BOOK REVIEW: Mario Buatta: Fifty Years of American Interior Decoration

Mario Buatta: Fifty Years of American Interior Decoration; Mario Buatta, Emily Eerdmans

Rizzoli New York,

RRP: £47.50

Layout 1

This book is a celebration of the style and taste of Mario Buatta who has been decorating homes for the last fifty years and still continues to do so.

Mario Buatta in front of  painting. © Jason Schmidt and Nest magazine Background painting. © Sander Witlin

Mario Buatta in front of painting. © Jason Schmidt and Nest magazine
Background painting. © Sander Witlin

His style has been influenced by the renowned English elegance of Colefax and Fowler and by America’s colourful decorating doyenne Sister Parish.  His is a reinvention of the English country house style layered with antiques, sumptuous curtains and colours that all combine to produce rooms that are both opulent and stylish but immensely liveable-in.

Painting of Mario’s 1984 Kips Bay show-house room. © 1984 Jeremiah Goodman

Painting of Mario’s 1984 Kips Bay show-house room. © 1984 Jeremiah Goodman

It is a look that clients such as Henry Ford II, Barbara Walters, Malcolm Forbes, Mariah Carey, and the President (he helped decorate Blair House, the Presidential Guest House) have liked along with many other discerning clients.  The copious illustrations admirably underscore this.

Neoclassical House, Houston, TX—living room. © Gordon Beall / Architectural Digest © Conde Nast Publications

Neoclassical House, Houston, TX—living room. © Gordon Beall / Architectural Digest © Conde Nast Publications

Not unsurprisingly he is known as the “Prince of Chintz” for his prodigious and extremely effective use of this fabric.  At home his mother allowed him to re-arrange the furniture and his stylish Aunt Mary was another early influence.  Buatta shares with us his work process and the rules that he uses in decorating along with some amusing anecdotes.

It is certainly a book for all interested in interior decorating and one to keep close at hand for ideas.

JAHANGUIR at Thomas Williams Gallery

JAHANGUIR, until 18th January 2014 at Thomas Williams Gallery, 22 Old Bond Street, London, W1S 4PY

 

JAHANGUIR   Nova I   2013 Oil on canvas   80 × 80 cm / 31 1/2 × 31 1/2 in

JAHANGUIR Nova I 2013
Oil on canvas 80 × 80 cm / 31 1/2 × 31 1/2 in

Jahanguir a Swiss-Iranian artist has an inherent interest in Persian design.  He learnt how to combine this love of design with technical drawing while he was serving his apprenticeship as a mechanical engineer.

JAHANGUIR   Persian Stela   2009-11 Persian marble, granite base   75 cm (including base) ×  cm / 29 1/2 ×  in

JAHANGUIR Persian Stela 2009-11
Persian marble, granite base 75 cm (including base) × cm / 29 1/2 × in

As you can see by his paintings and sculptures in this show his works have a precise beauty formed through a combination of ornament, design and metalwork. His sophisticated style is embodied in his exploration between positive and negative space.

JAHANGUIR   Durchdrang I   2013 Oil on canvas   80 × 80 cm / 31 1/2 × 31 1/2 in

JAHANGUIR Durchdrang I 2013
Oil on canvas 80 × 80 cm / 31 1/2 × 31 1/2 in

His abstract sculpture at first view may be taken as machine-made but closer inspection shows that they are hand-crafted with a precise technical skill that reflects his great artistic talent.

