Thank God it’s Friday

Posted on January 8, 2016

Fanuary 8th, 2016

My cultural look-ahead for the beginning of the year: Clothes have a message, and a new calendar has begun since January became Fanuary

Dear Readers,
How are you? Our new year at SC Exhibitions starts busy, since two of the world’s best-known Egyptologists, Dr. Zahi Hawass and Dr. Nicholas Reeves, will visit The Discovery of King Tut, our exhibition which recreates the tomb of King Tut and the treasures found within, for special events in New York on January 14th and 18th. Dr. Hawass and Dr. Reeves are both renowned for their ongoing research regarding Tutankhamun’s tomb, and Dr. Reeves has recently been making headlines for his theory that the mummy of Queen Nefertiti lies behind a wall of that very tomb. There’s a huge media interest, and I’m in rush to prepare the events in New York with our team of publicists at Keith Sherman Associates.

Today, I have the pleasure to share with you my cultural look-ahead for the first months of this year. To start with, David Bowie celebrates his 69th birthday today, and has chosen to mark this date with a birthday gift for all of us: Blackstar. I hope it will become available on Spotify (for my flight to New York), and if not I’ll rush to the next record store to buy the singer’s 28th studio album.

Update, January 11th : David Bowie died two days after his 69th birthday. “Here was music that celebrated uncertainty, rootlessness, inner chaos, difference, otherness, doubt, impermanence. And it did so with beauty, style and charisma,” says Peter Ormerod in The Guardian about “… a moment that changed me – listening to David Bowie’s Hunky Dory”. The album is available on Spotify, my favorite piece is ‘Tis a Pity She Was a Whore. Thank you for the music, David Bowie!

Another album to listen to is Ennio Morricone’s first Western score in decades, created for Quentin Tarantino’s THE H8FUL EIGHT. Maestro Morricone is giving a number of 60 Years of Music concerts all over Europe in the coming weeks, with my personal pick being his appearance in Wrocław’s Centennial Hall on February 23rd as part of Wrocław’s term as the European Capital of Culture. I certainly hope that the Maestro will perform a “hateful” piece as well. UNESCO has chosen Wrocław as this year’s World Book Capital, and the city is my travel tip for this spring – the cultural programme is great, and it houses many architectural wonders, including the Centennial Hall itself, Max Berg’s architectural masterpiece, as epic and dramatic as Mr. Morricone’s music. Follow the programme on Twitter and

When I arrive in New York on January 13th, I’ll certainly need a shower and fresh clothes. I’m curious to learn if our friends at the Museum of Fine Arts Boston will beam me a fresh shirt to my room at The Archer Hotel. Why? Well, our colleagues are working on an exhibition about clothes that respond to the environment; fabrics that are “grown,” dresses you can tweet and garments that come off a 3D printer ready to wear—all of these innovations are poised to have a profound impact on the future of fashion. #techstyle (March 5th–July 10th, 2016) examines how the synergy between fashion and technology is not only changing the way designers design, but also the way people interact with their clothes. Read more at: www.mfa.org/…

NB: Is this the very first museum exhibition to use a Hashtag in its title? Does anybody know? Please tweet me

After the retrospective exhibitions featuring famous designers in museums across the globe, “technology and fashion” seems to be this year’s topic among curators. The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York announced “manus x machina: fashion in an age of technology,” on view from May 5th through August 14th and sponsored by Apple. The exhibition will open with the glamorous Met Gala, this year reportedly headlined by singer Taylor Swift; the actor Idris Elba; Apple’s chief design officer, Jony Ive; and “the devil wears Prada,” Anna Wintour, the Vogue editor-in-chief for whom the Costume Center at my favorite Big Apple museum is named.

The Kunsthistorisches Museum celebrates its 125th anniversary with Celebration!, a show that will examine European festival culture of yesteryears,
with objects from the institute’s own collection and international celebrity loans from the Prado & Co. (www.khm.at).

European festival culture can also be found at the British castle Downton Abbey, the playground and name of one of the most successful TV melodramas of the past decade. In the US, the final season started last weekend on PBS. Of course, in real life Downton Abbey is Highclere Castle, seat of the Carnarvon family, and once home to George Herbert, the 5th Earl of Carnarvon, who financed the search for the tomb of Tutankhamun in the Valley of the Kings. Julian Fellowes, the creator of Downton, wrote the book for School of Rock, a new Broadway musical by Andrew Lloyd Webber (on my bucket list as well). Mr Fellowes (I hope we can win him for an exhibition one day!) is launching his next project in April, Belgravia. Mr. Fellowes is experimenting with an old narrative form, the serialized novel, with the latest digital delivery system: an app. Check www.julianfellowesbelgravia.com

This column goes online on the 8th day of January, sorry: Fanuary. A new calendar has begun: from 2016 onwards, January is Fanuary. America’s foremost pop culture magazine Entertainment Weekly (a must-read if you work in arts & entertainment; I am a subscriber here in Germany on the iPad) is celebrating the fans; for me, this is an inspiration and a wonderful example of publishing/editorial creativity. Read more at www.ew.com/fanuary and follow hashtag #EWFanuary

The next FRIDAY will appear on Fanuary 22nd, 2016, on this page. It will be a video interview with Dr. Nicholas Reeves, explaining, from our reconstruction of the tomb, what he is working on in Egypt. And I will try to get an interview with Entertainment Weekly’s editor-in-chief Henry Goldblatt – this Fanuary campaign is something I’d like to feature in our SC Exhibitions Magazine (out March 3rd).

Very best wishes, luck and health, for the new year!

Christoph Scholz
Director SC Exhibitions



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