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Santiago Rusiñol: The Luminous Tapestry of Catalan Modernism

June 13, 2023 in Arts & Culture

Santiago Rusiñol i Prats (1861-1931), a luminary in the Catalan modernist movement, was a versatile figure whose artistic expression extended beyond painting to encompass playwriting and writing. Born into a family of wealthy textile manufacturers in Barcelona, Rusiñol showed an early inclination towards the arts, a passion that the conventional confines of his family's business couldn't suppress.

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The Architectural Genius of Hassan Ragab: Reviving Ancient Egyptian Building Techniques

June 17, 2023 in Design & Décor

Hassan Ragab, the Egyptian architect, engineer, and diplomat, is best remembered for his contributions to reviving ancient Egyptian techniques in modern architecture. Born in 1917, Ragab was known not only for his architectural prowess but also as a cultural entrepreneur. He led a rich and varied career, making lasting impacts in fields as diverse as architecture, cultural heritage preservation, and even agriculture.

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Courant Sauvage: Luxury Beach Umbrellas for Perfect Summer Aesthetics

June 26, 2023 in Design & Décor

In recent weeks, Sophisticated Spectra has been filling up with photos of branded beaches with bright sun loungers and umbrellas. The correct and photogenic selection of these items can significantly help a hotel (and, as we now understand, a fashion brand) in promoting on social networks. A good beach umbrella is expensive, and there are luxury players in this genre. One of them is the French manufacturer Courant Sauvage in Landes. The price for their umbrellas in fruit sorbet colors with thick fringe (immediately reminiscent of the luxurious resorts in Slim Aarons' photos) reaches up to €1000. The company works with suppliers of the best materials in their class, many of which are included in the list of France's Living Cultural Heritage. Courant Sauvage also accepts individual orders, although it is worth taking care of this not at the peak of the season.

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LùBar: A Slice of Sicily in the Heart of Milan

June 29, 2023 in Travel & Destinations

LùBar is an enchanting oasis nestled in the bustling city of Milan, offering a delightful escape from the city's fervent heat. Located on Via Palestro, this chic locale is the brainchild of the three eldest children of designer Luisa Beccaria - Lucilla, Lucrezia, and Ludovico.

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The Celebration of Craftsmanship: Dolce&Gabbana Alta Moda 2024 Collection

July 9, 2023 in Fashion & Style

In their Alta Moda 2024 collection, Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana pay tribute to the rich tapestry of craftsmanship that underpins their brand. From intricate macramé, delicate lacework, and embroidery to the weaving techniques that have defined their aesthetic, the designers delve deep into their Italian roots for inspiration.

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Van Cleef & Arpels Present High Jewellery Collection Inspired by the Aristocratic Grand Tour

July 22, 2023 in Fashion & Style

Van Cleef & Arpels, a name synonymous with luxury and elegance, has introduced its latest collection of high jewellery, drawing inspiration from a historical tradition that was prevalent among the aristocracy of the 18th and 19th centuries - the Grand Tour. This enduring tradition, a long journey across Europe, was embarked upon by the fashion house's founder, Andre Suarez, in 1910, which now serves as the creative impetus for this grand collection.

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Notre-Dame de Paris Gets a Makeover by French Designer Guillaume Bardet

July 30, 2023 in Travel & Destinations

The Notre-Dame de Paris, one of the world's most iconic cathedrals, is slated for a major restoration, set to be completed by the end of 2024. The restoration will incorporate a new design by French designer Guillaume Bardet, who has created a cohesive ensemble of interior elements that includes an altar, cathedra, seats, baptistery, and tabernacle.

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A Taste of Tradition: Exploring Aveiro's Historical Train Station and Local Delicacies

Aug. 13, 2023 in Travel & Destinations

The city of Aveiro, located in Portugal, offers visitors an extraordinary blend of history, art, and culinary culture. A recent visit uncovered the exceptional beauty of the city's historical train station and a distinctive culinary tradition that's both intriguing and, for some, an acquired taste.

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Van Cleef & Arpels Unveils Its Grand Flagship Store in Seoul: A Five-Story Jewel Box

Aug. 14, 2023 in Design & Décor

Van Cleef & Arpels, the distinguished French jewelry house, has introduced its monumental flagship store in the heart of Seoul. Comprising five floors, the new space has been likened to a vast jewelry box, reflecting the luxury and elegance that the brand is renowned for.

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Salvatore Ferragamo's FW23 Campaign: A Fusion of Fashion and Renaissance Art under Maximilian Davis

Aug. 14, 2023 in Fashion & Style

Maximilian Davis's vision for the Ferragamo FW23 campaign is a breathtaking melding of art and fashion. Collaborating with Florence's Uffizi Gallery, Davis has managed to incorporate masterpieces into the advertisement, including Vasari's "Portrait of Alessandro Medici," providing a backdrop for model Vittoria Ceretti. Photographer Tyler Mitchell was behind the camera, capturing the blend of Renaissance elegance and Ferragamo's modern designs.

