Narratives That Illuminate Design If you believe that design-centric coffee table books contain nothing more than visual surveys of portfolios, I am out to change…View More Narratives That Illuminate Design
Chinoiserie is a decorative style that has been a consistent design element for centuries. I enjoy referencing it when I find it among the products I feature here on the blog.
A survey of my posts finds Chinoiserie among the projects of top interior designers and the objects owned by tremendous tastemakers on par with Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis. When Sotheby’s auctioned off her estate nearly 45 years later in April 1996, the two-inch-thick catalog, titled The Estate of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, notes she owned Tiffany silver and Ormolu accessories, Italian cast bronze sculpture, gilded and ebonized furniture. And Chinoiserie proliferated in her art and accessories.
Antiques were plentiful, as well, including Rococo, Biedermeier and Neoclassical treasures. Her art collection included French School watercolor portraiture; Neapolitan School scenic watercolors; Dutch oil paintings; French School gouaches of architecture studies, which hung in the foyer of her Fifth Avenue apartment; and marble sculptures, many of them depicting mythological figures, dating from the 4th-century BC to the 3rd-century AD.
One Special Summer with Jackie O
Hegel’s caveat “history teaches us nothing” may be relevant in cultural and philosophical realities but in the design world the statement is far from succinct.…View More One Special Summer with Jackie O
We’ll Never Be Royals
Nest Nest Nest features the Alliage pattern.As I write this, I can feel the design energy draining from the Americas as the movers-and-shakers in our…View More We’ll Never Be Royals
Furnishing Pastimes of Henry VIII
As I mentioned in my last Improvateur article presenting a brief history of Hampton Court Palace, I launched into a furnishings fantasy when I heard…View More Furnishing Pastimes of Henry VIII
The Peacock Room à la Whistler
The most recognizable painting by artist James Abbott McNeill Whistler might lead you to believe he was as Puritan as his upbringing. The fact he…View More The Peacock Room à la Whistler
Allegorical Accents from Barry Dixon
Certain aspects of being southern seem to seep into the skin through osmosis. It’s as if the summer heat wriggles into our DNA, the perspiration…View More Allegorical Accents from Barry Dixon