Vancouver - ARTS & CULTURE
January 12th, 2005
If you rip out pages of Dwell for your office inspiration board and dream of ordering a prefab Glidehouse to plunk on that slice of undiscovered Gulf Island waterfront you're (sort of) of shopping for, here's where you might just meet your soul date.
The Vancouver League for Studies in Architecture holds an ongoing free lecture series in Robson Square. Who knows? Notorious architect manque Brad Pitt might even show.
Next week's lecture features Japanese architect Kengo Kuma, who is responsible for the Japanese headquarters of Louis Vuitton Moet Hennessy. Glass, bamboo, plastic, stone and wood are all elemental in his award-winning, modern apartments and buildings.
Lost? Just look for all the other slim people in tone-on-tone outfits with stylish eyewear and excellent handwriting.
January 17, 2005, 6 p.m. C300 Theatre, UBC Robson Square, 800 Robson Street.
More info at www.lecturesonarchitecture.net
January 5th, 2005
Long nights, bright fires, witty heroines, dashing visitors: they're they stuff of classic novels, the likes of which we've rarely seen since the Brontes and Jane Austen brought us Jane Eyre and the Bennet sisters.
Written in 1948, the recently re-released I Capture the Castle (Dodie Smith) tells the story of an eccentric British family living in a decrepit castle as told by the delightfully precocious-yet-naive 17-year-old Cassandra Mortmain, who fills journals in order to 'capture the castle' (and meantime our hearts) with her lilting prose.
Her failed intellectual of a father and lute-playing, artists' model stepmother add fodder to the farce, which also recounts her coming of age and first love amid the family's abject poverty and attendant follies. The story then moves to London, with the lure of fame and riches, lust and secrets.
It's a book to be passed on to every wide-eyed 12-year-old girl, and picked up again, many years later, when it means even more to be reminded of how delightful innocence and young love once was.
Purchase I Capture the Castle at www.chapters.ca
December 29th, 2004
Trying to fit in a cut-and-colour between holiday shopping and socializing--not to mention work--can drive even the most skilled multi-tasker to the brink of madness.
But before you resort to trimming your own bangs a la rebellious toddler, we'd like to introduceyou to Halo Salon.
Catering to women-on-the-go,the salon is open until 9 p.m. Wednesday through Friday, and boasts weekendhours that actually allow you to pick-up that strapless number you dropped off at the cleaners three weeks ago.
Sound too good to be true? It gets better.
Staff is friendly, stylists listen before they cut, and regulars swear owner Cindee Beirness is a genius with colour and hard-to-treat hair types.
And they may still have a few free appointments before the ball drops.
2771 Arbutus St.,604-730-1355, www.halosalon.ca
December 22nd, 2004
If jewellery for men conjures up images of piled on gold chains over a hairy chest, wipe that picture out of your head-immediately.
Now that Karl Lagerfeld has made men's rings cool (he's been stacking both hands with his own men's creations for H&M) we think any guy'd flip for Elsa Smith's new ESLA range of men's jewellery, inspired by human anatomy.
Think chunky, spiky, brass-knuckle-like silver rings and tuff cuffs.
He'll for sure scrap those gold medallions for this.
Buy the ELSA line at the Vancouver Art Gallery Gift Shop, 750 Hornby St.,604-662-4706, www.vanartgallery.bc.caand at Ice Jewellery Design, 982 Denman St., Vancouver, 604-678-4600,www.ice-jd.com
Read about the designer at www.elsasmith.com
December 8th, 2004
It's so easy to get caught in the trap of reading about reading without actually picking up a book.
We're about to change all that.
Novelist Ann Patchett's first work of creative non-fiction, Truth and Beauty, recounts her struggles as a young writer, toiling through graduate school and assignments from Seventeen, before finally getting published in New York and joining the glamorous literary circuit.
But don't expect any Bergdorf Blondes here: the story also recounts the tandem career of her best friend and equally talented writer, the late Lucy Grealy (Biography of a Face) whose disfigured jaw and attendant struggles give the book its reality bite.
Challenging, intriguing, brave and talented: these women are the purveyors of the real chick lit.
Buy Truth and Beauty (sale price $25.86) at www.chapters.ca
December 1st, 2004
Clever girls like you who never pay retail are veterans of the sample sale. Not only doyou get your hands on one-of-a-kind goodies that didn't make it into production,but you also get next season's styles at cost.
This weekend's FashionCrawl is the best sample sale line-up we've seen in ages. Grab some girlfriends,follow this treasure trail, and remember accessories fit everyone.
Start at Martha Sturdy'sfactory, where you'll find small resin bud vases (the perfect holidayhostess gift) and beautiful square entertaining platters to glam up thesushi at your next soiree.
Next, head down thestreet to the gorgeous showroom of Jacqueline Conoir, grab a glass ofbubbly and peruse black satin halter tops for a sexy Christmas Eve andsparkly Jeanne Lottie handbags for New Year's.
The Western Frontis just up the block, and there you'll find designer-direct pricing atthe annual Tuque fashion sale, which includes such fabulous labels asFawn Designs, Propellor Design Group, Anna De Coucy jewellery and Paperand Thread cards.
Keep heading eastto Mimi & Marge, and hope to score some of the sterling-silver anddark-wood jewellery, or oversized faux-engagement rings.
