Even though I spent a lot of time in 2012 stranded on the island of Manhattan, I still managed to do some continent-hopping to a bunch of my favorite foreign locales--and one city that I'd never been to before.
In January, Diane Pernet sent me to Rio again (I had to pout and beg a little bit and she finally relented because it was during my birthday) at the invitation of Monica Mendes and ABIT (Brazilian Textile & Apparel Industry Associaton). We stayed in Copacabana which is really the more authentic, egalitarian Rio experience as opposed to trendy Ipanema.
In September, I took my yearly trip to the magical music-box-like city of Vienna, where I am invited to cover MQ Vienna Fashion Week.
I usually stay close to the Opera House, but this year for the first 3 nights I stayed in the rarely visited district of Margareten. After World War I, Vienna was known as "Red Vienna" because of the left-wing government that put a lot of Socialist programs in action, including municipal housing projects for the poor. There are quite a few in Margareten (and the highway that borders the district is nicknamed the "Ringstrasse of the Proletariat") and I did my own self-guided tour of the area. This one was my favorite communal housing project: the elegant Reumann-Hof, built in 1924 (above).
Backstage at the Tiberius show at Vienna Fashion Week.
Designer Mariella Morgana Meyer at the "White Mask" afterparty for the Tiberius show at the fabulous Le Meridien Hotel (where I stayed for 3 nights).
I really enjoyed the "Reflecting Fashion" exhibit at MUMOK in Vienna's Museum Quartier. (Maria Oberfrank of MQVFW kindly supplied me with passes to all the museums.) One of the highlights was the inclusion of Elsa Schiaparelli's collaboration with Salvador Dali, the iconic lobster dress, which was very conspicuously absent from the Met Costume Institute's disastrous Prada/Schiaparelli show. Even though I am a Freudian, I was very amused by this feminist provocation (above), "Flow My Tears 1" by Mai-Thu Perret. The mirrored face is meant to reflect back all Freudian theories projected onto women, making her impervious to them.
After Vienna, I passed through Berlin for 3 days to visit my nutty "cousins" Vaginal Davis and Isabel. (Isabel has since fled the cold shoulders of the Germans and is now somewhere in sunny northern Thailand.) Isabel and I went to the Humboldt Cube museum and I took these photos from the veranda of the museum's restaurant.
Mitte is packed cheek by jowl with trendy, soulless boutiques that all seem to sell the same bougie "design" pillows and lamps for 50 euros a pop. One moment of respite was an interesting bookstore (the entrance, above) that also hosts reading.
House of Cheese!
Amsterdam street style
My friend Marcelo took me out to a marvelous dinner at the Silver Mirror, a restaurant that has not changed much since the early 17th century! We quaffed champagne and supped on foie gras brulee while sitting inside the fireplace. Those tiles!
Happy art at the recently re-opened & re-vamped Stedelijk Museum
Me + Moet at the Amsterdam premiere of the amazing DIANA VREELAND: THE EYE HAS TO TRAVEL
We stopped by the Theater Tuschinski to check out the eye-popping interior.
Rem Koolhaas's CCTV Tower which generates almost as much propaganda as Fox News.
Beijing's arbiter of elegance, Jeffrey Ying, gave a party for the Party on China's National Day in his glamorous penthouse.