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Perfect Pair: Deadly Ponies + BMW

We know that the proverbial horse must always go before the cart, but a just-announced partnership between two brands known for their impeccable design and commitment to ethical and sustainable manufacturing is rewriting this popular saying, placing both horse and cart side-by-side for what’s set to be a head-turning series of creative collaborations.

To mark the release of its all-electric BMW iX3 later in 2021, the luxury car brand has chosen to work with local leathergoods label, Deadly Ponies, whose own goals of being the world’s most responsible handbag brand mirror BMW’s ongoing dedication to ecological and social sustainability, and the conservation of the Earth’s resources.

Indeed, recently recognised by Dow Jones as the world’s most sustainable automotive brand, of the 760,000 tonnes of waste generated by BMW’s production of 2.5 million vehicles a year, 99 per cent is recycled, and by the end of 2021, BMW Group will offer five fully-electric vehicles: the MINI Electric, BMW i3, BMW iX3, BMW iNEXT and BMW i4. For its part, Deadly Ponies’ plan to open its own atelier will enable it to maintain complete control and oversight of its environmental and social impact, as well as achieve 100 per cent renewable energy and zero waste to landfill by 2022.

With such a synergistic relationship underscoring the numerous special projects both brands have scheduled throughout the year, we’re expecting a smooth ride from go to woah. As for the first collab that STYLE readers will want to get their hands on, look out for next month’s limited-edition Deadly Ponies capsule collection, created to celebrate the launch of the sixth-generation BMW M3 and M4 high performance vehicles in mid-March.

The Fair Must Go On!

While many art-lovers around the world remain locked in their bubbles, their lack of creative stimulation becoming more acute with every mindfulness colouring-in book they complete, Kiwis are once again enjoying the spoils of our more-or-less contained COVID situation, with next weekend’s Auckland Art Fair the latest large, public event we’re gearing up for. 

One of the most hotly anticipated dates on the annual cultural calendar, this year’s Art Fair has in fact been two years in the making – last year’s having been cancelled just as COVID began to take its brief hold on the country. And in fact worldwide, an art event of this scale hasn’t been held since the Amory Show in New York last March! But with this week’s Level 3 bullet seemingly dodged, event organisers are now counting down to what they say is one of the best and biggest offerings in AAF history, featuring 150 artists from around New Zealand, Australia and the Pacific Rim, and the largest ever number of participating galleries.

Shane Cotton waterfall, McCahon House

So what can one expect? Beginning on Wednesday February 24 and running until the Sunday evening, the line-up includes some of the most iconic names in the New Zealand art world, from Shane Cotton and Gretchen Albrecht, to Nigel Brown and Len Lye.

Nigel Brown, Tipping Point

But this year, the emphasis is on the next generation of artists and art-lovers alike. STYLE readers would do well to look out for emerging artist Ashleigh Taupaki, whose work will be on display at Yu Mei’s brand new Newmarket flagship, and Elisabeth Pointon, whose exhibit has been sponsored by Tiffany, as part of AAF initiative The Projects.

As for those wanting to get a foot on the art investment ladder, an under $5k section at the fair will be dedicated to more affordably priced works, with consultants from MyArt on-site to provide interest free loans to enable people to purchase art.

With more than $9 million worth of art sold at the last live fair in 2019, organisers and participants are optimistic that this year’s fair will equate to a much needed cash injection for the arts and culture sector. Not in the market for an original piece? Show your support by purchasing a ticket and treating yourself to a bit of culture anyway. It’ll be more fun than colouring-in.

Subject to Auckland moving into Alert Level 2 on Tuesday, the Auckland Art Fair will run from 24–28 February, 2021. A variety of passes can be purchased at artfair.co.nz.