The Big Smoke.

The Big Smoke.

Saturday, 27 November 2010

Monday, 22 November 2010

Seduced by Any Human Heart

Oh wasn't it beautiful. The lead man dashing and charismatic, the setting romantic and idyllic. Beginning in the glory of the roaring twenties,  the current period drama, taken from the original book of the same name written by William Boyd, is gracefully illuminating our very modern screens with the most stunning display of flawless, snappy, refined and of the fashion period costumes. I wish style of this stature exuded today... The episode is reminiscence of love and the raw power of lust. Any Human Heart, all human nature.

The series has been cinematically shot in so many seductive ways. As we look on in reverence at how the style of the day was then so chic, dapper, a thorough and conscious effort made and put into every day dress. Effortlessly cool. The men poised and handsome. The ladies feisty and elegant. The love intense and passionate. The city scapes and the country panoramics show some of the best of early 20th Century England backdrops. I recommend to watch this series for the visual aesthetics alone. I feel similarities or certainly accepted influences from A Single Man, that stories can be quietly understated, but glamorised when told and a complete pleasure to the eyes.

The story narrates, but in flashbacks it seems, the life of Logan Mountstuart, writer, social climber, charmer (somewhat promiscuous, shall we say) but genuine gentleman, with the ability to wear his heart on his sleeve. His exceptionally colourful life intertwined with so many key events and people of the time. My favourite moment so far has to be the moment he chats with Ernest Hemingway, as you do. Perfectly confident, momentarily in awe and equally flippant to the romanced speech from the poet. It's intriguing and clever, an original novel and screenplay at its best and most beautiful.

I fear next Sunday cannot come quick enough.

Sunday, 21 November 2010

Bridget Riley at The National Gallery

Begins on the 24th November. Riley is an iconic artist of our time and of immense personal inspiration. Her prints are a wonder of colour, pattern and psychedelic geometry that leads the eye and mind to leaps of complex trickery, builds momentum and executes with pleasant surprises. The artist and the gallery have a deep affiliation and i anticipate the work to look at home but newly decorated on the walls of the National.

The Exhibition is on until May 2011. Pleasure your eyes with illusion and experience up close and personal.

UPDATE: A film accompanying the exhibition, which is awakening to see in the walls of the Pre Raphaelite surroundings of The National Gallery, is definitely worth seeing and taking note of. It goes into the depths of practice and the tenacious searching it takes for Riley to complete a work. An incredibly insightful piece of film, terribly English in its dated narration, but moving and eye opening. And charismatic i suppose.

Uber cool. Simply, awesome.

Satellite images of the Earth depicted through the extremes of the colour spectrum, look 'remarkably' unnatural.

View the stunning online Gallery from the Guardian.

Thursday, 18 November 2010

Secret Sale... i just... can't... keep secret...

The Royal College Of Art is hosting it's annual and innovative 'secret sale' this weekend. This exhibits nearly 3000 postcards from contemporary artists, designers and RCA graduates themselves. It is a truly original and exciting idea within its shadow of secrecy. You can view this sea of postcard sized artworks to as much as your hearts desire but you shall not know who they are by until you purchase the chosen piece. Under these naked conditions, stripped of any preconceptions of art you have or confidence of 'what is art' you may find yourself surprised what your eye favours without knowledge or prejudgement.

I will be heading straight down for a look, curious as i will be to see what it is i really do like. Will it be for aesthetics, impact or shock value i acquire. We'll soon find out.

The exhibition is on at The RCA until tomorrow Friday 19th. And the sale will take place on Saturday.

I heart originality.

Wednesday, 17 November 2010

Hermes, Je t'aime. And the girls who wear these scarves...

Who doesn't love a Hermes scarf. Beautiful, uplifting and ever on the eccentric side. Hermes are celebrating our affinity with these lovely pieces by opening two pop up stores in London, The Shoreditch pop up palace for scarves-a-plenty opens tomorrow until the 21st. Quick! And the second opens in West London from 25th November.

