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03/02/2009



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Chinese collectors jet in to buy Wallace Chan jewels at Biennale

Chinese collectors flew in by private jet this week to buy the latest creations from the world's top designers at the 2014 Biennale des Antiquaires, and made a beeline for Wallace Chan's intricately crafted jewellery. One of the great names in his field of contemporary design, his sculptures of insects, flowers and fish in coloured titanium and colourful gems drew collectors, artistic directors at top jewellery houses, up-and-coming designers and artisans seeking inspiration for their own work. “When I carve, and when I work on a gemstone, I am very tender,” Chan told Reuters at the Sept. 11-21 exhibition in Paris's vast Grand Palais. “When I see a gem, if I feel for it, I try to communicate it through light and colours,” he said. Works on display included “On Dragon Fly Wings”, made of oval-shaped jadeite, pink sapphires, coloured diamonds and garnets in a carved titanium setting. “This is where jewellery meets art at the highest level,” said Alexander Davis, who owns a boutique in Mayfair, London,

Flowers, pattern-mixing, sportswear triumph at London Fashion Week

Designers took inspiration from nature, sportswear and eclectic pattern mixes for their London Fashion Week collections, offering an array of glamorous gowns and sleek casualwear heavy with hand-crafted details. Burberry, Erdem and Marchesa showcased spring-summer collections that drew on the countryside -- plants, flowers and botany -- for their abstract prints, embroidery and lavishly embellished gowns. "It's just a very romantic, feminine season and the idea of looking at the world through the joyous lens through all of the great clothes that we are seeing," U.S. luxury department store Neiman Marcus's Fashion Director, Ken Downing, said. "The whole story of pattern-mixing is also prevalent. It can be wide stripes with narrow stripes, big flowers with small flowers, or many times mixing stripes with flowers or even animal prints together at one time," he said. Sportswear influences also featured heavily, with designers Richard Nicoll, Jasper Conran and British retailer Topshop's up-market Unique label showing hooded anoraks, jersey dresses and cycling tops in colours from bold primaries to chalky pastels. "Sporty is still a trend, ever since Celine ushered it in a few seasons ago and has been going strong -- you see a lot of editors in sneakers and track pants -- and we are still seeing that on the runway," fashion magazine Lucky's Editor-in-Chief, Eva Chen, told Reuters.

George Clooney to receive Golden Globes’ Cecil B. DeMille award

Oscar-winning actor, director and producer George Clooney will receive the Cecil B. DeMille Award, an honorary Golden Globe for his contribution to cinema, organizers of the event said on Monday. Clooney, 53, one of Hollywood's leading men on screen and behind the camera, will be honoured in January at the Golden Globes Awards, one of the year's most high-profile awards ceremonies for film and television organised by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association. Theo Kingma, the association's president, said the award was for Clooney's "outstanding contributions both in front of and behind the camera." Clooney is a two-time Oscar winner, as supporting actor in "Syriana" and as a producer of the 2013 best motion picture "Argo." He has also won three Golden Globes, including best actor in a motion picture for "The Descendants" in 2012 and "O Brother, Where Art Thou?" in 2001. This year, he released his fifth film as director, the World War Two drama "The Monuments Men," and he recently signed to direct Sony Pictures' "Hack Attack," about the phone hacking scandal that ensnared British politicians and media figures.

After Toronto, small film world primes for peak viewing season

The red carpets have rolled up and the festival awards are adjudicated, and now comes the deluge of small and independent films for fall viewing and Oscar baiting. Unlike last year when "12 Years a Slave," and "Gravity," emerged from the Toronto, Venice and Telluride festivals as solid front-runners for awards, the fate of the 2014 class is more uncertain. There are many acclaimed films on the horizon, but the race for February's Academy Awards is wide open. One strong contender is Toronto's top winner "The Imitation Game," the biopic of British World War Two code breaker Alan Turing, who was later persecuted for being gay. Turing is played by the popular Benedict Cumberbatch, a casting choice that likely helped the movie win the public-voted best film prize. Toronto's victor last year, "12 Years a Slave," won the Oscar best picture in a showdown with "Gravity." "It is a great place to present a film, said Michael Barker, co-president of Sony's art-house unit Sony Pictures Classics, which showcased nine films at North America's top festival. "The presentation, the aura, the atmosphere - the best place for critics and exhibitors to see the film with the kind of responsive audience." He and co-president Tom Bernard presented Sundance winner "Whiplash," about a jazz drummer obsessed with perfection, and Cannes favourite "Foxcatcher" starring an unrecognizable Steve Carell as a du Pont family scion who murders a wrestling champ. Both films have received critical acclaim and Sony waited to release them in the fall to increase their awards potential.

Marches, prayer, mayors: What to expect at U.N. climate summit

The U.N. climate summit in New York next week gives different parts of society - from businesses to faith groups to ordinary people - a chance to call for stepped-up action on climate change and make their own pledges. Here are some of the initiatives expected to happen at and around the main meeting on Sept. 23, which will feature announcements from 125 world leaders and their deputies. - People's Climate March: Two days before the summit, rallies, marches and protests will take place around the world, described by organizers as "the biggest-ever global demonstration for climate action in history". The largest gathering will be in New York where upwards of 100,000 people are expected to demand leaders take action at the summit."There's a vast latent constituency of people out there who are alarmed about climate change. But for years, nobody has put up a banner that said 'This is the time, this is the place, to show you care'. The People's Climate March is that banner, and we're seeing a phenomenal response to it," said Ricken Patel, executive director of Avaaz, which has led an online petition supporting the demonstrations. More than 2,000 "People's Climate" events are planned worldwide in 150 countries, from rural Papua New Guinea and Tanzania, to New Delhi, Bogota, London and Paris. - New business coalition: A coalition of organizations that work with thousands of leading companies and investors, named "We Mean Business", will be launched on Sept. 22. The coalition aims to inject a unified business voice into the climate debate and to highlight how the private sector can benefit from the transition to a low-carbon economy.