VENU #26 WINTER 2015

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Contemporary Culture





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Contemporary Culture




Events + Gatherings



ENTREPRENEUR: Bernerd Garsen, has single-handedly revolutionized the game with his patented, two and three-sided putter grips


PHILANTHROPY: Sailors for the Sea, promoting responsible stewardship of our life-giving oceans


COLLECTOR: Private museum collector is preserving American space culture


BUSINESS: Spatial experiences, uniquely activated by circleTPRTM

Parties, Art Exhibitions & Activities

Travel + Leisure


The Kennebunkports, debunking the Off Season



GALLERY WATCH: If they are looking for contemporary art, they will make their way to Lionheart



STYLE SCENE: Introducing Pluggz, a new line of good for your body shoes


Reading between the lines, the moving art of Meri Bourgard




ARCHITECTURE: Grand Central Terminal (Part 2)



Crowning Thomas Henkelmann & Homestead Inn as Connecticut’s Premier Golden Palate Partners

ON THE COVER: Photographer / Digital artist / Andre Sanchez Model / Maya @ Next Models Paris Styling / Nathalie Croquet Hair / Philipinne Cordon Makeup / Lisa Legrand Postproduction / Stephanie Wencek Inspired by the fashion illustrator Rene Gruau Fashion credits: Bolero / Yves Salomon Hat / Marie Mercie Brooch / Chanel Haute Joaillerie

78 Contemporary Culture



Roger Ferris, essays in modern architecture



Angelika Buettner, uncovering The Cover Girls



MOTORING: David Porter, and understated champion


YACHTING: Successful United States debut of the Arcadia 85




ON THE BLOCK: Smashing Contemporary

Gallery and Museum listings in Connecticut and New York




Venü Magazine’s marketplace for furniture, lighting, textiles, jewelry, art, antiques and accessories


ART: Lazaro Valdes, “The Emperor of Bronze and Patina”



MUSIC: Vita Bergen – Affecting and Emotional Indie ROCK


THEATER: The New Christmas Classics – Three new holiday tales vie for a place in our hearts... and wallets



“Whiplash”– Hyper-ambitious drummer, Andrew Neiman (Miles Teller), gets more than he bargained for when he meets band conductor Terrence Fletcher



The Daisy Column: Miami society, The powerful, The chic, The unique




Miami Beach O N



The center of Miami Beach transforms

into a mile long marina with a spectacular display of the finest new

yachts from the world’s top builders and designers. See an impressive selection of pre-owned yachts, exotic cars and marine toys. Visit floating pavilions with the latest electronics, engines, and other marine




It’s Miami’s greatest Yachting Attraction.


Presented By



12-16 2O15


President, Publishing/CREATIVE Director Tracey Thomas Features Editor Cindy Clarke Film & Entertainment Editor Peter J. Fox Decorative Arts Editor Matthew Sturtevant Florida Content Editor Daisy Olivera Copy Editors Susan Sullivan, Marc J. Miller Publisher Venü Media Company DESIGN & PRODUCTION J. Michael & Company Contributing Writers Susana Baker, Jeff Blumenfeld, Rebecca Cahilly, Cindy Clarke, Phillip James Dodd, Peter Fox, Marianne Brunson Frisch, Linda Kavanagh, Janet Langsem, Daisy Olivera, William Squier, Matthew Sturtevant Business Development Shelly Harvey/Connecticut, Liz Marks/New York Legal Counsel Alan Neigher, Sheryle Levine (Byelas & Neigher, Westport, CT) Distribution Thomas Cossuto, Man In Motion, LLC Office 840 Reef Road, 2nd Floor, Fairfield, CT 06824 Advertising Inquiries Editorial Contribution Subscriptions

The small print: No responsibility can be taken for the quality and accuracy of the reproductions, as this is dependent upon the artwork and material supplied. No responsibility can be taken for typographical errors. The publishers reserve the right to refuse and edit material as presented. All prices and specifications to advertise are subject to change without notice. The opinions in this publication are not necessarily those of the publisher. Copyright VENÜ Magazine. All rights reserved. The name VENÜ Magazine is copyright protected. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted without written consent from the publisher. VENÜ Magazine does not accept responsibility for unsolicited material. This is a bimonthly publication and we encourage the public, galleries, artists, designers, photographers, writers (calling all creative’s) to submit photos, features, drawings, etc., but we assume no responsibility for failure to publish submissions.



by Daisy Olivera


number two ranked player, Henrik Stenson from Sweden, who used the jumbo Max. Stenson had seven Top 5 finishes in Europe and a Top 3 finish at the PGA Championship this past summer, leading the field in putting stats. These are unprecedented accomplishments for Garsen Golf, a small, innovative startup making a lot of noise within the multi-million dollar, global putter grip industry. Bernerd Garsen learned the love of golf from his father, Ernest, while growing up in California. After a successful, 25-year career as a model and television commercial actor in Europe and the U.S. Garsen returned to golf. For 10 years, leading up to his company launch, Garsen worked in the South Florida golf industry as a manager and an assistant golf pro. He never imagined his passion for the game and the creativity inherited from his dad, would result in his re-inventing the most crucial piece of equipment in golf. After five years in development, Garsen Golf’s grips launched to rave reviews from golf pros and average golfers alike. We caught up with Garsen to find out more about his fast-growing putter grip company.

Bernerd Garsen proudly holding his patented two and three-sided putter grips. On the left is the “G-Pro Max” Jumbo Putter Grip, on the right is the “G-Pro Edge” Putter Grip.

The Winning Edge

Bernerd Garsen, has single-handedly revolutionized the game with his patented, two and three-sided putter grips


ith the only re-design of the putter grip’s shape since golf emerged over 400 years ago, Bernerd Garsen, has single-handedly revolutionized the game with his patented, two and three-sided putter grips. Months after launching Garsen Golf in 2013 with the Garsen G-Pro Edge putter grip, Miamian

Bernerd Garsen would not only achieve numerous Top 10 finishes on the PGA Tour with players using his grip, but also a first victory with JB Holmes’ stellar win at the Wells Fargo Championship, while using the G-Pro Edge grip. A dozen other PGA and Champions Tour players were already using the Garsen Golf putter grips, including the world’s

The “G-Pro Max” Jumbo Putter Grip

VENU MAGAZINE: How did you come up with this idea? Bernerd Garsen: The research I did while working in the golf industry. I heard from frustrations and needs from thousands of golfers all over the world and it was all about putting. The inability to maintain a consistent putting stroke to lower your handicap and win. And existing golf companies had only focused on the putter, not the grip design itself! Just the grip texture and size but not the shape. It was an “aha moment.” VM: How do the grips change how someone putts? BG: The unprecedented, two-sided Edge and jumbo Max grips put the hands into a neutral position, which eliminates wrist breakdown. This turns the elbows into the body, setting the shoulders back, which relieves tension creating a more consistent putting stroke. The new three-sided design, the Ultimate – which has had a limited release only to golf professionals and instructors – allows the golfer to place their hands in multiple positions allowing for a customized perfect grip. VM: Who in the golf industry, which is so tough to break into, supported your efforts early on? BG: Mike Shannon, the world-renowned golf coach. It was invaluable encouragement for someone of his stature to believe in my very first product! He works with top PGA Tour professionals and is one of Golf Digest’s “Top 50 Golf Instructors in America.” Mike teaches at the Sea Island Golf Resort Learning Center in Georgia and uses the G-Pro Max on his own putter. He’s also a big fan of the Ultimate.