JAHANGUIR   Stela A   2003-11 Solid stainless steel, granite base   347 cm (including base) ×  cm / 136 5/8 ×  in

JAHANGUIR Stela A 2003-11
Solid stainless steel, granite base 347 cm (including base) × cm / 136 5/8 × in

http://www.thomaswilliamsfineart.com

JAHANGUIR   Universalis II   2010 Oil on canvas   140 × 140 cm / 55 1/8 × 55 1/8 in

JAHANGUIR Universalis II 2010
Oil on canvas 140 × 140 cm / 55 1/8 × 55 1/8 in

ALL IMAGES ARE COPYRIGHT

BOOK REVIEWS: Miller’s – 3 new volumes

9781845337698

 MILLER’S ANTIQUES ENCYCLOPEDIA

NEW EDITION

General Editor: Judith Miller

Mitchell Beazley

Hardback £40

Miller’s Antiques Encyclopedia has been described by BBC Homes & Antiques Magazine as “An ornament to any bookshelf and a treasure-trove of information.”  It is certainly a very useful tome that provides a helpful and practical introduction and guide to the different disciplines of the antique world.  Now in its fourth edition it has over 2,000 colour images and is compiled by an international team of consultants and experts.  A handy reference book to have at home.

 9781845337469

Miller’s Antiques Handbook & Price Guide 2014-2015,

Judith Miller

Mitchell Beazley

Hardback £30 

Again like the Encyclopedia this is a very useful book for the collector, dealer and no doubt eBay bidders and sellers with new images of over 8,000 antiques featured in some detail (with helpful “Judith Picks” too) on the following: Ceramics, Furniture, Glass, Silver, Metalwares, Jewellery, Objects de Vertu, Clocks & Watches, Books, Oriental Antiques, Textiles, Toys, Decorative Arts and Modern Classics.  But do remember condition is all important in pricing.

9781845337988

Miller’s Antiques Marks

Judith Miller

Mitchell Beazley

Paperback £30

A user-friendly pocket-sized reference book with over 6,000 marks covering silver, Sheffield plate, bronze figures, ceramics, glass, costume jewellery, toys and dolls.  Very helpful in dating and identifying makers and factories. I found a mark in there that I had had trouble finding elsewhere.

 

Oleg Vassiliev: Paintings 1967 – 2012 at the Faggionato Gallery

Oleg Vassiliev: Paintings 1967 – 2012, until 17th January 2014, Faggionato Gallery, 1st Floor, 49 Albemarle Street, London W1S 4JR

Welcome 2012 Oil on canvas Signed, dated and titled on reverse O. Vassiliev I/XII, “Welcome” 152.4 x 119.4 cm (60 x 47 in)

Welcome 2012
Oil on canvas
Signed, dated and titled on reverse O. Vassiliev
I/XII, “Welcome”
152.4 x 119.4 cm (60 x 47 in)

In 2008 Faggianato held Russian artist Oleg Vassiliev’s first major show in London and now hold a retrospective that celebrates his life and includes some of his last works.  He died in January this year.

Praire Grasses, Reflections 2012 Oil on canvas 182.9 x 182.9 cm (72 x 72 in)

Praire Grasses, Reflections 2012
Oil on canvas
182.9 x 182.9 cm (72 x 72 in)

His works certainly do not conform to the State’s idea of Socialist Realism and he was considered to be one of the leading exponents of the Soviet Non-Conformist Art Movement (the “unofficial” Russian Art Movement) which emerged in the 1960s.

The Aisle 2004 Oil on canvas Signed, titled, dated and inscribed on reverse O. Vassiliev, “The Aisle” 2004, | Study | 71.1 x 61 cm (28 x 24 in)

The Aisle 2004
Oil on canvas
Signed, titled, dated and inscribed on reverse O.
Vassiliev, “The Aisle” 2004, | Study |
71.1 x 61 cm (28 x 24 in)

The paintings, which include some (Lusja with Tulips, 1967 and The Aisle, 2004) which are being exhibited for the first time, are a mixture of the Russian early 20th century Avant Garde and the lyrical realism of the previous century.  They are a fusion of almost abstract light and realism – “the light of consciousness”. There is a sense of looking back combined with a feeling of looking forward; a spirit of hope imbues them.

