Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Good design leads to magical things...and people

Recently I walked to Union Square in San Francisco, musing on how long it had been since I shopped there. After six months in eastern Canada, I am appreciating the sophistication and the "world class shopping" atmosphere. White and gold beckon from Neiman Marcus - brilliant light drawing me into the rotunda. I feel quite the naive girl from the provinces.

A beautiful blonde woman about my age stands behind the AMOREPACIFIC skin care counter, front row center orchestra. She seems to appreciate my sense of wonder and asks me a lot of questions. I'm thinking this is probably pretty tough real estate to acquire at NM; this woman must be pretty sharp to command this "world class shopping" spot. The packaging is very simple: a lot of white, gold and silver. There is something different about these Korean products; they seem to separate themselves from the endless objects competing for my attention in fragrance land.

AMOREPACIFIC, according to the branding literature, "respects the profound wisdom contained in Eastern approaches to beauty. More specifically, we believe in the holistic perspective that humans are inseparable from nature and our body from our minds. We study and research women and their lives as well as their skin to gain a balanced understanding of their skin and beauty. The AMOREPACFIC brand is the culmination of our ongoing efforts to help women from all walks of life realize a beauty all of their own.

AMOREPACIFIC products are formulated with extracts of root plants that retain the bountiful energy of the earth. The ingredients are encapsulated in nano particles about 1/1000 of the size of skin cells to ensure quick and deep absorption, and formulated according to our unique beauty regime based on the Eastern concept of the 5 crucial elements of the universe."

Now I'm not exactly sure how water, metal, fire, earth and air connect to this formulation but something is working - Big Time. The skin care system works around this fine bamboo mist that you spray on your skin before applying the lotions and serums...and that alone sends you into this altered state of well being and contentment. I can't explain it scientifically, but I can tell you that Pamela Murphy, the beautiful blonde Sales Queen, has amazing skin and a countenance that draws you toward her. And this Eastern spritzing and softening attracted a few classmates to me at a recent party in New York.

So it's no surprise that a few weeks later Pamela and I are sitting at Piperade, my favorite San Francisco restaurant around the corner from my gallery talking to the owner Gerald Hirigoyen about stopping by the gallery to buy a piece of art.