Things to Do to Combat the January Blues: Daisy Hoppen’s Guide

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Jean Jacques Lequeu (1757-1826): Builder of FantasyVia Petit Palais

Great things to see, shop, eat and read this month

January is always slightly filled with dread and trepidation about the year ahead – it’s similar to that back to school or Sunday night feeling. Here are some ideas that I am hoping will cheer up the month.

See: Jean Jacques Lequeu (1757-1826): Builder of Fantasy at Petit Palais, Paris: until March 17, 2019

I grew up looking at the work of French artist Jean-Jacques Lequeu through my father’s (Michael Hoppen) admiration of him. Lequeu is primarily known as a draughtsman and architect, with his visual narrative spanning from technical drawings of buildings (sometimes widely fantastical and bizarre) to graphic and erotic. Six months before he died in poverty in Revolutionary France and forgotten for many years, Lequeu donated his estate to the French National Library. For the first time the archive of many hundreds of drawings are on show in Paris. My father has used a Lequeu drawing of a human eye as the logo for his gallery over 35 years, so this is a very sentimental show for me to go and see.

The exhibition is accompanied by a catalogue, Jean-Jacques Lequeu: Bâtisseur des fantasmes (Laurent Baridon ed., BnF Editions in collaboration with Norma Editions).

Watch: The Favourite, in UK cinemas now

Any film featuring corsets will always spark my interest, so I have been eagerly waiting for The Favourite to arrive in cinemas. Set in the 18th-century court of Queen Anne (directed by Yorgos Lanthimos of The Lobster fame) the film stars three of my favourite actresses: Olivia Colman, Rachel Weisz and Emma Stone. Period dramas can often be saccharine (which still makes me melt inside... Alan Rickman in Sense and Sensibility is forever mine), but I love the idea of a historical drama with bite, black humour and some corset style lust! I plan to watch it wearing Simone Rocha pearls and crystal encrusted headbands, accompanied by a large glass (or bottle) of elegant red wine.

Listen: Gilles Peterson’s Worldwide Awards 2019

Gilles Peterson’s show on BBC Radio 6 Music is always playing at home. Peterson is well known for supporting emerging international talent, as well as bringing together a wide range of genres and styles from across the globe. The Worldwide Awards this year include: Ben LaMar Gay, Dur-Dur BAND International (Somali Music Band), Cleo Sol, Emma-Jean Thackray, Atmosfear, Children of Zeus ft. KSR, HAAi, and KOKOROKO. Go support and look forward to hearing the next generation of grass roots talent from world music that Peterson is so adept at uncovering.

Shop: New Beginnings at Dover Street Market (London, Ginza, NY, LA, Singapore and Beijing, and online): from January 12, 2019

The store’s bi-yearly changeover with new spaces, installations, brands and specials. This season I am most excited to shop (in my dreams!) Sophie Bille Brahe’s new diamond collection ‘L’Ocean Ensemble’ – shot here by Danish artist Emma Rosenzweig. In addition the London store will launch LCF graduate Peng Tai, who works with natural elements such as branches and fallen leaves to dye and distress fabrics within her ethereal collections. Finally Jil Sander’s beautiful – and exclusive to DSM – shell clutch bags can be added to my growing collection of shell and pearl accessories that I am hoarding at home.

Eat: Dinings SW3, Soba January Menu

After the heaviness of neverending Christmas dinners, I always feel like Asian food puts me in a good place for a new year. Japanese restaurant Dinings will be launching a ‘Soba January’ menu. From the vegetarian friendly soba noodle salad, with buckwheat soba noodles, mixed leaves mixed cress and a sesame vinaigrette to the kamo nan-ban duck broth with cold soba noodle, with duck fillet, spring onion and shredded nori seaweed, I am going to tuck in with a refreshing cold sake on the side. (I don’t do dry January...)

Read: The New Silk Roads by Peter Frankopan

The original Silk Roads was quite a tome to carry around and finish – but it was an incredible achievement to cover how the East has interacted with the West since almost the start of civilisation to the modern day, all in one book. I pre-placed my order for Oxford historian Peter Frankopan’s The New Silk Roads as soon as I heard of its arrival. It acts as almost a final updated chapter to the original book, as the author believes that the last three years have been times of such rapid change in world order that it was necessary. Looking at this new world and power that forms across the spine of Asia – through China, Russia, Iran, the Middle East and Asia, Frankopan describes a new ‘belt’ that will essentially link all these territories and rapidly growing economies together. Frankopan puts forward a more than reasonable argument that the sun is setting in the West with discord and uncertainty, and the East is where we should all look to for growth and opportunities, despite challenges that of course are still present in the region.

Daisy Hoppen is the founder of DH-PR, a London-based communications agency. She also works in house with a small number of brands, companies and personalities across fashion, art and culture.