The Monocle Minute

In association with Brand Hong Kong

The week ahead, opportunities and observations
Saturday 12 November 2016

Image: Juliana Johnston

Font of knowledge

Type is all around us but it’s so ubiquitous that we are often entirely unconscious of its influences. Graphic designer and author Sarah Hyndman has a particular interest in the psychology of type; her research topics include profiling the personalities of typefaces and identifying the effect typography might have on us. What’s more she is on a one-woman mission to make typography accessible and exciting for everybody, not just designers. Sarah will run a Type Tasting studio at the Chocolate Factory in northeast London during the Winter Open Studios Weekend on Saturday 26 and Sunday 27 November. It will be a chance for visitors to get a taste of the evocative nature of typefaces and fonts, how they create a first impression, alter our interpretation and influence our behaviour and mood – even before we have time to read the words.

Image: Yannick Sas

Hitting the right notes

Brussels’ biennial Ars Musica Festival gets into the swing of things in the 1920s art nouveau Bozar concert hall today before dispersing across 17 locations around the city over the course of 16 days. The 27th edition celebrates 150 years of diplomatic ties between Belgium and Japan under the title The Land of the Rising Sun. Venerated masters of Japanese music, such as the late Maki Ishii and Toru Takemitsu, will be honoured alongside performances from 30 of the country’s top composers – as well as a host of Belgian talent. Belgian composer Claude Ledoux will unite the two cultures in sonic harmony at Bozar on 17 and 18 November with a performance of the Orchestre Philharmonique Royal de Liège featuring seven traditional Japanese instruments.

An open book

If you weren’t able to make it to this year’s Singapore Writers Festival, here’s a selected duo of titles from an independent publisher that will act as able introductions to the Singaporean literary scene. Crossing Universes and Unhomed are two ambitious publications from Ethos Books that promote the work of budding editors, poets and unpublished writers. The beautiful editions, which contemplate travel and belonging respectively, are sparingly designed tactile touchpoints for all that independent publishers can do for young talent. At times pensive, irreverent and outlandish – and ever so slightly naive – they’re a lively insight into the young but fast-maturing scene here.

Image: Theo Wargo/Getty Images

Voice of defiance

One year after the Paris attacks, in which 130 people died, the Bataclan will open its doors once again. On Friday 13 November 2015 three gunmen entered the venue to the sound of Eagles of Death Metal and fired on a crowd of 1,500, killing 90. The reopening is symbolic of the nation’s power to heal and its denial to accept fear and defeat in the face of terrorism. Sting’s concert will be the first since that fateful night in order “to remember and honour those who lost their lives in the attack a year ago and to celebrate the life and the music that this historic theatre represents. In doing so we hope to respect the memory as well as the life-affirming spirit of those who fell. We shall not forget them.”

From Monocle 24

Image: Getty Images

Meet Xavier Dolan

Canadian film-maker Xavier Dolan is a prodigy. At age 16 he wrote his first feature film that took him all the way to Cannes. As he completes work on his seventh film, he tells Ben Rylan about his impatience with cruel reviews and why his latest film, “It’s Only the End of the World”, is his favourite work to date.

From Monocle Films

The Monocle Guide to Drinking & Dining

The Monocle Guide to Drinking & Dining is for anybody who enjoys food but can do without the foam, fuss and trickery it’s often served with. Monocle Films gives you a taste of the 340-page guide, which covers everything from where to drink and dine around the world to how to whip up the perfect roast chicken. Available now in The Monocle Shop.

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