Friday, January 23, 2015

Snow that never shows

Words to the wise. 1 PM. Photo: JH.
Friday, January 23, 2015. Bright, sunny, colder – but again not too – yesterday in New York. The weatherman continues to predict snow that never shows. Now it’s for Saturday. If I sound like a sulky boy, well, I am. I love the snow in winter, especially January when everything is dull and grey and feels that way. Even the shiny architure looks tacky. But the snow transforms all that and the city is a jewel once again.

Last night at the Park Avenue Armory was the Opening Night Party of the Winter Antiques Show to benefit the East Side House Settlement. The W-A-S as some are now calling it, marks the beginning of the social season that will now extend until late May when people start preparing for summer (and many leaving the city whenever they can). The Winter Antiques Show runs through the next two weekends ending on February 1st.

This is the 61st year of the show which was launched in 1954 by the East Side House Settlement. It is always a very successful show, and that’s good because the opening night is critical to East Side House’s work in the South Bronx – which is one of the nation’s poorest Congressional Districts.
Entering the Park Avenue Armory last night, heading into the Winter Antiques Show in the Ward Thompson Drill Hall.
The evening’s co-chairs were Lucinda Ballard, Arie Kopelman and Michael Lynch. Arie Kopelman, now retired President of Chanel US, has been at the center of producing this Opening Night for many years, and has been a hands on contributor to its successes. The Opening Night Party Chair was Kathleen Tierney, Executive Vice President and COO of Chubb Personal Insurance.

The East Side House Settlement was established 124 years ago in 1891 as a non-profit community service organization. The “settlement houses,” of which there are several in the greater New York area, were all founded to assist newcomers (immigrants) and the poor in the neighborhoods. They are the glue to a cohesive community that moves and grows in every direction by leaps and bounds in the city called New York.
At the show I ran into Jonathan Marder, who was taking in the opening night with Mary Claire Boyd, who is director of the Olympian International Art and Antiques Show in London (their show runs from June 18th through the 28th). I asked Ms. Boyd how she liked being in New York. Loved it. Why? The energy. There is nothing quite like it in London, or really anywhere.

The East Side House Settlement is an excellent example of what that energy can do and does in New York. From its supporters, to its contributors, managers, directors, teachers and helpers to several generations of New York children and neighbors, the East Side House has helped untold numbers of people establish their own identities, and acquire accomplishment and achievement in their lives as members of their communities.
A special exhibition organized by the Newark Museum.
There were many familiar faces in the aisles which were crowded with connoisseurs, dealers, interior designers, collectors and people contributing to the cause. My goal is always to get as many pictures of the stalls – there are 75 this year. But there are also distraction of running into friends and meeting  visitors and guests. So I was unable to accomplish my goal, having caught about a third of them.
Mary Claire Boyd and Jonathan Marder. Brian Stewart and Stephanie Krieger.
Mark Gilbertson and Leigh Keno.
Jeff and Liz Peek. Nicole DiCocco and Dr. Penny Grant.
Style speaks.
As I’ve suggested before, and I take my own advice, for those who have no other time, it’s a great way to spend a couple of hours (or more on a weekend afternoon in wintertime). Antiques and art dealers are purveyors of style and change. Nothing ever really goes entirely out of style, but preferences and attitudes vary with each era. The best dealers are ahead of the trend. This year’s show seemed to demonstrate that to me. It may be subtle, or it may just be me who doesn’t really know what he’s talking about. But. It’s fresher and newer. It’s not what is now officially known as contemporary, but it’s the return to what contemporary is, and always was. The old is new; changing with the times. Fascinating.
Autumn Equinox at Keshishian.
Gold Panagia and chain at A La Vieille Russie, New York. Sir Osbert Sitwell, The FIne Art Society, London, England.
Elliott & Grace Snyder, South Egremont, MA.
A Lillian Bassman at Peter Fetterman Gallery, Santa Monica, CA. Safani Gallery, Inc., New York, NY.
Kelly Kinzle, New Oxford, PA.
Conner • Rosenkranz, New York, NY.
Joan R. Brownstein & Peter Eaton, Newbury, MA.
Moderne Gallery, Philadelphia, PA.
Portrait of Josiah Lasell, 1895, by William Merritt Chase; Hirschl & Adler Galleries. Thomas Coulborn & Sons, West Midlands, England.
David A. Schorsch — Eileen M. Smiles American Antiques, Inc., Woodbury, CT.
Barbara Israel Garden Antiques, Katonah, NY • New York, NY.
The Henry Moore Table at Carlton Hobbs LLC, New York, NY.
Lost City Arts, New York, NY.
C.L. Prickett, Yardley, PA.
Allan Katz Americana, Woodbridge, CT.
Carswell Rush Berlin, Inc., New York, NY.
Associated Artists LLC, Southport, CT.
Michele Beiny, Inc., New York, NY.
Maison Gerard, Ltd., New York, NY.

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