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CHINA’S MOST POPULAR FREE MAGAZINE
ISSUE 1 DECEMBER 10
Your escape to western cuisine...
TELEPHONE 37668477 3068 KAIYUAN MEDITERRANEAN SHOPPING MALL
(Nearby Song Jiang New Century Grand hotel and the east side of the internet bar)
MINIMALISM TO THE GRAVE Interview with Jacob Jensen P6 STUFF SO CHEAP EVEN YOUR DOG CAN AFFORD IT Guide to the fake market P 11 LAO WAI GUIDE TO CHINA Illustration P 17 SCISSORS AND HYDES Hand crafted leather bags P 18 MUSIC Interview with Jack Prior P 22 THE EXPLORATION Captains log P 26 FACE TO FACE Rainer Maria Latzke P 30
FACE TO FACE P 32 The Michaelangelo of Modern Times
etter from the Editor
I came to China to visit my parents for Christmas in 2011, stayed on for a Shanghai New Years (I actually ended up staying in Songjiang that night).. And then decided I would stay for Chinese New Year as well. I can’t remember what I did that night, but what I do know is that; I got stuck. It took me some time to understand this place. I’m European, where towns were built around churches, people dance in clubs and chicken heads are not supposed to be on my plate. Here, people dance on the street and sleep in clubs, and churches are built as tourist attractions, while chicken heads are a common treat. I realized, for a city that is barely 5 years old, I hadn’t approached this town from the right perspective. With its random western chains, surrounded by traditional Chinese lifestyles, New Songjiang is only getting to where I expect it to be and it’s doing so quickly. It’s evolving into a city with it’s own personality, a greener and more comfortable attitude than its hyperactive big brother, Shanghai. Simply put, I am making this magazine to be a part of this growth, to fuel the publics mind, the Curios and the Creative, to inspire the Motivated thinkers and the Ambitions doers.
Born from the womb of a Transylvanian vampire, and fathered from a lonely sheepherder, Paul Smith first discovered his talent and passion for writing while climbing the Himalayan Mountains. When the rest of his party had either fallen to their deaths or had been eaten for survival, Paul felt he would not live to tell the tale. So, from a frozen clump of hair plucked from his tour guide then dipped in feces’, he began the unforgettable novel that would soon become a following in the Tibetan region of China, “The Tao of eating your friends.” It wasn’t long after he had eaten his backpack and climbing gear, desperate for the iron nutrition that a lonely wonderer found him, still clutching to the remains of his friends leg. She bore the weight of his ego and pride as he cried limply into her arms and dragged him down the 60 meters from the hazardous climate and terrain. Her name would forever be burned deep into his mind, “Gertrude.” It wasn’t long after this life changing experience that Paul would soon publish countless books based on his 6-hour journey of survival. His fame and recognition would spread across the world in places like, New Guinea, Galapagos Islands, and Afghanistan. Paul Smith would live in infamy, known for his courageous outlook in life and for his deep love of a small woodland woman. To this day, he has dedicated himself to the pursuit of happiness and now is currently offering his unforgettable talent to the magazine, Down Town Songjiang.
Zhai, Likes Zebras, riding his bicycle on a rainy day, putting on make-up and playing bingo.
Mr. Wang, likes cooking noodles, chasing chicken and writing poetry.
Elin, Likes apple crumble with custard, long walks in the park, waiting in long lines and watching people talking without hearing them.
Chris, Likes the feel of soft fur, walking on muddy grass and playing leap frogs with frogs.
