28 February 2015

a very good friend,

My recent profile on Walter's Story of A House is of my dear friend, Sterling. I've known him for about 25 years and every time I see him he is brimming with energy. It was a pleasure to visit with him and share his story. His eclectic collection is a mix of art and provenance, and in turn it tells the story of his métier. Read it in WALTER here, and I've added some of my own photographs of particulars not in the story for you here.



 photograph by Catherine Nguyen from WALTER


Over the many years I’ve known Sterling and spent afternoons in his company, I’m always the richer for it. His boundless energy is infectious and both his knowledge, and taste, impeccable. Many pieces in my collection were a once a part of his own. 


One wall in a small hall way is covered with works from the last days of the monarchy thru the reign of the Bonaparte family. Telling the story in engravings, and ephemera, Sterling's wall talks:A letter from a Voltaire relation, thanking its recipient for a basket of food while he was imprisoned during the Reign of Terror (not shown), Engravings of Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette, Marie, c. 1793 (not shown) , Engravings of Pauline Bonaparte lounging as Venus Victorious, and Daumier engravings from 1830.





Winged Victory on a console in the Entry, along with miniatures of Napoleon and his generals, and Josephine with her own intimates, signed DAVID, c 1810.







Years ago when Sterling was moving to a smaller digs, he had a private sale, and I like to think I got some of his best things-though it can’t be so-for Sterling every object-every work of art- is special-a particular favorite, evoking a memory, time, and place in his incredible life. 




On his many trips to Mexico City & Cuernavaca to visit his great aunt, he collected magnificent masks. One of these masks hangs in his living room- it's one I had purchased from him-years later, he insisted I sell it back to him. 
I did, and as a sort of student of the imminent Dr. Boyd, I sold it back at a tidy profit!
 
 “Thanks to art, instead of seeing one world only, our own, we see that world multiply itself and we have at our disposal as many worlds as there are original artists…” so said Marcel Proust, in Remembrances of Things Past, doubtless Sterling would say the same.
My friendship with Sterling has yielded so many gifts.I hope you have been half as blessed!


the WALTER story here, and a more in depth look at Sterling's home in the WALTER issue April 2015.





26 February 2015

GEORG JENSEN Reflections


"an imagined truth, a rumination on the how and why one falls in love with Georg Jensen silver at first sight"
Murray Moss




Neck Ring No. 169, Pendant No. 131, and Bangle No 205
Vivianna Torun Bulow-Hube

" Torun let the sunshine in."  Murray Moss


Torun an incredible beauty, began designing for Jensen in the 1960's, imbuing the company with a distinct beauty in the form of achingly exquisite jewelry. She was already considered one of Sweden's foremost silversmiths of the postwar when she began designing for Jensen.


"Jensen became hip." Murray Moss




It's expected that the singular aesthetic of Georg Jensen would present in an equally singular volume of its 110 years of work. GEORG JENSEN Reflections, authored by Murray Moss is just that.

"I looked for what I believe has not been offered-a contemporary contemplation of a contemporary company, tenaciously remaining relevant today." Murray Moss author

What captivates is the book's design, its sleek, yet over sized pages, its photography (especially commissioned for the book), and its story. Moss' GEORG JENSEN Reflections is in a sense the author's love letter to Jensen's genius. Rare today in the world of books, GEORG JENSEN Reflections delivers Moss' sense of Jensen with poetic understanding, and free flowing reflection-much like a piece crafted by Jensen himself or his cadre of renowned artists.





Blossom Ladle No 84/151
Georg Jensen, 1919








Blossom Flatware No. 84
Georg Jensen, 1919


"Blossom," as cutlery, was created in 1919. This is for me Jensen's most exquisite work. Surrounded by an Art Nouveau style that could be excessive, Jensen looked deeply into nature's artistry to forge a flower stem sinuously  wrapping a handle and terminating in a gorging flower bud.
While "Blossom" as a design element originated 100 years ago, it exudes a modernity. Sensuous, yet pure, in "Blossom" Jensen transcends conformity, atypical, the design stripped away all of Art Nouveau's preconceptions into an elan vital in accord with the 21st century.




Blossom Teapot No. 2A, 1905
Silver with Ivory Handle


In addition to the newly evocative photographs of Jensen works, archival photographs, and original renderings at conception are a  part of this special visual paean.



ALL Images were used with permission from the publisher, GEORG JENSEN by Murray Moss, Rizzoli New York, 2014.




23 February 2015

Princely



Rodarte Fall 2015

I love the use of a classic pattern, in this instance the Prince-ly Prince of Wales Check , and  variations thereof on houndstooth- in the Anorak. Easily done, and equally well done by Michael Kors (the quintessential American sportswear designer), in the Trench.

Michael Kors, Fall 2015




the ORIGINAL


the one time Prince, Carte de Visite of King Edward VII c.1902.



 Edward, Prince of Wales



Prince & Consort


Finally, Both designers get high marks for beautiful evening wear with the Ease, coincidentally, and familiarly, of The Duchess of Windsor.



KORS 2015



Rodarte 2015





fashion pictures from style.com and vogue uk.

21 February 2015

another set of Pearls

In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, 
with shamefacedness and sobriety; 
not with broided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array;...

 neither cast ye your pearls before swine,
lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and rend you. 
(King James version of the Bible-the only readable one, and as always the delightfully contradictory)



Caravaggio's  Penitent Mary Magdalene, 1596-97



Whose adorning let it not be that outward of plaiting the hair, 
and of wearing of gold, or of putting on of apparel; KJ


(Tilda Swinton by Derek Jarman, 1986)


 "the infant was 'Pearl,' as being of great price- 
purchased with all she had- her mother's only pleasure."NH

 "& however white and clear originally, they had taken the deep stains of crimson and gold, 
the fiery lustre, the black shadow, and the untempered light of the intervening substance.
 Above all, the warfare of Hester's spirit, at that epoch, was perpetuated in Pearl." NH
 
 
 
 

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