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Bringing Confucius’ legend to life


NEWS  by Lola Cristall/January 10, 2017/11.04




Liu Haidong

After Asia, Europe and Australia the dance drama, Confucius, lands in New York. The China Arts and Entertainment Group (CAEG) returned with a marvellous performance at the David H. Koch Theater at Lincoln Center. The China National Opera and Dance Drama Theatre presented an inspiring feature, directed and choreographed by a 77th-generation descendant of Confucius, Kong Dexin. Written by Liu Chun with costume design by Yang Donglin, the set and its design make for a magnificent backdrop for this dramatic, expressive tale. The beautifully decorated Asian-influenced stage, upbeat traditional tunes and eye-catching outfits make the crowd yearn for more. The full 90-minute performance is divided into six parts: ‘Inquiry’, ‘The Chaotic Time’, ‘Out of Food’, ‘Great Harmony’, ‘Mourning for Bene­volence’, and ‘Happiness’, each explicitly telling a tale, evoking philosophical concepts brought about by the arts. The renowned philosopher’s life blossoms on the stage, sharing various profound messages. As dancers expressed the story, Confucius’ words of wisdom are highlighted on two screens on either side of the stage.—Lola Cristall, Paris Editor









Liu Haidong

Special features to kick off Lucire’s 20th anniversary year


NEWS  by Lucire staff/January 5, 2017/10.31


Paula Sweet

Above: Stanley Moss heads to Punta Ala in one of his best travel pieces to date. Click here to read it.

Welcome to Lucire’s 20th anniversary year.
   Remember that if you don’t see a news update (which will come with an RSS update), you can go to the main part of the website and check out our features.
   In the last couple of weeks, we’ve had Lola Cristall’s 2017 living guide; an archive interview with Thor director Taika Waititi; one of Stanley Moss’s best travel pieces to date, on five Italian centres, and another on Flemings in London; Elyse Glickman heading to Seoul, and Jack Yan testing the Mazda 3, or Mazda Axela. We’ve also looked at a natural skin care range, Kokulu, and made our picks from the spring–summer 2017 shows from New York Fashion Week.
   And, of course, there’s our print edition: issue 36 features stories on Delikate Rayne and author–filmmaker Leslie Zemeckis, and it’s a particularly strong issue on female power. Never mind the outcome of a certain country’s election: as Bhavana Bhim writes in the opening feature in issue 36, women have been increasing their power throughout the ages.
   Expect to see more of our Golden Globes’ suites coverage with Elyse Glickman this weekend in the news section, and more fashion, beauty, travel and living features through January.

The Beauty Therapy Project treats London’s homeless women to makeovers for Christmas


NEWS  by Lucire staff/December 23, 2016/0.14




Emanuela Di Mulo

Top: The Beauty Therapy Project’s founder, Ebun Ali. Above: Scenes from the special day as 50 professionals gave makeovers to homeless women.

Fifty volunteers in London have pampered homeless women as part of the Beauty Therapy Project.
   A southeast London community centre was transformed into a beauty haven, with drapes, warm lighting and forest greenery, thanks to sponsors Cocospring and Popsy Mag.
   The Beauty Therapy Project raised over £3,000 in under two weeks through Crowdfunder and helped engage women to donate sanitary towels and toiletries. Donations will be distributed to homeless shelters across London.
   The women, accessed through St Mungo’s homeless shelter, were treated to makeovers from 50 professional make-up artists, hairstylists, masseuses and nail technicians. They could access a full wardrobe, including clothes, jewellery, bags and other accessories, all of which they could keep. Each woman could also keep a goody bag containing items from Pink Parcel, Motives Cosmetics, Nails Inc., Fab Little Bags, Sanitary Owl, Yogaleggs, Sugar Tables, Emily Crisps, Seascape, Joe’s Tea, Clarity Magazine, Popchips, Vitacoco, Mallow and Marsh, Pip & Nut, Organyc, Kokomelt and Cinnamon Tree Bakery. The evening concluded with a long-table banquet dinner.
   Director of the Beauty Therapy Project, Ebun Ali, said, ‘It was a surreal experience—it was humbling and very emotional for everyone involved. Seeing these women transformed was one of the most beautiful things we could have ever witnessed and we are all so honoured to have been a part of this.’
   Supporters Martha Silcott (the inventor of Fab Little Bags) and Robina Brennan (partnership manager at Smart Works charity) are looking to provide longer-term solutions.
   Other partner organizations were Heartbeat Community Centre, Everyone Active Leisure Centre, Southwark Council, the Salvation Army, Loveworks, Woosh Washrooms, Smart Works and Camberwell Market.





