alain elkann interviews

LITERATURE AND EDUCATION

Magdi Yacoub

Professor Sir Magdi Yacoub, OM, FRS, Founder and President of Chain of Hope, is one of the world’s greatest, and most famous, surgeons. Born in Egypt in 1935, he studied medicine in Cairo and then London, becoming a consultant cardiothoracic surgeon at Harefield...

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Hanif Kureishi

Hanif Kureishi is the author of novels such as 'The Buddha of Suburbia' and 'Intimacy', story collections, plays and screenplays. 'The Buddha of Suburbia' was made into a BBC TV series with a soundtrack by David Bowie. 'My Beautiful Laundrette',  a story about a gay...

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Prosper Assouline

Assouline: The luxury brand where everything is about style. Prosper Assouline and his wife Martine have a magnificent office on the 27th floor of a Park Avenue building. From their windows you can see in front of you the Chrysler Building, the Empire State Building...

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Corinne Flick

Dr. Corinne Michaela Flick studied both law and literature, and is Founder and Chair of the Convoco! Foundation. Dr. Flick is Chair of the Board of Trustees of the Aspen Institute Germany, Co-Founder of the Friends of the Bavarian State Library, Munich, and a member...

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Hannah Rothschild

The Improbability of Love You are quite eclectic and your work has ranged from documentary films, to banking, to philanthropy, to biography, and now to a novel. Why do you think you have many different facets? I have that kind of restless, inquisitive mind. It’s...

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Paula Rego

Paula Rego was born in Lisbon in 1935 and has traveled between London and Portugal throughout her life. She studied painting at the Slade School of Fine Art, and her career as an artist spans half a century. Originally commissioned for the exhibition Spellbound (1996)...

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Natalia Indrimi

Primo Levi opened a universal platform with his reflections on human nature. You are the Director and one of the founding members of the Primo Levi Center in New York. What is the purpose of this center? The Center was born in 1998 to sustain the conversation and...

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Ik-Joong Kang

Artists are the leaders of the 21st Century. Ik-Joong Kang is one of South Korea’s most renowned and celebrated multimedia artists. His works are poignant symbols of hope for reunification, particularly of North and South Korea. This September at Robilant+Voena’s...

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Eike Schmidt

“In Florence exhibitions on old masters are more successful than exhibitions on contemporary artists!” Eike Schmidt was appointed Director of the Uffizi Gallery in Florence by Dario Franceschini, the Italian Minister of Culture. He is the first non-Italian to be...

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Doja Purkit

"In the USA we are recognised as a food supplement and as a provider of massage. Ayurvedic medicine is the medicine of comfort, leading to cure and preservation of life." Dr Doja Purkit, MD BSc DSc MBRCP is an Ayurvedic doctor who gained his degrees in India at Jaipur...

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Julian Fellowes

"People Pray For My Characters." Did you think Downton Abbey would be such a success? No. The received truth at the time of the film "Gosford Park" was that the audience had gone. It was one of those fabulously inaccurate prophecies that show business...

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Ruth Direktor

Ruth Direktor is Curator of Contemporary Art at the Tel Aviv Museum of Art (TAMA). Can you describe your Museum and its permanent collection? The Tel Aviv Museum of Art is a museum of modern and contemporary art, the oldest art museum in Israel. It was founded in...

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Alexander Sturgis

Dr Alexander Sturgis is a British art historian and museum curator. He is the current Director of the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford. "Museums have never been so popular.... So much of our experience becomes virtual that the importance of the real actually becomes...

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Elie Wiesel

We re-publish this 2014 interview with Elie Wiesel in grateful commemoration of his life and his humanity. Elie has been a longtime friend  and an example of Jewish life. I will remember his voice, his words, his love for literature. When together we used to speak...

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Mark Regev

H.E. Mark Regev is the Ambassador of Israel to the United Kingdom since April 2016. He was the chief spokesman for the Prime Minister of Israel from 2007 to 2015. You have been Ambassador in the UK for a few months and had to face the Livingstone affair, when the...

