Palm Beach Social Diary: East Side/West Side

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This Ann Norton Sculpture Gardens patio took on an unearthly glow Friday night for Gordon Cheung’s reception marking the open of New Order Vanitas, an exhibition of the artist’s latest works.

Yesterday, there was The 400. Saturday morning there was The 700+ at The Society of The Four Arts Gubelmann Auditorium, rubbing elbows in anticipation of  sculptor Edwina Sandys’ lecture about her grandfather Winston Churchill’s paintings, currently exhibited in The Four Arts’ Esther B. O’Keeffe Gallery.

Guest lecturer Edwina Sandys with Frank Salisbury’s Blood, Sweat & Tears portrait of her grandfather Winston Churchill.

Despite being held on what was December’s “darkest hour” with a thunderstorm ushering in the first cold front and a packed parking lot to deal with, the lobby was SRO.  Seen among the umbrellas and raincoats were Susie and Ed Elson, Gigi and Harry Benson, John Loring, David Miller, Duncan Sandys, Lorraine Odasso, Melinda Hassen, Erik de Bourbon-Parme, and The 700 who appreciate all things Churchill and Edwina’s insightful close-up of her family.

In between the ebb and flow of cement mixers ready to pour and the procession of tower cranes and front end loaders, the other day I noticed the Marky’s van gliding up Cocoanut Row, making its run from 79th Street in Miami with only the iciest Beluga and Kaluga, Kiev candies and Odessa delicacies. With distributors in Panama and the Ukraine ‘s prime locations, Marky’s duck foie gras parfait and Russian Imperial Golden Osetra surely satisfies the most discerning Palm Beach palate.

With pop-ups aplenty and so many from so far ready to capitalize on the Palm Beach brand, I wandered over to the Garden Club of Palm Beach’s one-day-only Christmas Boutique looking for Made on Palm Beach items, although I confess I do not shop and my interest was only as a cultural anthropologist. Then I stopped in at Dede and Grace Merck’s Royal Poinciana Way shop in search of Local Color.  Construction sites appear to be widespread, occupying streets with more obstacles than a steeplechase course and the makeover at the former Testa’s on RPW has yet to begin. Friday’s reception at the Ann Norton offered a refined aesthetic alternative, an artist who transforms images of Old Master still lifes into evocative nebulous artworks with the expertise of an alchemist.

December 7, 2017
Garden Club of Palm Beach Christmas Boutique
The Society of the Four Arts – Palm Beach

Peruvian Avenue green thumb Polly Reed designs a line of popular jewelry.
The Garden Club of Palm Beach’s Christmas Boutique was SRO. I arrived 15 minutes before it opened, sensing it would be no less than mobbed.
L. to r.: North Lake Way resident Phyllis Dennis designs bridge table covers and a line of hand-painted fabrics and stitched goods as Eastern Shores Designs.; Brenda Callaway and her Christmas necklace.
Judy Roy’s Christmas cards and ornaments.
Garden Club members sold a curated selection of the club’s amaryllis blooms ($30).
A Garden Club crafted wreath headed out the door with Kit Pannill.
Necklace design by Polly Reed.
Pat Sned prepping for the after-lunch in the Pannill Pavilion.

Local Color

At Grace Boutique on Royal Poinciana Way, Dede Merck and her daughter Grace Merck offer local wares, including these Strong Boalt brand men’s swim trunks by Amanda Boalt, a multi-generational Palm Beacher.
Grace Boutique’s first label, a Strong Boalt cashmere hoodie.
Matthew Chevallard’s Del Toro casuals are available at Grace Boutique.
In flight at Cluett Memorial Garden, The Episcopal Church of Bethesda-by-the-Sea.

December 8, 2017 – 5:30 pm
Reception for Gordon Cheung’s New Order Vanitas Exhibition
Ann Norton Sculpture Garden – West Palm Beach
December 9, 2017 – February 4, 2018.

London-based artist Gordon Cheung spent the day at Art Basel Miami where his work was also being shown before motoring up for the reception. Pictured above, Still Life, 2017 (after Abraham Hendricksz van Beyeren, c. 1640-1680). Edition of 20.
Gordon Cheung. Hans Bollongier I and II (New Order), 2014. Editions of four.
A preview piece by sculptor Boaz Vaadia was placed in the central sculpture garden. Vaadia’s exhibition is planned for January 11 – April 29, 2018.
Board member Cynthia Sulzberger and Scott Robertson, decorative artist and interior designer.
L. to r.: Jennifer Garrigues.; The courtyard patio with a striking centerpiece.
Ann Norton Sculpture Garden, view from the east toward the Main House & Gallery.
View of the Main House from the south side of the central sculpture by Ann Norton.
Robert and Mary Kathrine Flucke.
Sales were brisk of Gordon Cheung’s work that helped support the Ann Norton’s various efforts.
Gordon Cheung. The Madness of Crowds, 2014. I was captivated by this piece seen on Cheung’s website.  Cheung’s work “captures the hallucinations between the virtual and actual realities of a globalized world oscillating between Utopia and Dystopia.”
Patio centerpiece, detail.

December 9, 2018 – 11 a.m.
The Art of Winston Churchill: An Illustrated Lecture by Edwina Sandys
The Society of the Four Arts – Palm Beach

Guest lecturer Edwina Sandys with Frank Salisbury’s Blood, Sweat & Tears portrait of her grandfather Winston Churchill. The extraordinary exhibition of Churchill’s paintings and memorabilia closes January 14.
There was already a considerable crowd when I arrived at 10:30 a.m.
Curator and archivist Erik de Bourbon-Parme was co-curator of the exhibition along with The Four Arts and the National Churchill Museum.
Edwina Sandys and Brinsley Matthews.
The 700.
Gubelmann Auditorium. Chandelier in the Mizneresque style.

Works in Progress

At the Sun & Surf.
A new version of Cucina is rebooting with a few more finishing touches.
Craftsmen at work on nearly every street on Palm Beach.
Next door to the Ann Norton, an environmental installation.
“Five Ladders.”
West Palm Beach City Hall (1980). Last look. “Going … Going …

Palm Beach Landscapes

In memory of Alex Fatio Taylor who each season when she returned to Palm Beach, we would have lunch, drive around looking for what was lost since the previous season, and try to remember what/who was no longer part of the skyline. Partial to her father Maurice Fatio’s1930s Palm Beach, she would gasp and turn away from the window as we passed Il Palmetto (“The original coral is all gone …”), Four Winds, (“A Fatio in name only …”) and at Eastover she would recount her episode with Veronica Hearst (“Oh my God, look what she did …”).

North End.

Photography by Augustus Mayhew.

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

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