MINIMALISM TO THE GRAVE
THE JACOB JENSEN FOR M L A NG UAG E
And just when we were getting into that mode of thinking about that, we got this contact from DTMA (the Detao Masters Academy). And they talked about all these dreams. And I said why us. And they said, well we asked the Raymond Loewy Foundation and the Museum of Modern Art in New York for a list of the best designers in the world. (And I did ask what number we were on that list. ) Then there were a lot of emails and Skype meetings and stuff, and then here we are; and then you could say why? Because it is a challenge and adventure, and a lot is going on in this part of the world, you know that. India, china, the whole region. And I like it here. And it is fun. I think currently there is a lot of talk about China and western media’s especially because of the economic growth. But I think sometimes they show China in a bad light because they are a little bit scared of this massive China now growing so strong. Was there any worry about the brand being in China, the name associated with china? No, because I mean, Apple has all their products manufactured out here, everybody has their stuff manufactured out here and I think that the west is getting the whole thing about China wrong. Because first of all, I think it is absolutely legitimate that China’s people and any other people on this planet wants the same living standard that we have in Europe or in North America or Japan. Why should they not have that? And they will get it, and I think that the demand of services and goods and products and buildings and stuff from this part of the world is going to make us all rich and it’s not going to make us poor and them rich, if you make some money you ask the neighbor’s son to cut your grass or lawn. If China is going to become rich means we are all going to become rich. I think that China has shown over the last years that they are sincere about getting accepted in the world culturally, financially, politically, and also in terms of copying others people’s products, which was a big, big problem thirty to forty years ago in Thailand, Hong Kong, and then moving into mainland China. I feel that the Chinese don’t just want to be the manufacturer of all of us, and getting the lowest cut of the deal. They want to add value to the products, to the solutions, so they can make a better margin.`
Tell me about the series of events that led Jacob Jenson to opening a studio in Songjiang, China I backpacked around the world in 1989. And of course I did Europe, Southeast Asia; I went to the Pacific and North America. So I spent some time out here, not in China but in Thailand. I like it a lot. The people, the food, the climate, the culture, the craft; maybe not the modern concrete buildings but there is a lot of nice stuff out here. Much later, I start working for a Japanese company, I think it was our first Asian client. Then Korean, and then Chinese, so we have been working with clients in this part of the world since the mid 90’s. We have been working with Chinese clients since 2000. A lot of our products are manufactured in China, like the rest of the world. I was out on a press tour 1 half years ago. And it was sort of mentioned that we should set up a branch office in this part of the world. Should it be Tokyo, should it be Seoul, should it be Shanghai, should it be Bangkok or Singapore, whatever?
What makes you design a coffin that to me looks like an escape pod on a space ship? Well that is what it is. (Laughter) The story about the coffin is that it is the largest and oldest coffin manufacture in Denmark. They are called Tommerup Kister. This company turned 100 years old and it was natural for them to celebrate that in various ways, and one of the ways would be to make an anniversary line of coffins. So we did normal research on who buys these products. Well the first one who buys the coffin is a woman; she is in her 70’s. She buys it for her husband. The next one to buy is woman who is in her 40’s and she buys it for her mother. And maybe they knew, because it was an older person or young person, or baby or whatever, but no matter, people are very emotional and they have to make a lot of decisions in a few days. You don’t want to screw it up; you don’t want to do it wrong., (you can’t say) “we can just do it again”. You can’t do that, it can’t be redone. So we then came up with various concepts, and turned it around. It’s not for the last journey, it’s for the next journey, it’s not a sunset, it’s a sunrise, a new beginning. You don’t want it to be extravagant or vulgar, you want it to be a little level up but under control, that’s what we do.
I once heard a phrase that is relevant to your work. “If it isn’t functional, it isn’t beautiful.” I think by Charles Eames. What is your approach to design? I say “form follows feeling” Do you have a favourite designer from past or present Apart from myself, of course... I think that Porsche has made a lot of good stuff. To talk more about Jacob Jenson. I think you have done a fantastic job in maintaining Jacob Jensen, your father’s, minimal style and I think it’s actually difficult to distinguish your work from his. Is there sometimes a problem that he is credited for your work or vice versa? I joined the studio 33 years ago, when I was 16. And at that time I was just called Jacob Jensen’s son, they couldn’t even say my silly name over there (Timothy). So at that time things were of course difficult for me. If the father failed, the son failed. I started under him and we worked together for several years, then he sort of left. And I don’t see it is his or mine, I see it as ours, we are a team, creating these solutions and yeah somebody gets the credit and that’s the boss, the boss always gets the credit, and also when the shit hits the fan by the way. All of us has looked after it, like a little garden like watering it, cutting it, doing the right things to it. So I am just very fortunate, that is how I feel. And I am happy to be a part of it and maybe being able to contribute to it to live longer.