Emanuela Di Mulo

Alicia Aylies, Miss Guyane, wins Miss France 2017


NEWS  by Lucire staff/December 17, 2016/23.20


TF1/SIPA Press/Bertrand Noël


Via Alicia Aylies/Twitter

Alicia Aylies, Miss Guyane, has been crowned Miss France 2017. She is 18 years old, and a first-year law student.
   Vaea Ferrand, Miss Tahiti, was runner-up, with Morgane Thérésine, Miss Guadeloupe, second-runner-up. Justine Kamara (Miss Lorraine) came fourth.
   The competition was held at the Montpellier exhibition centre, as the jury and the public found a successor for Miss France 2016 Iris Mittenaere, with live coverage on TF1. Jean-Pierre Foucault hosted the ceremony for the 22nd time.
   Thirty regional winners were selected during the past year to compete for the title of Miss France 2017. Twelve had been preselected by the jury, this year chaired by actress Arielle Dombasle, who replaces Jean Paul Gaultier.
   These 12 were Meggy Pyaneeandee (Miss ÃŽle-de-France), Ambre Nguyen (Miss Réunion), Esther Houdement (Miss Normandie), Axelle Bonnemaison (Miss Aquitaine), Alicia Aylies (Miss Guyane), Aurore Kichenin (Miss Languedoc-Roussillon), Morgane Thérésine (Miss Guadeloupe), Claire Godard (Miss Alsace), Justine Kamara (Miss Lorraine), Maurane Bouazza (Miss Bretagne), Myrtille Cauchefer (Miss Picardie), and Vaea Ferrand (Miss Tahiti). The public were then invited to select the top five.
   Miss ÃŽle-de-France had topped the general knowledge quiz in an earlier session, while Miss Languedoc-Roussillon had probably the greatest amount of applause when the top 12 were announced.
   The top five—all brunettes—were Alicia Aylies (Miss Guyane), Aurore Kichenin (Miss Languedoc-Roussillon), Vaea Ferrand (Miss Tahiti), Justine Kamara (Miss Lorraine), and Morgane Thérésine (Miss Guadeloupe).
   Other jury members were actress Ingrid Chauvin, comedienne Michèle Bernier, Miss France 2010 Malika Ménard, musician Amir, filmmaker Christophe Barratier and Olympic gold medallist Tony Yoka.
   Through the evening, the contestants paraded in costumes recalling The Nutcracker, tuxedo dresses in a penguin-themed sequence, Christmas-themed swimwear, Frozen cosplay dresses, Christmas outfits, outfits with giant Christmas decorations seemingly inspired by the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show, white ball gowns, and, sticking to the past earlier in the evening, bikinis.
   There had been one incident during the night, reports Paris Match: Miss Mayotte, Naïma Madi Mahadali, was hospitalized due to a fall after the penguin-themed parade, and appeared with a bandaged right foot when the top 12 were announced.
   Traditionally, 40 per cent of the viewing audience watches the live telecast on TF1. Former Miss France (2002) Sylvie Tellier remains the president of the competition.

UK modelling agencies fined £1·5 million; Models 1, Premier and Storm to appeal decision


NEWS  by Lucire staff/December 16, 2016/17.08


Above: Models 1 is one of three agencies appealing a decision by the UK Competition and Markets Authority.

