Saturday, November 29, 2014

Men's Folio 17th Anniversary

Happy 17th birthday Men's Folio! It has been great following you guys through reading the magazine and it has definitely inspired my creativity and knowledge about culture!

Last week everyone gathered at the amazing ION Sky to celebrate 17 years of Men's Folio - Wow! Time flies so fast!

Everyone was dressed fashionably according to the night's theme of Dandy Sartorial Chic where all of us were treated to a superb performance by solo-violinist Joshua Kua and the groovy tunes to Jack & Rai.

The anniversary party was also held in the crowning moment of Men's Folio inaugural Design of The Year event held at the National Design Center last month. It was unfortunate that I fell ill that day otherwise I would have gone!

Congratulations Weilun and those who clenched a prize! Let it be an inspiration to your equals out there!

Men's Folio Design of The Year competition is an inaugural platform offering aspiring Asian menswear fashion designers a unique opportunity to showcase their talent. This year's competition saw the participation of over 70 aspiring designers from all over Asia, including Thailand, Indonesia, Philippines, Malaysia, Singapore and even Japan.

It is wonderful that Men's Folio and their partners aim to nurture and promote these gifted individuals from around the region. :)

Men's Folio was launched in 1997, and is Singapore’s first men’s fashion and lifestyle magazine. Available at all major bookstores across the island, it is also delivered to over 1,200 specifically selected high-end hair salons, clinics, marinas, golf, country and other member-only clubs.

This luxury lifestyle bible is published in Singapore, Indonesia and Malaysia.

Enjoy the photos!

Friday, November 28, 2014

Gnome & Bow Latest Collection Launch - Book II: Jekyll's Hyde

I swear, this is the most embarrassing thing that happened to me this week. Okay, second embarrassing. I won't tell you what's the most embarrassing part of the week but I'll give you the moral of the story, check if the course is clear before taking photos!

Here's the embarrassing thing. When I got this:

I really thought it was a book launch. I was so mistaken! I can't help it but to laugh at myself and cringe at how silly I was to have said "I have a book launch to attend tonight." I got it all cleared now!

I was over at Keepers last week for Gnome & Bow's latest collection launch. By the way, a little introduction about Gnome & Bow, it is a Singaporean designer brand that was founded with the notion that bags can go beyond functionality to become a new medium for storytelling (especially forgotten classics!), and evoking the same emotions as the stories.

So in their latest collection launch last week, they presented us with this collection named Book II: Jekyll's Hyde collection. What happen to Book I? Will get to that later in the video below!

Their latest designs are inspired by a novel written by Robert Louis Stevenson - Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde. The collection explores and reinterprets the idea of duality, change, and acceptance.

In this latest collection, wallets and cardholders are designed to interpret two contending faces of human nature; the rational, reserved side versus the wilder and more uninhibited inner self. As interpreted from the dramatic novel.

Gnome and Bow can also be found at Keepers: Singapore Designer Collective.
The classy leather wallet collection is a prologue to an upcoming series of bags. More to come! Good things are worth the wait!

If you ask me which details of the collection do I like, I'd say the apt quote that was engraved in the wallet that says -

"It is one thing to mortify curiosity, another to conquer it."

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Asian Couture Federation (ACF) Awards Gala Party


I am very delighted that this year a very prestigious event was held here in town!

Presenting the Asian Couture Federation Awards gala!

I am actually very delighted for the one fact that this is organized by FIDé, the first to bring a full Men's Fashion Week back in 2011. Its fashion shows grew and never stopped since. Although it is not innately mine but I am a supporter since its birth and I must say I am proud to see it grow too!

The gala was graced by many who has a vested interest in the event, and was definitely a fashion awards event of the year! There were so many breathtaking guests, starlets and friends whom I have not met since ages! Can you imagine how excited and jumpy I was when I see them? Go figure.

Asian Couture Federation (ACF) presented the region’s most prominent fashion awards at Marina Bay Sands (MBS) where it honoured key individuals across a range of disciplines and professions who have made a profound impact on the fashion industry, particularly in Asia. Fifteen awards were presented, including the Lifetime Achievement Award to ACF Honorary President, Mr. Kenzo Takada.

It pays homage to these individuals by acknowledging their efforts in raising the profile of Asia’s fashion industry on the world stage. Each award represents outstanding achievement and reflects the commitment and excellence of each and every nominee.