Is there any specific design field, genre that you would really want to try out, maybe a hotel design, or just some simple product design? Yes. I really think something you haven’t done before is a challenge, more interesting. It’s like cooking a new meal that you haven’t cooked before, its more challenging, its more interesting, and that could be anything like cars, yachts, and housing, and interiors and products, and so yah, in general, new things are interesting.
PHOTOGRAPHY & STYLING, ELIN MODEL & CLOTHING, MAURICE & INDIE
afford IT !
JACKET 100 RMB TAILORED SHIRT 100 RMB GUCCI BAG 180 RMB LEATHER SHOES 200 RMB
IWC WATCH 250 RMB GUITAR 400 RMB LV SCARF 30 RMB COMME DES GARCONS CARDIGAN 120 RMB
For me there are three major approaches to bartering at the fake market. The first and simplest is having plenty of money but not much time to lose. In this case you’re probably a well dressed middle aged business man or his wife and you’ll get charged a ridiculous starting price due to your money boasting appearance. That also means if you bargain your way down 20 or 30 percent you’ll wear your new oversized ROLEX or UGG boots proudly! The other extreme is a junkie; he will cower over his laptop devouring every fake-market-blog-roll he can get his hands on, to find THE lowest possible price for the product he’s been preparing to buy for weeks now. Well, you either love the kicks of extreme bargaining, or you’re just a stingy fuck! Then there’s me; the middle. I love to bargain and I also love to brag about my 150 RMB Nike high tops. But I’ve also come to the conclusion that I’d rather end up paying 50 RMB more to save myself the torture of the endless back and forth with the market vendors, so here’s my comfortable guide to nearly fair prices; and remember, always suck up and use that lao wai charm of yours. Oh and, whatever you do, no matter if they scream or cry in your face; don’t worry, they will always make their profit!
1 In a friendly way tell people you live in China, and not to give you ridiculous tourist prices. They’ll still give you a ridiculous price, or push you to make a first offer. At this point, tell them if they don’t like your offer it’s ok, maybe next time you can do business. Tell them this will be your final offer. They’ll tell you that they pay more than that, etc… at this point, in a nice humble voice, with a big smile on your face try to get it into their stubborn heads that it is better to make ‘just a little business, rather than no business at all’. 2 Don’t be too impressed when they hold lighters to their leather products to convince you that it’s high quality leather.
3 Of course you shouldn’t show your interest too much, and try not to get attached to a specific product, so when you aren’t getting anywhere start walking away, they’ll try to keep you of course but leave in a friendly manner. Tell them you’ll come back later, or that you can do business another day. Don’t worry, while you leave they’ll offer you their lowest price. 4 If that price is still not low enough, then go to the next shop, and tell them you already have this product, they’ll ask you how much you paid, so just name the price you got from the last shop, but knock off about 100 RMB for bargaining..
5 Knowing the actual going price for a product is just as important, as the negotiation to get it there. Check out taobao.com. it’s like Amazon, except it has exponentially more choice, the majority being fake of course. Many of the products are directly sold by factories, setting the bar for the lowest prices. 6 Go later on in the day, this way they are more likely to let their goods go for a lower price before locking up. 7 Always stay friendly and suck up to them. They get really stubborn and would rather not do any business if you get too aggressive or arrogant.
8 I once read in some tourist guide that you should knock off 80% of the price shown to you on those annoying calculators. Sometimes that’s true, but prices are rising in Shanghai, and it nearly seems like fake goods are becoming a brand in itself.. Anyways, never pay more than 50% of the first offer you’re made! 9 Always stay friendly and suck up to them. They get really stubborn and would rather not do any business if you get too aggressive or arrogant. Let us know your best fake market stories, and the best prices you got for your goodies, send us a mail email@example.com
A new life made by crocco skin
SCISSORS AND HYDES
HA N D CR AFTER LEATHE R B AG S
INTERVIEW & PHOTOGRAPHY MAURICE I loved the smell of fresh leather the instant I entered the store. Immediately I was drawn to the unfamiliar and strange tools that I had never seen before. I dreamt of a different life, where I was a gun slinging buckskin designer, drifting from town to town, collecting the finest rawhide to tailor into masterpieces
What inspired you to make leather bags? I’m a shopaholic. I like bags and I like to work with leather. At first I liked to buy them, afterwards I began to get into contact with cloth and leather. Why did you chose Thames town as a location for your shop, and not somewhere like in shanghai? Thames Town is the best choice for us to do business. Before we moved here, we lived in Xujia hui, but it’s too noisy! When I came back from Dubai, I wanted to slow down the pace of my life. How does the type of leather effect the product. What is your favorite leather to work with? It depends on different needs. Are there a lot of people who come with their own design, or do they rather choose from your design? I think more people will choose our designs, because it’s different from the other shops and markets. How long should a “SHENG” leather bag last? Maybe.. yeah a lifetime. Which brands does your wife like? Chloe, but I like my own brand more. Is there any designers that influence your wife and her design? I used to work in an architecture company, so I think my experience in this field and interior design influences my products. How long does it usually take to make a bag from start to finish and which is the most difficult part when making a bag? It depends, a small one takes one week and each bag has its’ own difficult parts to make.
