Quintessentially Asia is now in its 10th edition and the latest incarnation of the magazine has Rendezvous as its theme and focuses on fashion, art and travel. We chose these two areas because the consumption of both by collectors and the style-obsessed has become one of the principal means through which newly wealthy Chinese express their influence and changing behaviour.
For example, the transformation of Art Hong Kong into Art Basel Hong Kong, analysed in The Collectors, was in direct response to the phenomenal growth in the market for art on the Mainland. It’s a development that has had profound effects on the work now being produced by Asian artists, as Jeremy Payne explains on page 38.
In Bare Faced Chic (p28) and Flights of Fancy (p58) we look at how two famous European companies plan to expand in China and in our two fashion shoots, Free Spirit and Fantasy Island we reveal how Hong Kong continues to bring a much more street edge to its Asian fashion aesthetic than anything found north of Kowloon.
Stories on Dries Van Noten, luxury adventure in Yunnan, Gerard Rancinan, Bottega Veneta, Christie’s new private sales gallery and cartoonist Huang Yao round out the magazine’s rendezvous with fashion and art on our voyage through the ever-changing Chinese landscape. In 1939 the American President Franklin D.
Roosevelt wrote, “This generation of Americans has a rendezvous with destiny.” That was in the middle of what became known as “the American Century” but time has moved on and we are now in the Chinese century. LVMH Chief Executive Bernard Arnault, who arguably brought luxury to the global masses, once told me that the events of 21st Century China are not “an abnormality” but “a return to normality.”
What I think he meant is that China’s current power, influence and appetite for luxury is simply a rebirth of Chinese ascendancy, of the kind that prevailed during the pride and pomp of the Middle Kingdom. So if this generation of Chinese has a rendezvous with destiny, it’s interesting to consider what that might mean.
We know one thing for sure, whoever you meet and wherever that rendezvous takes place you will leave something of yourself with them and they will leave a piece of themselves with you.
To rendezvous is to live; to live is to change, to change to be reborn and a good place to begin the process of renewal is within the pages of Quintessentially Asia magazine.