Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Palm Beach Social Diary

Filmmaker Katie Carpenter and Mary Hilliard at Wednesday night’s reception at the Preservation Foundation of Palm Beach for the opening of Places & Faces: The Photography of Mary Hilliard, a showcase of Hilliard’s images from ballrooms to runways and from Park Avenue to the Champs-Elysees that document her career as a bold-faced society and cultural events photographer.
Figure Studies: Mary Hilliard + Boaz Vaadia
By Augustus Mayhew

Last week the Preservation Foundation of Palm Beach and the Ann Norton Sculpture Garden opened exhibitions that focus on the human figure, photographer Mary Hilliard and the late sculptor Boaz Vaadia. As much as Hilliard’s work may seem ephemeral, her spontaneity and instinctiveness in capturing the moment creates the same transcendent aesthetic as Vaadia produces with his precisely chiseled bronze and stone works. Known for meticulous constructions shaped into statuary forms named for historical Biblical personages, his Asa and Yo’ah bluestone and boulder work is installed in front of NYC’s Time Warner Center. The Ann Norton’s exhibition is comprised of fourteen of Vaadia's gallery pieces as well as weightier representations throughout the garden.

Mary Hilliard has chronicled the realm of the here-and-now for more than three decades, making for more than 100,000 images that she and foundation member Steven Stolman co-curated for this exhibition. She and her Canon have been at the frontlines of New York’s social and cultural vanguard from the emergence of the 1980s Nouvelle Society to the 21st century’s go-for-baroque exuberance. Unlike Slim Aarons’ still-life tableaus or Bill Cunningham’s candid camera, Mary Hilliard’s museum quality portfolio of the best-dressed and the best-known is ineffable.

Amid the holiday comings-and-goings, embarrassingly I must confess I made my first visit to Renato’s, a longtime Worth Avenue institution. Actually, it was the private room facing Peruvian Avenue where Angela Whittaker put together a milestone birthday gathering for her husband’s “Too Many to Count” milestone. Happy Birthday Sam!
Sam Whittaker’s birthday gathering attracted a throng of well-wishers to one of Renato’s landmarked private rooms on Via Mizner. The champagne, the plates and plates, and the service were sensational.
Pasticeria Publix delivered the “Too Many To Count.”
January 10, 2018 – 6PM
Places & Faces: An Evening with Mary Hilliard
Preservation Foundation of Palm Beach
311 Peruvian Avenue – Palm Beach
January 8 – February 16, 2018
Amanda Skier, executive director, and Pauline Pitt, chairman of the Preservation Foundation of Palm Beach’s board of trustees. To the right, Mary Hilliard’s photograph of Pauline Pitt taken just yesterday.
Mary Hilliard welcomed a multitude who extended kudos for the exemplary show.
The exhibition’s co-curator Steven Stolman and Sheila O’Malley.
The Preservation Foundation building was built in 2005. Above, a view of the entrance from Peruvian Avenue.
The drizzly weather didn’t stop more than 200 members and their guests from the reception.
Kiwi Hilliard.
Tracy Stern and Jerry Turco.
Hilliard’s f-stops included snaps from Paris and New York leading catwalks and runways while last night’s reception provided moments of fashion convergence. Pamela O’Connor and Tom Shaffer.
The exhibition’s designer Harvey Bader with Stephanie Sidjakov and Stephen Baumer.
Helen Hilliard and Stuart Craig.
Kevin and Frances Asbacher.
Andrea Stark, Renee Steinberg, and Adrienne Haber.
Missy and Eduard de Guardiola.
Elaine Kay and Jeanne Calamore.
Donald Smith and Mai Hallingby.
Estelle Blatt with “Jackie in the Rain.”
Mary Hilliard with Allan and Carol Cohen.
Nicki McDonald, Katie Carpenter, and Dragana Connaughton.
... a thousand words.
January 10, 2018 - 7PM
Celebrating Boaz Vaadia: 1951-2017
Ann Norton Sculpture Gardens
January 10, 2018 – April 29, 2018
Where better to contemplate the calm of Boaz Vaadia’s bronzes than the oasis at the Ann Norton Sculpture Garden amid the sheltering palms and southeast breeze where the Israeli-born Manhattan-based artist’s representations complement Ann Norton’s more abstract pieces.  In between rains, guests gathered in the tent.
Gayle Gross and her committee welcomed members and guests to an evening of art and music, Boaz Vaadia and bass-guitarist and former Metallic frontman Jason Newsted.
Gallerist Deborah Sponder with the late Boaz Vaadia’s daughters, Rebecca Vaadia and Sara Vaadia.
In Gallery Two, Boaz Vaadia’s Ovadyahu. A portion of the sales benefit the Ann Norton Sculpture Garden. Vaadia’s work is part of the permanent collection at The Met.
Roger Ward, president and CEO of the Ann Norton, stands with Vaadia’s Pashur in Gallery One.
Sculptor Jane Manus and daughter Ann Jonas.
Former Metallica bass guitarist Jason Newsted played the classics.
David Miller, Jennifer Garrigues, Vicki Halmos, and Ray Wakefield.
Morgan Simses and Morgan O’Connor.
Boaz Vaadia. Omri and Shemaryahu.
Dan Ellenson. Sally Soter.
Ann Norton Sculpture Garden, looking southeast toward the Intracoastal Waterway.
Bradley Park cuisine
Preservation Foundation of Palm Beach

This past summer at  Bradley Park the sound of hammers and nail guns replaced the memories of the spinning  roulette wheel as the Preservation Foundation of Palm Beach undertook the park’s much-needed makeover.  Once the setting for Edward R. Bradley’s Beach Club where guests could gamble away their trust funds 24/7 while dining on Monte Carlo  cuisine, the park now sports a new entrance, waterfront gazebo, pathways, trees, lighting, and a restored fountain. The joint private-public project was under the supervision of architect Mark Marsh and  SMI Landscape Architecture.
January 2018. The recast 12-foot Artemis statue and fountain basin has been setback considerably from Royal Poinciana Way. Once a significant gateway element, it is now a centerpiece for what is described as a plaza with the tearoom bordering along the north and a new restroom building added on the east side.
November 17, 1940. Originally, the fountain and Artemis statue, topped with a figure with a harp, anchored a prime position as residents and visitors crossed the Flagler Bridge onto the Royal Poinciana Way thoroughfare. There may not have been an attempt to recast the fountain’s original figure.
Bradley Park, fountain, looking north.
January 2018. The fountain and statue were moved because officials thought it would be “overshadowed” by the new Flagler Bridge. December 2010. The Artemis fountain statue, as it looked before it was damaged. Photo Augustus Mayhew.
The new Rest Area has a Chinese theme inspired by the tearoom’s existing Oriental-influenced fireplace.
The L-shaped tearoom, looking west.
Tearoom, ceiling detail.
Bradley Park, plaza. The curvilinear 30-foot wide fountain basin contrasts with the irregular flagstone-and-grass inserts.
Photography by Augustus Mayhew.

Augustus Mayhew is the author of Palm Beach-A Greater Grandeur