Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Christmas in New York

(click on photos to enlarge)
We have been celebrating the season here in NYC with lots of get-togethers with family and friends. I enjoy this time of year because we get to see so many loved ones – it fills up the well for the year. New York City has been donning the lights so that everything sparkles with color like Radio City Music Hall, above, and the Empire State Building, below.

Up at Rockefeller Center, the big tree had a slow start. Here it is before it was lit –

and then lit on a rainy night –

Finally recently on a balmy night it shone with golden flags waving overhead.

Our friends Katherine and Jim invited us to go with them to hear Chanticleer, the renowned male chorus. The concert was held at St. Ignatius Loyola, the majestic Catholic church on Park Avenue at 84th Street, which was built in 1886 and was the site of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis's funeral in 1994.

The Chanticleer concert was beautiful and moving. It is the sound of angels singing. I recommend it!
The chorus takes af final bow: 

We went to get our Christmas tree on Jane Street from Billy Romp, where we have been getting our tree since, yes, 1988 –

Billy put our tree on his delivery bicycle/cart and brought the tree to our apartment through the streets of the Village –

The next night, we got it decorated –

Uptown, the stores windows were dressed for the season. I love this crazy scene at Prada with the wild floral luggage and the mannequin wearing grey socks and turquoise sandals.

At Bergdorf Goodman, the theme is "Holidays on Ice" which is a good way to celebrate fashion and luxury year 'round.
Pictured here is Valentine's Day, a glistening boudoir dripping with icicles.

A close-up of madame –

With all the activities of the holidays, I needed to lay down for a nap at home

which was quiet and still.
I am wishing you the love and joy of the season, and peace and stillness too –

Monday, December 9, 2013

Kevin Paulsen's Mural Magic in Greenwich Village

(click on photos to enlarge)
I had the great pleasure recently of getting an exclusive preview look at an exquisite new residence in an iconic building in Greenwich Village. My friend artist Kevin Paulsen invited me to see an impressive mural that he has created for the the dining room of the residence. You might remember that I visited an exhibition of Kevin's at Bergdorf Goodman a few years ago here on the blog. Kevin is inspired by itinerant artists who traveled the countryside creating work for customers. I really like his artwork which to me evokes a blend of folk art and nineteenth century seafaring art and Italian landscapes and the Hudson River School. He thought I might like to see his latest project.

The century-old Greenwich Village building was recently converted into luxury condos. Interior designer Glenn Gissler contacted Kevin about creating murals for the four walls of the dining room for his clients, a couple with two young children. So the itinerant artist who is based up the Hudson in Kingston, New York, came down to Manhattan. The couple, two women, suggested some themes. Back in his studio Kevin worked on muslin and synthetic plaster with soy and powdered pigment, creating a world of fantasy and charm.

When the works were complete, the four large panels were rolled up and brought down to Manhattan where they were installed in the dining room. The panels were glued to the wall and then lightly sanded, antiqued, and touched up. Now, in the dining room, which also features vintage Moroccan lamps and a dining table designed by Glenn Gissler, the murals look as if they had been there forever. They have a quality that is both monumental and light at the same time.

I love the palette of greens and browns, and the whimsical nature of the scenery –

Kevin used the motif of pearls throughout the tableau, as seen in this detail shot  –

The white pearls add an incandescent touch to the darker, more melancholy colors –

Two women at play –

The itinerant artist, Kevin himself, returning home from work –

A lone figure flies away in a balloon –

Yours truly with the artist –

A view from the dining room out to the front hall and the front door –

What a beautiful way to live.