July 13, 2009

Gothic Revival: IT’S ALIVE! In Westchester County, New York

It’s time for a Gothic Revival-Revival! Do you have a tendency toward romanticism and flights of fancy? Are you fond of pointed arches, deep carvings, curvaceous tracery?  Are you a secret lover of vampire literature, television and cinema? Guess what: YOU’RE  GOTH!  No, I don’t mean you have to go out and get body piercings and buy lots of black clothes!  I mean you should look at this gorgeous, influential movement in American design.

In Tarrytown, New York (in the southern part of Westchester County,a little north of New York City) is Lyndhurst Castle, one of the finest, extravagantly beautiful OPEN TO THE PUBLIC examples of Gothic Revival architecture and interiors in America.

Lyndhurst_Tarrytown_NY_-_front_facade

Lyndhurst Castle Tarrytown, NY

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In the mid 18th century, with the rise of Romanticism, an increased interest and awareness of the Middle Ages among some influential connoisseurs created a more appreciative approach to selected medieval arts, beginning with church architecture, the tomb monuments of nobility, stained glass, and late Gothic illuminated manuscripts. The movement quickly swept through Europe, finally taking deep root in America, becoming the style of choice for the newly wealthy industrialist class, and infamous robber barons!

Lyndhurst Ent Hall

Lyndhurst Entry Hall

Lynd art gallery

Lyndhurst Art Gallery

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Lyndhurst was designed in 1838 by Andrew Jackson Davis, for William Paulding, a former mayor of New York and merchant.  The house, as it stands today, was further formed by the Merrit Family and the famous railroad tycoon, Jay Gould.

In person, Lyndhurst Castle is both more impressive, and less daunting than the photography suggests.  Many children grew up in Lyndhurst, and the little nursery rooms,( quite near to the Master Bedroom) are on display, complete with a pair of old fashioned little girl's button up boots.  Within sight of the main house, is a perfect play house called Rose Cottage.

The rooms are large and filled with beautiful detail of the Gothic Revival period, but not heavy or oppressive.  Though spacious, the brilliant architecture of A.J. Davis  manages to keep it on a human scale.  Faux finishes became quite the fashion out of Europe in the later Gothic period, and Lyndhurst is filled with the finest examples I've ever seen of faux limestone and marble, and other forms of decorative painted surfaces.  Really, the only word is INCREDIBLE!  This is decorative painting elevated to the level of fine art.

dining room Lynd

Dining Room, Lyndhurst

Dutchess Guest Room, Lyndhurst

Dutchess Guest Room, Lyndhurst

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Restored Wheel Back Chair designed for Lyndhurst by it's celebrated architect Alexander Jackson Davis, one of the many exquisite authentic pieces to be seen at the mansion.

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Hey, did you know that Lyndhurst Mansion was used as the house set for the classic TV series from the late 60’s-early 70’s “Dark Shadows”? I was strangely drawn to watch it, but my Mom wouldn’t let me because it gave me nightmares!  Boo Hoo!!

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There's Lyndhurst in the background. I promise, during the day it's not scary at all!

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Lyndhurst as seen in "Dark Shadows" Oooooo, spookey!

But really, Lyndhurst is no vampire’s lair, nor maker of nightmares.  It’s much more like something from a fairy tale, an enchanted castle from a little girls’ favorite story book.

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Exterior window detail. If I'd known I was taking my own picture, I would have said "cheese".

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Rose Garden

A detail from a large planter near the Rose Garden

I can’t resist including this  heartbreakingly beautiful painting  by my favorite artist of the Gothic Revival era,  Sir Edward Burne-Jones.  This piece is NOT at Lyndhurst.  It’s at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City.  I’m showing it here, because it embodies so much of the dreamy romantic quality of the Gothic Revival movement…and I LOVE IT!

 Sir Edward Burne-Jones

"The Love Song" by Sir Edward Burne-Jones

American Gothic Revival Rocks On…..!

