Each month we pick three things that have provided us with some creative inspiration. From art, design and branding, to food, drink and beyond… Welcome to the March edition.

1. David Hockney: Bigger & closer (not smaller & further away)

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Creative Director, Mary, writes...

A living legend and a fellow Yorkshireman, David Hockney has long been my hero. So when his new immersive exhibition opened at the new dynamic art space – Lightroom – in King’s Cross, I was quick to hotfoot down there for an hour of pure happiness.

Unlike other immersive exhibitions, Hockney’s real life presence is felt throughout. He is in the room with you - his comforting broad Yorkshire accent guiding you through his unique creative process. His bold imagery surrounds the room enveloping the 12m tall walls, floor and everyone within it in a riot of colour, energy and sound.

From his unusual view of perspective to his famous swimming pools, and of course, my favourite - his paintings of the Yorkshire Wolds, everything enthralls and inspires. He mentions that he wants his work to elicit joy – it does that and more.

“The world is very, very beautiful if you look at it, but most people don't look very much. They scan the ground in front of them so they can walk, they don't really look at things incredibly well, with an intensity. I do.”

I left, (very reluctantly - I could have stayed for hours), feeling energised and uplifted with the aim to try a little bit harder to do exactly that.

The exhibition is on at Lightroom, Kings Cross until 4th June. Buy tickets at Lightroom.uk

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2. Häagen-Dazs Founder’s Favourite

It was International Women’s Day this month. Cue lots of brand noise, some virtue signalling and not enough action! (According to the Global Gender Gap report, at the current rate it’s going to take 132 years to achieve gender parity.) Which is why we were very pleasantly surprised to see Häagen-Dazs go beyond celebrating a single day with brand action and a social impact campaign.

Few people know that the brand was founded by a husband and wife team. The story of Rose Mattus – the person who made Häagen-Dazs famous – has been hidden behind the story of her husband, Reuben – the guy that developed the flavours.

Not any more! A new global strapline puts Rose front and centre of the brand, proudly announcing Häagen-Dazs as ‘a woman-founded business’. Alongside the identity reveal, it launched the Rose Project, which pledges $100k in scholarship funding to women who ‘don’t hold back’. Nominations are now open.

To mark the announcement on International Women’s Day, the brand also launched a Rose Mattus limited edition, rebranding her favourite flavour, vanilla, as ‘Founder’s Favourite’.

Find out more about Rose and The Rose Project: GeneralMills.com

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3. Saicho

This month we are loving Saicho – a stunning range of non-alcoholic sparkling teas created by another husband and wife duo, Natalie and Charlie Winkworth-Smith.

Natalie can’t drink alcohol, but Charlie loves wine. At restaurants, she would listen to sommeliers regale stories of vineyards, varietals and perfect wine pairings as she nursed a glass of water. Feeling left out of a part of the fine dining experience, Natalie decided to develop a non-alcoholic pairing with all the complexity and flavour of wine, but none of the side effects.

Hailing from Hong Kong, Natalie is well versed in drinking tea with food, with factors such as regionality, harvest timings, weather conditions and production methods all creating different flavours and styles of tea.

Saicho is made with cold brew single origin teas and served in a Champagne flute. Available in three different varieties, we think they taste as exquisite as they look!

Jasmine – a Fujian province, Chinese green tea scented with jasmine blossom, this is the most delicate tea in the range with exotic floral and vanilla aromas and a refreshing finish.
Pairs with spicy Asian salads or creamy pasta

Darjeeling – a black tea from the foothills of the Himalayas, it has stone fruit and orange characteristics with gentle sweet spice undertones.
Pairs with grilled meats or lasagne

Hojicha – a roasted green tea from Kyoto in Japan that utilises leftover leaves, stalks and twigs. It has a deep savoury note with nutty complexity and a hint of smoke.
Pairs with sushi, cured meats & mushroom risotto

Find out more: SaichoDrinks.com

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Saicho Range

Saicho photo credit: Johnny Stephens