Tag: review

Portuguese artist Alexandre Farto aka Vhils, recognised for his visual poetry is currently showcasing his highly anticipated exhibition, ‘Dissonance’ at Lazarides Gallery that runs until 23rd April. Dissonance explores the ever-increasing erosion of identities within contemporary urban societies, and speaks of how individuals are shaped into abstract personalities by the overpowering force of city life, becoming lost to the dissonance caused by the chaos of technology, visuals and mass media.

A complex reflection of the factors that shape us into who and what we are, and losing ourselves to the visual noise that surrounds us, the show dissects urbanised life through the composition of metal, wood and billboards. Similar themes are expressed in styrofoam dioramas that show the process of mutual shaping that lies at the heart of the relationship between the city and its inhabitants.

I first saw Alex’s work back in 2007 and was totally floored. Here was this crazy Portuguese kid, doing these mad portraits on the street by chopping out bits of walls. It was one of the most innovative techniques I’d ever seen. It has been a pleasure to see how much he has come on from those early days to his most recent museum show in Lisbon. Long may it continue.” Steve Lazarides

Farto has been exploring the subject of the urban environment under the name of Vhils since his days as a prolific graffiti writer in the early 2000s. An avid experimentalist, he has been developing his concept of the aesthetics of vandalism within the media, from stencil painting to wall carving, and pyrotechnic explosions to 3D modelling. Farto’s carving technique which formed the basis of his Scratching the Surface series, presented in Lisbon in 2007 and London’s Cans Festival in 2008, has been hailed as one of the most compelling approaches to art created in the street in the last decade.

Dissonance Dissonance Dissonance 

Exhibition Details:

27th March 2015 – 23rd April 2015-03-29

Tuesday – Saturday, 11am – 7pm

Lazarides, 11 Rathbone Place, London, W1T 1HR

Words: Sarah Jones

Usually our regular hotel/holiday slot is titled leaving London however we feel that sometimes a change is as good as a holiday and if you can see London through the eyes of an early adopter rather than the drudge of the workers in the city then perfect.

Number Sixteen will allow you to do just that. So wether you're reading this planning a trip to London (as we know many of you do) or reading it thinking you just need a break from your poky flat, then read on!

No16 Bedroom 101 HR

Number Sixteen is part of the Firmdale Group and offers wonderfully designed rooms and even a garden in the heart of South Kensington, London.

As we mentioned - if you are one of the many few that lives in London sharing a flat with no outside space to speak of then this will be your personal slice of living heaven for you stay.

The interior design which you simply can't miss throughout has been created by owner, Kit Kemp. If you get home and feel that your house is a little lack lustre after bathing in a wash of colours during your Number Sixteen stay then not to worry, you can buy some of the Kit Kemp collections used throughout the hotel yourself - or her book and gather some inspiration for your own little pad.

NO16 Library MR C

If you are concerned about leaving canine friends at home then don't be - the hotel allows small dogs in the rooms which is a great bonus to anyone the knows the trials and tribulations of finding doggy cover.

No16 Garden MR R

So with any concerns put aside you can get on with enjoying a stay in some of the most colourful sumptuousness we have come across in our hotel travels.

You have the choice to sit tranquil and quiet in the courtyard garden behind the hotel - making full use of the wonderful afternoon tea on the hotel menu or wonder out the front of the hotel to the more bustling but still relaxing South Kensington Streets. There are bars, restaurants, coffee shops and pubs a plenty in the vicinity and you are a stones through away from Hyde Park and the Natural History Museum. Both brilliant days out.

NO16 Drawing Room NEW MR

If you just want to lounge around the hotel - which you may do seeing as it is so beautiful then there are beauty treatments available in for form of Soholistic. There are no special treatment rooms at Number Sixteen - rather you have your chosen treatments in the comfort of your own room - wonderful!

Firmdale Hotels partner with Temple Spa to provide a unisex range of highly advanced products and treatments created to combat the stresses and strains of everyday life, perfect for renewing your London living love. At Number Sixteen you will get the very best in anti-ageing skin care, aromatherapy and anti-oxidants without leaving your room.

There are two great offers on at the hotel currently - one - a Sunday Stay-over and another ready for Valentines.

Take Monday off or leave from a wonderfully comfortable bed and rested night by taking up the offer to stay at Number Sixteen over Sunday night.

Included in your stay:
Chilled glass of Champagne
Welcome gift
Continental breakfast

Superior Room from £252
Luxury Room from £282
Deluxe Room from £324

Alternatively plan your Valentines now and really get those brownie points from your other half. Even though you would have done all the hard booking work you can still relax and enjoy your gift to your  significant and much loved other. Number Sixteen will lay out chocolates and a chilled bottle of Cuvée Rosé Laurent-Perrier Champagne ready for your arrival and wake you up with a Continental breakfast for two in the morning.

