The Monocle Minute

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The week ahead, opportunities and observations
Saturday 2 June 2018

Festivals

Image: Getty Images

Sound of the summer?

The forecast may be cloudy for New York but the attendees of Governors Ball are brightening things up.

You could be forgiven for not knowing where Randall’s Island is. Sandwiched between the Manhattan neighbourhood of East Harlem and Queens, the park island is renowned for being the host of what might be New York’s most iconic outdoor music festival, Governors Ball, which kicked off yesterday. The island will play host to about 135,000 people this weekend, with artists such as Jack White and Eminem playing headline slots. Festivalgoers are being asked to wear orange this year as part of a national gun-violence prevention initiative organised by Everytown. Meanwhile, the festival usually marks the unofficial start of the summer. The forecast this weekend? Rain, of course. It wouldn’t be the same any other way.

Fashion

Image: Getty Images

Après-ski

Moncler is going off-piste and seeking to conquer the streets as well as the slopes.

Italian fashion house Moncler is taking to the streets. The brand famous for its high-end ski wear and shiny puffer jackets has been coveted by more than just the slope set for some time – but now it seems like they are embracing its wider cultural impact wholeheartedly. Moncler is trying to adopt a model better known by streetwear brands, looking to offer up limited-edition puffer jackets – still 80 per cent of their business – each month in product drops, rather than waiting for seasonal collections. The needed fast-paced turnaround time to release new down coats every month is certainly revolutionary for an industry that has been racing to create ever-speedier fashion. While “fast fashion” has its detractors, Moncler is hoping it can keep up.

Culture

Image: Getty Images

Starting from scratch

The restoration of France’s historic properties is being funded by a scratchcard. It’s a gamble but we think it might work.

France’s cultural heritage is set to be preserved through a clever but unlikely avenue: a special €15 scratchcard. Earlier this week at the recently restored Château de Ferney – former home of Enlightenment philosopher Voltaire – president Emmanuel Macron revealed plans for a national lottery to fund the restoration of crumbling historic properties and works of art. While France has an annual heritage budget of €326m, culture minister Françoise Nyssen expects the innovative lottery, first envisioned by journalist Stéphane Béarn, to add up to €20m to the coffers. So far 18 properties are set to benefit out of a sea of hundreds of applications. First up will be the former island home of Martinican poet and politician Aimé Césaire, alongside a 12th-century castle in Burgundy and one of the country’s Roman aqueducts. Expect countries the world over to follow suit.

Art

Image: Getty Images

Power play

For commercial galleries, raising money while maintaining artistic integrity isn’t easy. But one Toronto event may have the answers.

The way that art galleries raise funds for their pursuits is a competitive business. A key question is how to host an event that will raise money while maintaining artistic integrity, rather than simply pandering to fat cheque books. One event that has successfully managed to create a fundraiser with artistic merit is the Power Ball, which took place in Toronto this week. This year marked the 20th instalment of what is widely considered to be Canada’s best-regarded annual art gathering. Over the years the one-night event has commissioned artworks that range from chandeliers made of octopus to conceptual performances. By raising money through sales of the hot-ticket event, it has become a standard-bearer for funding. “We want to be a catalyst for the artists, outside the context of the white cube,” says Gaetane Verna, director of the Power Plant Contemporary Art Gallery, which hosts the shindig.

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From Monocle Films

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