33

May 2010

Monocle's May issue looks at the ascent of Brasília – why yellow and green are the new red, white and blue in international diplomacy.

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Oceania Briefing

Lawn bowls undergoes a youth revolution in Australia, and New Zealand finally dumps a confusing traffic law.

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Culture Briefing

Monocle has a chat with the chairman of auction house Bonham's Asia division, and we review the new Bill Hicks biopic and the third album from Paris-based tango tearaways Gotan Project.

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Defence Briefing

Beijing and Delhi announce their defence budgets almost simultaneously, Egypt vies to build its own fighter aircraft and Israel unveils its text message air-raid warning system.

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Fonts of knowledge

Deadlines mean nothing to Japanese font-maker Morisawa. The firm will take up to four years and spend €800,000 to get a typeface right. This meticulousness has led its fonts to become as celebrated as Helvetica and adorn…

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Isolated case

Having fought with most of its neighbours, Eritrea has few friends. And offers of help from the West are turned away as the president believes aid does more harm than good. But meanwhile people starve and flee abroad.

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Inventory No. 33

On this month’s shopping list: some nifty business card holders, a Paul Smith for Stelton kitchenware collection and a pair of rockabilly worker boots.

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Word champion

He made serious literature popular and if he liked a new book the nation ran out and bought it. He even made a televised spelling test appointment viewing. The talk-show host and TV producer Bernard Pivot is a peculiarly…

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Forest wisdom

Sankara Hotel & Spa is a new eco-friendly island hideaway surrounded by ancient forests and mountains off the coast of Kyushu. It offers detached villas and a cultural blend of Balinese design and impeccable Japanese hos…

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Sunny outlook

The Mojave desert receives more sunlight than anywhere else in the US, so plans for it to become a solar-power ‘Saudi Arabia’ seem spot on. But while many recession-hit locals are in full support, others are casting a…

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Monocle travel guide

This issue we’re excited about the openings of cosy hotels in Japan and Taipei, a Thai island retreat, a Swedish eco-lodge and a unique retail store in Antwerp. We also profile an airline, Susi Air, in Java.

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Jungle flyer

Susi Air, based in Pangandaran, West Java, was founded by a husband and wife team and came into its own after the 2004 tsunami.

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Up the tubes

Email looked to have made obsolete the process of transporting data by pneumatic tubes, but logistics firm Swisslog saw a potential growth market: healthcare. Now, every new hospital has a network to carry drugs and samples…

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Bowled over

In a part of South Korea that is so remote it doesn’t even make it on to the map, 84-year-old Lee Bong-ju has been busy reviving the tradition of making beautiful, unique Korean bronzeware.

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Mar Mikhael

Over the last few years, boutiques, architectural practices, bars and an arts centre have been set up in this Armenian neighbourhood but for many residents, old and new, the charm of Mar Mikhael lies in its authenticity and…

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Elegant solution

Curate your wardrobe with simple spring masterpieces. We pick the showstoppers at the 21_21 Design Sight museum in Tokyo Midtown.

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Museum pieces

Museum culture has altered radically in recent years. Here we spotlight the most exciting venues and ask what makes an ideal 21st-century museum.

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Turin, shrewd

Guido Martinetti is one half of the chilled duo behind Grom ice cream (and one of our ‘new heroes’ featured in issue 29). When he is not on the road checking on suppliers, he can be found around Piazza Carlo Felice in his…

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Time lords

Every spring, the world’s watchmakers and horology enthusiasts descend on Basel for the industry’s key fair, where the latest innovations in timekeeping are unveiled. We went along to gauge the mood and pick our favourite…

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