Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Goodwill

Guests at last night's UNICEF Snowflake Ball holding up candles to symbolically light the UNICEF snowflake on Fifth Avenue. 8:30 PM. Photo: JH.
Wednesday, November 30, 2016. It rained yesterday in New York, beginning around noontime and continuing, often heavy, into the mid-evening, with mild temperatures in the high 50s.
The heavy afternoon rains nearly stripped the trees of their remaining leaves in front of my building, plastering the sidewalks with the bright yellows fading to brown. This was the sight at 4:30 p.m.
And at 10:30 p.m., the rains had stopped and the pavement and roadside and cars have been redesigned by Mother Nature on her merry way.
Last night down at Cipriani Wall Street, JH along with over 800 guests attended The UNICEF Snowflake Ball, which celebrated its twelfth year. For over 70 years UNICEF has provided children with access to food and water, education, healthcare and much more. UNICEF's priorities have been realizing the intrinsic rights of children to a basic quality of life.

This year's gala honored UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador Katy Perry with the Audrey Hepburn Humanitarian Award and Moll Anderson with the Spirit of Compassion Award. Unbeknownst to everyone in the room, Hillary Clinton made a surprise appearance (her second public appearance since the election) and presented the award to Katy.
Guests moving from the cocktail reception at the Museum of American Finance at 48 Wall Street to dinner across the street at Cipriani Wall Street.
Gillian Miniter and Desiree Gruber served as Gala Chairs, Jaime Jiménez as Project Chair, Daria Daniel and Sterling McDavid as Next Gen Chairs, and Christine and George Stonbely were the Snowflake Patrons. Sara Bareilles gave a beautiful performance to close out the night before guests moved on to the after party.

Presenting sponsors included Marine and Baccarat, who donated a beautifully wrapped pair of crystal tumblers for each guest at the end of the night.

The gala raised over $3 million. The Snowflake Ball has raised $27 million over the past eleven years. 90% of every dollar spent goes directly to assist children. To learn more or donate, click here.
The UNICEF banners decorated the room at 55 Wall Street, which was designed by Vern Yip.
Gala chair Gillian Miniter with Sylvester Miniter and Danielle Hirsch.
UNICEF Baccarat snowflakes served as the table centerpieces. The menu was designed by Marcus Samuelsson.
The faces of UNICEF.
Octavia Spencer served as gala emcee. She also generously bid on a number of the auction items.
UNICEF Snowflake Lighting Sponsor Alex and Ani Charity By Design celebrating the official lighting of the UNICEF snowflake.
The Doo Wop Project singing the priases of the gala honorees, sponsors and chairs.
Brooke Burke-Charvet introducing her good friend Moll Anderson.
Moll Anderson receiving the Spirit of Compassion Award from Brooke Burke-Charvet and Caryl M. Stern.
Moll left us with this thought: "If you want to touch the past, touch a rock. If you want to touch the present, touch a flower. If you want to touch the future, touch a life."
The cast of "The Color Purple" performing.
Katy Perry looks on as the bidding begins for 4 tickets to her concert with backstage access. The winning bid went for $50,000!
The crowd applauds the winning bidder.
A surprise guest appeared and was met with a very long standing ovation.
Hillary Clinton introduced Katy Perry and thanked her for her tireless work on behalf of UNICEF.
Hillary and Katy embrace.
Hillary presented the Audrey Hepburn Humanitarian Award to UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador Katy Perry. They are flanked by Pamela Fiori and Caryl M. Stern.
Honoree Katy Perry spoke passionately about her work with UNICEF.
A headline performance by Sara Bareilles closed out the dinner portion of the evening before guests moved on to the after party.
Restaurant life. Monday night was restaurant night for this New Yorker. I started out at Donahue’s on Lexington and 64th to meet Liz Smith and Joe Armstrong who is here in New York for a few days. Donahue’s, specifically Donahue’s Steak House, is owned and run by Maureen who is the daughter of the original owner.

From the outside it looks like one of those 1940s neighborhood bar-restaurants, with a canopy that runs to the curb. Not fancy and been there a long time. Immediately inside there is a long bar that runs right up to the back room with tables and booths. All wood or wood colored.
Donohue's owner Maureen Donohue-Peters.
The place was opened in 1950, and it looks like nothing has been changed. It is one of the most popular restaurants on the Upper East Side (closer to mid-town), as a neighborhood restaurant. Over the decades, however, it has attracted a constant, smart professional, and well-fixed crowd, many of whom dine there almost nightly. Many members of the clientele you might also see at La Grenouille on a dressier night.