Garsen Golf G-Pro putter grips are available at 14


by Cindy Clarke

SPOTLIGHT / Philanthropy

Aove, R. Mark Davis, president of Sailors for the Sea at the helm of Tempus Fugit sailing from Nantucket to Newport. Left, David Rockefeller, Jr., chairman of Sailors for the Sea onboard Ocean Watch near Cape Horn.

Sailors for the Sea

Promoting responsible stewardship of our life-giving oceans “An investment in knowledge pays the best interest.” – Ben Franklin


ince 1939, Neuberger Berman has worked toward a single goal: partner with clients to achieve their unique investment objectives. One of the world’s leading employee-controlled investment managers, the private 75-year-old firm is fueled by a steadfast belief in fundamental research, dedicated to focused engagement, and passionate about the shared ideas and opportunities that come from a culture of active, independent thinking. They are investors, pure and simple, managing upwards of $247 billion in assets across equity, fixed income and alternatives with a global presence having 30 offices in 17 countries around the world. Their investment solutions are uniquely designed, thoughtfully implemented and strategically executed to help their clients achieve their individual objectives. They debate, nurture, motivate, advise, assess and deliver, teaming the skills and expertise of some 480 financial professionals that strive to deliver for their clients – the term clients being the operative word here, because, for them their clients include future generations who stand to benefit from wise decisions made today. The folks at Neuberger Berman are forwardthinkers. Key to their company culture is their philanthropic philosophy. While not a corporate mandate, their commitment to community service initiatives extends to each of their 2,000+



employees, impacts a diverse array of non-profit organizations world wide, and is poised to touch lives, today… and tomorrow. We met them one moonlit October night at an informative presentation about the non-profit organization Sailors for the Sea. The setting was at Belle Haven Country Club in Greenwich, Connecticut, a yachtsmen’s paradise of quiet elegance nestled on a painting-perfect inlet on Long Island Sound. This night, the focus was on environmentally responsible actions, with a nod to ocean conservation. The audience, by design, was geared to corporate citizens, boaters and benefactors who had the wherewithal and the opportunity to promote responsible stewardship of our life-giving oceans. David Rockefeller Jr., co-founder of Sailors for the Sea, an organization dedicated to rallying boaters to protect our oceans and whose family legacy of responsible philanthropy and conservation-oriented causes is legendary, joined Neuberger Berman Head of Wealth Management, Ken Rende, Vice President Peter Karadimas, SRI Portfolio Manager Ingrid Dyott and Sailors for Sea President R. Mark Davis to dive deeper into the issues of investing in environmentally beneficial strategies. Oceans are a hot topic. David Rockefeller Jr.’s opening remarks summed up the state of the oceans with a simple and powerful declaration that our oceans are in crisis from overfishing, acidification and habitat destruction, threats that, if left unchecked, would set in motion a man-made tsunami of sorts that would eventually devastate the economy and livelihoods of people around the

globe. Mark Davis took the podium to speak about the educational outreach and ways Sailor for the Sea is navigating through the issue of ocean conservation, a topic he is especially well-versed in since he took the helm of the non-profit organization last October. He spoke of the need for individuals, boaters in particular, to take actions that will have a positive impact on ocean health issues, including implementing programs like their Clean Regattas initiative that raises awareness about reducing our carbon footprint, cleaning up our waters and helping to heal and protect our oceans. Protecting the future for generations to come requires mindfulness on the part of sailors, boaters and anyone else who interacts with water of how our everyday actions, purchases and even investments may connect to ocean health. Stewardship in mind, act and deed can create the momentum behind a sea change. While the Socially Responsive Investing (SRI) portfolio is an important part of Neuberger Berman, it is just one of the many strategies offered across asset classes at the firm. As pioneers in SRI, Neuberger Berman shares the passions and concerns that were set forth by David Rockefeller and Mark Davis, proactively incorporating environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues into their investment analysis and decision-making processes. Portfolio manager Ingrid Dyott spoke about the effect ESG issues can have on long-term investment performance. “We have long considered ESG factors to be a significant part of our investment processes and we actively seek opportunities in well-positioned businesses demonstrating leadership and progress in areas of social and environmental impact.” She explained that her team incorporates many ESG factors such as environmental and product liabilities, legal risk and corporate governance into its investment process as part of its underlying due diligence and fundamental analysis. Their goal is to identify high quality companies that are growing with management teams cognizant of both risk and opportunity as it relates to their company’s social and environmental footprint. She added that many of the same challenges that are jeopardizing our ocean’s health, from rising CO2 levels to runoff and pollution have broader implications to the health of communities and companies. Corporations that are thoughtful around the environment can not only mitigate their risk but also provide solutions to environmental problems. She also included multiple examples: energy efficient auto parts to drive fuel efficiency, industrial gases to reduce emissions in manufacturing and retailers promoting sustainable seafood guidelines to suppliers. Wise investments have always been key to building a sustainable future for generations to come. And when you can get everyone on board, from the suits of Wall Street to the wet suits of sailors and boaters, to navigate a course for a healthy planet, the whole world wins. Venü is proud to be part of the voyage. For further information about Neuberger Berman, please contact Wealth Advisor, Peter Karadimas at (212) 476-8898. To learn more about Sailors for the Sea, visit

ENTREPRENEURSHIP. RESILIENCE. ECONOMIC DIVERSITY. Help shape New York City's entrepreneurial future. Join us at CUE to CUE and create opportunities for a diverse, successful urban environment. Ƥ

