When Robin was invited to dinner by Rolls-Royce Motor Cars in Belgravia, little did he know how surreal the experience was going to be…
“Black Tie with a surrealist twist” it said on the wacky invitation from Rolls-Royce to their dinner in Belgravia last Thursday evening. Images of the aberrant party thrown by Rothschild in the 1970‘s, where guests embraced the eccentricity of the surrealist movement of the 1930‘s was indeed on message. I arrived with my guest, Anthony Wenyon, a little nervous that our rather comical effort of an apple face mask and a blue sky with clouds bow tie inspired by surrealist artist Rene Magritte would be acceptable. Our efforts were very much overshadowed by many of our fellow invitees. But the main spectacle was the event itself. This was to be no ordinary black tie dinner. The purpose of the evening to celebrate the creative luminary of Charles Kaisin, the world famous Belgian artist/designer commissioned by Rolls-Royce to create a new piece for Rolls-Royce’s London showroom in Berkeley Square.
The artwork suspended from the ceiling and comprised more than 2,500 miniature origami pieces. Kaisin graduated from the Royal College of Arts in 2001 but it was his spell at Kyoto University of Arts that kindled his interest in the Japanese art of origami. Each individual piece has been folded into the shape of the Spirit of Ecstasy and once pieced together it will recall Rolls-Royce’s iconic bonnet ornament on a larger scale. Some 500 hours were needed to craft and assemble the delicate artwork, which is made from silver paper that will reflect light back into space.
Charles Kaisin extended his creative reach beyond the Rolls-Royce showroom for this dinner celebrating the new commission – his first in London following similar concept events across the world. The designer masterminded the entire multi-sensory concept dinner, from costumes through to music and table settings. Opera singers and a pianist were just some of the theatre but the main spectacle were the choreographed waiters. Each course served by performers wearing uniforms specially made to complement the dishes. Clouds, Silver Ghosts were amongst the incredible costumes worn for this food serving spectacle. We were all given our very own piece of Kaisin origami to remember the evening by. I think the memory of the evening will last a long while. It was brilliant, eccentric and even mad at times. You might even call it surreal!