. Stem cell research has already enabled the world’s first windpipe transplant. Memories can be transplanted. Tape-recorded impulses in the hippocampus of one mouse as it learns a task allows the next mouse receiving the same triggers to repeat the task despite never having learnt it before. Considering the impossible extends to the far-out, sometimes literally—Kaku is one of the few scientists who support the SETI (search for extraterrestrial intelligence) project. He also echoes Nobel laureates in the idea of consciousness as the driver of reality. Willing to explore areas of science deemed heretical, Kaku crucially keeps the window open for the next leap our societies obviously require. These Wellsian ideas and hippie ghosts of ‘69 offer a kind of hope to a world

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crumbling on its Newtonian wheels. “We physicists are the only scientists who can say the word “God” and not blush,” Kaku wrote in his Big Think blog. He points out that “consciousness is one of the great problems facing science”—and it is our greatest opportunity. We live in a time that demands broader thinking. We also live in a time that has proved divisiveness and the concrete has proven destructive, and inadequate. We require interconnectedness. To fully consider that would be to include things not quite tangible nor visible. He says, “Scientists can have, almost approaching a religious experience, as to realise that we are children of the stars.” Kaku insists, “What we usually consider are impossible are simply engineering problems. There’s no law of physics preventing them.” To Stephen Hawking’s wisecrack of where, then, are the time travellers from the future? Kaku offers the nugget, “It could be that they are invisible.” For a science that has too often tried to nail down reality, often to its own coffin, Kaku is a breath of fresh air. His receptivity to the unknown challenges the entrenched disregard for the intangible and invisible. His gift lies in his returning a humanity to science, and a wonder for the world that most would have left behind as an indulgence of childhood.


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Stockists Andreia Chaves www.andreiachaves.com

Dan and Dave www.dananddave.com

Lie Sang Bong www.liesangbong.com

Prada www.prada.com

A.P.C www.apc.fr

Etro www.etro.com

Max Mara www.maxmara.com

QLOCKTWO www.qlocktwo.com

Aesop www.aesop.com

Ghurka www.ghurka.com

Mocoloco www.mocoloco.com

Rad Hourani www.radhourani.com

Baartmans And Siegel www.baartmansandsiegel.com

Givenchy www.givenchy.com

Moleskine www.moleskine.com

Smythson www.smythson.com

Ben Amun www.ben-amun.com

Issey Miyake www.isseymiyake.com

Momento Watches www.mementowatches.com

The Emotion Lab www.theemotionlab.com

Brian Atwood www.brianatwood.com

Iris Van Herpen www.irisvanherpen.com

Mr Porter www.mrporter.com

The Leather Atelier www.theleatheratelier.com

Burberry www.burberry.com

H&M www.hm.com

Niels Astrup www.nastrup.dk

Thorocraft www.thorocraft.com

Cheap Monday www.cheapmonday.com

Handgraft www.hardgraft.com

Pamela Love www.pamelalovenyc.com

Topshop www.topshop.com

ChloĂŠ www.chloe.com

Jean Paul Gaultier www.jeanpaulgaultier.com

Parrot Zik www.parrot.com/usa

Versace www.versace.com

Chopard www.chopard.com

Joe Fresh www.joefresh.com

Pasionae www.pasionae.com

Zana Bayne www.zanabayne.com

CJ Yao www.cjyao.co.uk

Koonhor www.koonhor.com

Phillip Lim www.31philliplim.com

Club 21 www.club21global.com

LaQuan Smith www.laquansmith.com

Pink Cobra www.pinkcobra.ca


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Vulture Magazine Issue 01: Basic Space  

the official page of VULTURE: Daily news of exploratory rush; the new age confinement of an independent space.

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