Additional awardees include Ms. Silvia Fendi for Outstanding Contribution to the Global Couture Industry, Mr. Bryan Yambao, more famously known by his moniker Bryanboy, for Outstanding Contribution to Social Media in Fashion and Rain (Jung Ji-Hoon) as the Asian Couture Federation Style Icon.

As FIDé Fashion Weeks is also the organiser of the ACF Awards, this demonstrated its continued and close collaboration with the ACF, which was inaugurated at FIDé Fashion Weeks 2013. With it being the first Asian fashion awards, it definitely reflects FIDé’s reputation for innovation in Singapore and soon, on a global stage!

See you guys!

The Art of The Poster - Vintage Poster Exhibition

Hey everyone!

I am pretty much delighted to be given the opportunity to grace the opening of a vintage poster event at ION Sky, The Art of The Poster, hosted by Picture This gallery from Hong Kong!

For the first time here in Singapore, the vintage poster dealer showcased highlights from the gallery's collection of rare original vintage posters. It is fascinating to be able to reflect the changing culture of times and know that original poster art is much more than just a decorative art!

It is actually quite an alpha-male thing to own vintage posters. Not that women don't really do this but vintage posters seems to gel well with men because vintage posters seems to have this classic look and persona; a quality that men tend to possess.

Star Wars movie poster (1977)
The opening showed us examples of the finest collectible posters. The exhibition displayed posters from the leading designers from the 1910’s to 1930’s including Adolphe Cassandre, Leonetto Cappiello, Jean d’Ylen, Pierre Fix-Masseau and Paul Colin together with the very best of the mid 20th century era including Bernard Villemot, Raymond Savignac, Guy Georget and Hervé Morvin.

I don't know them really, but after much research, they are actually very prominent in their time!

These posters had promoted domestic consumables such as food and drinks, household and consumer products, and many more. They presented amazing insights into popular culture and the trends during that era. Many leading poster designers are represented in the collection including Henri Toulouse-Lautrec and Jules Cheret from the late 19th century, and the very best of the 20th century poster artists including Adolphe Cassendre, Leonetteo Cappiello, and many more.

By the famous Andy Warhol (1968)
During that period of time advertising is relatively an expensive affair due to the absence of below-the-line ads like Facebook, Twitter and such. To most businesses, it is quite critical to get the essence of their product or service to get across to their buyers!

Also a part of this spectacular exhibition will be much sought-after travel and transportation posters, offering dreams of escape from humdrum city life, and the promise of exotic destinations. Even up till now, their 1920 Monaco Grand Prix poster makes me wanna fly over to Monaco already! I am feeling it!

Dating from the 1920’s to the 1960’s, themes include aviation, shipping, railways and tourism offices. With a particular focus on posters promoting Asian destinations such as Singapore, Malaysia, Indo-China, Hong Kong, Japan, India and Sri Lanka, these collectibles illustrate the long-lost romance of the Golden Age of Travel, a time when such journeys were within the grasp of only the wealthiest few.

The Golden Chersonese (1930)
The very best travel posters are replete with sharp images and bright vivid colors, created to lure travelers to the most exciting and exotic of places. The exhibition will encompass glamorous pop culture posters, including original movie advertisements portraying icons such as Steve McQueen, Audrey Hepburn, Clint Eastwood and other leading Hollywood stars, and covering epic films such as Star Wars and the James Bond series. Additionally, contemporary art posters will be on offer, showcasing works by some of the most important artists of the 20th century, among them Roy Lichtenstein, Andy Warhol, Milton Glaser, Saul Steinberg and renowned contemporary French posterist, Razzia.

Funny Face movie poster (1957)
I just feel that these vintage posters match well with a minimalist black and white home hanged in a black frame behind a hand-made leather sofa.

Collectibles, just like figurines and stuff does not come cheap if you have not known. The highest retailing price of the vintage poster is by Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec - Ambassadeurs poster  below.

This is a vintage poster of Parisian singer and entertainer Artistide Bruant. (1892)
My favourite without question would be the Visit Singapore (1954) poster -

Made in 1954, it captures the real major essence of Singapore then!
I hope you guys are loving it as much as I do! And I do have some tips that I learnt for myself when buying a vintage art! When I hear vintage art, I get very, very sceptical about its authenticity. I had to crack it out from the gallery owner to share with me some tips - even some of you might not be aware!