Lusja with Tulips 1967 Oil on canvas Signed, titled and dated on reverse in Russian 100 x 79.5 cm (40 2/5 x 31 3/10 in)

Lusja with Tulips 1967
Oil on canvas
Signed, titled and dated on reverse in Russian
100 x 79.5 cm (40 2/5 x 31 3/10 in)

The artist himself said “To me, the visible and tangible world is more a thing of remembrance than of perception of reality.”

Intertwined Space 2012 Oil on canvas 182.9 x 182.9 cm (72 x 72 in)

Intertwined Space 2012
Oil on canvas
182.9 x 182.9 cm (72 x 72 in)

One thing is certain in my mind and that is that this a show worth seeing.

Space and Landscape 1994 Oil on canvas Signed, titled and dated on reverse O. Vassiliev, “Space and Landscape”, 1994 121.9 x 91.4 cm (48 x 36 in)

Space and Landscape 1994
Oil on canvas
Signed, titled and dated on reverse O. Vassiliev,
“Space and Landscape”, 1994
121.9 x 91.4 cm (48 x 36 in)

http://www.faggionato.com

Tompion and the Golden Age: English Clocks 1675-1725 at Howard Walwyn Fine Antique Clocks

Tompion and the Golden Age: English Clocks 1675-1725 at Howard Walwyn Fine Antique Clocks, 123 Kensington Church Street, W8 7LP, until 14th December

 

To mark the opening of his new gallery leading antique clock specialist Howard Walwyn hosts an exhibition Tompion and the Golden Age which also marks the three hundredth anniversary of Thomas Tompion’s death in November 1713.  He was clockmaker to Charles II, James II, William and Mary and Queen Anne and is regarded as the foremost English clockmaker. He is buried in Westminster Abbey.

A fine James II period, ebony veneered, striking repeating bracket clock with a substantial twin fusee 8-day movement. A rare model, as few were made by Tompion with this movement. By Thomas Tompion of London Circa 1688 Ht: 12 3/8 in (31.5 cm) Provenance: This clock appears to have been in the same family for a great many generations and possibly since shortly after it was made. It is said to have been given by Queen Anne to a Miss Nicol who was a member of the Royal household and has come since by descent. If this is the case, the clock would have been some twenty years old at the time of the gift from the Queen

A fine James II period, ebony veneered, striking repeating bracket clock with a substantial twin fusee 8-day movement. A rare model, few were made  with this movement by Tompion.
By Thomas Tompion of London
Circa 1688
Ht: 12 3/8 in (31.5 cm)
Provenance: This clock appears to have been in the same family for a great many generations and possibly since shortly after it was made. It is said to have been given by Queen Anne to a Miss Nicol who was a member of the Royal household and has come down by descent. If this is the case, the clock would have been some twenty years old at the time of the gift from the Queen

What makes this exhibition very special, given the relatively small number of clocks made by Tompion still in existence, is that three clocks  – a Phase I ebony striking table clock, a rare 30-hour japanned longcase and a miniature striking lantern clock – are for sale (two of which  sold on the opening night!).

An important month duration Queen Anne period longcase clock, its magnificent case constructed principally of oak and veneered with the finest burr walnut veneers. The month duration movement is an example of Quare’s finest work. Made by Daniel Quare of London. Circa 1700 Ht: 117 1/4 in (298 cm) including top finial

An important month duration Queen Anne period longcase clock, its magnificent case constructed principally of oak and veneered with the finest burr walnut. The month duration movement is an example of Quare’s finest work.
Made by Daniel Quare of London.
Circa 1700
Ht: 117 1/4 in (298 cm) including top finial

Alongside these are a number of works by other leading clockmakers of the period and later, including a highly important longcase clock by Daniel Quare, who was also a Royal clockmaker.  There is a tavern clock by George III’s clockmaker Justin Vulliamy, unusual because of its tear-drop shaped trunk, as well as the rare one illustrated here by Thomas Chappell.