The UK Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has fined five modelling agencies a total of £1,533,500 for collusion, driving prices up for modelling services. The five agencies named were FM Models, Models 1, Premier, Storm and Viva, and their trade association, the Association of Model Agents (AMA).
   Models 1, Premier and Storm have stated that they would appeal the decision, calling the CMA’s findings ‘wholly mistaken’ and that the fines were disproportionate, outside the Authority’s own guidance.
   John Horner, managing director of Models 1, said, ‘We reached our decision to appeal the CMA’s findings without hesitation. It is clear that even after a 20-month investigation the CMA has failed to understand our complex industry.’ The agencies have said that the CMA has not stated any evidence that their activities have had a discernible effect on competition in the UK.
   â€˜The CMA is penalizing modelling agencies for seeking to maintain professional standards within the industry whilst also protecting the interests of young and vulnerable people,’ added Horner. ‘They are not improving the competitive environment but are damaging a small but important UK industry which is recognized as successful internationally.’
   The three agencies said their activities protected models’ interests and ensured a sustainable market that benefited consumers, the economy and society.
   In fact, they argue that competition is intense, with 10,000 models and 58 modelling agencies operating in the UK, and buyer power can be far stronger than that of agencies. They also point to falling revenue from modelling fees, which have dropped by 10 per cent since 2011.
   The CMA alleges that the price-fixing took place between April 2013 and March 2015 at the minimum, over a variety of assignments, from fashion magazine shoots to advertising campaigns. However, the services of top models were not affected by the collusion. This infringed the Competition Act 1998, which deems such anticompetitive behaviour illegal.
   â€˜The parties regularly and systematically exchanged information and discussed prices in the context of negotiations with particular customers. In some cases, the agencies agreed to fix minimum prices or agreed a common approach to pricing,’ said the CMA in a release. The CMA says that the AMA issued email circulars that pressured members to resist prices that were too low.
   The agencies appealing the decision say that the only communication that took place between them dealt with usage and publication rights, not the prices of modelling assignments. Warnings were issued about inappropriate contract terms over image rights, which have become a major issue since online retailing.
   The fines for each agency were: FM Models, £251,000; Models 1, £394,000; Premier, £150,000; Storm, £491,000; and Viva, £245,000. The AMA was fined £2,500.
   Penalties have been announced in France and Italy after investigations into the modelling services’ sector there.
   Yasmin Le Bon, Hannah Cassidy and former British Fashion Council COO Simon Ward have publicly defended the agencies.

Supermodel Kate Moss to be the face of Dutch label Nikkie from autumn ’17


NEWS  by Lucire staff/December 14, 2016/10.47

Dutch label Nikkie, founded by Nikkie Plessen in 2011, has scored a coup by securing supermodel Kate Moss as its brand ambassador.
   Moss will make her début for Nikkie for its autumn–winter 2017–18 collection.
   Plessen announced the news during her spring–summer 2017 collection presentation in Amsterdam, attended by Moss.
   In a release, Plessen said, ‘I am incredibly proud of the fact that supermodel Kate is the new face of Nikkie. Kate Moss personifies precisely what I want to express through my fashion label: she is strong and tough but at the same time also feminine and sexy. The fact that she wishes to represent Nikkie as its muse is of course fantastic. For me personally, Kate has also always been the ultimate embodiment of style. Seeing how we immediately got on so well with one other during our first meeting, and knowing that she will now become the face of Nikkie, is a dream come true.’
   Nikkie is represented in 15 of its own stores, and is available at Galeries Lafayette, Takashimaya, Robinsons and Le Marais. The label ‘plugs the gap between high-end and high-street fashion labels,’ in its own words, and has been worn by Natasha Poly, Tyra Banks, Kristina Bazan and Raline Shah.

British glamour meets Moroccan tradition


NEWS  by Lucire staff/December 12, 2016/13.34



Marrakech, an historic crossroads, always surprises when east meets west, and today the city finds itself in a time of rediscovery. The recent COP convention drew global attention to the issues of climate change, the annual film festival is in full force, and all eyes turn toward the 2017 Biennale which begins next December. The breaking news that British style icon and design legend Jasper Conran has opened his first boutique hotel property here adds gloss to the blossoming Moroccan rose. L’Hôtel Marrakech is small by any standards, only five spacious luxuriously-appointed suites overlooking a courtyard garden, and can be booked in its entirety. Objects of décor selected from Conran’s personal collection artfully counterpoint the whitewashed walls and tile surfaces, garlanded by flowing voile curtains and opulent plantings. A heated lap pool hidden by banana trees nestles next to a classic burbling fountain. There’s a roof terrace with views of the Atlas Mountains, yet a sense of privacy and exclusivity prevails. This property delivers a fusion of rest and comfort, a nostalgic memory of a classic palace. A full-service kitchen is on hand to serve the finest local delicacies or a ‘perfect steak and chips’. Welcome to the medina, Jasper. It’s lovely to see your vision merge with these ancient walls!—Stanley Moss, Travel Editor

