A Hug to Humanity Fire-chat with Saskia Niño de Rivera, founder of Reinserta in Mexico
Saskia Niño de Rivera was the first of the Vital Voices Gala evening’s honorees to walk back on stage at Washington D.C.’s Kennedy Center Opera on April 24th, 2019.
The Mexican activist went straight to Hillary Clinton, and without hesitation, hugged the former Secretary of State and co-founder of Vital Voices, a global foundation launched in 1997 to support women who advance economic opportunity, increase political and public engagement, end gender-based violence and promote human rights across 180 countries and territories.
A few moments before, the audience saw a video of children playing in Lucha Libre disguises (the famous masked Mexican wrestlers). One them, drawing, is heard wishing: “I want to go to the zoo; when I am big, I want to be a fireman; and when I am really big–yeah–if I am really big, I will be The Hulk.”
A childhood fantasy, indeed, except this child cannot even go to a zoo. This child is one the 700 children born and raised in a Mexican jail.
A Stylish Elevator for an Ethical Bag As published in First Class Life magazine | Mexico
There is an old elevator in the Chelsea neighborhood of Manhattan, so old that there are no buttons to push, but instead, a cable to maneuver expertly once the primitive steel doors are closed. This is as vintage as it can be: breathing life into memories and ghostly stories alike while eluding a romantic New York, a far cry from the Hudson Yards that recently opened just a few blocks away to the West.
Once inside the third-floor loft, painted in dark and woody colors, a feeling of entering a special world takes the visitor even further. The furniture is a balanced mix between antique tables and lamps found in flea markets and modern sofas and tables. On the right, a small corner office is filled with leather pieces, bouts of fur, African jewelry and a dozen of handbags: clutch, shoulder, tote, crossbody and pouch styles. They are all part of the collection that Ingrid Bruha, a French woman who moved back to the United States with her American husband Sheldon and their three children in 2013, has created for her eponymous and fast-growing brand.
A Requiem for a Car Fire chat with Mexican artist Betsabeé Romero, special guest of Art Paris 2019
A group of bicycles is carrying on their “shoulders a dead body made-of-steel,” moving a car through the large avenues and narrow streets of Paris to its final resting place right in front of Le Grand Palais, next to the Champs Elysées. “A Requiem for a Car,” a Jaguar to be exact, is a symbol of speed, power and wealth. This invitation to slow down a humanity obsessed with haste, consumerism, and individualism is Mexican artist Betsabeé Romero art installation to celebrate the 2019 edition of Art Paris. Romero, whose art has been exhibited throughout the world and is now part of the permanent collections in North and South American as well as European museums, plays here with some of her favorite themes: automobiles and globalization.
A spanish version of this interview with Bétsabée Romero was published online by First Class Life
Ethical Fashion: UpCycle! Fire chat with Gabriella Smith, the founder of the UpCycle Project
Passionate about fashion and an entrepreneur at heart, Gabriella Smith wanted to be disruptive. Her clothes had to be more than just a brand, more than just beautiful. “I wanted a story of purpose, respect, transparency and reasonability.” So, after a first corporate experience at Estée Lauder, she launched The UpCycle Project, “an education platform to raise awareness of the waste the fashion industry creates by developing hands-on workshops, student mentorship programs, debates, as well as innovative events and products to develop circular solutions for fashion and other industries.”
Last November, I had the pleasure to interview twice Jane Fonda when the French Institute-Alliance Française awarded her the 2018 Trophée des Arts. To celebrate the 2019 International Women’s Day, here is an updated article based on these conversations. The two-time Academy Award winner explained how she made a first name for herself as a young adult in France, thus becoming a major trailblazer.