Bench & Loom Background

December 1, 2014


This story appears in an edited version in the current Winter 2014 issue of Bonhams Magazine.

“Good design is honest,” said F.A. Porsche. “A coherently designed product requires no adornment; it should be enhanced by its form alone.” 

For the grandson of Porsche paterfamilias Ferdinand Porsche, F.A. Porsche, or Bützi, as he was called, good design was inherent. However, when he first designed what would become the 911, little did he know...

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November 1, 2014


I was in Ouagadougou during the last coup d’état back when the country of Burkina Faso was called Upper Volta. It was not a comfortable situation. Now it’s happening again.

As everyone knows, West Africa has always faced challenges and now it’s being plagued by ebola. Sierra Leone, Liberia (two countries suffering the effects of past civil war), Guinea (a haven of relative peace) and now Mali (a country that just got back on its feet after war with Al Qaeda) are all affected.

These countries already have little except their rich culture and self-respect. Despite being some of the poorest on earth, the people are some of the happiest, quickest to smile and laugh, and most giving you’ll find anywhere.

We have a strong affinity for Africa, specifically the western, non-safari countries – what a lot of people refer to as “authentic Africa”, and the hour of need is...

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October 20, 2014


The greatest climber in history.
The only introduction needed for Reinhold Messner is to say he is the greatest mountaineer of all time .

A living legend, it’s a true privilege to have him participate in our exclusive “10 Questions” interview, complete with characteristic answers that are direct and succinct.

Where are you from and where do you now call home? Home is Juval Castle. (Editor: Perched above the Vinschgau Valley in South Tyrol in German-speaking northern Italy.)

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June 22, 2014


Fastest race car in the world in 1954.
In 1954 the Ferrari 375-Plus was the fastest factory team projectile in World Championship contention bar none. 

This is the car that in 1954 led the pack in the legendary Mille Miglia, helped Ferrari dominate the grueling 24 Hours of Le Mans, and obliterated the competition at the Silverstone Grand Prix.

Spellbound by its awesome power, the British, whose own Jaguar team – represented by human and mechanical legends Stirling Moss in a D-Type – was eaten alive by Ferrari, called the ferocious 4.9-liter car the “
Fearsome Four-Nine .” The French press called it “ Le Monstr

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May 12, 2014


This story appeared in the Summer 2011 issue of Ralph Lauren Magazine.

Picture the scene: On a lonely English country lane in the early 1920s, a motorcycle is speeding along at 100mph, at that time a shocking velocity associated with science fiction rather than reality. The gleaming bike slows to a stop in front of its creator, George Brough. Brough (rhymes with “rough”) is pleased. He shakes the rider’s hand and both turn to admire what could be called the world’s first super bike: the Brough Superior flagship model SS-100 ("SS" for Super Sports and 100 for the speed it was guaranteed to...

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