SHENG Tailor-Made Leather Work No.993 Shop, Thames Town, Songjiang, Shanghai
What started you into playing and composing music and why? Oh man it’s the hard troubles of life.. (laughter) I don’t know man… fathers influence, like most people, and then just, bought a second hand guitar and just started jamming after failing at my classical guitar lessons, just started jamming by myself and started jamming at home, and something started to come out. That’s what happened. That’s pretty much it. Who are your role models that have inspired you in music and life? Umm.. Musically the two biggest by a long shot are Jimmy Hendrix and Mark Knopfler. Mark Knopfler, I bought his play along CD and learned his solos, like, “Telegraph Road” for like 50 minutes long, I learned it from back to front. Hendricks as well, I started a Hendricks cover band when I was like 15, they were my two biggest role models in music. Who is/are your biggest groupie or groupie’s? I seem to attract 24 to 30 year old women. What can we expect from you in the near future? In Songjiang, I want to try and organize and bring more musicians from downtown. I want to bring them here cause I think there is such a huge potential down here and there is really nothing happening, kind of pathetic. So I think there should be a lot more gigs happening, lot more rock shows, should be a lot more folk mucisians, a lot of these awsome musicians downtown and I think they should be coming to Songjiang more, this should be the height of music, In Songjiang, not downtown. You know in the summer we got thousands of students and on the weekends they are just sitting at home playing with their QQ and really they should be listening to awsome live music. What are your future plans in music, China, and your life? So now I am recording my album, and I will be finishing it in the next three months. So in China, then the biggest thing will be in February, we are heading to Taiwan. If you’re heading to China, Taiwan is the best place to start. So before I can really go big in China I have to go to Taiwan, I have some gigs lined up there. So the idea after would be to come back to Shanghai, Beijing, Chengdu, Guangzhou. Pretty much the four biggest cities. We have heard you are sort of a player, how many Chinese women have you been with? Uh. If your refer to being a player as a player of the guitar…yah, I play my guitar you know.. and you know sometime some people want to hear my guitar, so I play it for them you know… Do you have special names for these guitars? Yah you know…uh…(laughter) my current guitar is called, “Betsy”. Betsy 2 actually.. If you had to rate yourself as a specific genre or artist, what would it be? (Sigh)…I don’t know man…I have no idea… it depends on my mood and what is happening in my life… I can see my music now, it veering a lot toward Blues more than it did before…but there is always a modern pop in all my songs… uh… I guess as well, there are a lot of things that happens to me in China that is reflected in my songs…a lot of the stuff that happens here, the things I see that go on around me, like the culture of China, naturally it’s just coming out through the lyrics of the songs, you know, good things and bad things. What is the craziest things that has happened to you back stage? (Laughter), The craziest thing that happened back stage…(can we just pause this for a second please) (laughter) ok…so you go to China.. everything, people basically, you have to be careful what you sing about… and what we do on stage , uh pretty much everything….I’ll tell you one thing that happened though.. so we are doing this gig at Life House in shanghai… this is the craziest thing that happened recently. Basically I was playing this gig with this girl and she decided to take her top off on stage and then people just ran on stage and pulled her off. That’s pretty much the craziest thing that has happened… Uh. That was on stage, It was a question of the craziest thing that happened backstage. Uh, yah… hmm.. ok, as you know
INTERVIEW WITH JACK PRIOR
I try to keep my principles all the time on stage and back stage as a musician, (laughter). But the great thing about playing music is you meet a bunch of cool people and you do get people backstage, drinking….i mean what do I say….ok I’ll give you three words my friend. Eye liner, lots of beer, and extremely short skirts.