  • Learn all you can about the development of poster art.
  • Although buying from flea markets, yard sales, antique shops, sales by individuals and auction houses are all options, it is safer to work with a reputable poster dealer who will guarantee the poster‘s authenticity.
  • And never purchase from the black market or through questionable sources.
  • Prices fluctuate at both the wholesale and retail levels, and vary due to several factors. Because dealers have to buy their inventory, a dealer‘s own investment price affects a poster‘s resale. Prices also vary according to an individual poster‘s condition, rarity, subject matter, and artist.
  • While it is impossible to determine the number of existing poster images, some posters are found more frequently than others; naturally, the rare ones command larger prices.
  • Be careful when a poster is described as “vintage.” It is important to clarify that the poster is an original, old vintage poster. Sometimes sellers use the term “vintage” incorrectly, when they actually are describing the poster‘s style, not its age. A vintage style poster is not collectible; it is not an investment. It is just a copy of an original vintage poster. Typically a vintage style poster can be reproduced inexpensively, in an unlimited number.
  • If you are buying for decorative purposes, make sure that you can exchange the piece after taking it home or to the office and finding that it doesn‘t look right.
  • Find out the dealer‘s payment plans, return and exchange policies, shipping options, documentation procedures, framing guidelines, etc.
  • The best price isn‘t necessarily the best buy. There is no definitive price guide for antique posters. While auction prices typically define “fair market value”, because every poster has a unique condition and provenance, two posters of the same design may sell for vastly different prices.

By the way, Picture This gallery is the only Asian based member of the prestigious International Vintage Poster Dealers' Association and yes, I would love to drop by your gallery when I'm in Hong Kong! Thumbs for such a great show!

The Art of The Poster
24-1 December 2014
ION Art Gallery, ION Orcahrd, Singapore

Monday, November 24, 2014

Bank Art Fair 2014

Hey guys! Hope you guys are all well this weekend, and are using the best of this time to enjoy and relax! I have to say I am so grateful that my hurdle for three days this week is over, and I will definitely plan something more strategic next year! But let's not talk about life stress right now.

It's been a while since Digital Fashion Week and the past few weeks have been crazy fun month for me with all these opening parties and events. I love it, and I would like thank you lovelies for making it possible for me. Bless you guys! Would like to congratulate Empire club for its grand opening (it's a must-go club, I cross my heart), and Affordable Art Fair 2014 for the amazingly huge art exhibition showcase that was held till 23 November.

For me, this month's major art event would be the Bank Art Fair 2014 held at Pan Pacific Hotel from 20-23 November 2014. I have a high appreciation for art, probably because I can't paint for nuts - But I can always collect them, and who knows, sell it away at a higher price. Like stocks and gold, it depends on what type of art do you purchase and being a collector, art is not something that one would want to buy impulsively.

Bank Art Fair 2014 definitely gave us the space to immerse in the artists creativity and entertain my friends. Not every art pieces are up to my liking, but I do quite appreciate the technique, the background of the art and the hard work and patience they put in. Whatever price that their gallery has put up for these artists, they are definitely well justified! In their pieces, there were more than just paints that were used for the art pieces exhibited, but also include other materials like papers, precious metals, and even resins (which makes everything look very swarovski-ish). The majority of the works were contemporary, and participating galleries and artists hail from all over the world including South Korea, North and South America, Myanmar, Hong Kong and more.

Bank Art Fair 2014 was held at Pan Pacific - very central, easy to find, and because the hotel is newly renovated with a scenic view of the Singapore skyline, it really help buyers to have an idea how will it look like in a home setting. Since art pieces are everywhere in the room, you can imagine how it goes with the lighting that you have. Loving their exquisite taste!

So here are some of the art pieces that are my favourite!

Would like to take this opportunity to those who came with me, and made this possible! :)

If you miss this year's event, fret not as they are planning for an annual run. So keep lookout!

Friday, November 21, 2014

Singapore International Film Festival 2014 - Ms J Contemplates Her Choice

I am back once more for Singapore International Film Festival (SGIFF) 2014!

You have no idea how amazing this is! As most of you guys would have know by now, I am quite a movie buff. I like all sorts of movie but quite particular about horror, so being invited to SIFF is definitely a wonderful opportunity to catch up with the familiar faces, and find out about their latest projects.

