Archive for the ‘Art’ Category

You may have wondered why I so frequently share my admiration for all things textiles at TGL. The short answer – if it’s knitted, printed or woven, it’s the bee’s knees in my book. The long answer (which I’ll tuck away in more detail for a rainy day, or god forbid, another pandemic) – I studied Textile Design at the nation’s oldest textile institution so textiles are always in my peripheral vision. In my Bachelor’s course of study, the trifecta of textile disciplines were covered in depth, and while I elected for a capstone concentration in knit design, printed textiles are personally one of my favorite platforms for celebrating pattern + color.

My recently launched series The Captain’s Catch includes an inspiring interview from Business of Home featuring painter and designer Serena Dugan. Serena, whose given name still resides with the lifestyle brand Serena & Lily she co-founded in 2004, left corporate culture in 2017 in pursuit of a return to her artistic roots. Having contributed creatively to the California based-brand for more than 15 years as CCO, Serena’s passion for painting and fine art tugged at her hartstrings. After what some may call a daring departure from the safety net of direct-to-consumer retail, she completed a painting residency at a chateau in the French countryside, and in early 2020 launched Serena Dugan Studio. Textile Designers are what I like to call the unicorns of the design world, frequently overlooked for more glamorous roles in Fashion Design or Interior Design; a niche group of creatives responsible for the very fabrics showcased in end-form on respective runways and in the beautiful rooms of the aforementioned designers. Combine the talent of a fine artist with the subtle beauty of a textile and it’s a recipe for sheer magic.

Tucked in a cozy 1,000 sq.ft. studio hugging the waters of Sausalito (a tiny hamlet a stone’s throw from San Francisco), Serena and her small team have introduced a collection of screenprinted textiles, wall coverings + for those of you decoratively challenged, pillows guaranteed to make any loveseat or window seat pop with a touch of pattern. Several collections, each uniquely inspired by Dugan’s travels, translate beautifully on a ground of 100% Belgian Linen, the gold standard in home textiles and with a spotlight on screenprinting, which harmoniously blends art + handcraft, we’re yearning for yardage. Whether you have a statement wall or a tucked away sitting room calling for a special touch of tactile interest (cue the grasscloth), these delectable designs are guaranteed to provide a unique look worthy of picture-perfect ‘grams or simple, unadulterated adoration. The toughest challenge you’ll face will be deciding which print, or likely even more difficult, which colorway, to call your own.

Images by Serena Dugan Studio and Laurie Frankel.

Like many of you joining us at Around the Pound, I haven’t left the house in weeks barring a small handful of outings geared exclusively at picking up the essentials. And yet, despite what many would deem the confines of home, I’ve found myself more inspired than in the many months prior to rotating Sundays in pajamas (these are my current go-to) with a side of puzzles. From the coast of New England, I’m delighted to introduce our newest hallmark at TGL. Personally penned + curated by yours truly, ‘The Captain’s Catch’ provides you, TGL readers, direct access to my most well kept insider secrets – what I’m watching, where I’m wandering (virtually until further notice) + what I’m reading, i.e. the fuel that feeds my creative fire outside the office on any given day. Not dissimilar to the ‘direct from the dock‘ approach of providing access to the most local of local fare, I hope you’ll equally delight in the content I’ve curated. Paired with visual keepsakes I’ve been collecting herehere, it’s the perfect recipe to thrive, (note, not survive) in whatever life throws our way. Found something worthy of sharing or simply want to say hello? Feel free to send me a note, I’d love that too. xx, D

| watch | If #stayathome orders haven’t inspired you to curl up with a good book (or ten), perhaps this documentary will change your tune. For me, a lifelong bookworm, tucking into a quiet corner of an independent store is to willingly cocoon in the company of the written word for an afternoon; fast becoming the unicorns of the book world, these literary landmarks + their leaders face near extinction to mass retailers + digital devices. PSA: Newport’s beloved single-screen Jane Pickens Theater is streaming films that would have otherwise opened during this time; consider supporting local by watching The Booksellers + other indie films from the comfort of your own home (and no one to judge, er elbow you, over that second bowl of popcorn).