This day-long conference will bring CUE members together with other urban entrepreneurs üųŅĵ ±ÏųŅŸŸ ƋĘå ÏŅƚĹƋųƼ ƋŅ ŸĘ±ųå ŸƋų±ƋåčĜåŸ ±ĹÚ ŸƚÏÏ域üƚĬƤƚųÆ±Ĺ ŞĬ±ĹĹĜĹč ±ĹÚ ŞŅĬĜÏƼ ±ŞŞųŅ±ÏĘåŸ that stimulate and support economic opportunities through entrepreneurship. ŅŞĜÏŸ ƋŅ Æå ÏŅƴåųåÚ ĜĹÏĬƚÚå× ĹåƵ DŽŅĹĜĹčƤƋŅŅĬŸ ±ĹÚ ŅŞŞŅųƋƚĹĜƋĜåŸƤüŅų ųåüŅųĵſ ŞŅƋåĹƋĜ±Ĭ üŅų ŞųŅƋŅƋƼŞĜĹč ±ĹÚ ŞĜĬŅƋ DŽŅĹåŸſ ĹåƵƤ±ŞŞųŅ±ÏĘåŸ ƋŅ ŞŅĬĜÏƼ ±ÚƴŅϱÏƼ ±ĹÚ ĬŅϱĬ ŸŅĬƚƋĜŅĹŸěĀĹÚĜĹčſƤĜĹƋåčų±ƋåÚ ŞĬ±ĹĹĜĹč ƋŅ ŞųŅƋåÏƋ ĵĜƻåÚ ƚŸåŸØ ųåƋ±ĜĬ ÚĜƴåųŸĜƋƼØƤŞƚÆĬĜÏ ŸŞ±ÏåŸØ ±ĹÚ ŸĘ±ųåÚ ±ĵåĹĜƋĜåŸſ ŅƴåųÏŅĵĜĹč ųåŸĜŸƋ±ĹÏå ƋŅƤĜĹĹŅƴ±ƋĜŅĹŸſ ±ÚÚų域ĜĹč ±ýŅųÚ±ÆĜĬĜƋƼſ ±ĹÚ ÏĜƴĜÏ ĜÚåĹƋĜƋƼţ

MARCH 5 & 6 2015 NYC

CUE Committee for Urban Entrepreneurship



by Jeff Blumenfeld


Space Race:

Private Museum Collector is Preserving American Space Culture


pace travel always had an allure for me. When I was younger, I made models of Mercury and Gemini capsules, suspended an X-15 from the ceiling, and watched nearly every launch on a black and white Emerson TV. Those relics of space age culture, sadly, were tossed along with my baseball cards. Thus it’s heartening to know that thousands of space-related cultural artifacts have found a safe home, albeit in an unlikely place. Down a winding country road in Litchfield, Connecticut, about 120 miles northeast of New York City, is an unassuming former hay barn with sunlight streaking through its cracked wooden sides – its exact location we’ve been asked to keep confidential. Beneath a roof where bats often roost, is the Space Age Museum whose mission is to preserve, interpret and present the cultural history of the space age. Founder John Kleeman, 67, and his son Peter, 34, have relentlessly searched for cultural artifacts that capture the spirit and underlying meaning of human space exploration. It was Peter’s love for space toys at an early age that launched the collection. The Space Age Museum tells the story of how everyday people expressed fascination with outer space and engaged in the epic adventure of space exploration. The private 4,000 sq. ft. collection includes science fiction toys, space adventure amusement rides, robot advertising and period photographs that capture life in Space Age America. In one corner there’s a Mr. Bolts robot, the market for which,

Kleeman admits, “is pretty thin.” Space artifacts ranging from R2-D2 and E.T. and the Jetsons cartoon are all represented. The Kleeman’s are also passionate about photographing remnants of Space Age art and culture alongside American roads and highways, racing to save them before the weather and urban renewal sweep fiber glass rocket ships, aluminum flying saucers, and cast iron robots from the landscape forever. Kleeman doesn’t consider himself an expert on Space Age culture, history or philosophy. He and his son simply enjoy learning how ordinary folks at the dawn of the Space Age strove to participate in humanity’s journey to the stars.

One photo album includes a collection of black and white photographs that ordinary people took of their TV sets in 1969 when Neil Armstrong first walked the moon. Elsewhere in his cluttered office sits a display case of 180 space-themed Cracker Jack toys. Often trolling eBay for collectible items, he regrets missing out on a seat/plunger contraption used to support Buzz Aldrin when he suited up for the Apollo 11 mission. “We don’t try to compete with space museums like the Kansas Cosmosphere and Space Center,” said the elder Kleeman as he points a Buck Rogers atomic pistol in my general direction. “We focus on the people behind the scenes – the less glamorous, and less well known members of the NASA team whose stories are yet to be told.” While the collection is closed to the public, museum curators often call to request items for public display, including a recent visit by the Museum of Modern Art which borrowed some items for the 2012 exhibit “Century of the Child: Growing by Design 1900-2000.” If you have an item for sale, or would just like to share an image of roadside space art, you can email the museum through its website. If the local Rocket Dry Cleaners or Astro Car Wash is going out of business, or if you have a souvenir from the A’Le’Inn, John Kleeman wants to know. To learn more about The Space Age Museum please visit:

About the Author: Jeff Blumenfeld, a frequent contributor to these pages, is editor of, and author of an adventure sponsorship book titled, Get Sponsored: A Funding Guide for Explorers, Adventurers, and Would-Be World Travelers (Skyhorse Publishing, 2014).




by Cindy Clarke



Spatial Experiences, Uniquely Activated by circleTPR TM


asters at activating spaces that creatively express a company’s signature persona, the folks at circle thrive on creative collaboration. Their passion plays out in luxurious spatial experiences that not only romance the brands behind them, but also energize and tantalize anyone and everyone within view. I use the term luxurious in every sense of the word here. Look it up and its definition is as far-reaching and all encompassing as circle’s projects are: pleasure making, well appointed, stylized, stylish, upscale, impressive and gratifying. Meticulous attention to detail is key. Hands-on expertise in architectural design and interior nuances is a given. And the ability to seamlessly orchestrate and integrate myriad creative disciplines into one well-executed branded experience is all in a day’s work for them. “We work with a diverse group of talent and portfolios,” said Christian P. Arkay-Leliever, SVP Creative for circle, who explained that the full service production agency’s team, strategically spread out on the east and west coasts, includes designers, architects, producers, planners, strategists and digital media professionals, experts all. Who they are and what they do on behalf of an A-list roster of breakout brands speaks volumes about the creativity at work…and play… here. I met Christian and circle SVP Account Director, Tiffany Dahlen, for coffee early one morning to talk about their show-stopping work, including their latest, locally Connecticut, projects. We talked about the elegant vignette Christian had just created in Fairfield County, Connecticut, for Southport Congregational Church’s high profile, designer-inspired charitable showcase, Rooms With A View, an annual



