Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Home life

A day after the Met Gala. Photo: JH.
Wednesday, May 3, 2017. A beautiful, sunny day, yesterday in New York, with the temperatures hovering around the low 70s by day and into the low 60s by the midnight hour. It wasn’t hot or cold, but just pleasant with a strong yet lazy breeze in the late afternoon.

JH and I had lunch at Orsay with an old friend and colleague Christine Biddle. We’ve known each other for many years now although it’s one of those New York relationships where you have good friends you rarely see because of the hyperactivity of professional life here. So what did we talk about in our catch-up? We talked about real estate. Christine once kept an apartment in the same building as this restaurant back when it was owned by Glenn Bernbaum, and his restaurant Mortimers was located in the space occupied today by Orsay.

Back then, in the '80s and early '90s, Christine had two bedrooms, a dining room, living and kitchen for $1000 a month. She now keeps a smaller apartment for her public relations work here but lives almost totally in Westchester. Hassan El Garrahy, the GM, is an old friend too, from his maitre d’ days at Harry Cipriani. He now runs Orsay and is a partner also in Bar Italia on 66th and Madison.
Christine Biddle, Hassan, and DPC at Orsay. We learned that Hassan is somehing of an Aikido master and has broken many a bone in his body studying the Japanese martial art. Don't mess with Hassan!
On Monday night, JH stopped by the Institute of Classical Architecture & Art's (ICAA) 2017 Arthur Ross Awards for Excellence in the Classical Tradition where over 400 supporters gathered to celebrate the winners. Established in 1982, the Arthur Ross Awards further the educational mission of the ICAA by recognizing the achievements and contributions of architects, painters, sculptors, artisans, landscape designers, educators, publishers, patrons, and others dedicated to preserving and advancing the classical tradition.
The lively cocktail reception before dinner.
The winners included Peter Pennoyer Architects (Architecture); Thomas Gordon Smith (Education); John Saladino (Interior Design); Kevin Lippert and the Princeton Architectural Press (Publishing); Carl Laubin (Fine Arts); Stephen Byrns (Stewardship); and John H. Bryan (Patronage). A Board of Directors Award was also bestowed upon Norman Davenport Askins.
Katie Ridder and Peter Pennoyer.
John Rosselli and Bunny Williams.
Peter Lyden and Richard Driehaus.
Gilbert P. Schafer III, Suzanne Tucker, and Bunny Williams. Honorary Chairs included Janet C. Ross, Suzanne R. Santry, and Ambassador William J. vanden Heuvel served as Co-Chairs.

They raised over $500,000 in support of the ICAA's mission to advance the classical tradition in architecture and the related arts through education, publications, and advocacy.
Guests finding their seats for dinner.
The French-American Aid For Children (FAAFC) celebrated its 2017 Bal des Berceaux at the Rainbow Room last Wednesday, April 27th.  They presented the Children Come First Award to France Parrainages in honor of their 70th Anniversary.

Michael Pochna receiving the Children Come First Award for France Parrainages.
Started as the ‘French Center for the Protection of Childhood,’ the mission of France Parrainages is to sponsor children and youth in difficult social situations. By identifying and selecting host families, France Parrainages helped 100,000 children over 70 years. 

Sponsored children are able to enjoy a child’s life, be prepared for the future, and shape their own identity. Today, France Parrainages assists 13,000 children in over 16 countries including 850 children in many French regions. FAAFC funds about 10% of the French programs.

Tanya Rivero, host of “Lunch Break” on Wall Street Journal Live, was emcee for the evening. Margarita Somnolet and Lucila Vollbrechthausen were co-chairs of the event.  The 76th Bal des Berceaux was under the patronage of Their Excellencies Gérard Araud, Ambassador of France to the United States, Francois Delattre, Ambassador of France to the United Nations, and the Consul General of France in New York, Anne-Claire Legendre, who presented the engraved Baccarat Award to France Parrainages for their exemplary work with vulnerable children.

Kips Bay Boys and Girls Club ‘K-Company’ performed a moving ballet and Nicholas Lowry of Swann Auction Galleries led the Live Auction. The evening ended with lively dancing after a “Wishing Well” of donations to directly benefit France Parrainages.
Marguerite Mangin, Michael Pochna, and Consul General Anne-Claire Legendre.
All funds raised from this event will be dispersed to seven children charities.  The American charities are: Kips Bay Boys & Girls Club, an after-school activity center in the Bronx where teens and youngsters learn to recognize and develop their potentials; Storefront Academy Harlem, a private, tuition-free school in Harlem with programs from pre-school to 8th grade; and The Children's Village, a residential care and treatment center for neglected, battered and abused children in judicial care, reeducating families to reintegrate their children back into a safe home life.

