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David Gandy and his XK120 charm London’s creative quarter | How charity In Place Of War channels creativity in conflict zones | Interior designer Joyce Wang shares the latest trends in luxury | Panasonic Jaguar Racing’s most successful year in Formula E | Meet Jaguar’s new design director Julian Thomson

A barefoot girl dances

A barefoot girl dances across a restaurant’s terrazzo floor inlaid with brass stripes, then somersaults past bespoke leather upholstered, Perspex bar stools before cooling her hand over a red marble basin that is still part-locked inside the raw lump of stone it has been hewn from. Such is the unique visual story that sets the tone for Hong Kong interior designer Joyce Wang’s impressive body of hotel, restaurant and residential work on her website. Of course, the woman herself has her feet firmly on the floor when we speak, but it is her uncompromising commitment to revealing the unexpected within luxurious materials that has put her powerfully on the international design stage today. With sumptuous interior design projects ranging from the Mandarin Oriental in London and Equinox private wellbeing clubs, to the famed Mott 32 restaurants around the world and skyscraper residential penthouses, Wang has set the bar high for modern dining and good living. “You have to know how to live and enjoy life to really understand luxury,” she observes. Her elegantly conceived spaces may differ in size and function but they are all united by a richness in cultural history, true to their location. “I’ve not heard that said before,” she says. “But I really like that description.” And it’s true. Inspired by the park views from the windows of the Mandarin Oriental Penthouse suite, Wang introduced cork wallpaper brushed with silver leaf to echo the trees outside while, over in Hong Kong, the basement bar of award-winning Mott 32 is inspired by a Chinese apothecary, metal chains referencing the region’s history as a fishing village and graffiti propaganda hinting at the colony’s political heritage. With such a sensitivity to history and culture, it’s no surprise that Wang grew up loving both design and antiques, combined with an appetite for travel. Born in Honolulu to Shanghainese parents, her family moved to Hong Kong before she was sent to boarding school in the UK, followed by university in Boston, USA, finishing her studies with a Masters at the Royal College of Art. She then moved on to LA for two years, and it was here that she worked on her first big commission – 34 / Jaguar Magazine

Design Lofty ambition The 242-seater Mott 32 restaurant, on the casino floor of The Palazzo at The Venetian Las Vegas, unites spacey New York industrial style with Chinese imperial elements redesigning the interior of the Roosevelt Hotel on Hollywood Boulevard. Wang credits this with “making” her. “It made me think differently, it stretched my imagination and my use of different materials,” she explains. “People in LA think very differently to people in Hong Kong and I had to understand them. What was their lifestyle? What were they obsessed with? What kind of houses did they aspire to live in? That was what interested me.” It was this desire to get under the skin of her clients and their customers that has since propelled Wang on to great heights and led to her setting up the Wang Studio in 2011, with offces in London and Hong Kong. “That is real power,” she says emphatically. “To be able to understand people and, from that, create a language which excites them.” Her intuitive approach has also made her sensitive to people’s responses to materials and the need, in such a technology-driven age, for texture and honesty. “Luxury today is a feeling of comfort and privacy,” she explains. “It used to be about spending on expensive materials but now something textured and authentic is a rarified luxury.” She mourns the loss of old-type film, which was “gritty and grainy”, when everything is now all high-definition, smooth and slick, and feels that the same is happening in other areas of creativity. It explains Wang’s focus on the raw materials that she returns to again and again in her projects and, in particular, her love affair with metal. “I love using metal, but in a soft way,” she says of her designs for a three-storey Shanghai apartment, which features a spectacular, sweeping circular staircase using five kilometres of cabling for the balustrades. In fact, Wang worked three types of metal into the scheme – sheet metal, weathered metal and cabling – using bent sheet metal to fashion a curvaceous staircase up to the roof and lining the walls with thin slats of corten steel. Sounds hard and unforgiving? The result is surprisingly soft and Wang’s lightness of touch makes the space feel sensuous and feminine in a totally ungirly way. “One of my pet peeves is when people say, ‘Oh, your work is industrial chic’,” admits Wang. “I cringe. I don’t » Jaguar Magazine / 35

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Jaguar Magazine celebrates creativity in all its forms, with exclusive features that inspire sensory excitement, from beautiful design to cutting-edge technology.

In this issue, we explore the art of creativity from the Brazilian masters who devised the graceful art of Capoeira, to the Irish artists mixing new culture with old. You will also discover the creative line that links Victorian wallpaper to the iPhone. While the multi-talented actor and performer, Riz Ahmed, explains why it is the right time to reveal his true self to the world.


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