event co-chaired by Tiffany for the past seven years. Christian donated his time and considerable design talent to pay tribute to Albert Hadley and the Church with “a transformative guest experience.” Blending the Church’s architectural details with luxury leather and fluffy Mongolian hide rugs from client and friend Edelman Leather, Christian presented “an inventive contemporary twist on tradition” – and nature. He fabricated a table base out of a locust tree stump he found in Ohio, magnificently gnarled by nature and then painstakingly gilded by hand in layered gold leaf, 200 of them, one by one. He fashioned a round table top over it, dressing it in an embossed leather top, custom stitched with faux sinew and lined with suede that perfectly mimicked the artistry and natural grain of wood. His overall room design featured a rustic chic chandelier reimagined from deer antlers, gold dipped lights and gilded decorative elements, including a beepatterned Farrow & Ball wallpaper, that together ingeniously symbolized the seamless interaction of man, animal and nature, and, I couldn’t help but think, also embodied the “living art installations” that circle specializes in. “Living” is the operative word in all their work. Step inside the newly opened Geronimo restaurant in Fairfield, and you’ll be transported to Santa Fe, New Mexico. Christian collaborated with the restaurant’s owners to activate a true hands-on cultural feast for the restaurant’s interior with a tequila library, carved wood columns, custom designed lighting, and hand-made Spanish tiles to enrich the authentic look and feel throughout. More delicious culinary interior feasts de-

signed to tempt at every turn await at Eli’s Tavern, a vibrant gastro-pub in Milford, Connecticut; RIVERMARKET Kitchen & Bar in Tarrytown hailed as “a modern eco-creation of stone, brick, and wood (200-year-old reclaimed maple floor!) and a ceiling made from mushroom growing crates”; and others, along with the soon-to-be-unveiled Tiqa, a 7,000 square foot Mediterranean eatery being built across the wharf underneath a flagship Marriott Courtyard hotel in Portland, Maine. Performance art is a particular passion of circle team member, Tiffany Dahlen. Her expertise in orchestrating brand-building trade show exhibits and extravaganzas dazzled at Fashion’s Night Lincoln, a red carpet, road rallying “runway meets driveway” event held on the eve of Fashion’s Night Out in New York and at what sounded like an incredibly enchanting Summer Soulstice corporate event for Connecticut-based BLT Chembulk in Copenhagen, a fairy tale setting if there ever was one. Fairy-tale settings are just a part of circle’s ability to turn brands into stars. Engaging guests with unique opportunities to socialize is another. Like taking an empty Las Vegas parking lot and transforming it into a multi-ring showcase arena for MGM and break-out brands like Coke, or fashioning a velvet rope Super Bowl XLIV hospitality party for 50 VIPs in Miami, complete with private fleets of planes and cars, command celebrity performances, plus a whole lot of other once-in-a-lifetime concierge experiences that only the wildest lotterylucky imagination could dream up. But over the top is what they do at circle. And as befits their company name, there’s no end to where they’ll reach next.





Reading Between The Lines


The moving art of Meri Bourgard by Cindy Clarke

he images emerge unscripted before her eyes. They are revealed slowly, in their own time, artistically expressed through a chaotic frenzy of lines and scribbles that fall into place to tell a unique, unfailingly poignant, story. Her medium, like the message, is a mix of colors and textures, pastels with oils, and watercolor washes punctuated with pencil. As Brooklyn-based artist Meri Bourgard explains it, her paintings convey dynamic human situations that develop a voice of their own, visually, spiritually and, without exception, distinctively. Searching for images that reveal themselves is at the core of Meri’s art... no preconceived intentions of subject matter, no primary pencil sketches, no end vision, just a suggestion of marks that keep turning, changing and evolving until an image appears. She told me that a few of the great masters had also discovered and written about a similar process, Leonardo da Vinci among them, summoning faces and human imagery from unexpected places.




Magical, maybe. But her paintings, intuitive and Impressionistic, are rooted in a well-rounded lineage that begins with early art lessons with her father, that recalls her carefree days sketching and painting in Paris, that pays homage to her studies in fine art at Hunter and especially at Pratt Institute and that blends, effortlessly and endlessly, all the learned disciplines and hands-on skills she has acquired through her lifetime as a professional artist. I spoke with Meri Bourgard at length about her background, her career and her passions, drawing her out of her natural reticence to talk about herself. Like so many talented artists, she prefers to let her art tell the stories. She worked extensively in watercolors and pastels in Vermont, on trips to Key West and Europe observing the beauty around her. Years teaching art students and working as a successful graphic designer and illustrator helped hone the signature mixed-media style that today distinguishes her as one of the most ethereal and intuitive artists to emerge on the art scene. In early years, she worked only from observation. Her pen & inks of Parisians, watercolors

1. Commuters, III, 20” x 26”, mixed media on gessoed paper 2. Family, VI, 39 1/2” x 29 1/2”, pastel + charcoal with wash on paper 3. Workers, XIII, 59 3/4 “ x 57 3/4”, pastel + charcoal on paper

2 done in a painting frenzy on Maine’s Monhegan Island during a hurricane, her travel gestures immortalizing quick moments in time as people passed her by, reveal a versatility that informs her current work from Internal sources. Like the accomplished musician who sits down at a piano to improvise a score that ultimately stills and fills the room, she finds expression in the medium, trusting that no matter how discordant the notes or scribbles appear to be at first, she will be able to pull the threads together into something that’s meaningful. She likes keeping her work fresh and challenging herself, admitting that “there is anxiety and mystery in not knowing what the image will be until it reveals itself. I take advantage of spontaneous effects and frequently mix media in non-traditional ways.” She explained that images come and go as she alternates between “abstract mark-making and a focused search for content.” She often erases emerging forms, sensing that something more powerful needs to take shape. She has allowed figures to move on and others to take their places until she, intuitively it seems, feels that the message and the medium are in synch. How long does it take her to complete a piece? With an honest laugh she said, “When you don’t know what you are working on, it takes time to reveal it. Sometimes it takes days and if it comes right away, it’s a gift. There are times when I put something away for a few years before I go back to it again and then it is only when I have learned what it needs.” It is her Internal Portfolio that gives voice to the inspirations and visions that are whispered in her soul. These works, spiritual and sensual, explore human interactions and dynamic situations, nodding to the impact people have on one

3 another’s lives, whether realized or unknown. “I try not to edit the imagery,” she said. Some have references to past experience, others take on a mysterious, prophetic quality. Read between the lines, or the spatial scaffolding as Meri defines it, and you’ll discover “a gradual disclosure of images revealed on suc-

cessively deeper levels“ that may suggest figures “captured in a glimpse of memory or dream.” Look again and the panoply of images seems to move and shift. This is where Meri’s insightful gifts really come into play, paying tribute to a world energized by spirit and the human capacity to find beauty within every possibility.

