This essay celebrating the first printing presses during the Renaissance in Florence, Italy, is included in my most recent book The Modern Salonnière. The 34 other…View More Saluting the Renaissance Book Club
There are two versions of Florence in my mind: the loveliness of the historical view of the city as seen in films like A Portrait of a Lady and the hip modern-day Mecca of style.
I explore the latter in my diary entry Date Night in Florence Italy, though I don’t move my point of view completely into the present, as the couple on a fictive date is Michelangelo and Vittoria Colonna. The riff was inspired by images I saw of La Ménagère, which is much more than just a restaurant: it’s an enclave of intertwined coffee bar, florist, boutique, eatery and bar nestled into a centuries-old building that held, until recently, a housewares store of the same name since 1896. The transformed mise-en-scène was envisioned by Luca and Marco Baldini, the former the architect and the latter the designer—the brothers principals of the q-bic architectural and design studio.
Instead of slathering the walls in this gathering spot with layers of slick materials that would hide a mountain of medieval wear and tear, the brothers made the surprising move of taking it all off, removing tile to let the plaster and stone beneath provide the interiors with a textural authenticity. The spaces are lit by whimsical lighting by Karman. This is the hip side of Florence, and I do have other diary entries featuring the Florence of the past so I hope you’ll stop by to experience more.
The Personality of Place
So, this is how it feels to experience a medieval Tuscan village that has existed on a hillside in some form for almost 1000 years!…View More The Personality of Place
Vigée Le Brun’s Passion for Painting
A Passion for Painting Billowing ruched fabric, pointy toes of dainty shoes visible from beneath flounced skirts hemmed in gold fringes and ornate trims. A bejeweled…View More Vigée Le Brun’s Passion for Painting
God’s Articulate Finger
Michelangelo and the Sistine Chapel In this last entry of the year, I wanted to share a piece of my own creative writing to say…View More God’s Articulate Finger
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
A Room with a View x 2
When I saw the expressive twin spaces Justin Shaulis created as one of American Standard’s 2015 DXV Design Panel participants, I knew I had to…View More A Room with a View x 2