27 July, 2011

The Duchess Acknowledges . . .

Lucien Freud

Lucien Freud, the figurative painter known for his realist portraiture, passed away last week at the age of 88.  The grandson of Sigmund Freud, himself the very father of psychoanalysis, Lucien spent his entire life working in London.  He painted long hours each day, even well into his 80s.  He employed painstaking techniques to achieve the intensity of his works, taking sometimes years to complete one portrait.  Pay him a visit at the Tate Gallery, the National Portrait Gallery, or MoMA.  Bonsoir, Lucien.

The artist as a younger man.

Paddington, 1951

Girl With A White Dog, 1950-51

David Hockney

The 2006 Label for Chateau Mouton Rothschild. 
Mr. Freud was paid in cases of the stuff.

20 July, 2011

The Duchess Lucky.

By a happy twist of fate, the Duchess welcomed work by the artist Sarah Cain into her life this weekend.  Ms. Cain (Honor Fraser) creates works on paper, favoring acrylic, gouache, and gold leaf, as well as site-specific installations of painted objects; her emphasis on geometry lends a sculptural dimension to her pieces.  No pictures of the Duchess's acquisition posted below; if only she knew how to hang it. 

Breaking Light, 2010

Illuminated Manuscript, 2010

Untitled (strings), 2010

Installation View at Santa Barbara Contemporary Arts Forum, 2011

Double Future 2009, Installation view at Seiler + Mosseri-Marlio Galerie, Zurich

Midnight Mission 2009, Installation view at 533 gallery Los Angeles as an offsite exhibition for the 2008 California Biennial in conjunction with LAXART, Los Angeles, CA


Installation view images and "YOU AURORA BOREALIS ME" via www. honorfraser.com. 
"Breaking Light," "Illuminated Manuscript," and "Untitled (Strings)" via Anthony Meier Fine Arts.

15 July, 2011

The Duchess Impressed.

Todd Merrill's Apartment

As usual, New York Social Diary kicked off the Duchess's weekend in just the right way:  by featuring photographs of the apartment of New York antiques dealer Todd Merrill and his wife Lauren.  The Duchess suffers from serious apartment envy, and is missing all her friends who are in New York for the weekend!   

Warhol presides over a Tommy Parzinger sideboard.  Zebra rug late of Geoffrey Beene.

A James Mont cinnabar console.

A John Dickinson console table beside a torchere by Serge Roche.

Ari and Jackie Onassis Collage by Peter Beard.

A Tommi Parzinger bed in the guest room.

Lamps by Mont; tables by Parzinger.

Lucite chairs by Charles Hollis Jones; table by Karl Springer.

The patio of the brownstone.

All photographs by Jeffrey Hirsch.

12 July, 2011

The Duchess Reads . . .

"The House in France" by Gully Wells

While the Countess lounges about Provence, stepping on oregano while sipping rose in the sun, the Duchess must make do with a literary journey across the pond, which she is achieving quite successfully with "The House in France" by Gully Wells.  Ms. Wells, an editor and writer for Conde Nast Travel, spent summers with her mother, Dee Wells, and stepfather, the famed British philosopher Freddie Ayer, at her family's home La Migoua, a house nestled in a hamlet between Toulon and Marseille.  The memoir is an enchanting coming-of-age story, and truly a fantastic summer read. 

But to borrow from The Beach Boys, wouldn't it be nice to have a chateau of one's own?  Particularly when they look like this and conjure thoughts of afternoon naps in the sun, countless terrines, and gobs of wine . . .

Chateau de Varenne (10 km from Avignon)

Interior at Chateau de Rochegude

Chateau Miraval (the Pitt-Jolie vineyard)

Well, we are in luck.  Christie's International Real Estate has a tidy little listing, the Chateau de Sannes, which insiders report (Christie's has not released the price) is going for about $35 million.  This 17th century beauty sits on 136 acres in the rolling hills of Provence.  What's not to love? 

01 July, 2011

The Duchess Gapes . . .

Kate Moss Wears Galliano, Weds Rocker

The Duchess supposes it isn't too surprising; Ms. Kate's always loved the outlaws.  Perhaps that's why she chose to don a design by John Galliano, the ousted former chief of Dior, for her nuptials to The Kills frontman Jamie Hince.  As we know Mr. Galliano was fired as "frontman" of Dior after his drunken anti-semitic slurs were publicized across the World Wide Web.  Ouch.  Will Ms. Kate's wedding gown revive Mr. Galliano's career?  Time will tell.  So will the photos! 

Thanks to the Lady Irene for this breaking news alert.  xxo

The Duchess Wishes . . .

Everyone a very merry July 4th weekend.  This time last year the Duchess was headed off to Big Sur for some beach blanket birthday celebrations.  This year, she's headed to the Hollywood Bowl for some Hall & Oates picnic blanket birthday celebrations.  With the Baron and Baroness no less.  What could be more fun?

Perhaps this shit right here . . . only eight days away! 

Steely Dan, "Everything You Did" from The Royal Scam

In other news, happy July 1st to Novak Djokovic (our new #1 seed).  Though the Duchess was desperately wishing for you to lose to her new tennis heartthrob Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, in the end the JT couldn't overcome the ice cold focus and stamina of Novak (the grass seems to suit him).  All that's left to say now is, Go Rafa!

 And we learn that the most beautiful woman in the history of the world, Linda Evangelista*, goes to a different sort of court over child custody and support arrangements for her four year-old son with Francois-Henri Pinault.  M. Pinault also has a four year-old daughter, Valentina, by his wife of two years, Ms. Salma Hayek (no slouch in the beauty department herself).  Who says money can't buy everything?  Apparently, they're wrong.

*Fact.  Not opinion.


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