Meri Bourgard is a Brooklyn based artist who has found inspiration working from both observation and internal sources. While creating art for over fifty years, she has developed a process of accessing internal imagery. She is the recipient of a Vermont Council on the Arts grant and her work appears in public and private collections in the U.S. and in Europe. She is a Professor at Pratt Institute where she teaches Color on the graduate level.



events + gatherings

By Angela Whitford

FCBuzz Celebrating Arts & Culture in Our Community

Executive Director, Cultural Alliance of Fairfield County

As we celebrate the New Year, we take a look at some of our organizations that are celebrating a momentous anniversary in 2015. With over 196 organizations as members of Cultural Alliance of Fairfield County, we realize the importance of each one growing and developing, and enjoy saluting the passion for arts and culture in our community. Planning events, shows and exhibitions takes a tremendous amount of time; preparing for your anniversary year or season adds additional pressure. Five of our members are doing exactly this and we are proud to feature their stories here. Located on the scenic banks of the Five Mile River, the Rowayton Arts Center was founded in 1960 to serve as a community cultural center and provide a welcoming environment for the exchange of arts-related ideas. Its 500 members include nationally-recognized professionals, talented amateurs, beginners and “art appreciators” from Fairfield County and beyond. RAC presents 10 monthly exhibits with receptions that are open to the public. Events include ATRAC artist talks, a monthly open chantey sing, demonstrations, ART21 screenings and lectures. Special shows feature artwork by local high school students, new RAC exhibiting members and participants in an after-school program organized by the Family & Children’s Agency of Norwalk (and underwritten by RAC). A 55th anniversary show is being planned. Throughout the year, adults and children explore their artistic talents during classes in the RAC Art School’s well-equipped upstairs studio and at outdoor locations.

Curtain Call is a live theatre and performing arts production company that presents year-round performances that entertain more than 25,000 patrons annually. It is Stamford’s longest running and only non-profit producing theatre company. There are two stages, the Kweskin Theatre and the Dressing Room Theatre. In the summer, a free Shakespeare production is held on the grounds. Curtain Call offers performance classes and workshops for all ages and abilities, and offers scholarships for classes as well as Flex pass for the season. Celebrating 25 years seems to be a popular milestone for 2015. Fairfield University’s Regina A. Quick Center for the Arts (QCA) serves as a vibrant center of creative and educational activity and is a leader in offering one-of-akind educational opportunities and making a positive difference in the lives of students, staff, faculty, and our friends across the region. For its 25th Anniversary season, the Quick Center for the Arts, located on the campus of Fairfield University, will offer a diverse program of events including the World Premiere of a

In Stamford, Curtain Call also celebrates its 25th season starting in September. Shows will include: Diary of Anne Frank, The Producers, Spamalot, and Once on This Island which is the youth theatre production.

Looking for something different to do? is the place to find out what’s happening in Fairfield County any day of the week—featuring theater, exhibits, music, history, science, family fun, classes and local artists. Click on Pick a great event to attend. Then Go—bring your family, meet your friends or fly solo.™ is presented by the Cultural Alliance of Fairfield County. For more information contact the Cultural Alliance of Fairfield County by emailing, calling 203-256-2329, or visiting the Web site at



music composition commissioned to honor the anniversary. There will be further programming that celebrates the rich arts resources and artists in Connecticut and Fairfield County. The Thomas J. Walsh Gallery, located within the Quick Center for the Arts, also celebrates its 25th anniversary this spring with an exhibition entitled Ghosts in the Landscape: Vietnam Revisited (March 26 – June 6, 2015). Beginning in 1995, photographer Craig J. Barber, ex-combat Marine, returned to Vietnam to traverse many of his former military routes, taking photos with an 8 x 10-inch pinhole camera. Barber created a series of platinum images that capture the serene beauty of the country and, at times for him, the all-too-memorable landscapes. Also on the Fairfield University campus, is the Bellarmine Museum of Art (BMA) will be celebrating its 5th anniversary in the fall of 2015 with an exhibition of Hair in the Classical World (October 8 – December 19, 2015). This exhibition will bring together artifacts from the Bronze Age to late Antiquity, and will examine how hair and its treatment were important socio-cultural signifiers in Classical Antiquity through three discrete but inter-related sections: Arrangement and Adornment, Ritual/Rites of Passage, and Divine and Royal Iconography. BMA is home to encyclopedic permanent collections, with objects ranging from preColumbian sculptures to Tang pottery, from medieval jewelry to Renaissance paintings. The museum also presents up to four dynamic temporary exhibitions per year, and implements an array of invigorating outreach and educational initiatives. We wish all of our organizations and members a successful and prosperous New Year. We hope you can enjoy the wonderful events, shows and exhibits with us as we celebrate all arts and culture in Fairfield County. Please check for further information about these and more events in the coming year.



(800) 940-7642




One of the world’s best gatherings of sport yachts, cruisers, sportfishers, and other marine vessels

Fishing Seminars, New AquaZone pool for watersports demos, & Blue Wild Dive Show

Marine electronics and accessories, seminars, exotic cars, fashion shows and live music.


Presented By:


Sponsored By:



events + gatherings

By Janet Langsam CEO, ArtsWestchester

A Who’s Who of Contemporary Art on Display at ArtsWestchester

Left, Martin Creed, Work No. 1367, 2012 Watercolour on paper 35 x 30 x 2.5 cm / 13 3/4 x 11 3/4 x 1 BNY Mellon Collection (c) Martin Creed Courtesy the artist and Hauser & Wirth, Photo: Todd-White Right, Louise Bourgeois UNTITLED, 1988 Ink and pencil on blue paper 15 1/2 x 9 1/2”; 39.4 x 24.1 cm. Collection BNY Mellon Photo: Zindman/Fremont, © The Easton Foundation/Licensed by VAGA


he sculptor Louise Bourgeois has said that her parents valued her for her ability to draw. The parents were in the tapestry restoration business, and Louise would draw in the missing parts of the items to be repaired. One of her drawings, a seemingly inverted tower of geometric forms, is among the works in a unique exhibition “Drawing Line into Form: Works on Paper by Sculptors from the BNY Mellon Collection,” on view at ArtsWestchester’s White Plains gallery until December 6. The 69 works on paper include exploratory studies and stand alone finished works of art by some of the most noted sculptors of our times, including Alexander Calder, Mark di Suvero, Olafur Eliasson, Sol Lewitt, Maya Lin, Henry Moore, Kiki Smith, and Fred Wilson.

British artist Martin Creed, along with Jessica Stockholder and John Chamberlain investigate the potential of color in abstract works. Others, such as Paul McCarthy and Robert Smithson play-out future monumental-size three dimensional works in two dimensional graphite on paper. Venice Bienniel artist Sarah Szeis is represented in the show with a mammoth six-foot long drawing, an explosion of color and geometry on a grand scale. Alice Aycock’s colorful drawing, “The Indian World View, with the Island of the Rose Apple Tree,” presents an imagined

structure for a fabled paradise. Maya Lin, known for the elegant minimalism of her design for the Vietnam Veteran’s Memorial on Washington, D.C., is represented with an evocative drawing that recalls an aerial view of a river valley. BNY Mellon is one of the world’s most active corporate supporters of the arts, and one of the few companies that still has an active collection. “Assembling this collection has been a journey of discovery,” says Brian J. Lang, BNY Mellon’s Curator. “Each work of art opens a new window into the mind of its creator.”

