26 November 2014

intimacy


America's Cup Dinner. President Kennedy, Mrs. Kennedy, others. Newport, RI,"The Breakers"
photograph by Cecil Stoughton, September 14, 1962








24 November 2014

what FLEUR wore

BALENCIAGA Organdi plissé -fil de fer -robe de jour automne-hiver 1952-1953


Fleur Cowles editor of Flair magazine 2003, photograph by Robert Trachtenberg





20 November 2014

une boite de tabac à priser, lot 218


fully marked, the rim engraved "Au Petit Dunkerque". LOT 218


image from Richard Jean-Jacques, Bijoux Et Pierres Precieuses here

Charles-Alexandre Bouillerot, born into a family of goldsmiths, was one of several gold box makers Paris retailer Charles-Reymond Grancher,"Au Petit Dunkerque" commissioned for purchase by the French nobility during the reign of Louis XVI. Grancher served as bijoutier du reine. His shop was at 3 quai de Conti, on the corner of the Rue Dauphine (6th arrondissement, Paris).


 César-François Cassini de Thury, astronomer, member of the French Academy of Sciences -"taking snuff"
miniature watercolor on ivory by Nattier, c. 1750








18 November 2014

A Mellon Aviary



The unprecedented ease of Bunny Mellon's style. 
Over a Regency red and yellow japanned faux bamboo bookcase, c.1805, hangs a Braque painting, Les Deux Oiseaux and housed in the bookcase-a collection of birds.

In a world of rooms touted by magazine editors full of beige this and that-to my eye most mudane, Mrs. Mellon's genius style lies in her having kept her eye honed for what she loved, and artists she revered. She surrounded herself with nature inside her houses when she could not be in her gardens. No doubt with the wealth she had before marrying Paul Mellon, it could have been easy for some to lapse into rooms of souless, staid grandeur.

Not so, Mrs. Mellon gives us a glimpse of beauty in rooms, in its highest form. 
Pure, personal, and what appears uncalculated, precisely edited.




There pipes the woodlark, and the song-thrush there
Scatters his loose notes in the waste of air.  

-Couplet about Birds, Thomas Gray, 18th c. poet

1 of a Pair of Italian Scagliola Panels, 18th c., Lot 307


 
 
“Hope” is the thing with feathers -
That perches in the soul -
And sings the tune without the words -
And never stops - at all-
 
-314, Emily Dickinson, American poet, 19th c.

A Dutch delft six-tile pictorial panel second half 18th c., Lot 923


 
 
A Robin Red breast in a Cage
Puts all Heaven in a Rage
A dove house filld with doves & Pigeons
Shudders Hell thro all its regions 
-Auguries of Innocence, William Blake, c. 1803
 
Le Balcon Et La Cage D'Oiseau, Tsuguharu Foujita, 1917. Lot 408



 
Friends shall I have at dawn, blackbird and thrush
To rouse me, and a hundred Warblers more;
And if those Eagles to their ancient Hold
Return, Helvellyn's Eagles! with the Pair
From my own door I shall be free to claim
Acquaintance as they sweep from cloud to cloud.
The Owl that gives the name to Owlet-Crag
Have I heard whooping, and he soon will be
A chosen one of my regards. . . 
-Home At Grassmere, Wordsworth, c.1806.

An Aviary, Madeline Hewes. Lot 1491




Hail to thee blithe Spirit! Bird thou never wert, 
That from Heaven, or near it, 
Pourest thy full heart In profuse strains of unpremeditated art. 

-To A Skylark, Percy Bysshe Shelley, 19th century Romantic poet

Two Victorian painted Tôle Birdcages, second half 19th c. Lot 992




Young Girl Holding A Bird, Jean Braun, 1749.
Lot 344


 The lark that shuns on lofty boughs to build Her humble nest, 
lies silent in the field.
-Of The Queen,Edmund Waller,17th c.

Bunny Mellon teaches us the art of living at home, rather than so today-those who are ever seeming to perfect that art, yet never staying home to inhabit it.






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