J'aime mon carré means affectionately 'I love my scarf', the event's title. A genius advertising campaign and masterstroke that spoils us not only with two new Pop Up Shops in the city, but by also tempting us further with a novel, youthful and a la mode style interaction with the brand to feature and showcase the mademoiselle's who really wear these stunning scarves through four cities, London, Paris, New York and Tokyo. Street pictures of 'real people' adorning them and an alluring film piece ( )  romantically remind us of the beauty of these scarves and the joy they bestow upon us.

Tuesday, 16 November 2010

Pretty Fog, you knocked me off my feet this morning. Delight me again tomorrow...

Anna Sui for Anthropologie. Boho, no.

I love my Vintage Anna Sui dress i brought only this year in LA, its 'simply' quirky and i know not why or how I've come to that conclusion, perhaps it is subconsciously projecting some of her previously unique styles and oh so wonderful recent history-of vividly in my mind that makes me hold onto this piece, clutching it to the sky in an ' It's fashion. It's vintage way!'... Perfectly acceptable. And while it is familiar to see monochromatic pieces by the designer in her Anthropolgie collaboration. And although her signature and experimentation with print is present. I feel like i am being cheated out of the playful nature of the label (even though a trompe l'oiel dress is there for the taking). Tough client i know.

I forever anticipate the catwalks every season for the inspirational shows, and prints in particular, Anna Sui gives to us just like some revelation. I just cannot feel a connection with the pieces within this delightful store (in itself). Anthropologie i do adore you. Anna Sui you are an aspiration. So maybe next time, I'd just like to be 'moved' at least... A compelling must-have, buoyant, and/or irrational spontaneous purchase too much to ask? Surely not.

Thursday, 11 November 2010

So you want to be on trend.

An English Eccentric Equestrian inspired ride of a Dandy air about you, singing a bird song and plumping feathers ready for flight. Maybe an artifical intarsia jumper obviously standing in an extremely altered and digital world with highly saturated surroundings. AW10? Nailed.

Do enjoy.

Does anyone else hear that?...

The accompanying theme tune to my life, world, would either be the slightly chaotic Faster Kill Faster Kill Pussycat from Paul Oakenfield or the determined Don't Stop Me Now by the legends that are Queen. Yes. I'd be happy with that musical meter matching every step. David Lamb you can narrate. The Wonder Years meets Ally Macbeal throwback mix. Just a thought...

Monday, 8 November 2010

Out of the black and into... the smoke. No yellow?

Ok, so it's Autumn, Winter for as much as the temperature is worth. It's suddenly, for do you remember Summer? I do. I think. But yes it's suddenly very cold and very dark regardless of the hour going back. But London? A sea of black on the commute, really?? I for one wear a lot of black, it's neat, cool, i like to think edgy and mostly outfits back with everything i have easy. Not to mention the way i wear my make-up quite heavy on the eyes. But even i am fearing the Winter blues, or blacks, in the London fashion stakes. Particularly on our commute folks.

I'm always incredibly defensive of the city commute to work, we are not a zombie nation as many outsiders like to claim, we do suffer from an immense lack of sleep yes, agreed. I am always amazed when i get the 6.03 am train to Cannon Street just how many people are on their way to work, or most probably pretty much there. My alarm goes off at 5/5.30am and I'm pretty sure I'm never asleep before 12.30am, regardless of how early i go to bed. So four and a half/five hours sleep it is then. Great. I'd prefer this to be slightly more than the national average, unlike calorie intake. But still we're up, raring to go... well with time, and caffeine. But not a lifeless Zombie or a black hole thank you very much critics.