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David Adjaye

The planetary architect of today delivers a well considered response to human, cultural and geographic diversity. The leading architect David Adjaye OBE set up his first office in 1994, where his ingenious use of materials and his sculptural ability established him as...

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Paolo Colombo

You started your life as an artist and exposed your work at Mario Tazzoli’s Galleria “Galatea” in Milan in 1974. Then you stopped painting for many years, and worked as curator and director of various museums and art institutions - in the United States, in...

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Rene Ricard

It is very sad to have to say that this is the last Rene interview, because the death of a poet is the end of a voice. In any generation there are very few voices like that of Rene. So I think that all the American people who love poetry and art will want to mourn...

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Lorin Stein

Lorin Stein is Editor of The Paris Review. Lorin, you had a prestigious job as senior editor of the publishing house Farrar, Straus and Giroux. What made you accept the challenge of becoming the editor of  The Paris Review and what does it mean? I should say that my...

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Umberto Eco

It was with great sadness that we learnt of the death of Umberto Eco on February 19th, 2016 at the age of 84. We remember him with huge admiration. He was a magnificent intellectual and a great Italian who made Italians proud of being Italian all over the world. We...

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Valerio Magrelli

"My American students have exceeded all my expectations." Valerio Magrelli is Professor of French Literature at the University of Cassino, which is situated between Rome and Naples. He is the author of six poetry collections for which he has won many prestigious...

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Jonas Mekas

On a rainy April afternoon I met with Jonas Mekas in a little bar in the Lower East Side next to the Anthology Film Archives (AFA), the institution that he founded and has run for very many years. The Anthology Film Archives is at the corner of 2nd Avenue and 2nd...

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Jonathan Galassi

Jonathan Galassi has translated the poems of Primo Levi from Italian for a new edition of his Complete Works, edited by Ann Goldstein. Galassi is President of Farrar, Straus and Giroux (FSG), one of the most prestigious publishing companies in the United States. As...

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Giorgio van Straten

The Italian Cultural Institute of New York is an office of the Italian government, dedicated to the promotion of Italian language and culture in the United States through the organisation of cultural events. You have now been Director of the Italian Cultural Institute...

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Cornelia Guest

My love for animals made me vegan. People should not buy animal products. You were a famous debutante, and then you became a vegan, interested and deeply involved in animal rights? Yes, and I also became an actress and I still do movies. I have been surrounded by...

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James Bradburne

Napoleon intended Brera Pinacoteca to be the Louvre of Italy. Dr. James M. Bradburne is a British-Canadian architect, designer and museum specialist who is the newly appointed Director General of Pinacoteca di Brera e Biblioteca nazionale Braidense in Milan. His aim...

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Benjamin Clementine

The Englishman from Paris. A rising star. Benjamin Clementine is a Mercury Prize-winning pianist, poet, singer and songwriter. He was recently featured on the cover of T, The New York Times Style Magazine. Benjamin, when did you discover that you were a poet and a...

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John Richardson

"I am still obsessed by Picasso." The wind is blowing on a very cold New York winter day when I arrive in the downtown 5th Avenue building where I am expected. I have come to interview the art historian Sir John Richardson, who has just turned 92 years old. The lift...

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Eric M. Lee

You are Director of the Kimbell Art Museum in Fort Worth, Texas, where you have now been for seven years. Can you explain why the Kimbell is such an important museum? There are three factors that make the museum important internationally. First there is the...

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Frederick Seidel

The Music and Energy of Poems. Why is "Widening Income Inequality" the title of your new collection of poems, published by Farrar, Straus & Giroux and coming out in America now? The title is used with some considerable irony. It is a very common phrase, used by...

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// FEATURED

ANITA PALLENBERG

Anita Pallenberg is an actress, model, and fashion designer. Born in Italy in 1944 she was the partner of the Rolling Stones’ guitarist Brian Jones and then the partner of Keith Richards. Anita, you have worked in the worlds of cinema, music and fashion. Would you define yourself as an eclectic person? I would say... READ MORE

// PUBLICATIONS

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