INTERVIEW PAUL SMITH
JACOB JENSEN is a trademark of JACOB JENSEN HOLDING ApS and is used under license by JACOB JENSEN BRAND ApS.
n Ico s rie Se | w .ja ww b co s je n en m .co
DRUNK INTERVIEW with Mr. Wang
How many years have you been a Chef? 18 How many noodles do you make a day? Uhh... How did you meet your wife? My baba and her baba arranged our wedding Do you charge more money for laowai? No Do you have a permit for your restaurant? huh? You want to food ma? Where are your toilets? Ah..? Ohh.. (Points at KFC) Whats your uncles name? Mr. Wang Whats your english name? ..Noodles with egg ma?
WRITING & MONTAGE PAUL SMITH
Of China and Etiquette
CAPTAIN’S LOG 11212011: I have been sent to a strange periphery on planet Earth called, “China” to gather information about the local people. It seems as though they have existed for thousands of years yet remain unaffected from the surrounding civilizations. Several attempts to contact them have been, “blocked”. In my last briefing, I was told to observe their rich culture of certain etiquettes and behaviors. I am instructed to try their local eating habits and social activities to gain a deeper insight of these rituals. CAPTAIN’S LOG 11222011: I have landed in the Shanghai-Songjiang sector. The air seems to be breathable from my atmosphere analysis. So far, it was not as I thought. I was told that the average height was shorter than ours, from what I can see, untrue. However their body mass seems to contain much less fat. I have documented them entering into a processing factory called, “KFC” and coming out much taller. This is where growth mutations must take place. I was escorted by a “TAXI” to what must be their temple. Research indicates a strong belief in a religion they call “KTV”. It glows in several colors and a constant flow of believers, the majority being male, enter. At the doorway, imperial guards dressed in red, stopped me to check for weapons, I assume. I asked them to “Take me to your leader”, in which they replied with a throat gurgle. Their language is unfamiliar to my dialect. It seems to be generated from sharp tongue movements, grunts and groans, and often throat clearing and spitting. I think this is their way of saying hello. I will attempt to try this technique when I meet the ruler.
CAPTAIN’S LOG 11222011-1: I have been invited through hand gestures and primitive drawings to have dinner with their leader. It became apparent as I walked down the long hallway escorted by a beautiful native that this was to be an important meeting. I entered their office and noticed a large communication television on the wall; The meeting table was equipped with microphones indicating a long distance conference call. For the next 20 minutes, several attractive servants came in and placed drinks and food at the table. Their food is hard to recognize, it is mixed with heads of animals and various types of sea life uncooked or still in their shells. I observed that they eat everything in whole; must have some nutritious aspects that I am unfamiliar with. CAPTAIN’S LOG 18:00: Several Imperial guards enter the room escorting the ruler. I attempt to practice their techniques of, “hello” and spit on the ground as he approached. This was not received well, as no spit was returned. I still need to research deeper into this strange custom CAPTAIN’S LOG 19:30: It is becoming clear that in order for them to survive, they need to inhale cigarette smoke. One man has been nominated to supply everyone a smoke as he hands them out on a regular basis. I refused several times, but it was impossible to say no. It must be custom for them to speak loudly as they try to communicate. In return I also spoke loud in my native tongue which I was given several strange looks. It is important that I learn their language to communicate properly. After several minutes the ruler raised his glass and spoke, “Ganbei”. I learned quickly that this is a ritual to show your strength and wisdom, by finishing your drink as quickly as possible. My attempts at joining their prayers were well received and seemingly admired; I raised my glass several times and yelled, “Ganbei” making sure I finished first. This seemed to be an amusement to them as it lasted for several hours. CAPTAIN’S LOG 23:00: I am starting to become drunk off their local moonshine. Several servant women have joined us making sure that we are always paid attention to and have a drink in hand. The ruler I