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KAWS' Largest Creation Yet: A Giant Pink Bunny in Indonesia's Prambanan

Aug. 20, 2023 in Arts & Culture

Internationally celebrated artist, KAWS, known for his larger-than-life sculptures and iconic characters, has marked his latest stop in Indonesia. The chosen venue is nothing short of iconic – the Prambanan Temple Complex, a UNESCO World Heritage site.

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Farralone House: The Iconic Bauhaus Gem with a Star-Studded Past Hits the Market for $16.5 Million

Aug. 27, 2023 in Travel & Destinations

If walls could talk, the ones at the iconic Farralone House would have stories to tell of Hollywood legends and on-screen performances. Built in 1951 by architect William Pereira for banking heiress Dora Hutchinson, the house is a Bauhaus marvel boasting 6 bedrooms and 7 bathrooms. Over the years, it has served as home to Frank Sinatra from the mid-1950s to the mid-1960s, Judy Garland, and Lucille Ball.

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Chanel Partners with Yéol for the Second Time to Support Korean Traditional Crafts

Aug. 31, 2023 in Design & Décor

Luxury fashion house Chanel has once again partnered with Yéol, a foundation dedicated to the preservation of Korean heritage and traditional crafts. This year's collaboration has given birth to the "Woobomanri: An Enduring Walk Toward To Purity" exhibition, which will run until September 23 as part of the Seoul installment of the Frieze Art Fair.

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Celebrating 160 Years of the London Underground with New Art Posters

Sept. 10, 2023 in Arts & Culture

In honor of its 160th anniversary, the London Underground has commissioned four stunning art posters that seamlessly meld past and present. The posters take inspiration from vintage designs from the last century, housed in the London Museum of Transport. These historical designs feature iconic cultural landmarks like the English National Opera, the London Symphony Orchestra, the Southbank Centre, and the Royal Opera House.

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Prabal Gurung Unveils a Collection that Bridges East and West

Sept. 12, 2023 in Fashion & Style

Prabal Gurung, a Singaporean designer who has carved out a niche for himself in the fashion world, recently unveiled a collection that serves as a meeting ground between the East and the West. "It's essentially Escada from the 80s meeting Bollywood from the 80s, with a touch of Bill Blass," Gurung explains.

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Stephen Jones Unveils Wales-Inspired Headwear Collection Perfect for Autumn Dreaming

Sept. 18, 2023 in Fashion & Style

As the leaves begin to change and the air grows crisp, autumn traditionally becomes a time for hats. While not explicitly designed for the season, Stephen Jones's new collection invites us to dream. Inspired by his native land of Cymru, or Wales, the designer has crafted an assortment of headwear that reflects the beaches, waters, and rocky landscapes of his homeland.

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Raquel Welch: A Trailblazer of Beauty and Strength in Hollywood

Nov. 9, 2023 in Models & Actresses Photos

Raquel Welch, a name synonymous with classic Hollywood glamour and an emblem of the 60s and 70s sex symbol phenomenon, lived a life as vivid and interesting as her on-screen personas.

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Sharon Stone's Legendary Playboy Photoshoot, July 1990: A Pivotal Cultural Moment

Nov. 14, 2023 in Models & Actresses Photos

In July 1990, Sharon Stone, already a rising star in Hollywood, graced the pages of Playboy magazine, marking a pivotal moment in both her career and the cultural landscape of the time. The photoshoot, captured just before her breakthrough role in "Basic Instinct", showcased Stone's charisma and undeniable presence, transcending the typical expectations of celebrity glamour.

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Ernie Barnes: Celebrating the Vibrant Life of African Americans Through Art

Feb. 1, 2024 in Arts & Culture

The art world continues to celebrate the remarkable contributions of Ernie Barnes, an American artist whose work vividly captures the essence and vibrancy of African American life. Known for his unique style of elongated characters, Barnes' paintings are more than mere representations; they are a dynamic celebration of culture, movement, and emotion.

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Kintsugi: Embracing Imperfections with the Art of Golden Repair

Feb. 4, 2024 in Arts & Culture

Kintsugi, or Kintsukuroi, is a poignant and beautiful form of Japanese art that goes beyond mere ceramic repair. This centuries-old technique involves mending broken pottery with lacquer derived from the sap of the urushi tree, which is then mixed with precious metals such as gold, silver, or platinum. However, Kintsugi is much more than a method of restoration; it's a profound philosophical statement about life, resilience, and beauty.

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