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Like the iconic painting “American Gothic” (1930) by Grant Wood,(titled for the  pointed arch window depicted in the farm house) Gothic Revival just keeps on going!
Is Gothic Revival still relevant? Yes it is, and guess what. Far from being relegated to Grandma’s attic, it’s influences are all around us and have never really gone out of style or usage. They’ve just evolved. You don’t have to be a wealthy robber baron to take part.  Here are some examples of Gothic Revival today:

Gothic Revival printed fabric form the period.

Gothic Revival printed fabric form the period.

Kravet

Kravet #28247-613

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More beautiful fabrics that display the Gothic influence:

Kravet  #23089-540

Kravet #23089-540

Kravet 25841-319

Kravet 25841-319

Highland Court #180933H-298

Highland Court #180933H-298

Highland Court #180906-533

Highland Court #180906-533

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Whimsical, dreamy, fanciful; Mackenzie Childs has built a whole sub-category and career on elaborating on these qualities (already present) in Gothic Revival, to create something new and current, built on design of the past.  Fabulous!!

Mackenzie Childs

Mackenzie Childs at Neiman Marcus

Mackenzie Childs at Nieman Marcus

Mackenzie Childs: Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll was published in 1865 at the height of the Gothic Revival. Alice is the only thing missing from this fantastical display!

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Architectural touches from the period you can add to even the most contemporary setting:

These beauties are available from www.bygones.net

These reclaimed beauties are available from www.bygones.net

www.jmjoinery.com

From www.jmjoinery.com,brand new Gothic windows ready for installation.

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Here are some current furnishings that  bear the unmistakable influence of the Gothic Revival period:

Yep, this is Gothic Revival

Yep, this is Gothic Revival!

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www.gothic-furniture.co.uk

www.gothic-furniture.co.uk So modern, but very Goth!

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Antique fixture at Lyndhurst Castle

Gothic Revival reproduction lantern from www.thegreenhead.com  Well done!

Gothic Revival reproduction lantern from www.thegreenhead.com Well done!

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Cabinets from Walz Craft

Cabinets from Walz Craft

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Walz Craft is wonderful!  Any door style you can think of, they’ve got it.  And they’re terrific to work with.  Their interpretation of a Gothic cabinet door has the beauty and grace of the past, combined with unsurpassed function.

This would make a great hallway piece.  From www.pine-on-line.com

This would make a great hallway piece. From www.pine-on-line.com

Here are some decorative touches you can use that will add some of the old world beauty of Gothic Revival to your home:

oneofakindantiques

This piece is available from www.oneofakindantiques.com

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From www.taleriaenterprises.com

From www.taleriaenterprises.com

Scroll work wall art from Pier 1

Scroll work wall art from Pier1, little $'s, lots of Goth!

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This piece will be auctioned at clark Auction on June 13th .  The estimated sale price is $150!

This piece will be auctioned at clark Auction on June 13th . The estimated sale price is $150! Needs a little love.

www.andythornton.com

www.andythornton.com

From Horchow.com Four Point Mirror

From Horchow.com Four Point Mirror

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Susand and Russell's new house 003 The print on my outdoor pillows from Restoration Hardware (2 or 3 years old) is pure Gothic Revival.  Their current prints are too!

Lyndhurst is one of five exquisite historical mansion museums in the Lower Westchester area of Sleepy Hollow and Tarrytown, NY. The Lower Hudson River Valley region is rich with history on display.  It’s the best way I know to time travel, and get a shot of inspiration from the past.

So, if you’re coming around, I wouldn’t worry too much about vampires, but you better watch out for a HEADLESS HORSEMAN! I hear he’s still running around these parts!

ahead

The Headless Horseman from Legend of Sleepy Hollow by Washington Irving

For more of the fascinating history of Lyndhurst Castle and the other historical mansion museums, as well as their hours directions etc : www.hudsonvalley.org and www.lyndhurst.org

GO GOTHIC! and HAVE FUN!