ArtsWestchester is privileged to have been selected by BNY Mellon to show these works. For more information about the exhibit and ArtsWestchester, visit or call (914) 428-4220. ArtsWestchester is located at 31 Mamaroneck Avenue in White Plains, NY. Gallery hours are Tuesday-Saturday, 12-5pm.

For more of Janet Langsam’s cultural musings, be sure to visit her blog at For a full calendar of arts events visit: CONTEMPORARY CULTURE//MAGAZINE 26 On display José Feliciano, “cuarto” guitar used to record his classic, “Feliz Navidad”

“Chip” Daniani of The Remains, who opened for the Beatles US Tour

Pat Parker, Nancy Stillerman

Bob Thomas with the USP Show Troupe

Photos by Elaine Ubiña

Leora and Steve Levy with Malibu

Geri Corrigan, Rick Lund

Ann Rice, Kathy Green, Deb Greco

David Levy, Audrey McNiff, Mark Shiffrin

ECAD’s 2nd Annual Polo Luncheon at the Greenwich Polo Club was a spectacular success.


ithout exaggeration, ECAD’s 2nd Annual Polo Luncheon at the Greenwich Polo Club on September 7 was a spectacular success. The day could not have been more gorgeous, sun shining with a delightful breeze wafting through the tent, but not too strong to disturb the stunning hats that so many of the beautifully dressed ladies wore. Plus it was just a perfect day for LuLu’s three -month -old pups and soon to be Service Dogs in Training to make their debut and wow the crowd of admirers with their good behavior. This year’s theme, Salute to Our Heroes, which honored Veterans of our Armed Services, including World War 11 Veteran, Bob Thomas, brought the capacity crowd of 230 to their feet repeatedly in a show of respect and gratitude. ECAD founders Dale and Lu Picard presented Greenwich residents Leora and Steve Levy with the Gordon Raymond James “Pay it Forward” Award in honor of their commitment to members of the Armed Services. Also honored for their work on behalf of Veterans were Jenne Britell, Chairman of the Board/Director, and Michael Kneeland, CEO of United Rentals, Inc. The company, a generous supporter of ECAD, received the Seven Seals Award from Ted Graziani, the CT State Chairman of the Department of Defense’s ESGR (Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve). Throughout the afternoon, the charming and talented USO Singers treated guests to spirited renditions of anthems of all the Armed Services with music by Valli Entertainment.

Allegra Grunberg, Michael Grunberg, Julieta Lopez Cuervo

Proceeds raised from the event will go toward sustaining ECAD’s Programs of educating and placing Service Dogs. Media Sponsor: Venü Magazine

Annette Thomas, Bob Thomas, Tracey Thomas, Matthew Sturtevant, Phil Bauer and Reese

Leora and Steve Levy with Malibu

Leora and Steve Levy with Malibu

Jeff O’Geary, Geri Corrigan

Dale Picard, Lu Picard, Leora Levy, Steve Levy

Lu Picard, Leslie Shantz

Dale Picard, Rick Lund, Allen West, Steve Levy

Doris Schecter, Pat Jones, Ron Paisner, Shifra Lichtenstein

Rick Lund, Sabrina Forsythe, Joe Reilly



Photos by Jay Ackerman Photography

events + gatherings

Sandra Singh, Frank DeLucia, Cindy Clarke

David Foox, Matthew Sturtevant

Tracey Thomas, Elena Kosarnaja

Keith Lippert, Connie Lippert, Mark Johnson, Suzanne Johnson

Gisela Calitz, Mathilde Laderud

Mary and Peter Marwick

Raphael Mazzucco, Kathy Kennedy, Philippe-Artus Hoerle, Tracey Thomas

VENÜ Magazine and Fleet Miami Host Sunset Soirée aboard super yacht M/Y Usher in New York City Harbor VIP Party Showcased Pop-up Art Exhibit by Raphael Mazzucco


ew York’s “It” celebrities gathered with magazine and yacht insiders aboard the super yacht M/Y Usher at a pop-up party and art exhibit hosted by VENÜ Magazine and Fleet Miami to launch the Fall issue of the contemporary lifestyle publication on Wednesday, September 3. The guest list included acclaimed fashion photographer Raphael Mazzucco, the feature cover artist of VENÜ’s 25th issue; Philippe Hoerle-Guggenheim, Director at HoerleGuggenheim Gallery; pop artist and filmmaker David Foox; Ralph Lauren breakout model, Morgan O’Connor; American hotel developer and entrepreneur Frederic Marq; fashion photographers Kristian Schmidt and Micheal DiDonna and other well-known luminaries from the business, fashion and art worlds. Heather Gross, Lindsay Morris

Morgan O’Connor, Mathilde Laderud, Ceasar Anquillare, Kathy Kennedy

Vita Sidorkina, Raphael Mazzucco, Anastasia Belotskaya

Eric Bland, Valeria Vigas Hoffmann


CONTEMPORARY CULTURE//MAGAZINE Mark Timperio, Philippe-Artus Hoerle

Roberto Buchelli, Anna Huzar, Harley Lippman

Honorary Chair Butzi Moffit, Art Show Founder Enid Munroe

Art Show Committee

Judges: Ryan Odinak, Jane Sutherland

Pequot Library’s 17th Annual Art Show


elebrating National Art and Humanities month in October, Pequot Library had its most successful Art Show Weekend in its history. The weekend was pack-filled with numerous events including an Art Show with more than 190 artists, a children’s activity, an appraisal day with New York City-based Heritage Auction, and a Fundraising Gala featuring a Silent Auction. The art show, which included works created by Connecticut artists in various media, was judged by Ryan Odinak and Jane Sutherland. Awards were as followed: Amy Dolego’s Sunset in High Desert for the Best In Show, James Travers’s Soar 3 for Best in Construction/Sculpture/Jewelry, Joseph Dermody’s Pemberwick for Best in Mixed Media, Lisa Hess Hesselgrave’s Abigail’s Standing for Best in Painting, Adrien Broom’s The 11th Hour for Best in Photography, and Katie Buonanno’s Self Portrait for Best Work on Paper. The weekend-long celebration began with the Children’s Activity, which was attended by more than 25 children who explored the Art of the Selfie. Presented by The Painted Bird, children created unique self-portraits in a hands-on workshop. On Saturday, Chairs Celie Campbell and Andrea Dean Shantz hosted a fundraising gala and silent auction, including a stay at the Delamar Hotel in Southport. The benefit gala was an elegant evening of friends, art, fine food, and drinks. On Sunday, more than 220 people gathered at Pequot Library to have their treasures appraised by Heritage Auction House experts. Event Media Sponsor Venü Magazine graciously promoted Pequot Library’s art show and distributed its newest issue to patrons throughout the weekend.

