• Editorial,  Other

    The Chinese photographers causing a stir in 2016

    China’s pre-eminent photography fair is back this September to recognise and savour local and international artists, side by side. These are the emerging talents that should be top of your get-to-know list. It’s no secret that China’s art market has experienced a boom in recent years, thanks in no small part to household names like Ai Wei Wei. But in the photography world, a new generation of talent is emerging and creating a statement of its own. Ever since China opened up and globalised its market, photography has slowly developed into an instrument through which artists could reflect their socio-political anxieties. For decades, the nation’s artists became known for their…

  • Editorial,  Other

    Building blocks: our edit of the most striking structures around the globe

    Dror for Montreal’s Expo 67 26 April Fifty years since the unveiling of R Buckminster Fuller’s Biosphere – a spherical tribute to the historic World Fair Expo 67 – Studio Dror is proposing a contemporary space to haul the island of Île Sainte-Hélèneinto the 21st century. Concieved to coincide with the 375th anniversary of the city’s founding (which takes place next year), the new landscape would see the architectural vision of Dror Benshetrit sit adjacent to Fuller’s now iconic structure. The dynamic framework of a 150m-wide aluminium dome will be draped with vegetation, creating a visually stunning accompaniment. It’s set to house an array of public events, from fairs and concerts…

  • Editorial,  Other

    The West Memphis Three: Glorifying Brutality?

    It was recently announced that the documentary, Paradise Lost 3: Purgatory, has been nominated for an Oscar.  It has caused uproar with the families involved in the story and leads us to ask, ‘Does cinema glorify awful historical moments, or simply highlight important parts of our past for each of us to learn from?’ The documentary itself, split into a trilogy, depicts the story of the murder of three minors Stevie Edward Branch, Christopher Byers and Michael Moore in Robin Hood Hills, Memphis, in 1993.  At the time, the offense was assumed to be the result of a satanic ritual carried out by three teenage boys who had previous convictions for…

  • Editorial,  Other

    Paris: An Empty Promise?

    Qu’il ne nous donne rien et qu’il nous promet tout? At the very mention of Paris, the city of love, of art, of fine dining, we all gush at the prospect of a movie style moment that will alter our lives forever; embracing beneath the Eiffel Tower, the Hunchback ringing his bells at the Notre Dame, the grandeur of the Moulin Rouge, or a mime divulging his whole life with one hand gesture… simply beautiful… One can understand why each of us is lured into the fantasy that Paris appears to offer us.  The capital has been the muse for countless love poems, eccentric novels, artistic movements and Hollywood blockbusters. …

  • Editorial,  Other

    The Tinderbox at the Charing Cross Theatre

    Hans Christian Anderson’s Scandinavian fairy tale The Tinderbox comes to life this Christmas at the Charing Cross Theatre. Set beneath the rustic railway arches, this intimate venue is the perfect backdrop to see an all-time festive favourite. Written and performed by Mandy Holliday, this rendition is a fun-filled pantomime suited to audiences of all ages. The classic tale begins with an old witch on the hunt for a tinderbox, who enlists the help of a lonely, poor soldier.  This war veteran, Brian the Brave, falls madly in love with Princess Beautiful and sets his sights on marrying her. With the help of the willing audience, the characters must overcome every…

  • Editorial,  Other

    Sleeping Beauty at Sadler’s Wells Theatre

    A performance by dance company New Adventures is a Christmas tradition at Sadler’s Wells Theatre, London and this year is no exception. Artistic director, Matthew Bourne OBE brings to life once more the famous musical score by Tchaikovsky in this contemporary adaptation of Sleeping Beauty. Having recently producedSwan Lake and The Nutcracker, Bourne was inspired by a range of sources from the Brothers Grimm to Walt Disney, each having created magical versions of the classic fairy tale. The story begins once upon a time as a barren king and queen finally welcome a daughter to the kingdom. Suitors from across the land offer the fair Princess Aurora roses in exchange…

  • Editorial,  Other

    Essex Boys: The Truth

    Back in 1995, one of the most infamous gang killings in British history took place. The brutal murder of the Essex Boys, in which three men were found dead in a Range Rover, remains a tale of mystery, uncertainty and a shocking depiction of the cruel capabilities of humanity. Now, two decades on, gang member Bernard Mahoney wishes to share what he believes to be the truth behind the Rettendon murders in the feature documentary entitled Essex Boys: The Truth. It documents the drug-fuelled, bloody years that led to the tragedy, and claims to be from a perspective that’s never been shown before. This isn’t for the fainthearted as its…

  • Editorial,  Other

    Christmas with the Coopers

    If the lack of snow is threatening your Christmas spirit this year, it might be worth considering heading to see seasonal cinema release Christmas with the Coopers. Don’t expect gooey sentimentality or cotton wool-covered plot lines, instead buckle up for a realistic account of the run up to Christmas. With several story lines weaved seamlessly together, Christmas with the Coopersdelves into the insecurities and anxieties of a typical family during what is considered the most family-orientated day on the calendar. Set on Christmas Eve, brothers, sisters, aunts, grandchildren and even a lonely waitress set out on their snowy journey to gather for mother’s famous Christmas feast. Each facing obstacles both…

  • Editorial,  Other

    REVIEW: Twelfth Night, Everyman Theatre

    As the opening play for the newly refurbished theatre, The Everyman, there was a lot of pressure to impress and Wednesday night didn’t disappoint. Many may pass up the opportunity to attend a Shakespearean play claiming it’s outdated, incomprehensible and dialogically claustrophobic. But Twelfth Night, directed by Gemma Bodinetz, will challenge anyone who believes Shakespeare is dull. Ashley Manning reviews… The story begins with Viola, a woman who becomes shipwrecked and believes her brother has been drowned in the storm. Viola then disguises herself as her apparently deceased brother and becomes unavoidably intertwined within a love triangle involving the man she is servant to. This is accompanied by a comic…

  • Editorial,  Other

    “What if you end up staying with Joseph Fritzl?”

    CouchSurfing: the only way to get around. Sifting through the mixed responses from people as I announced I was going couch-surfing around Europe, the above just happened to be the most absurd! Far from the typical English social code of keeping oneself to oneself, CouchSurfing brings together thousands of strangers each year to share their homes, share their experiences and most importantly, share their beer. In a nutshell, this rising craze originates from a website in which people, predominantly students, offer their homes FOR FREE to travellers.  Luxury ranges from a sleeping bag on the floor to your own room, a key to the hosts abode, unlimited use of the…