June 18, 2009

Larchmont Has Art: Mini Art Scene in Lower Westchester

Writing and researching for my last post, about ways to hang art, gave me the incentive to take a better look at my own little town in Lower Westchester, to see how the art scene is doing in Larchmont, NY. What I found surprised me in it’s wealth and diversity.

Where to Begin!
PALMER ART at 1985 Palmer Ave, Larchmont, New York 10538 (914-834-3627) represents abstract painter Anton. Here are some of his pieces showing now:

A wall full of art by Anton

A wall full of art by Anton at Palmer Art

Anton at Palmer Art

From Anton's web site.

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Carlos, expert framer

Carlos Rodriguez is the owner-operator of Palmer art. I rely on his expertise and refined aesthetic when making framing decisions.

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One more by Anton. I may find a home for this one...in MY home!

WENDY GEE! at 1949 Palmer Ave in Larchmont, New York (914-834-8507) has just added some whimsical and charming wall art to their collection of beautiful home furnishings. These are not one-of-a-kind pieces, but are very nicely printed on stretched canvas for a finished look.

pretty store interior

Friendly Dog print on stretched canvas, in rustic frame

Taking pictures at Wendy Gee! is a pleasure. Wherever you point the camera, there’s something pretty! This a great spot for interior designers. You can furnish, accessorize and take care of wall art all in one spot.

A collection of decorative wall art in a fresh spring palette.

A collection of decorative wall art in a fresh spring palette.

Must love dogs! Nicely framed prints

Must love dogs! Nicely framed prints

LARCHMONT ART at 1899 Palmer Ave, in Larchmont, New York (914-834-0288) represents local artists. Larchmont Art also does beautiful framing work. Here is a sample of the art of Marcia Korotkin:

Marcia Korotkin at Larchmont Art

Marcia Korotkin at Larchmont Art

Marcia Korotkin

Marcia Korotkin

Alexander Girshin is a local artist and art teacher. Here is an article about him from the Rye Record. These two striking examples of his photorealism style are now on view at Larchmont Art.

Girshin My Friend by Alexander Girshin

Girshin My Friend by Alexander Girshin

A piece by Alexander Girshin at Larchmont Art

A piece by Alexander Girshin at Larchmont Art

KINESE BARNS FINE ART is an exquisite fine art gallery in Larchmont. They represent an array wonderful artists. Kinese Barnes is located at 1955 Palmer Ave. (914-834-8077) Here is a VERY small example of my favorite picks from this beautiful gallery.

Everybody Wong Chung'd That Night by Katarina Chung

Everybody Wong Chung'd That Night by Katarina Chung

Eyes on the Horizon by Cecile Chong

Eyes on the Horizon by Cecile Chong

Echo Niner by David Collins

Echo Niner by David Collins

CLARKE AUCTION is an honest to goodness auction house hidden away in Larchmont. Clarke’s is at 20 North Ave, Larchmont (914-833-8336) They have monthly auctions of furniture, accessories and art, and twice yearly Art Only auctions. If you’ve never been to a live auction, you’re in for a thrill! Here are a few pieces that sold at their last Art Only auction. The variety of styles that come through is mind boggling! There’s something for everyone.

Something old...

Something old...

Something new...

Something new...

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Something modern...

clark-painting

Something blue...

PAOLO CORVINO, an artist of international reputation has been creating art for over 50 years, and has his artist’s studio right at 1887 Palmer Ave. in Larchmont NY(914-833-1175) His work is expressionist, impressionist, conceptualist. The art speaks for itself.

Paolo Corvino First Night , Yankee Stadium at the Museum of the City of New York

Paolo Corvino First Night , Yankee Stadium at the Museum of the City of New York

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Inside the Corvino art studio

Inside the Corvino art studio

ANNELLE GANDELMAN is a beautiful New York style art gallery at 1989 Palmer Ave (914-840-4151) Annelle Gandelman has rotating exhibits, so check out this stunning art photography by Geoffrey Baris before it’s leaves on July 8.

