Issue N°2—Returns

As the rate of change accelerates, many of us are devoting more and more energy to finding meaning, balance and a map that works. In pursuit of steady ground, we find ourselves looking to the past for solutions, inspiration, humility and truth. This more complete perspective allows us to weigh and measure the findings of today and yesterday, to pick what is appropriate, what works and what is real, and discard the obsolete, superfluous or absurd. Returning to first principles, original baselines and classic simplicity we take what has worked to solve what hasn’t, equipping ourselves with the wisdom of the ages as we correct and forge our path ahead.

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Photography by Alpha Smoot


The concept of Mastery is a powerful one, too often lost in today’s multitasked, cross-functional times. We pride ourselves in being…

by Paul Bennett

Photography by Dominique Lafond

You Are What You Share

In the context of the new chef craze, iconic culinary figure Jacques Pépin underlines the everlasting importance of simplicity and humility,…

Artwork by Giuseppe Randazzo

Assembling A Common World

Faced with limited time, money, space and material, it becomes paramount that we act deftly when it matters most; but first we’ll have to hone our…

by Bryan Boyer

Artwork by Andrew B. Meyers

Frugal Innovation

Where do you go to find innovative solutions to complex problems? Charles Leadbeater argues that sometimes the most game-changing ideas come from…

by Charles Leadbeater

Artwork by Julien-Pacaud

Meaning Well And Doing Well

Justice isn’t an airy abstract concept; it’s the concrete path to solving problems. Our instinct is to nurture great and ambitious plans for the…

by Daniel C. Russell

Photography by Alpha Smoot

Informality & The Adaptive Business

The informal economy thrives on chaos and ambiguity, so it’s no surprise that with today’s landscape it is providing new jobs, products,…

by Rich Radka

Photography by Alpha Smoot

People, Platforms & Possibilities

As businesses get caught in the crossfire of the Big Shift, a new archetype is emerging for creating value: The Platform.

by JP Rangaswami

Artwork by OpenStructures

An Enterprise Transformation

Methodologies, tools and vehicles of production are accelerating full-speed into the future—Simone Cicero offers seven ways organizations and…

by Simone Cicero

Photography by Jeremy Harris

Psychedelic Therapy

While the time of free love and shag carpets has expired (for some), perhaps the lab work for experimental drugs is just beginning.

by Flavie Halais

Artwork by Julien Pacaud

A Change In Outlook

The field of psychological trauma is evolving to recognize that adversity may actually be good for you.

Artwork by Julien Pacaud

The (Un)examined Organization

We expect great things from corporations, but their ability to effectively represent our best collective efforts should be thoughtfully examined.

by Tod Martin

Artwork by Julien Pacaud

Notes On The Future Of Capitalism

British philosopher Robert Rowland Smith reflects on the future of capitalism and suggests it will look strangely similar to its past.

by Robert Rowland Smith

Artwork by Catherine Laporte

Thoughts On A Post-mass Society

Three leading British minds discuss the second wave of connectivity, post-mass society, the importance of individual curiosity and stroking each…

by Ravi Mattu (interview)

Photography by Alpha Smoot

Objects Of Meaning

Could it be that our collective obsession with mid-century modern design serves as familiar comfort amidst the overwhelming immediacy of an…

by Rosie Jackson

Photography courtesy of TSOL

Apothecary For The Mind

Where do you go when you’re haunted by a big question? Enter The School of Life, a 21st century forum that is part university, part…

Artwork by atelier olschinsky

Cities Rediscovering Their Roots

Cities thrive when they successfully service our basic needs with intelligence and simplicity. Urban planners are taking things in the right direction—backwards.

by Richard Martz

Photography by Wolfgang Lonien

Country Crushes

What makes the global culture industry fall for some countries and not others?

by Michelle Lhooq

Photography by Darren Chin

Singapore Virtues

Why would an established writer with a penchant for creativity move to Singapore? Because while New York may call itself ‘the capital of the…

by Fredrik Härén

Photography courtesy of Rabbit Island

An Unconventional Investment Property

Three miles off the coast of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, in the world’s largest freshwater lake, sits an undeveloped 90-acre island with an…

Photography courtesy of Rabbit Island

There Is No Antonym For Subdivision

As a doctor, Rob Gorski’s training and livelihood is intervention. But when it comes to his island, he’s decided to let nature run its course.

by Rob Gorski

Photography by Aaron Siegel


A pioneering institution, a trailblazing magazine, a legendary region and a networked culture. Fabrica’s new CEO talks us through the…

by Dan Hill

Fabrica Courtyard

The Systemic And The Discreet

Before Fabrica there was Dark Matter, strategic design and systems thinking. In discussion with Dan Hill, we further our understanding of those topics…

3D Prints by Matthew Plummer-Fernandez for HOLO Magazine

Drunk On 3d Printing

3D printing is here to stay, but exactly in what form and for how long is the bigger question. As designers of the future we have a responsibility…

by Nick Foster

Artwork by Gerard Stricher

Anarchy In Practice

A creative Berliner looking for a challenge also finds community in post-revolutionary Egypt where chaos is but one story among many.

by Jay Cousins

Photography by Lynn Kloythanomsup

Designing For Uncertainty

Responsible design requires thinking ahead, outside of the realm of today’s definition of normalcy, and bravely facing the risks head-on. Anab…

Artwork by James Gallagher

A Phantasmagoric Army Of Resistance

Guy Fawkes, Friedrich Nietzsche and now, Anonymous. The shape-shifting cyber vigilantes are ever-present wherever there is a stir in the people,…

by Gabriella Coleman

Artwork by Daniel Kan

The Drones Economy

Beyond the headlines of targeted killings and privacy issues lies a story of a technology rife with possibility as it enters into our everyday…

by Parker Higgins

Prologue to N°2

Prologue to N°2

After a long wait, The Alpine Review returns, with diligence, study and love. Reflections on the need to understand our histories and question our future progress.

by Louis-Jacques Darveau



Where do you go to get some perspective? In a crowded world, finding fresh air, new paths and eye-opening discoveries is no easy feat. In this…

by John Hovey



To follow is easy, to surpass demands more. Our editor Patrick Tanguay looks at some of the areas we focused on in our quest to make Returns.

by Patrick Tanguay

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