The measure of a true supercar is not how fast it goes, nor how sophisticated it is, or even how much it costs. No sir, the real proof of the supercar pudding is in its ability to attract attention. When heads turn, when fingers point, when cellphone cameras start clicking – when the blonde in the BeeEm drops her cellphone in her lap and just stares – then you know you’re driving a supercar. Clearly, the Audi R8 Spyder qualifies – even if this one is the so-called “baby” of the R8 clan. By DEON SCHOEMAN.
The newest of the Smithsonian Institution’s great museums in America, the National Museum of African American History and Culture, is planned for completion in 2015. A centrepiece of this building will be an authentic slave cabin from South Carolina. J BROOKS SPECTOR looks at the larger significance of the acquisition.
Despite its German ownership, Bentley remains the epitome of British automotive craftsmanship, inexorably linked to very real dynamic talents. The new-generation Flying Spur may place a greater emphasis on comfort than its predecessor, but the majestic sedan’s athletic prowess remains undiminished – even on China’s twisty, crowded roads, as DEON SCHOEMAN finds out.
Daft Punk’s latest album Random Access Memories is big and lush and eye-poppingly ambitious, and I have only listened to it a few times on iTunes. So this is not a review. What this is, is a gentle appeal for you not to miss what is going to be one of the better albums of our times. By SIPHO HLONGWANE.
Hyundai’s first coupé since the long-defunct and mildly predatory Tiburon is not exactly what one would expect. With its hot hatch styling and oddball 2+1 door configuration, the Veloster is proof that Hyundai wants to add some charisma to the brand. However, is it really a trend-setter? By DEON SCHOEMAN.
A dramatic Haute Couture event with New York City and a red-carpeted grand staircase as a backdrop, the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute Gala Benefit is one of the most coveted fashion extravaganzas in America. This year, daring outfits punctuated with fauxhawks, platinum blonde hairdos, cut-out studded leather symbols of ‘punk influence on fashion’, made for a theatrical night. By EMILIE GAMBADE.
Bloemfontein-born Anne Hirsch is one of a growing number of global comedians and entertainers who aren’t sitting around waiting for a TV broadcaster or record label to pull it together to offer them exposure. Instead, they’re using their own YouTube channels to get their material out there. And, in the case of 'The Anne Hirsch Show', it’s far funnier and fresher stuff than the normal content on local TV. By REBECCA DAVIS.
There is a sense of the confessional permeating the new show by Pieter-Dirk Uys. For all that he dresses up as different characters, it feels like his own personality is the character most laid bare. As if, after years of presenting his views through the mouths of others, it’s time to strip off the make-up and tell us more about himself. By LESLEY STONES.
Late last week, it was announced that plans are finally properly underway to turn an old Long Island laboratory into a permanent memorial and museum to the late Serbian-American inventor Nikola Tesla. For Tesla’s supporters, it’s the culmination of a 70-year battle – since Tesla’s death – to see the appropriate commemoration of the man largely responsible for our modern electricity system, and a host of other scientific advancements for which he never received sufficient credit. By REBECCA DAVIS.
Compact SUVs must count among the most successful and desirable vehicles in South Africa. While European motorists prefer estates (aka station wagons in the local vernacular), gung-ho SA drivers prefer the taller stance and off-road talents that SUVs epitomise. Ford’s new-generation Kuga is the latest arrival in this segment, and despite that silly name, it’s a worthy contender. By DEON SCHOEMAN.
Even for viewers who are well acquainted with Gerard Sekoto’s work and styles, the current exhibition at the Wits Art Museum will come as a revelation. Seeing his paintings arranged in rough chronological order, reflecting where he lived and worked at each point in his life provides compelling insight into Sekoto’s travails and his development as an artist. By J BROOKS SPECTOR.