Children’s activity, the Art of the Selfie

Alison Barry, Philip Eliasoph

Perkin Gallery


Media Sponsor: Venü Magazine

A Celebration of Bespoke Luxury at The St. Regis, New York


his past fall marked the launch of a new event in New York City during Fashion Week, A Celebration of Bespoke Luxury. Organized by Katie Fong, an emerging women’s designer, A Celebration of Bespoke Luxury showcased the thriving business of bespoke fashion and integrated lifestyle. The invitation-only event took place September 10 at the Dior Suite at The St. Regis Hotel, which was designed to evoke Christian Dior's Avenue Montaigne headquarters in Paris. 1) Katrina Steele and Renata Dorfman of Rendor & Steele. 2) Hayden Lasher of Hayden Lasher Handbags. 3) Kathryn Minckler, Mack Moze of RogueTailors, Matt Lowe, and Amer Ahmed. 4) Katie Fong and models wearing Katie Fong Collection. 5) Betsy Atkins of Baja Corp., and Elizabeth Nichols of Taigan.

➃ ➂



Photos by DeRuvo Photography

events + gatherings

Randy Weiss tending bar

Auctioneer Guy Bennett of Pelham Holdings

Laura G. Einstein, CCP Executive Director and Tim Shanley, CCP Board Member

Left to right; Margo Rappoport, Suji Kang Baak, and Paul DeRuvo, CCP Associate Printer/Studio Assistant

The Center for Contemporary Printmaking - Benefit Auction

Kaveh Mojtabai, Publisher Artscope Magazine, and Steven Steele Cawman, Media Relations at CCP


he Center for Contemporary Printmaking’s 2014 MONOTHON Benefit Auction and Party took place Saturday, November 8th. MONOTHON is CCP’s major annual fundraiser. Attendees have the opportunity to acquire original prints by established and emerging artists at competitive prices. The event includes both Silent and Live Auctions, hors d’oeuvres and beverages donated by area purveyors of fine foods, and an open bar with the signature “MONOtini.” The Live Auction offers an amazing selection of artwork by world renowned artists. 2014 Honorary Chair: Dr. Walter A. Liedtke, Curator of European Paintings, The Metropolitan Museum of Art Auctioneer: Guy Bennett of Pelham Holdings, formerly International Head of the Impressionist and Modern Art Evening Sales at Christie’s. CCP would like to thank everyone who made MONOTHON 2012 a success. We hope to see you next year!!

Brenda Giegerich and Betty Ball, Auction Co-Chair

Duvian Montoya, Andrea and Jim Bonfils

Christopher Shore, CCP Master Printer

Left to right; Dr. Walter A. Liedtke, Honorary MONOTHON Chair; Greg Palitz, Bill Frank, CCP Board Chair; and Nancy Liedtke



Laura G. Einstein, CCP Executive Director and Rebecca Lin, MONOTHON Chair

out above all others that were submitted for the position. The result? A perfect fit! Lyle W. Williams, Curator of Prints and Drawings at McNay Art Museum, San Antonio, Texas, states, "I have known Laura Einstein for about 25 years, having met her when we were both working at Yale University Art Gallery. The Center for Contemporary Printmaking is fortunate to have such an intelligent, forthright, and talented person at the helm. I’m sure she will lead the organization with keen judgment and unflagging good humor." Laura has amazing energy and intelligence, so it didn't take her long to get into the full swing of the demands of her new job. She has already co-curated the monotypes that went into CCP's recent MONOTHON Auction and Party, the annual fundraising event of the year, and was instrumental in acquiring many of the items for the Live Auction. Richard Field, former department head of Prints and Drawings at Yale University Art Gallery has said, "When she worked at Yale University Art Gallery, Laura Einstein was an ideal young professional – intelligent, perceptive, and anxious to learn. Since then, she has become a very able and even adventurous private curator and administrator in the arts." After acccepting the position of Executive Director of CCP, Laura closed her consulting firm. She continues to guide tours of the Philip Johnson Glass House in New Canaan, which has become an important part of her life, and to write for Venü Magazine.

Judy Oppel, Lisa Marie Browne, Susan McGregor

A Perfect Fit by Alanna Fagan


n September of this year, Laura G. Einstein, appointed by the Board of Trustees, became the new Executive Director of the Center for Contemporary Printmaking in Norwalk, Connecticut CCP, as the Center is known, is a renowned arts organization devoted to the art of the print in all its forms – intaglio, lithography, monotype, silkscreen, woodblock, book arts, and digital arts – and hosts many exhibitions of printmakers, including two highly regarded juried International Print competitions. Einstein has a richly diverse background. After majoring in Art History in college, and receiving her MFA in Asian Art from The Ohio State University, she worked at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, interned at Christie's, NY, and was Assistant Curator for nine years of the Asian Art Department at Yale University Art Gallery, and for a time was its Interim Head of the Department. She has lectured at The Metropolitan Museum of Art for both the Asian Art and Education Departments, the China Institute Gallery, and IBM Gallery of Science and Art, NY. Working as an independant curator at a number of museums and galleries throughout the tri-state region, Einstein also formed her own firm, LGE Fine Art Consulting, and has represented many artists working in CT and NY. Laura's talents and skills, along with her vast experience in a variety of areas in the art world, her personal relationships with so many artists as a private consultant and curator, her ability for grant writing and fundraising, plus six years as a former Board member of CCP, made her resumé stand

Gordon A. Lewis, Jr

RoboVault T

he Uffizi Gallery of Florence, Italy was the star of the show at the Friends of the Uffizi’s lecture event hosted graciously by the ultra secure automated storage facility RoboVault. Gordon A. Lewis, Jr., advisor to the Friends of the Uffizi and the Vice President of the Fine Arts Conservancy in Palm Beach, presented a fascinating lecture on the damage the Uffizi has faced since WWII and the dedicated individuals who have worked endless hours over decades to preserve and restore the treasures inside the world famous gallery. No stranger to art preservation, protection and restoration methods, Susan McGregor, President and General Manager of RoboVault, also a committee member of the Friends of the Uffizi, provided hors d’oeuvres and cocktails for her guests and had a special surprise in store for them. After Mr. Lewis’ lecture, Susan showcased RoboVault’s capabilities with a different type of Italian masterpiece, a Lamborghini. Guests watched in awe as the Automated Retrieval system went to work, moving the car to its appropriate place within the vault.



Travel + Leisure Leisure: Destination NorwaY

Cape Arundel Inn & Resort

THE KENNEBUNKPORTS Debunking the Off Season by Linda Kavanagh

“Maine is a joy in the summer. But the soul of Maine is more apparent in the winter.”