Corporate supporters included: Adlers Jewelry, Altour, Baccarat, Bond No. 9, Chanel, Christie’s Auction House Paris, Crédit Agricole CIB, Crédit Industriel et Commercial, Dassault Falcon, French-American Chamber of Commerce, Givenchy, Guibert & Co, Halstead Property, Hermès, Hotel Le Bristol, Lalique , La Maison du Chocolat, La Mamounia, Lilly Pulitzer, LVMH, Lycée Francais de New York, Metrowine Group, Montblanc, O’Connor Davies, Pommery, Realty Purchase, Stribling, Swann Auction Galleries, Travers Fine Jewelers, US Trust, Van Cleef & Arpels, Viking Cruises, and Weiser and Associates.
Auctioneer Nicholas Lowry.
The annual Bal des Berceaux was first held in 1942 and has been FAAFC's main fundraising event ever since.  All funds are used to further FAAFC’s mission of ‘Children Come First.’  The event attracts French and American dignitaries as well as distinguished guests from the New York area and community leaders from around the world.

To learn more about FAAFC, go to: http://www.aidforchildren.org
Katrina Dudley, Jeremy Kohomban, and Marguerite Mangin.
Melanie, John, and Nathalie Lapides.
Yasaman Djunic with Fiske, Michelle, and Liza Warren.
Jean Denoyer and Karin Hehenberger. Daniel Henninger and Inmaculada de Habsburgo.
Dan Quintero and Kips Bay Trustees.
Véronique and Jean-Hugues Monier and their guests.
Michael Figliola, Andrew Krinsky, Natasha Withoff, Arthur Harris, and Francesca Dricot.
Lyn Alessi, Sue Vaccaro, Laurie McNally, and Elaine Tross.
Donna and Richard Soloway with Diane Ackerman.
Maxence Mangin, Abigail Moyer, Vanessa Lundborg, and Michael Markbreiter.
Eric, Sandra, Margarita, and Marc Somnolet.
Consul General Anne-Claire Legendre, Keith Yazmir, and Benedicte de Montlaur.
US Trust guests, Martinis and Ravels.
Hannah Dameron, Krisy Herrold, Blake Christensen, and young friends.
Allison Mignone bidding with Jack Egan.
Jennifer Herrera, George Mickum, Maria Fishell, and Klaus and Gayatri Steeg.
Nicole Salmasi and Julio Herrera.
K-Company dancers.
Dancing at the Rainbow Room.
Last Thursday night at the Rizzoli bookstore at 1133 Broadway at West 25th Street, Kitty Hawks and Larry Lederman hosted a book signing to celebrate the publication of Larry’s new book “The Rockefeller Family Gardens: An American Legacy.”

You may have read about Larry here before when we reviewed a book of photography he did of the trees in the New York Botanical Garden. I wrote about it five years ago when the book came out. You can read it here.
Larry Lederman signing copies of “The Rockefeller Family Gardens: An American Legacy.”
Click to order.
Larry has an eye for Nature’s beauty. His wife Kitty shares it with him. Their house in Westchester is a reflection of that inside and outside. This new book is a record of the gardens on the Rockefeller estate on the Hudson in Pocantico Hills. Its main house built by the first John D. Rockefeller sits on the highest elevation on the property with a magnificent view of the Hudson and the surrounding environment. Larry’s book gives you the magnificence of that environment in all its natural glory.
Below, on the putting green overlooking the Hudson and the Catskills in the distance, Aristide Maillol's "Night" on the right; and Marino Marini's "Horse" on the left side.
In the Japanese Garden at Kykuit.
In the introduction to the content, Dominique Browning describes it most succinctly:

Most of us think of water as being essential to gardens; it is perhaps the first association that comes to mind. Keeping a garden properly watered .... The photographer however, considers something else to be fundamental to the life of a garden. He watches the light. The light that throws lines into relief, the light that sets maple leaves ablaze, the light that slicks the tone with a glistening sheen, the gloaming light that picks out the white blossoms so that they linger like ghosts as the day dies. And then there is the breathtaking experience of an early light catching the trunk of a tree or an afternoon light dazzling us with color. These are the moments of light that etch images vividly into our memories .... These are the impressions captured by photographer Larry Lederman in this new book.

... Lederman teases out the singularities of the Rockefeller gardens, highlighting the way garden rooms are composed, views framed, plantings distributed. He has an intimacy with these gardens that can only come over years of close attention. These photographs are his memories, but they become ours, as well, as if we had visited in a dream.
David Rockefeller, Jr. and Ariana Rockefeller Brenner Thomas, Myriam Castillo, and Chad Kaydo
Pilar Viladas and Sara Vass Agnes Gund, Yeohlee Teng, and Joerg Schwarz
Zack McKown, Wend Goodman, and Peter Stamberg Lisa Gabor and Stephen Segaller
Elizabeth White (Monacelli Press) and "Rockefeller" book contributor Cynthia Bronson Altman Kitty Hawks and Fern Mallis
Michael Blackwood, Larry Lederman, Kitty Hawks, and Kent Barwick Larry Lederman and Kitty Hawks

Photographs by Joshua Wong (FAAFC)

Contact DPC here.