| read | You may recognize her of the Cali-based lifestyle brand that shares her given name, but we’re head-over-heels for Serena Dugan’s more recent venture, a namesake studio founded in pursuit of creating beautiful prints, patterns and artwork (all of which you’ll want to cover every available surface of your life with). In an interview with the industry go-to resource Business of Home, Dugan shares what inspired her to trade corporate culture for a return to her creative roots.

| wander | Museums may currently be closed, but many collections are far from off limits. Ever wondered what goes into opening a major exhibit, especially when the works of art aren’t of the framed kind? A behind-the-scenes tour of Christian Dior: Designer of Dreams, the show that débuted at Paris’ Musée des Arts Décoratifs in 2017, will forever alter your mindset about paying an entry fee. It’s filmed primarily in French (with subtitles), so while most of us won’t be traveling to Paris any time soon, at least for a fleeting hour we can feel akin to strolling the Champs-Élysées. And for my neatnik, paper-loving peeps (you know who you are), I have two words for you – Dior Archives.

| listen | It’s certainly no secret, we adore the work of Rhode Island furniture maker O & G. Under ‘normal’ settings, but particularly during these unprecedented times, navigating the high seas of small business ownership can feel like taking on the southernmost leg of the renowned Ocean Race. Two podcasts with brand co-founder + Creative Director Jonathan Glatt, 1) sharing how his small team is not only reinventing classics for contemporary living, but 2) adjusting their sails to survive the most important, and unanticipated, journey in their history.

| learn | House & Garden’s Calico Club has just the remedy to break up those long neverending #wfh hours – a series of thirty-minute morsels filled with creative content perfectly sized to schedule into your lunch hour (sublimely starting at 1pm EST). Last week we joined Gabby Deeming’s talk on textiles, next in the queue, a conversation on how to create a successful cutting garden. Let’s be honest my fellow Americans, a half hour of British accents are a welcome antidote to any stateside-led Webex and if we learn how to grow the perfect English garden or adore chintz as openly as any royal in the process, we might just survive this godawful pandemic afterall.

DETROIT

November 9, 2019

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We know, we promised 2019 would be a pointed return to better blogging. If you’re here as a loyal reader, fingers crossed you’ve already forgiven us. Ended up here on a whim? We’re so glad you found us. With a trip to Michigan already on the books, we declared it perfect timing to tack on a few days in the Motor City and faithfully return to our Gilded Getaway roots. Having been to the city in recent years for a special project, one might say we were pre-exposed; we had a heightened sense of what to anticipate and where to explore. It’s true what the papers say, Detroit is a city in transition, i.e. ‘under construction’ – the sights and sounds of revitalization and a return to glory on the horizon, but very much a work-in-progress. Thanks in part to an alliance of local developers and larger corporations, downtown has successfully seen the restoration of landmark buildings, complemented by cutting-edge cuisine, American-made manufacturing and good ‘ole red, white & blue homegrown spirit.

While a stay at the new Shinola Hotel was truly the catalyst of our travel journey, the guide is chock full of good eats mixed with a splash of inspiration. Recently named Best New Large Hotel by Surface Magazine, the 1400 Woodward hotel designed by Gachot Studios is simply stunning, worthy of every accolade already received and all the future news that’s fit to print. The site is storied with Motor City history, an amalgamation of five historic buildings and a tucked away alley paying homage to one of the city’s first black landowners. For those looking to stay local, the Detroit-based Shinola team provided everything at arm’s length for the discerning traveler – craft cocktails at the Evening Bar to a strong cup of brew for the morning after. Namaste your preferred mode of R&R? Check out Citizen Yoga right around the corner for early sunrise salutations.