Superior Room from £372
Luxury Room from £414
Deluxe Room from £456

Valid 13-15 February

For reservations, please book online above. For more information, please contact the hotel directly on T: 020 7589 5232 or CLICK HERE to email.

A stay at Number Sixteen doesn't need to be a special occasion though - we fully recommend it for some rest and recuperation if you are a Londoner or a luxurious break to sample city life if you come from out of town.

16 Sumner Place

T: +44 (0)20 7589 5232
E: sixteen@firmdale.com

food 3

Finding somewhere in Soho which doesn’t cripple your budget or leave you hankering after a MacDonald’s on the way home is a life-long mission of mine and Vapiano on Wardour Street achieves exactly this feat, moving it onto my recommended places for when you next find yourself in the area.

It's the fourth branch in London of the German chain which is a kind of modern take on fast food. You choose your food, go up to a long counter and order it and then wait (or watch) it be prepared and cooked right in front of you.

The difference is that the food is also pretty decent. It’s nothing too fancy but it is comforting, delicious, inventive and extremely reasonable.

food 2

The restaurant serves Italian food but i's more exciting than your usual pizza pasta with fresh, colourful ingredients used in well-presented and tasty dishes.

Another excellent benefit if you’re going in a group – each diner is given a card which their order is added to, saving the inevitable annoying end-to-all-group-meals when working out the bill (to that person who always leaves us short we know who you are and we hate you).

All-in-all Vapiano is an easy, laid-back venue for fast food with a difference – it’s delicious, inventive, and cheap, something to shout loudly about.


Last November saw London’s Olympia turned into a temporary Japanese Christmas market that celebrated the very best in Japanese culture, craft and cuisine.


With dozens of stalls offering a wide range of clothes, toys and tableware, along with a food hall packed with an overwhelming amount of Japanese delicacies, there was something for everyone who enjoys both traditional and contemporary Japan.

So here we’re going to be taking a look at what made the Hyper Japan 2014 event the best one yet!


Assortment_of_sushi,_May_2010 (1)


You couldn’t have found a better introduction to Japanese cuisine than what was on offer at Hyper Japan 2014. From simple Japanese street food like curry rice and ramen, to the more sophisticated varieties of sushi, the food hall was a shrine to the wonderful tastes of Japanese food.

And not only that, but there was also a host of food events such as sashimi tuna carving and even a heated sake seminar, that meant you could take home the skills necessary to recreate all the wonderful flavours of Hyper Japan 2014!




What was truly incredible about the shopping experience at Hyper Japan, was the sheer diversity of Japanese items for sale. Ranging from traditional handicraft tools such as Tokimeki art brushes and delicate ceramics, to the fiendishly cute Kawaii accessories, it seemed that Hyper Japan was designed to part you with your money!

And J-style fashion was also reigning supreme at the Christmas market with stalls overflowing with the latest designs in Japanese couture. What’s more is that there were even live fashion shows that gleefully paraded the most innovative and inspiring outfits straight from the streets of Tokyo.

Such displays are always useful as a barometer for future style trends, as many diverse areas of modern culture all take a good amount of inspiration from the creative minds of Japan. Take the gaming industry which increasingly borrows visual cues from Japanese pop culture, whether it be massive titles like Final Fantasy or even Casino Saga Fans which is not only a casino games website, but also has a great blend of Japanese influenced fantasy and adventure!


Traveler Digital Camera


While all of this was going on, there was a constant whirl of entertainment throughout the market. With the steady thrum of the traditional Japanese Taiko drumming and the extremely impressive martial arts displays running throughout the weekend, there was always something new to see and hear.

After all the variety of Japanese experiences on offer in one space, it’s going to be interesting to see how Hyper Japan could possibly get any better when it returns in 2015

We saw Childish Gambino at Brixton Academy. We would definitely see him again.


With support from UK soul child Elli Ingram, the night was off to a brilliant start before it had even begun. Inbetween acts, the stage metamorphosed into a virtual black board, with the audience using an app to write rude messages and draw penises. Not quite what was intended i'm sure; but a good way to pass the time none the less.

Donald's backdrop was a living room of utmost grandeur, and when the music kicked in, i was sold.

'Crawl' echoed across the academy, with the audience bouncing in synchronized bliss. Childish Gambino gave an audio and visual show like no other i have seen recently.

With stand out tracks including the radio popular '3005', and 'Sweatpants', some other tracks immediately grabbed and held my attention; 'The Party' being one.

Gambino's freestyles were also met with much applause, and i have to say I'm sold on his talents.

Check out the video for 'Heart Beat' below (another prime moment at the show, in which Gambino was caught skanking like never before!)