From Omo to Sunlight, hand-washing detergent ads suggest black South African women are happiest with their hands in a tub of water while scrubbing stains. So as a new player in the game, what do you do? Repeat the stereotype, but break a Guinness World Record. Detergent brand Ariel did just that on Wednesday. By GREG NICOLSON.
You may not have heard, but according to a recent ANC statement, “some wedding at Sun City” is being hosted by “some family”. Many of the guests for the Gupta nuptials are coming from afar, and seeing that South Africa is a baffling place, it makes sense that they’d require a primer. After much deliberation, the Daily Maverick has decided to publish a top-secret Gupta wedding memo handed out to all overseas attendees. By RICHARD POPLAK.
Now poised in the early twilight of a tumultuous public life, Rev Jesse Jackson has come back to South Africa to receive one of the country’s most prestigious national awards. He’s 72 years old, but close up he is still an imposing, even formidable, physical presence that easily recalls the picture in the mind’s eye of the young, ever-energetic civil rights activist. Jackson is a big man – he automatically claims his space – and holds it easily, without effort. By J BROOKS SPECTOR.
Mars One, a private Dutch spaceflight endeavour which aims to launch a colony on Mars by 2023, opened for applications from would-be colonists last week. The not-for-profit foundation is offering you a ticket to Mars in 10 years’ time, and the chance to star in what it says would be the most audacious reality TV show ever dreamed of. The catch? There’s no coming back from Mars. But this apparently is no deterrent to the more than 30,000 people who have applied over the past week – including six South Africans so far. By REBECCA DAVIS.
We meet in a sunny, bustling eatery in the near-in suburbs. Pieter-Dirk Uys is back in Johannesburg again, preparing for performances in May at the Theatre on the Square. The man has already been an institution for 40 years and somehow his humour, his energy and his moral outrage never seem to flag. Today is no exception. By J BROOKS SPECTOR.
The all-new Mercedes-Benz A-class is not what you’d expect. What used to be a dumpy but technologically daring mini-MPV, much loved by young moms, greying empty nesters and even fastidious grannies, has suddenly evolved into a muscular, sporty premium hatchback. A radical departure from the previous A-class formula, yes. But hardly unusual in the luxury motoring context. By DEON SCHOEMAN.
Jaco Sieberhagen’s exhibition, “The Carnival (No dogs allowed)”, though nowhere nearly as in-your-face as Brett Murray’s “Hail to the Thief”, which featured “The Spear”, is arguably far more critical of the current regime’s iniquities and two-facedness. Yet the official response to the sculptor’s work has been a profound silence. J BROOKS SPECTOR examines the startlingly different responses to two exhibitions.
SA Fashion Week is committed to use its two cyclical events to present the crème de la crème of local fashion, designers who passed with flying colours the test of continuously creating, manufacturing and selling their collections to the public. This is no easy task, yet Spring/ Summer 2013 had all the ingredients to impress. EMILIE GAMBADE picks the best of SAFW.
The idea is simple: Yfm will broadcast a two-hour show every Monday night, showcasing some new South African musical artist to the audience. The station hopes to save artists in the age of pirated music, and introduce its young audience to music that isn’t just a set played by a disc jockey. SIPHO HLONGWANE was there to see Mi Casa play at the first #LiveNReyired session.
Striving for perfection is an admirable endeavour. But in automotive terms, there’s more to perfection than a flawless coat of paint, an exquisitely tailored interior or a fastidiously engineered drivetrain. More abstract qualities such as heritage, tradition and character come into play, too. Infiniti may have the premium sector’s major players in its sights, but its arsenal is short of some of those key ingredients. By DEON SCHOEMAN.
BMW’s M-cars are a breed apart: bespoke and finely fettled versions of production models built in relatively small numbers and created with an unwavering focus on performance. The 6-Series is a large and even cumbersome coupé with room for two, a boot that can swallow two golf bags plus designer DW luggage, and an ability to cruise cross-country with bombastic ease. Does an M-version of this car make sense? By DEON SCHOEMAN.