We were pleasantly surprised to find Detroit’s dining scene equally fulfilling. When inquiring with the locals in our pre-departure planning, out rolled a list a mile-long, from Bon Appetit award-winners to James Beard nominees. Headed to Marrow? The namesake dish is such for a reason. Sweets + treats more your thing? The almond croissant at Ochre might as well be Parisian. From pasta to patty melt, we most certainly did not leave hungry. Same could be said of creative inspiration. Also on Woodward (did we mention it’s one of America’s most iconic streets, not to mention the first to be paved in 1909, aptly fitting for the Motor City) is the Detroit Institute of Arts. For those who gravitate towards a traditional art setting, the DIA definitely won’t disappoint. For us, the creative scene-stealer is actually located in the picturesque Detroit suburb of Bloomfield Hills. Cranbrook Art Musuem, a National Historic Landmark, is home not only to a collection of 6,000+ works, but also a Frank Lloyd Wright home and Saarinen House. Going to be in the area before December 1st? Be sure to book a tour of the Studio Loja Saarinen collection of textiles on exhibit within the house she inhabited with her husband.

From past to present, mass production to craft purveyors, we’re excited to see what lies on the proverbial road ahead for the Motor City.

 

WARP & WEFT | ALEXANDRA KOHL

February 22, 2019

It was a few years ago at Field & Supply that we first came across the work of New York-based Fiber Artist Alexandra Kohl. Kohl, an avid equestrian, combines the beauty of cotton with horsehair via a delicate dance of warp and weft. The result – hand-woven textiles which not only unite the natural qualities of plant and animal, but also emanate an intricacy that discreetly draws the viewer in for closer admiration. For anyone unfamiliar with the age-old craft of hand-weaving, it is a process equally laborious and tranquil; each individual yarn manipulated by the weaver in a deliberate act as intricate as those of an experienced surgeon. Kohl’s masterful hand and eye for color marry flawlessly to preserve the longstanding tradition of hand-weaving.

In her most recent body of work, a joint venture with furniture designer J.M. Szymanski, bespoke furnishings juxtapose Kohl’s soft substrates against the stature of cast iron. Named an emerging talent by Architectural Digest in 2017, Kohl’s admiration for minimalism and organic architecture lends inspiration and is distinctly embodied in her textiles. What makes Kohl’s work even more desirable? A unique versatility to complement a wide range of aesthetic preferences, modern to traditional.

Images courtesy of Alexandra Kohl.

MIDCOAST MAINE

October 16, 2017

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There’s a reason they call Maine Vacationland. No matter the length of your stay or coordinates on the map, this postcard-perfect state grabs hold of your psyche whilst everything else melts away. Truth be told, we’ve been going to Maine for years, and easily a tradition we’ll continue for a lifetime more. An earlier Gilded Getaway found us in Portland, which in the short time since 2014 has exploded with such intensity that our travel compass is vehemently guiding us back for Getaway Guide v2.0. However, this trip had us craving a little more water, a little less land – we ventured farther up the rocky terrain, to an area the locals refer to as MidCoast.

Dotted with tiny coastal villages, each chock full of charm and character, the MidCoast region offers ocean vistas set against a backdrop of majestic mountains. Undoubtedly, one of the many reasons some of America’s most notable painters flocked to the region to capture the remarkable landscape for the rest of the world to see. Our admiration lies with time spent off the land, sailing along the coast past island after island, colorful lobster buoys as far as the eye can see. The natives are a hearty group, New Englanders through and through, some more salty than others, all eager to welcome visitors to their small slice of Vacationland heaven. Take Camden’s Schooner Surprise for example, setting sail in Penobscot Bay six months of the year, up to five sails per day. A crisp autumn breeze won’t cause this 99-year-old vessel to drop anchor, simply layer on the blankets, pack on the puffers and away you go.

Back on solid ground and as one would expect, the local fare epitomizes the freshest catch. Naturally, there’s seafood and lobsters galore, but what’s more exciting to a discerning palate is the new roster of restaurants that beautifully balance the bounty of land and sea. Nina June, recently lauded by Bon Appetit as one of 2017’s best new restaurants and of famed NYC restaurant lineage by way of Chef Sara Jenkins, does exactly that, all while overlooking a storybook setting below. Looking for a light lunch bite or packing for a picnic? Head to Main St. Markets in Rockland, pick up a handful of provisions and drive south to Owls Head State Park.

In these parts, we highly recommend a daily dose of Vitamin Sea, good for the soul and whatever else ails you.

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