A couple of years ago, Robert Ellsworth, a well known art dealer died. He dined there and even lunched there almost every day for many years. Evidently he was very attached to his cocktails and wasn’t the easiest customer in town. He evidently was aware of this on some level of consciousness. In his will he left Maureen $50,000 and $50,000 to her niece. The main reaction from other customers who knew the man and heard about it, was that Maureen and niece deserved every penny after looking after him all those years.
The bar filled with regulars.
Donohue's dining room, before the evening's rush.
The Madoffs lived right across the avenue until his great fall, and often dined there. Another neighborhood resident, Matt Lauer, can often be seen at the bar catching some lunch or dinner. The clientele is neighborhood but remember this is an upper income neighborhood of lawyers, investment bankers, agents, journalists, society types and even movie stars. Yet the atmosphere is Noo Yawk en famille; very down-home; no pretense nowhere.  Liz and Joe both have been customers for years. I’ve been there many times with Liz and other friends who live nearby.

I looked it up on Google and found this perfect description:

Other than new air conditioner units, little has changed physically in this steak house/bar since it opened in 1950. The same can be said about the menu and cocktail list. This is one of the few existing UES eateries from the mid-20th Century. The food is unexceptional but reliable. The crowd is not glitzy or hipster. The crowd is mainly regulars who have been around for a while. If it were up to me, if Donohue's ever closes, it should be moved to the Smithsonian as an example of a typical NYC post war restaurant.
Also Monday night, after spending forty-five minutes with Liz and Joe at Donohue’s, I excused myself and cabbed ten blocks up Madison Avenue to Caravaggio, the restaurant on 74th Street two doors west of Madison. I was going to a small birthday dinner Shirley Lord was giving for our friend Boaz Mazor. When I say “our” friend, I’m referring to the other nine at the table besides the birthday boy. I could be referring to many others also because Boaz is a man who has a wealth of friends. 

Shirley Lord and Boaz Mazor, who celebrated his birthday on Monday night.
Our table was just inside the entrance of the main dining room and Francisco Costa, the designer, came by on his way out with friends, and on seeing Boaz, stopped and with a warm bright smile went over to greet him with open arms.

Boaz loves his friends as much as they love him.  After the main course, Shirley asked that we go around the table and each tell why they liked Boaz. It was a sweet touch because Boaz evokes a natural affection in people who know him. He has a warmth and an enthusiasm, accompanied by strong sense of irony that causes laughter. And he is kind.

He’s been the sales director for Oscar de la Renta for many decades. I think he joined Oscar in the early '70s when he was a mere kid acting like a grown up. Already a charmer. Since Oscar’s passing he works even more intensely furthering the legend of this great international designer.

Boaz still travels the world showing the collection to its legions of smart, chic ladies all over. They all love Boaz too, and when he comes to town they all want to share in his company. Ironically this fashionable (appearing) life is only a backdrop of a very demanding and hectic business schedule. But this Monday night was a piece of pleasure for the man, and as much for his friends.
Caravaggio's civilized dining room.
Caravaggio is a different kind of restaurant from Donohue’s, obviously.  The clientele also reflects the price and preparation of the menu – which is considerably loftier than Donohue’s – but you could still run into some of the clientele down on 64th and Lex on another night. Caravaggio is one of four restaurants owned by the brothers Bruno. Pete Wells in the New York Times reviewed it as “one of the most civilized Italian restaurants to turn up anywhere in the city in the last few years.”

Meanwhile, last night down in Miami, Augustus Mayhew had this to report: With the temperature reaching the mid-80s and several hundred collectors, museum professionals, and art luminaries waiting for Art Miami to open its doors at 5:30 on Tuesday evening, I was standing next to Nick Korniloff, show director, when he told the show's staff to go ahead and open the doors ahead of the scheduled time. Something I hadn't seen at any of the other art fairs.
​Miami's art crowd converged at Art Miami's International Contemporary Art Fair opening on Tuesday night.
With more than 130 international exhibitors from 20 countries at this year's show that runs through December 4, Art Miami plans on attracting more than 85,000 during its six-day run. "We should surpass last year's attendance record," said Pamela Cohen, director of marketing and VIP Relations.
​Pam Cohen, Art Miami's director of marketing, sponsorships & VIP Relations and Nick Korniloff, show director.
​By the first hour, more than 1,000 collectors and art enthusiasts arrived.
​Christine Berry and Martha Campbell, principals Berry Campbell Gallery, New York, with an Elaine de Kooning painting between them.
​Hollis Taggart, principal Hollis Taggart Gallery, New York.
Salvador Dali. Vision of the Atomic Age (1948). Watercolor, pen and ink on paper.
​Jan Voss. Nouveaux Riches. 2011. Acrylic and collage on canvas. $48,000 US. Die Galerie, Frankfurt.
​Artist Andy Burgess with one of his canvases at Cynthia Corbett Gallery, London-New York. Andy likes Tucson where he's been living the past nine years.
​Gallerist Robert Casterline stands next door to a 2000 Robert Rauschenberg. Casterline has galleries in Aspen and East Hampton. "I really live in Naples," he said.
​Andrea Schwartz Gallery, San Francisco. Sensational!
​Lyons Wier Gallery, New York.
Michael Goedhuis, New York-London.
 

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