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geoffrey-baris_lg_laundry

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LARCHMONT HAS ART!! So come and see. From New York City, it’s a 35 minute train ride from Grand Central to Larchmont. Take an art walk! If you’re coming, let me know. We’ll do art, we’ll do vintage, we’ll do lunch too!

HAVE FUN!

June 5, 2009

Larchmont-Mamaroneck is a Gold Mine for Vintage Lovers!

If you love VINTAGE GOODIES and BARGAINS, you need to visit my charming Town of Mamaroneck and it’s equally charming Village of Larchmont. We have some real treasure troves here, and all are in walking distance to each other, or to the Larchmont or Mamaroneck train stations. (about 35 minutes from Grand Central) Hey, NEW YORK INTERIOR DESIGNERS, GET OVER HERE!

Cobalt Net

Lumonosov China pattern Cobalt Net, part of the June 15 auction to take place at the C&C Auction Gallery in Larchmont.

Lumonosov Set

This Lumonosov set is unbelievable! There are pieces of every description, napkin rings, soup tureens, coffee pot, tea pot etc, etc...It never ends!

Did you know we have our very own genuine auction house? C&C Auction Gallery, tucked away on North St in Larchmont, it’s an interior designer or collector’s HEAVEN! There are bargains galore on really beautiful pieces of every description, like this HUGE set of blue and white dishes to die for! If you’ve never participated in an auction, you’re in for a thrill. Over 150 pieces will be auctioned off at their upcoming event on June 15, 2009. Here are a few things that caught my eye:

OMG! The expected selling price for this classic piece is $300 to $500!!

OMG! The expected selling price for this classic piece is $300 to $500!!

Teacups and saucers

A pretty collecton of teacups and saucers.

This exquisite etagere is expected to sell for $200 to $300!!

This exquisite etagere is expected to sell for $200 to $300!!

Here in Lower Westchester and the Mamaroneck-Larchmont area, Chatsworth Used Furniture has been a well known and loved staple for generations. It’s been owned and run by the Lightbody Family, since 1924. Mamaroneck just wouldn’t be Mamaroneck without it! There are 4 huge floors to explore, so give yourself plenty of time! I’ve spent many happy hours wandering their aisles. If you’re an interior designer, you could really get stuff done here! Vintage dining sets, china, lighting, bedroom pieces,upholstery,rugs, the works! If you’re a collector of Vintage, you’ll have a blast! Just remember they’re closed on Sunday and Monday, and check for their week off in August.

Chatworth's

OK, I need the pair of flame stitch Bergere Chairs

Oh, where to begin!

Oh, where to begin! Dishes anyone?

More stuff

I have just the spot for the blanket chest.

In Larchmont,( just a few steps from Larchmont train station), at Carol Charney, you’ll find a very different experience. In her polished and perfumed showroom, Charney’s vintage pieces are lovingly restored and displayed. Here’s a small sampling:

The vintage jewelry eye candy!

Vintage eye candy!

mirror

Vintage mirror, pristine, and ready to hang.

Designer’s Corner in Larchmont is another one of those fun places for exploring. You never know what you’ll find! For me, it’s THE place for vintage light fixtures. Other Larchmont-Mamaroneck spots have them, but Designer’s Corner has their own on site lighting restoration specialist. And the collection is expansive. Here’s a small colorful selection:
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pink

They don't make 'em like this any more!

Turquoise glass vintage chandelier

Turquoise glass vintage chandelier

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sconce

I'd love to see this sconce in a powder room.

Blue

This vintage blue lamp is very on-trend.

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This is just the tip of the iceberg, there’s much more! In fact, Mamaroneck – Larchmont is a little hot-spot of vintage and antique resources.

There are LOTS of great restaurants too. Let me know when you’re coming, we’ll do lunch!

HAVE FUN!

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