I am honoured to have a preview of the upcoming Singaporean feature film - Ms J Contemplates Her Choice. Yes, very much exclusive preview of this amazing movie!

Synopsis: Singer Kit Chan takes on her first leading role as a radio personality whose life changes irrevocably when an anonymous caller dials in with a hidden agenda. An inspired casting choice in director Jason Lai’s feature, Chan plays the titular Ms J, who regularly offers advice to callers on a radio talk show. Her latest appearance on the show takes an unexpected turn when the unknown caller forces her to answer a series of difficult decisions that brings all of her life’s decisions to bear.

What do you think?

The movie will premiere this coming 6 December at the National Museum of Singapore. If you think it's bad, know that the premiere for this movie is sold out! I repeat. Sold out!

This almost-half-a-million dollar movie which was directed and co-written by Jason Lai was inspired by the repercussions of our choices in our daily lives. This movie simply puts it in the radical way that choices big or small, actually does determine the path that leads you to the next step in life. It simply haunts you back.

A fusion of psychological thriller and societal treatise, Ms J movie nimbly moves between three narratives that fits together in the end, shedding light on contemporary issues in Singapore with an exploration of morality and the consequences of free will.

Wondering who is Jason Lai? Here he is!
I wouldn't want to give too much info otherwise it wouldn't be fun! Even if you know what happens in the end, I think you guys should still watch it to enjoy the cinematography! It's really great because Jason Lai by experience is a documentary producer, so it is quite imperative to have such camera skills. It really adds life to the story and give it a local touch. Although in my opinion it may not be too relevant to the storyline, but I was sold by the panorama and quality.

A feature film by nature does not cost much; but the quality of the movie shows good filming streak. Great job!

Will see you guys again!

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Affordable Art Fair 2014, Singapore

This November is definitely an art galore for me. With so many art events going on, it's almost impossible to find out which art piece to pick! I am honoured to be at Affordable Art Fair this year. It is a yearly event where globally, over 1.4 million people have visited an Affordable Art Fair, buying over US$316 million worth of art. This month marks its fifth edition in Singapore

I am looking for a really great piece of art for myself and it was not an easy feat. See, the thing about me, I resemble my dad a lot. I like things that are one-of-a-kind and customized where possible.

When we talk about art, it is something that we find it very personal, something that resonates with our personality, mindset and attitude. Which is why, art just like beauty, lies in the eyes of beholder. it has to touch our soul!

I'm not judging anyone who buys mass produced art off the racks - because some of us just happen to share the same taste. Shhh, my house has truckloads of IKEA furnitures. We still love them because they are so simple - easy for us to personalize it and call it our own! Here's what to expect if you are going to Affordable Art Fair.

Among high-profile artists on show from all over the world were, third-generation Singaporean Hong Sek Chern (Singapore) from Artcommune Gallery of Singapore, popular for her unconventional landscapes and urbanscapes in traditional Chinese ink, Ernest Zacharevic (Lithuania) who has transformed the streets of Penang with a series of interactive murals, at first-time exhibitor Art Square Gallery of Malaysia, as well as works by David Spiller, an artist who combines the punchy aesthetics of Pop Art with his own brand of expressionism into beautiful screenprints, at returning UK gallery, TAG Fine Arts.

While art scene in Singapore may not be as vibrant and avant-garde as the likes in France or Iceland, it is definitely a great stepping stone to being equals because Affordable Art Fair was huge! Go figure the stretch of building we had to walk through. Nevertheless, like IKEA, people don't feel that tired because there's food and drinks for sale along the way, and the art hanging around will definitely distract you from the long walk.

To top it all, with an emphasis on displaying clear information and prices, so that there are no surprises, Affordable Art Fair offers a wrapping service on site, so that artwork can be taken home on the spot too.

Anyway, I entered at 6pm thinking I'd leave by 8pm.

The fair took three levels of the Singapore F1 Paddock - the entire building was filled with art from all over the continent. Affordable Art Fair was crazy with amazing paintings, sculptures, and other forms of art like vase and metals carvings. Massive!

I left the building at 10pm. So much for a quick runthrough!

I must say it is interesting to find out how Singaporeans actually quite appreciate art judging from the traffic they had! About 18,000 people attended that event throughout the fair.

Enjoy the photos - next up would be Bank Art Fair 2014! Stay tuned!