Finally, drop by PatriciaFieldwalker's Adagio lingerie factory for handfuls of $15 silk pantiestrimmed in contrasting lace for all your girlfriends, camisoles and luscioussilk slips that double as daywear. Do as we do, and put your name on afew slinky pieces, then send your significant other down to go Christmasshopping. That way, everyone wins.
The Fashion Crawlruns Friday, December 2 and Saturday, December 3, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Jacqueline Conoir and Patricia Fieldwalker will also open 11 a.m. to 5p.m. on Sunday December 4
Mimi and Marge is open Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Tuque runs Friday 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., and Saturday 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Martha Sturdy, 12 W. 5th Ave. www.marthasturdy.com
Jacqueline Conoir, 46 W. 6th Ave. www.jcstudio.ca
Toque, The Western Front, 303 E. Eight Ave., www.front.bc.ca
Mimi & Marge, 201-1155 Odlum Dr. www.mimiandmarge.com
Patricia Fieldwalker/Adagio collection, #302, 343 Railway St. www.pfieldwalker.com
November 24th, 2004
Attention: MichaelMoore, Noam Chomsky and Denys Arcand. The American people answer back.
Found: The Best Lost,Tossed and Forgotten Items From Around the World is the most compelling,heartbreaking, shocking, enlightening book we've uncovered in years. Consistingof discarded love notes, to-do lists and ransom notes mostly found inAmerica-it says more about American culture than any documentary filmcould.
The places the notesare found in are often as intriguing as the notes themselves, as withone man's sexually explicit letter to Jesus found in a library copy ofWhat to Expect When You're Expecting.
You'll be chokingback tears, then choking back laughter by turns of the page. It's thebest entertainment value $21 can buy.
For Vancouver retailersand more, visit
November 17th, 2004
November weather isupon us. You'll be in need of some inspiration and we've got jus the thing:some great films you may have missed, as chosen by the Vitamin V team.
Manon Des Sources/Manon of the Springs
" The sequel to Jean de Florette, this stunning film also standsalone-as does its star, the beautiful Emmanuelle Beart who plays a naughtyfemale goat herder in the foothills of rural France." Sarah Bancroft,editor-in-chief
"Hysterical, Australian Indie sleeper hit directed by Rob Stitchabout one man's quest to save his family's home from being obliteratedby the expansion of an airport. It will make your belly ache." TaraParker-Francis, publisher
L'Ange de Goudron/Tar Angel
"Denis Chouinard directs this touching story of an Algerian immigrantin Montreal who discovers his teenaged son is involved with an undergroundpolitical movement. This film rocked the Montreal film festival."Jeff Parker-Francis, technical director
Etre et Avoir/ To Be and to Have
"A touching documentary portrait of a one-room school in rural France.You'll laugh, you'll cry..." Margot McLaren, graphic designer
"So it's sort of like Heaven because it has Cate Blanchett in it.It's written by Krzysztof Kieslowski but directed by Tom Tykwer, CateBlanchett and Giovanni Ribisi-who I apparently look like because I ama sleazy photographer. Absolutely, gorgeously filmed in Europe."Johann Wall, staff photographer
The Taste of Cherry
"This melancholic, beautiful, philosophical film with gorgeous cinematographyfollows one man's search for human dignity in rural Iran. Shot in directorAbbas Kiarostami's inimitable style (Muslim New Wave?) and using his brilliantcasting technique of mixing real people with actors, it's an inspirationalSunday afternoon flick. P.S. Please don't Google the name of this film!"SB
Hable con Ella/Talkto Her
"Director Pedro Almodovar's powerful story of love and loss withSpanish characters expressing such raw, passionate emotions you'll feellike a
"Winnipeg meets Sex in the City in this anti-romance drama in whichfour people blindly follow their desires and only realize where it hastaken them once it's too late." JP-F
"Not for the faint of heart, this drama tackles the story of a notedprofessor (Emma Thompson) with a terminal illness. Get out the Kleenexand grab yourself a shoulder to cry on" MM
"Not only is it a sumptuously shot film-must be the collaborationwith the French that gives it that moody continental feel-but the filmfeatures Tilda Swinton, who is stunning, talented and also naked mostof the time. Murder, sex, treachery and Ewan McGregor." JW
November 10th, 2004
To buy a phat wig
From the 1960s
So it will be big
Or a'50s romance novel
' Cause that would be wacky
Or a Garfield stickerbook
But that would be tacky
The 21st Century FleaMarket is a whole bunch of fun
But hurry along, there's more shopping to be done
Next: downtown, tothe Circle Craft Christmas Market
In our brand new Smart Car, 'cause it's so easy to park it
We'll head straightfor the booth helmed by Susan Harris
Her gorgeous designs will be perfect for Paris
Striped knitted mittens!We can hardly bear it!
And if it's good enough for Holt's, well golly, we'll wear it!
November 3rd, 2004
Not yours, of course,as we just know you can whip up a mean bouillabaisse on a desert islandwith nothing but a pair of Wolford fishnets and a Le Creuset pot.
We're referring toGordon Ramsey's Kitchen Nightmares, a four-part British reality seriesthat debuts on Food Network Canada this Sunday.
Chef Ramsey is London'snotorious enfant terrible, who has been known to terrify his young chargesinto submission (and to turns of brilliance, as is the case with his formerco-worker Thierry Busset, Cin Cin's pastry chef).
Episode one has himunleashing his unique brand of punishment (and the contents of his stomach)on one unduly precocious 21 year-old chef named Tim.
Let the games begin.
Sunday evenings at9 p.m., Food Network Canada.