So why the black? Black coats, gloves, scarfs, bags, shoes and yet more bags. It is practical yes, and smart. But i did have a little daydream this evening on my way home that what if people looked like,wore, reflected say,  the colours of the vibrancy of their minds at that exact and current state. What a different, more animated and in turn truer London scene it would actually be. Tick... ticking away brains, might mean lime green, bright blue for motivation, red for a pulse or adrenalin rush, the brightest yellow for a bright spark of an idea, orange for remembering something from the night before, or purple for potential etc... Surely that reflects the inner Londoners. It is a silent and very politely English and uneventful scene i grant you, but think of the commute more as a silent disco where the sheer volume of the music being blasted through the eardrums of the music masses with individual tastes and styles and the tapping of the fingers or the foot that indicates something building momentum within, would make even you dance like no-one was watching or like the melody and precussions were vibrating through the veins of everyone else around you aswell. Or those brains woken up from some particularly inspiring or thought provoking; either way, newspaper feature that sparks a definite, conscious response. A conversation for later perhaps. Or books that enthrall and captivate and render the commuter unaware even of if a white elephant stood right before them on the tube.

If you look, and look a little closer the commute is a hub of activity and potential, we haven't achieved much so far, we certainly haven't conquered the world yet today, by 8am no. But that many people with ideas, buzzing away, contemplating, planning and interacting; if they'd only wish too in one place that early in a morning could be something. If only personified in equivalently busy active outfits of an equally vibrant palette.

If you could view the inner pulse of the city through the whole colour spectrum with energy sensitive and ehancing glasses,  i believe you really would be blinded by the sheer height and intensity of pigment visible before you.
So, although i admit i also saw a bit of grey, khaki, camel yes on trend thank you AW10 you were correct, a bit of navy, thank you Barbour for the quilted jacket refined but determined explosion. Do replace this relentless black with your true colours (in the words of Cindy Lauper... i shan't sing). Even if it just a red scarf London and be yourself.

The top of Canary Wharf and the HSBC building looked on fire tonight amoungst its dizzy lights and the mist...


Sunday, 7 November 2010

Keep Sake launch a stunning SS11 collection. Prepare to be dazzled...

Set in amongst an approaching haunting Halloween season the fresh and feminine label Keep-Sake London host their first launch party for their new SS11 collection.  The juxtaposition is wonderful. And what a success it is on the night.
A packed room of people eager for the SS11 Catwalk show to start are then given exactly what they came for with a visually tantalising but delicate explosion of floral print and colour flourishing then strolling confidently and beautifully through the room.  ‘The hand designed prints are becoming our signature; this is how we can tell a story with our collections. I think they are key to each of our collections.’ As I am happily informed.

Read more from the launch party across the page under Articles...  And follow the story and collections online at

Saturday, 6 November 2010

Nigel Kennedy rocked the Royal Albert Hall. Vivaldi himself would have been proud

The rebel of the Classical Music world showed us what an enigmatic, emphatic and exceptional performer he really is. Along side the Orchestra Of Life, Nigel Kennedy interacted with the audience continually, was clearly in awe of his fellow musicians and humbled by the  very music of Vivaldi and The Four Seasons being performed before us. The evening was a wonderful and delightful pleasure to the ears. What Kennedy does best is break down any pretentious barrier around Classical Music to allow the audience to be comfortable and simply inspired. His original personal style is only second to his natural talent as a genius with a Violin. It was as though Nature intended all along for Kennedy to play the Violin, a necessary part of something. Not just a man made instrument then learnt, well. The energy and life bellowing and echoing around the great hall from this one man and his fellow musicians gave you goosebumps and a racing heart, once again.

Well, it is still a shame Tate Modern that the new Turbine Installation The Unilever Series: Ai Weiwei's Sunflower Seeds 2010.

, is still not quite as interactive as intended to be, or we would like but... Each seed is individual and handmade out of clay. Hense the end to the visitor's initially (extremely 'enthusiastic' so we hear...) interaction. Dust fumes you see. But read more about or view the 'one to one' video and visitor questions with the artist. The installation is still monochromatically dynamic and definitely worth a look, sadly not a feel...