Thursday, 15 May 2014

Chanel Cruise 2014/5 on The Island, Dubai

Our commitment to the world of fashion is so great that on Tuesday, we journeyed by car, plane and boat, and all the way to a desert island to see the Chanel Cruise collection for 2014/5 – although, admittedly, the experience was less wild, beardy Tom Hanks in Castaway, more chic island-luxe. On Tuesday, Selections’ Rima Nasser arrived in Dubai and travelled to Karl Lagerfeld’s Arabian retreat on The Island, where against the grandiose backdrop of a blaze of sunset and the futuristic skyline, shisha tents and candles dotted the landscape.

1000 guests sat within the custom-built, mashrabiya-silhouetted structure and enjoyed a show daubed in the classic Chanel colour palette of white, black and beige, interrupted by moments of fuschia, midnight blue and red and floral prints. Oriental art was reinterpreted into contemporary lines and forms across the likes of three-piece suits, long and mini tunics, short overalls, and boleros.

Following the show, fashion editors and models – as well as celebrities including Tilda Swinton, Freida Pinto, and Dakota Fanning – traded hasty between-shows Marlboro Lights for a relaxed puff on an arghila, gathered around lantern-lit tables and to the soundtrack of Moroccan musicians. If this is island living, then we’re ready to get shipwrecked. 

Friday, 9 May 2014

Jabal 2014 at Hotel Le Gray

Celebrating the tenth edition of JABAL, Le Gray hosted the works of a group of emerging artists from at home and abroad, including 17 painters, seven photographers, seven sculptors, and even one embroiderer. Dotted amongst the sprawl were some promising talents, particularly Yasmina Nysten, whose sophisticated oil-on-canvas work was deftly technical and resolutely modern. Expertly evinced human anatomy was the site of melancholia, with the red-hued faces of ‘For a City of the Future’ wrapped in cold, contrasting shadows of cerulean blue. 

The human form also was the focal point for Diana Halabi, whose stooped, shrouded men in ‘The Trust Issue’ and ‘Ignorance’ were cited as visual metaphors for human behaviour – pallid of face, hunched of back and swathed in fabric, the figures were what Halabi bleakly referred to as ‘the real you’. 

Across a different medium, interior architect-turned-illustrator Jad El Khoury got smiles a-twitching with a series of cheeky, Keith Haring-esque illustrated prints entitled ‘Potato Nose’, referring to the squat, bug-eyed little protagonist who appears across all of them. Potato Nose comprises some of El Khoury’s first exhibited work, and Selections have him, and his squashy little hero, as one(s) to watch during the coming months.