The Monocle Minute

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The week ahead, opportunities and observations
Saturday 10 February 2018

Fashion

Italian American

New York hosts an unlikely visitor as a luxury Italian fashion house stages a unique show.

There’s an Italian luxury giant in the mix at New York Fashion Week this season. Kering-owned house Bottega Veneta, which usually shows in Milan, staged a glittering runway event last night. It made the one-off jump across the Atlantic to celebrate the launch of its new shop on Madison Avenue, a five-storey, metallic-hued temple to luxury (the “Maison” is Bottega Veneta’s largest store in the world, displaying homeware alongside men’s and womenswear). Bottega Veneta has been up and down in recent years but now looks to be on the mend: Kering’s results for the third quarter of 2017 showed sales up 0.9 per cent on the same period last year. With this impressive new space it will be hoping to make the most of the luxury comeback and the return of wealthy Chinese shoppers.

Art

Image: Joseph Fox

Show time

The much-anticipated reopening of a UK art venue that celebrates artistic diversity both at home and abroad.

Cambridge-based modern and contemporary-art gallery Kettle’s Yard reopens today after a two-and-a-half-year hiatus for renovation and expansion. A sanctuary for early 20th-century art, displayed across a labyrinth of rooms in the UK’s famous university city, Kettle’s Yard’s permanent collection includes work by Henri Gaudier-Brzeska, Constantin Brancusi, Barbara Hepworth, Joan Miró and Ben Nicholson. Speaking about the gallery’s late founder Jim Ede, director Andrew Nairne says: “Jim never saw it as a museum. It was his home and he wanted to prove that contemporary art can be appreciated in a domestic context too.” The gallery extension by London-based Canadian architect Jamie Fobert opens with an exhibition featuring 38 artists celebrating artistic diversity in the UK and abroad. Actions: The Image of the World Can be Different runs until May.

Books

Snap shot

The East End in Colour 1960-1980 unearths the monumental changes this area of London has undergone.

Shutterbug Chris Dorley-Brown has captured the comings and goings of his native East London for the past 20 years but it was an unexpected intergenerational collaboration that spurred this new book. On a trip to a local library Dorley-Brown uncovered a vast booty of 35mm Technicolor film slides bequeathed to archivists by the late photographer David Granick. The resulting selection, published by the canny souls at Hoxton Mini Press, sheds light (and, yes, colour) on the crumbly down-at-heel streets of Whitechapel, Spitalfields and Stepney during a massive upheaval between 1960 and 1980. Cue a charming procession of images depicting dusty terraces, taverns and hazy hovels in the foreground of vertiginous new-build tower blocks (and a few suspect 1970s haircuts to boot). It’s a thoughtful first glimpse at how far the city’s now thriving eastern reaches have come.

Culture

Image: David Edwards

On the up

With the release of their fifth album, Glasgow’s premier indie-rock group are in the ascendency.

Welcome back, Franz Ferdinand. You’ll know them as the art-school Glaswegian group who dealt in angular riffs, a penchant for – eine vorliebe für– the motorik rhythms of krautrock and Alex Kapranos’s affectedly effective Bryan Ferry baritone. The tight, bright new album Always Ascending has that holy trinity ticked off but also feels very French. Philippe Zdar of disco-sleaze bon viveurs Cassius produced the record and so we get deep bass, choral synths and a nice puff of what might be dry-ice but is more likely Serge Gainsbourg’s Gauloises smoke. The band have always known that brevity is the soul of wit and this latest clocks in at a laudable 10 tracks and 39 minutes of crisp, clever, captivating rock music.

From Monocle 24

Nuno Mendes’ Lisbon

The Menu

Top Portuguese chef Nuno Mendes’ tips for Lisbon, a new era for Argentinian wine and the week’s top headlines from Tokyo.

From Monocle Films

The secret to buying a painting

In the latest episode of our ‘Secret to...’ series, Alexander Gilkes, co-founder of online auction house Paddle8, unveils the alchemy that surrounds the world of collecting art.

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