The waves of lovely guests have left–first the French and then the witty Brits. Sharing our very singular American holiday with foreigners is fun but also a challenge. How does one explain my grandmother’s beloved homemade noodles — floury and heavy — to a Frenchman, let alone cranberry sauce with orange, and sweet potatoes with maple syrup — or even marshmallows ?
The Weatherstone driveway gates have closed and I am in my library longing to watch some TV and escape into fantasy land. Holidays are a lot of work, as we all know. But it is not meant to be, as I have one week to prepare for my book party in NYC. The invitations went out this weekend ( late as usual ) the email invite will go tomorrow. This may be my last book party ( although not my last book ) so I wanted to do something beyond the usual celebration. There are a zillion ( slight exaggeration –but just barely ) book parties in New York City. While New York is filled with many talented people, it seems everyone and his goldfish are doing some sort of book. So that begs the question: how can this one be distinctive?
Voilà: on the the 4th of December I am having a book party that features the work of some of my very talented friends. I asked Vladirmir Kanevsky to interpret some of my flowers in porcelain. I have written of my love of his work which I have collected since the late eighties. He just had a wonderful exhibit in Germany of his work for the esteemed house of Meissen, combining their porcelain with his amazing flowers.
As I have written in this blog, I have become addicted to water coloring. On a hike this last fall I was telling a friend, a very accomplished watercolorist, that I had this vision of my book party where Vladimir would do porcelain interpretations of my photos and that a botanical artist would do the same. The “penny dropped,” as my friend Simon always says, and I asked my hiking companion Page Lee Hufty if she would consider painting some of my flowers. She said, ” I am not a botanical artist but I love the idea of doing some of your flowers — but in a much looser style”. I said great!
Then, by happy coincidence, my friend Emmanuel Ducamp of Paris said that the English translation of his marvelous book The Summer Palaces of the Romanovs is just out in the U.S. and that our mutual friend Carlton Hobbs had suggested he do a book party at his New York gallery. Carlton’s was the place that I had done the party for my last book, A Passion for Interiors. I thought how great it would be to bring all of these talented like-minded people together in Carlton’s magnificent gallery for a party!
So here I am thinking about how I shall decorate for the event . . .
I would like to share a few photos of the work of Vladimir, Page Lee, Emmanuel and of Carlton’s beautiful gallery. You will glimpse why I love the work of these talented people.
Vladimir’s dahlia —in front of one of my most recent purchases for Charleston ( more later, after the party, about S.C.)
Page Lee’s water color of one of my tulips.
The glorious cover of Emmanuel’s book. More about him later… such a scholar with a large number of beautifully edited books on the marvels of Russia.
A photo of Carlton’s wonderful gallery above