Issue 07: 2012/2

Cover artist: Gary Stubelick

Editor's letter

B Beyond is an art and philanthropy periodical. Our editorials, however, are known for their punchy, often radical, content and focus on the global issues of the day.

Lest the link between the socio-economic and political landscape on one hand and art on the other is considered tenuous, let us re-define what art is today:

Rather than just imitating life, contemporary art increasingly interprets social and political issues of the day and Makes a Stand.

Philanthropy and individual philanthropists have long fostered a spirit of compassion. They can no longer do so from atop the proverbial ivory towers as these have been known to tumble (hubris does have its consequences).

The age of conscientious consumption has arrived – certainly, in the recession-ravaged West. At the time of writing this editorial, Greece had just had its second round of elections and although the radical left Syrisa party did not win, the Tsipras Effect is being felt throughout Europe.

Calls for a more compassionate form of capitalism (and indeed for more compassionate forms of governing) are gaining momentum and can no longer be dismissed as the domain of ultra-radical leftists and tree huggers.

The unprecedented growth of private wealth – along with the ever increasing gap between the haves and have-nots at a time when politicians are advocating and enforcing painful austerity cuts – has created a climate of mass discontent throughout the Western hemisphere.

When people are having a tough time, they look for an easy target to blame. Thus far, said target has been pinned firmly to the tailor made lapels of bankers and politicians. Signs emerged that the target is getting more defined and more personal when the UK group Uncut staged a demonstration in the street where Deputy Prime Minister Clegg lives.

In France, newly elected Socialist president Francois Hollande has won majority in the lower house of Parliament and is preparing to carry out his pre-election pledges of stimulating growth rather than doggedly implementing the austerity policy of his predecessor.

The US Occupy movement is an expression of deeply seated resentment at social and economic inequality that has resonated in several countries across the Atlantic.

The Middle East is still in the grips of its Arab Spring, a phenomenon that has changed the political landscape in that part of the world.

The world, in fact, is changing faster and more significantly than ever before – right before our eyes – and never before have we had such a strong awareness of change. Social media, an unstoppable force to be reckoned with, has given everyone a voice, the collective power of which is far reaching beyond casting a vote. It is a force we can only ignore at our peril.

B Beyond is not politically aligned but it does broadly promote compassionate philanthropy and those who are able to make a change for the better in the world through their philanthropic endeavours.

In this summer 2012 edition, we profile our youngest philanthropist ever, Vassilissa Conway, who is a trustee of the Linveco Cultural Foundation, promoting the works and interests of emerging creative talent.

We interview Caroline Stanbury whose style of fundraising is diametrically opposed to that of the conspicuous, party-loving ‘80s.

We look at two very different art fairs – a major one in Hong Kong and a smaller one in Monaco. We look at the ‘archaeology of collecting’ in the words of that mascot of the art world, Sydney Picasso.

We interview the new prince of French haute couture, Alexandre Vauthier, whose candid words make a refreshing read, and the London watch king, Marcus Margulies, whose equally candid comments should be heeded by enthusiasts and collectors alike.

We showcase some ultra-edgy art photography with which B Beyond has become synonymous, as well as our much read and loved travel features.

We have tips on how to ‘Keep Young and Beautiful if want to be Loved’ by some of the world’s leading physicians.

Our wine writer, Tom Harrow, is getting married this summer, so he can be forgiven for delaying his installment on the B Beyond cellar, which will follow in the Autumn edition.

We wish him and his bride Theresa a long life of epicurean happiness.