30 June 2011


self portrait 1939.

(née Lucy Renée Mathilde Schwob)

Claude Cahun was object and  subject of her photographs.
She was exploring-Self.

 Claude Cahun, self portrait 1929.

Today we project words like-
But it was Self  for Claude.

 Claude Cahun, self portrait 1927.

Nothing could be more full an introduction to Claude and the exhibition than this video by the curators François Leperlier and Juan Vicente Aliaga.
You will be captivated.
at Jeu de Paume:

I think it speaks volumes that the lady left her body of work to be unearthed. No bequests- No Expectations. 
Only Self.

Jeu de Paume read more here


my other faults


“If you hear that someone is speaking ill of you, instead of trying to defend yourself you should say: 
"He obviously does not know me very well, since there are so many other faults he could have mentioned" Epictetus



photograph by WOLF SUSCHITZKY more here


29 June 2011

how we SEE


a collection of photographs, images, paintings, screen-shots- what do they mean?

Do we take each image in its own right?
Link it to one-we prefer? or disdain?

How do we SEE them?
In context, out of context?

Do we see ART?
Do we see the Painting as ART more so than the Photograph? the movie still?

If we know
where or
who or
what-does it make us SEE differently?

How do we see the body in a painting? In a photograph? On the screen?
Are we forced to go beyond the surface to comment of say-the beautiful light, the brushwork, the fame or failure of the artist?  Do we linger over the great works on canvas as we do over a great photograph?
I wonder.  Say why you like the picture-  here at Red Mug, Blue Linen.

The Bathers, Henry Scott Tuke,1888
Henry Scott Tuke, 1897
The Companion, Henry Scott Tuke
The Bathers Resting , Paul Cezanne
various torsos
The Lake Scene from Room with a View
The Bathers, Seurat
Scene from YSL film shot by Bruce Weber
The Bathers, John Singer Sargent
The Bathers, Woodstock 1969
The Bathers, Paul Cezanne

consider the topic here at Red Mug, Blue Linen.

28 June 2011

Now-about Guinness in Paris

In a recent story about Gloria Guinness the indubitable Toby Worthington- commenter to this blog -practically since its inception- and still-and for that I extend heartfelt thanks- said:

"Gloria Guinness may have been a minimalist in terms of her fashion choices,but when it came to doing up her Paris residence in the 1950s it would seem that minimalism was the furthest thing from her mind. The
interiors by Georges Geoffrey were richly detailed, at least that is the impression gained by photographs shown in the 1960 publication,Les Réussites de la Décoration Francaise 1950-6."

Gloria Guinness

my reply:
"You may be right-I am taking a bit of license to make the point about this particular design idea. And I guess another thought might be-when In Paris do as the Parisians do. How I, and my readers surely, would love for you to share her interiors by Georges Geoffrey.If you have it, please scan some images for us. Again-as many- many a time I have asked, write a guest post for Little Augury and share your ideas,with all your brimming bookshelves of information you can be my resident scholar! As always I am glad you are reading and something here has peaked your interest, glad to know I am still one of your favorites."
& he was.
& he did!
lucky for all!


The decorator of the Guinness apartments was Georges Geoffrey. Friend Hubert Givenchy remembers him: "Geoffrey was an 18th century gentleman, a figure from another era, one of a breed of decorators that is extinct today." (from the AD January 2000 issue) Givenchy was an ardent admirer of the designer's work- like himself- Geoffrey was a purist. The opulence of the Guinness rooms never gives way to cliche & like the Guinness stripe- it is classic, timeless, chic.

The Salon, occupying a height of two stories, exuded the splendor of Louis XVI and was filled with art selected by designer and client.  Designer Geoffrey preferred devoting himself exclusively to a  client's project-with no others to distract him. He was a master with draping his own curtains just as a fashion couturier would do-his fabrics-taffetas, silk satins and failles were made to measure by Prelle.

detail of the Salon 
(from AD January 2000)

Givenchy said "Georges's great quality was his inventiveness." Easily seen-this inventiveness- from the detail above of the Salon's bookcase and mantle walls where Geoffrey cleverly uses swathes of fabric and trim to mark the soaring height of the room and soften it simultaneously. His use of fabric and mirror in the halls (see below) is another example of his trademark use of trompe l'oeil and sense of theatre.

In the photograph below, Gloria Guinness and her daughter Dolores are wearing Balenciaga, photographed by Henry Clarke for French Vogue in 1957. Delores- born Dolores Maria Agatha Wilhelmine Luise, Freiin von Fürstenberg-Hedringen- to Gloria by a previous marriage- married her step father's son Patrick Guinness at the age of  19. Patrick was killed ten years later, 1965, in auto crash. The couple had three children. Delores Guinness never remarried.

a page from Les Réussites de la Décoration Francaise 1950-6


Geoffroy selected an 18thc neoclassical paper depicting Greco-Roman statuary
(image from Architectural Digest 2000)


An 18th century  wallpaper transforms the bed chamber into a Chinese garden, while along side a pair of Hepplewhite chairs stands a gilded table displaying malachite objects.


One of the doors is false, the other gives on to a small office.

For all its grandeur the Geoffrey's rooms created for the Guinnesses never abandon Gloria's adherence to the classic- or the chic-and in this case-the best.


26 June 2011

when straw calls: O'Toole


 Peter O'Toole in The Last Emperor

 I watched Peter O'Toole in a movie called Coming Home-an adaptation of Rosamunde Plicher novel encompassing the period just before the second World War-its devastation and aftermath. O'Toole always has the power to mezmerize in any scene.
His eyes. It's his eyes-that speak whatever a script might ask of an actor. He is has that thing many actors lack- the ability to make Magic. The movie, from 1998, is quite good, with Joanna Lumley beautifully portraying  O'Toole's wife and Kiera Knightley being introduced to movie audiences for the first time.
Watch it, but watch it for O'Toole.

the movie is available for instant viewing on Netflix here.


23 June 2011

Anatomy of a HOUSE


My clients have been in their House for about 4 months & as she says-"it's beginning to look like Home,"-that is always music to My ears. I dropped in today to put some flowers together for an event at the house and took some photographs.

Some rooms are wanting- Some want for nothing.
It is a process.

Here in PIECES- the House that is becoming a Home.

Where will this chair be in another 6 months?
just Wait & See.


22 June 2011

in blue jeans


"Woman Begging with Two Children"

No discovery or great uncovering this exhibition-but I found the paintings to be of such loveliness that I could not put them in your sights. The linking of textiles of the past to present is always of great interest here and nothing could be more interesting than the exhibition of seven late 17th century Italian paintings showing the subjects dressed in denim. The fabric made at the time in Genoa and was called by the French name for that city, Gênes. The paintings are thought to be the work of a single, unknown artist,Imagine that! “The Master of the Blue Jeans” was organized by Gerlinde Gruber, a curator at the Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna, for Galerie Canesso in Paris.

"A Beggar Boy with a Piece of Pie"

  "Woman Sewing with Two Children"

  "A Frugal Meal with Two Children"

"Frugal Meal"

"Woman Spinning with Two Children"

"The Barber's Shop"

as I always say "there is nothing new under the 17th century sun.


21 June 2011



"Summer afternoon - 
Summer afternoon... the two most beautiful words in the English language."
Henry James

photograph by Lucinda Lambton 
World of Interiors, July,1992

& on this first day of Summer a birthday wish to ELizabeth- 28 years today.

Vogue June,1972



Anna & the internet





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