artistic genius: this time, on the rails of india

My heart's been all a-flutter since reading Brilliant Asylum's post yesterday about Wes Anderson's new film. Anyone who's remotely a fan of Anderson's work will want to check out "The Darjeeling Limited" asap, if only for its artistic sophistication and visual entertainment (what do I mean, if only?) This is the kind of movie that I wait to own - and then watch on a (practically) frame-by-frame basis. For now, the utterly delightful trailer (above) will have to do.

This from A. O. Scott's Times review (not a rave, but he makes his point):

[To call “The Darjeeling Limited” precious is less a critical judgment than a simple statement of fact, equivalent to saying that the movie is in color, that it’s set in India or that it’s 91 minutes long. It’s synonymous with saying the movie was directed by Wes Anderson. By now — “The Darjeeling Limited” is his fifth feature film — Mr. Anderson’s methods and preoccupations are as familiar as the arguments for and against them. (See an essay in the current issue of The Atlantic Monthly for the prosecution and a profile in this week’s New York magazine for the defense.) His frames are, once again, stuffed with carefully placed curiosities, both human and inanimate; his story wanders from whimsy to melancholy; his taste in music, clothes, cars and accessories remains eccentric and impeccable.]

Give me Wes Anderson's eccentricity and obsessive attention to detail any day.

Good weekend, everyone!

:photo via newyorkmagazine


tricia guild thursday: throw one on

Pretty textile patterns from TG's latest collection - bringing tidings of comfort and joy (and warmth and style) for fall. I had to throw in (pun acknowledged) the charcoal & grey number - couldn't resist a shot with TG's all-too-fine flocked wallpaper.

Do any of these work for you?



orange crush

Today's adorable find at etsy: this silkscreen print by Jane Buck of Foxy & Winston is one of a limited edition run of 200. It measures 12X12 inches including a 2-inch white border. The print is signed and numbered - and Jane has already sorted out the framing for you. She uses a whitewashed poplar square frame with plexi-glass (for safe shipping). All designs are hand-drawn by Jane, then individually hand printed in her home studio in Brooklyn, New York.

You can contact Jane directly for unframed print information: jane@foxyandwinston.com


Form. Color. Pattern. Done well, they can inspire throughout the day - and beyond.

:flask via sfgirlbybay
:buttons via howaboutorange


decorative objets friday

From the fantazmic apartment of legendary decorateur Thomas Britt. (Ulterior motive: I wanted to snag the following quote from NYSD's interview with Mr. Britt - it spoke to me.) "His apartment was Parisian-opulent, full of flair and confidence, the very opposite of the horrible, dull linearity that seems to have a stranglehold at the moment." Dull linearity. Nicely done.

Enjoy these. And happy weekend, everyone.

A collection of Chinese porcelain sits atop four faux Porphory tables designed by Britt and made in Bogotà:

On the marble mantel, a pair of raspberry-colored Chinese vases from Charles Heilemann flank a Ming Foo dog from Nuri Farhadi antiques:

:images via newyorksocialdiary/house


tuesday blog-glam

I just HAD to gussy up today's page with these amazing images. The spectacular florals are by Australia's Grandiflora. If you don't own a copy of Saskia Havekes and Gary Heery's G O R G E O U S book, get out there and buy it already! Then peruse daily. 'Tis good for the soul.

:magazine images via oh joy
:book cover via amazon


back in the saddle (as it were)

Now that we've broken on through to the other side of Labor Day, returned from oh-the-places-you'll-go travels and taken on some new, exciting ventures, it's time to burrow deep into work and resume the pace of everyday life. And my bloggies need some attention, too. They've been abandoned for a solid two weeks or more.

The lovely chair (above) is probably familiar to those who visit this blog. It graces the cover of Florence de Dampierre's richly photographed and well-written homage to the chair, Chairs: A History. Many of you probably have this book in your library.

And now...pop quiz! Without peeking, do you know which chair appears on the BACK cover?

(Jeopardy music.)

I'll tell you. It's the perfect juxtaposition: the Diamond Chair (Harry Bertoia, of course) designed for Knoll.

So, what to put with the parcel-gilt armchair?? Hmm. How about this...a Louis XIV medal cabinet. Oak veneered with tortoiseshell, brass, and ebony; gilt-bronze mounts; sarrancolin des Pyrenées marble top. Circa 1700, attributed to André-Charles Boulle (photo courtesy of The Getty Center Los Angeles).

When I was growing up, we had Boulle furniture in our living room. I was very fond of two pieces, a tall single-door marble-top cabinet and an exquisite commode. (The design of the table was quite delicate, very unlike the grand, almost overwhelming piece I've shown here.) I loved to study the intricate brass & tortoiseshell marquetry and run my hands over the varied textures of wood, shell and metal; I spent hours at this - the patterns are all but imprinted on my brain. And the gorgeous, elaborate ormolu mounts? To die. My father purchased these beautiful pieces at the Butterfield & Butterfield auction house in San Francisco, probably in the late 50s or early 60s.

Here's another example:

For those new to Boulle as well as aficionados, here's a bit of background:

André Charles Boulle, a French cabinetmaker, the master of a distinctive style of furniture, much imitated, for which his name has become a synonym for the practice of veneering furniture with marquetry of tortoiseshell, pewter, and inlaid with arabesques of gilded brass - and often utilized ormolu mounts. (Ormolu is an imitation of gold used to ornament furniture and moldings.)

Although he did not invent the technique, Boulle was its greatest practitioner and lent his name to its common name: boulle work.

André was awarded the title of master cabinetmaker before 1666. In 1672 he was admitted to a group of skilled artists maintained by Louis XIV in the Louvre palace, and thereafter he devoted himself to creating costly furniture and objects of art for the king and court. That same year he also received a warrant signed by the Queen, giving him the added title of 'bronzier' as well as 'ebeniste'. (Interesting, no?)

Boulle's pieces, having in general the character of Louis XIV, specialized in the inlaying of ebony with precious woods and mother-of-pearl. Large areas were covered with tortoiseshell, inlaid with arabesques of gilded brass. He was born in 1642 and died in 1732.

Today, Boulle is manufactured from PVC and copper instead of tortoiseshell as follows: Two plates of Copper and PVC which is colored in drawings of red and black are hand cut simultaneously in the specific Boulle shapes, and are then intermingled and inlaid complementary to each other (like a puzzle) in two items i.e. PVC inside copper in item one and copper inside PVC in item two. The surrounding frames are either black or mahogany.

And here we have some simple illustrations that represent this particular 'Louis' period - the XVth, to be clear. I found these sketches at an online tutorial. If you want the link, just let me know - I've yet to figure out how to embed links in text (my tech weaknesses are an embarrassment to me.)

Chair and cabinet could co-exist in a room of their own - though they'd be right at home here in this Met period room. (Quiz query #2: What is the period represented in this period room?)

Ah. It's good to be back.