Editor’s note: Jasper Conran is quoted in the upcoming fourth edition of my book, What Is a Brand?, available spring 2017 from Ronzani Editori.











NGV and Dior announce House of Dior: Seventy Years of Haute Couture exhibition, starting August ’17


NEWS  by Lucire staff/December 10, 2016/1.57



Wayne Taylor

Top: National Gallery of Victoria and House of Dior announce House of Dior: Seventy Years of Haute Couture at NGV International, opening August 2017. At the media announcement on Friday, Sandra Sundelin, Alejandra Zuluaga, Ella Bond, Maddison Lukes, and Bela Pelacio Hazewinkel model various Dior designs. Above: Ella Bond models the Dior bar suit from the spring–summer 1947 haute couture collection, Maddison Lukes wears the Francis Poulenc dress from the spring–summer 1950 haute couture collection, and Bela Pelacio Hazewinkel the Abandon dress from the autumn–winter 1948–9 collection.

The National Gallery of Victoria kept media in suspense as it led up to its unveiling of its major exhibition for 2017, The House of Dior: Seventy Years of Haute Couture.
   Beginning August 27, 2017, and running through November 7, the exhibition is a collaboration between the NGV and the House of Dior, and will feature over 140 garments from the company.
   The exhibition covers everything from Dior’s New Look spring 1947 collection to contemporary designs from its first female head designer, Maria Grazia Chiuri (see Lucire issue 36). Iconic designs from the intervening years will also be shown, including work by Yves Saint Laurent, Marc Bohan, Gianfranco Ferré, John Galliano, and Raf Simons. It will also feature original sketches, photographs, toiles, archival material, and multimedia displays, says the Gallery.
   The Christian Dior spring 1948 fashion parade at David Jones Sydney, which featured house models in 50 designs, is also explored. David Jones serves as the exhibition’s principal partner.
   â€˜It is a great pleasure and honour for the House of Dior to be celebrating its anniversary in 2017 in Melbourne. This exhibition will be the biggest Dior retrospective ever held in Australia. It will cover 70 years of creation, presenting the emblematic work of Christian Dior and his successors, including Maria Grazia Chiuri, who arrived last July and is the first woman at the head of the couture house,’ said Sidney Toledano, president and CEO of Christian Dior Couture.
   A black-tie gala will take place on August 26, 2017, with proceeds supporting the NGV fashion and textiles’ collection.
   Tickets for the exhibition are now available from the NGV online, retailing at A$26 for adults, concession A$23·50, A$10 for children aged 5 to 15, and families (two adults and three children) for A$65.

Interview clips

With subtitles

Promotional video

The Christian Dior story (archival video)


Copyright ©1954 Mark Shaw/mptvimages.com


Christian Dior





Wayne Taylor

Above, from top: Christian Dior adjusts the accessories to the Zaire dress, on his star model Victoire, during rehearsal for the autumn–winter 1954–5 haute couture show. Christian Dior and model, c. 1950. From the media announcement, Ella Bond in the Dior bar suit from the spring–summer 1947 haute couture collection. Sandra Sundelin models the Dior Embuscade suit from the autumn–winter 1950–1 haute couture collection and Alejandra Zuluaga the Gruau gown from the autumn–winter 1949–50 haute couture collection. Alejandra Zuluaga in the Gruau gown from the autumn–winter 1949–50 haute couture collection and Maddison Lukes in the Francis Poulenc dress from the spring–summer 1950 haute couture collection. Maddison Lukes wears Dior’s Francis Poulenc dress from his spring–summer 1950 haute couture collection.

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