was meeting with and his followers seemed to be drunk as well. Instead of the conference call with other elders or leaders I had been expecting, the communication screen connected to a number of people who sang songs with us. The ruler has expressed how tired he is by hibernating on the couch to regain his energy. I am not sure if our meeting will continue. I have tried several times to communicate with his assistants but have not succeeded, they are too preoccupied screeching a largely varying pattern of tones into the microphone while fondling the servants. The night grows late and I think I will have to try another meeting tomorrow. For now, I will enjoy the girl next to me who now is also drunk resting her head on my shoulder and saying, “Wo ai ni”
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18 Linying Da Dao, Songjiang 林荫大道18号松江
PROF. RAINER MARIA LATZKE
THE MICHEL ANGELO OF MODERN TIMES
WRITING MAURICE & PAUL SMITH
FACE TO FACE
Rainer Maria Latzke was born in Germany in 1950. His hometown, too small to find on a map, and his siblings, too many to know all their names, where just some of the reasons this young man with delusions of grandeur set out to Italy to study the arts of the Renaissance masters. An unlikely passion for an artist at the time, his professors at univeristy being avante-garde-every-thing-is-artbut-art prophets such as Jospeh Beuys, RML was never meant to be successful. But with the determination of a titan, a talent in painting and an equally skillful talent at attracting the curiosity and attention of everyone that crosses his path; Rainer Maria Latzke revived the art of mural painting and was crowned as one of the cultural trendsetters of the 90s by Forbes magazine. We sat down to talk to RML about his life and visions. It sounded like a movie, which was following the basic structure of a Hollywood script. RML broke free from his small town life despite his father’s objections, indulged in his success by living in Chateaus, buying luxury cars and partying with rock stars and finally settling down to leave behind this bodacious life easing into the ‘ordinary’ and becoming a professor to pass on his lifes experience on to the younger generations. The kind of ‘ordinary’ which would come naturally to any person in this world by the age of 61; relocating with your family to China..
Of course this is anything but ordinary, RML is long from settling, yet alone taking a rest. The conversation pinballed from childhood stories to museum projects in Pudong. We somehow felt that only half of his attention was dedicated to us, and we can only guess that the other half was far away, perhaps on a distant planet, which would be the new canvas for his largest project yet..
Besides painting, RML loves to jam on his Gibson. We spot it leaning against the wall along with his paints and piles of brushes. In the early sixties, at the age of 14 he founded his first band with classmates, the Fog Horns. In the late 90s Latzke callaborated with Dire Straights guitarist Phil Parlmer on some of his compositions, and eventually recorded some of his songs with jazz pianist Eric Alberti and bassist Frank Ledonne. Unlike the persuit of perfection in Latzke’s art, he considers music as a recreational activity. Around the same time RML began to develop a new techniques for the production of murals, which led to the invention of the Frescography. This patented technique allows mural artwork to be individually created for each clients interior and according to their wishes.
Using realism as a foundation, Latzke added his own personal touch of surrealism to his paintings, creating a stunning balance between modern and classical art. www.rainermarialatzke.com
EDITOR-IN-CHIEF MAURICE LATZKE PROOFING PAUL SMITH WRITING PAUL SMITH MAURICE LATZKE DESIGN MAURICE LATZKE ELIN
ILLUSTRATION CHRIS COLMAN PHOTOGRAPHY MAURICE TAK ELIN LITTLE PANDA IN-HOUSE PHOTOGRAPHER ZHAI
PHOTOGRAPHY TAK STYLING MAURICE LATZKE PAUL SMITH MODELS JAMIE CRISS KANG CLOTHING 台北米兰婚纱 松江区人民北路95号
SPECIAL THANKS TO JACOB JENSEN - LEGEND - RED BAR - RML - HAPPY VALLEY - ROSE BAR - MR WANG SHIFU WANG - JACK PRIOR - DIMPLE BAR - LA OLIVIA - HONG HE - SHENG LEATHER
ISSUE 1 DECEMBER 10
CONTACT INFORMATION INFO@DOWNTOWNSONGJIANG.COM
FOUNDED BY MAURICE LATZKE EDITORIAL & PRODUCTION MAURICE MAURICE@DOWNTOWNSONGJIANG.COM MARKETING & ADVERTISEMENT INFO@DOWNTOWNSONGJIANG.COM
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