Friday, October 12, 2012

The 1stdibs Antiques Dealer Block Party

The street scene at Il Cantinori on East 10th Street
Over the transom came an invitation from 1stdibs, the online antiques and art emporium, to attend "Between the Squares," an extended block party where eighteen antiques dealers located between Union, Washington, and Cooper Squares would open their doors for some festive browsing accompanied by passed hors d'oeuvres and cold Champagne.
What's not to like?
I enlisted by young nephew Aaron to join me – Aaron is living in New York City now (yay!) and is an intern at the très chic decorating firm Carrier and Company which has done work for Anna Wintour, Bob Pittman, Catie Marron and Jason Wu. We met on East 10th Street where most of the antiques dealers are clustered, and stopped first at Bernard Goeckler, the Swiss antiques dealer who specializes in twentieth century pieces from the 30s and 40s. While Aaron was looking overhead at the vast range of chandeliers , I was eyeing this chair. I liked its glossy black leather and stylish frame which looks like painted bamboo but actually is metal with brass trim. This chair to me is a great combination of elegance and comfort.
Its tag said it was made by Jacques Adnet in France around 1950, price $22,000. 
We passed the renowned Italian restaurant Il Cantinori (pictured above) and crossed the street to Eskander. The London-based fashion designer Eskandar Nabavi was born in Teheran to a English mother and a Persian father. His rustic, airy store on East 10th Street offers his simple, loose-fitting clothes in natural fabrics and pretty colors. They share that same feeling of elegance and comfort.
As Eskander, wood and metal furniture is piled with art books. You know I'm a sucker for that sort of thing.
In the back at the antiques dealer Maison Gerard was mounted a special exhibition of coquillage by Thomas Boog. Coquillage, if you are not up on your French, means ornamental seashells, and the exhibition included sconces and mirror frames made of fantastic seashells by Boog who was born in Lucerne, Switzerland, and roamed the Italian Riviera as a child looking for shells.
The elaborate white sconces held dark black candles and were hung on matte black walls for a very sophisticated, dramatic effect. Likewise, the iridescent shell mirror frames floated on a wall of smokey black.
Aaron and I circled around East 11th Street and visited some more antiques dealers, and stopped in front of Fleurs Bella, the well known florist shop of Bella Meyer who is the granddaughter of...wait for it...Marc Chagall, one of the greatest painters of the twentieth century. Bella uses not only flowers but also fruit, seeds, twigs and greenery in her arrangements for stellar clients like the Brooklyn Academy of Music. We will have more treats up coming from Bella here on the blog!
In need of sustenance after all of our browsing, Aaron and I soon found a table at a corner cafe in the Village where we had some dinner and some wine. It was wonderful to be wandering around New York City on warm autumn night. Beautiful things worked their magic.


Dean Farris said...

Hi Bart!

I enjoyed this post so much, I used to work in NYC and was always in the Vill-aage shopping for more antique caught the flavor of the city! Glittery and 19th century mixed with the latest and greatest!

Renée Finberg said...

i wish
i wish i were there!

Robin Amos Kahn said...

Looking forward to more with Bella!

Gail, northern California said...

So happy to see such a unique block party came along, and that "beautiful things worked their magic" for you, Bart. You're a wise man to appreciate them. It's what your mother would have wanted for you too.

Unknown said...

I just love the white sconces held dark black candles!!! Perfect for Halloween… :D

Unknown said...

It's nice to see at least some antiques being put to good use. I usually only see classics like those at a haunted house, an auction or in perth storage.

Anonymous said...

Those antique items are really beautiful. My uncle loves collecting antique cabinets and chairs so I guess he might like black leather chair.

-Ebony P.

Unknown said...

Well, I love antiques too and I would definitely collect some for our newly built house. I especially loved that mirror frames, so beautiful! -Cadence

rain said...

A lot of items are worth checking out. You have to check for repairs in the furniture as well.

Phoebe Todd