Thomas Chappell - Tavern clock An exceptionally rare George II period shield dial Tavern Clock of most unusual elongated form, the 8 Day movement with rectangular shaped plates. On the dial below the chapter ring are two outer angels playing trumpets and a central angel holding a scythe and an hour glass. The chinoiserie decoration on the door is also very distinctive with sun and clouds at the top and an intimate dining scene below. Date: circa 1755 Height: 64 in (165 cm)

Thomas Chappell – Tavern clock
An exceptionally rare George II period shield dial Tavern Clock of most unusual elongated form, the 8 Day movement with rectangular shaped plates. On the dial below the chapter ring are two outer angels playing trumpets and a central angel holding a scythe and an hour glass. The chinoiserie decoration on the door is also very distinctive with sun and clouds at the top and an intimate dining scene below.
Date: circa 1755
Height: 64 in (165 cm)

There is also a selection of other clocks and barometers from the 17th to the early 19th centuries, which are shown in a mixture of period and contemporary settings.

Tompion – Bracket or table clock - back plate

Tompion – Bracket or table clock – back plate

www.walwynantiqueclocks.com

ALL IMAGES ARE COPYRIGHT

Vincennes Porcelain Blue Celeste Oval Dish from First Louis XV Service Sells For £70,000

What is it about turquoise coloured Vincennes and Sèvres porcelain that make it so attractive and so sought after?  I think looking at this Vincennes Porcelain Bleu Celeste oval dish many will understand the reason why.

Vincennes porcelain Blue Celeste dish from Louis XV Service

What a dish it is too. Sold by Guildford-based Wellers Auctioneers for £70,000 after enthusiastic competition and setting a new house record, this dish comes from the first service made for Louis XV.  The service introduced Bleu Céleste as a ground colour and the shape of many of the pieces in the service were especially designed by Jean-Claude Duplessis who was created orfèvre du roi (King’s goldsmith) in 1758.  Duplessis had produced designs for the Vincennes factory since the late 1740s.  The service was delivered to the King in three stages between 1753 and 1755.

The successful bidder was La Maison Vandermeersch who specialise in French porcelain and European ceramics.  Speaking of their purchase Camille Le Prince said “We are thrilled for having discovered this exceptional piece, as its shape is very rare. It was designed by Jean Claude Duplessis and its’ drawing is now held at the archives at the Manufacture Nationale de Sèvres. We are excited by this new acquisition that will no doubt endow our large exhibition of French porcelain scheduled for June 2014”

LAPADA Gift Vouchers for Christmas Presents

If you are scratching your head in frustration at what to buy family or friends for Christmas (or any other celebratory occasion) then LAPADA Gift Vouchers may be the solution.  Ideal for those who love art and antiques!

French Modernist Chrome Planet Champagne Cooler, c.1955-60 from Smith & Robinson

French Modernist Chrome Planet Champagne Cooler, c.1955-60 from Smith & Robinson

They can be bought in denominations of £50 or £100 and can be used as full or part-payment towards your purchase from any LAPADA member whether in a shop or when exhibiting at one of the major antique fairs.  They have to be spent within a year of the date of issue.

Antique Cameo Shell Brooch from Berganza

Antique Cameo Shell Brooch from Berganza

To purchase LAPADA Gift Vouchers, email Max Stiegler (mstiegler@lapada.org), or telephone 020 7823 3511 and  request a leaflet and order form.

Butterfly Garden, 2013, porcelain and black stain, edition of 10, by Katherine Morling from Long & Ryle

Butterfly Garden, 2013, porcelain and black stain, edition of 10, by Katherine Morling from Long & Ryle

www.lapada.org

Christofle squirrel nut dishes, c.1930 from Hampton Antiques

Christofle squirrel nut dishes, c.1930 from Hampton Antiques

ALL IMAGES ARE COPYRIGHT

A George II red lacquer bracket clock by Robert Ward, London c1750 from Millington Adams Ltd

A George II red lacquer bracket clock by Robert Ward, London c1750 from Millington Adams Ltd