~ Paul Theroux

ure, you can’t beat Maine in the summertime. Stunning beaches with panoramic views of the Atlantic Ocean, crashing waves against the rocky cliffs, swimming, boating and hiking, seafood shacks and shopping – it’s truly New England at its best. In the heat of the season, Maine’s population practically doubles from tourism and migrating summer homeowners. But that’s not my scene. I’m a cold weather type of gal. And Maine in the fall and winter months is an equally breathtaking and adventure-packed destination for rogue travelers such as myself. Cool fall breezes brought us to Kennebunkport, an affluent township in southern York County Maine, rich in artistic talent, beautiful inns and a rather progressive culinary scene. Its “main street” hub is right out of a Norman Rockwell painting, bustling with boutiques, local watering holes and good-natured tourists traps. Colorful hand painted road signs mark each corner, directing you to beaches and attractions. And while there are still leaf-peepers in town taking in the vibrant fall foliage and enjoying brisk walks along the shoreline, shop owners and restaurateurs are starting to close up shop anticipating the self-induced “off-season” winter days ahead. “Not us. We stay open 11 months out of the year, “says Nick Maucieri the proprietor of Maine-ly Drizzle, a fabulous shop featuring olive oil and



vinegars from around the world, “Food is always in season and we look forward to the holiday business which could be even better if more shop owners stayed open longer, contributing to the overall success and attention attracted to the area during the cooler months.” Upon sampling an array of aromatic and tasty oils and vinegars, and ultimately purchasing black truffle oil, green chili oil and a robust jalapeno white balsamic vinegar, my travel companion and I continued to browse the many art galleries and retail therapy outlets throughout town, a stone’s throw away from the Kennebunkport Inn (circa 1890), our hotel located in the center of it all at Dock Square. The Victorian style estate is decked out in red, white and blue attire, exuding a colonial time-meets-Ralph Lauren feel. Crisp linens, warm comforters and attractive furnishings fill the guestrooms. Eat at the Inn’s One Dock restaurant offering a well-rounded menu of globally inspired small plates such as bourbon glaze pork belly, fish flautas and lobster rangoon. Sip on the Incognito Tea for Two made with Hendrick’s Gin, St. Germain, pineapple juice and mint or the KPI Old Fashioned shaken with Blanton’s bourbon, black walnut bitters, maple simple syrup and muddled fruit at The Pub at One Dock while listening to some of the area’s most rockin’ local musicians or while lounging on the patio with the fireplace to warm you. We followed the locals down the road to Alisson’s Restaurant & Pub, a fourth generation family owned and operated locale which oozes

Kennebunkport Inn Lobby

Mark’s Hot Dog Stand

“Year round establishments are gaining in number and popularity, “local shop owners and restaurateurs were excited to share. Jeff Fightmaster, General Manager of David’s KPT located at The Boathouse Waterfront Hotel and part of the KRC (Kennebunkport Resort Collection) family says this year’s holiday and winter festivities are bigger and better than ever, with added businesses keeping their lights on throughout the snowy months ahead. Day trippers and weekend rompers can look forward to a host of activities from December thru March including; Art Workshops at The Galleries at Morning Walk - local artists and artisans present a series of art workshops, lectures and hands-on classes. Winterfest - Skating party, chowder contests, sledding at the Nott House, Ice Bar at One Dock Spices from Vervacious Alisson’s Restaurant

Paint the Town Red for Valentine’s Day - Lobster-centric Red Plate Specials at restaurants, romantic “Five Shades of Red” packages at local hotels, “Red Tag” sales at neighborhood boutiques and more. The “lovely” happenings begin on February 1, when the community flips the switch to reveal a rose-colored town covered in red, twinkling lights. River Tree Arts Community Arts Center - Anti-Valentine’s Day Gallery Exhibit & Market Snow Day at Wells Reserve -3 mile snowshoe race, 200 M dash for adults, 1M dash for kids, snowman building, snowshoe rentals, sledding, hot cocoa, bonfire and more. Maine Restaurant Week - March 1 - 14, 2015 And much more found at:

New England charm and a wonderful upbeat energy. Wrapped in exposed brick and dark wood furnishings, it’s easy to sink into Alisson’s relaxed vibe, toss back a few beers and dive into some hearty American fare. Our faves included; a decadent lobster mac n cheese where you could actually taste the cheese and savor the sweet fresh lobster meat; a fresh and crunchy kale and arugula salad laced with apple vinaigrette and flecked with roasted Brussels sprouts and pumpkin seeds; and a juicy blackened salmon topped with house made pineapple salsa. This year-round gathering place is truly a local gem.

A more contemporary setting among a host of traditional New England sites is David’s KPT and Raw Bar located waterside in downtown Kennebunkport. Floor to ceiling windows provide stunning harborside views all year round. Ocean blue carpeting, rich wood paneling and a stately bar accentuated by vertical back lit wine racks conveys an almost steak house persona for a mostly seafood driven restaurant. In addition to robust cabernets and dirty martinis, the sleek and masculine ambience sets the tone for David’s not-so-traditional clam chowder spiked with thyme, brown sugar and smoky bacon; market fresh haddock presented with local peekytoe crab, white clam cream, roasted garlic-potatoes



Travel + Leisure Leisure: Destination NorwaY

and garlicky spinach; and tasty salmon and grilled corn cakes with sweet-spicy Thai chili remoulade and a crisp summer fennel slaw. Venturing 30 miles north we were Portland bound. “The City”, is what our friends in Kennebunkport called this historic Old Port fishing district along Portland Harbor. During a delicious and informative tour led by Maine Foodie Tours, we learned that after four devastating war time fires, Portland was almost completely rebuilt during the Victorian era. As we strolled from café to market, brewery to bakery, we were captivated by the city’s 19th century architecture, maintained due to constant attention to landmark preservation. Our brilliant and entertaining tour guide led us over cobblestone walkways and through active alleyways, introducing us to the city’s best bites and local artisans. We snacked on tart apple slices with star anise salt at Vervacious spice shop; ate local Maine potato donuts from The Holy Donut; visited the original Stonewall Kitchen shop and slathered everything we could get our hands on with wild Maine wild blueberry jam; drank pumpkin brew and Black Fly stout at Gritty McDuff’s Brewing Company; and toured Harbor Fish Market – a real deal fisherman’s drop off and lobster hatchery. Did you know that Portland is the home to the largest and continuous running farmers market in the world? Me neither. Maine Foodie Tours are offered in season in Bar Harbor and Kennebunkport and throughout the year in Portland. Enough of the Big City, we retreated to the cozy confines of Kennebunkport and our next destination, Cape Arundel Inn & Resort. Built in 1895, this gorgeous oceanfront property is located amid a myriad of mansions along Ocean Avenue. Labeled as a “bed and breakfast”, the mansion is far from meek in its tasteful design, plush guestrooms, expansive patio and pool area. The Inn is located an invigorating one mile walk or run from downtown. The Oceanfront Restaurant, rated as one of the “Top 100 Scenic Restaurants in America” (OpenTable) is spearheaded by Chef Pierre Gignac and is one of the area’s finer dining establishments, incorporating a farm-totable mentality and a New England sensibility throughout his menu. Sunset cocktails on the patio are a must before dinner. Menu standouts included; perfectly seared sea scallops with pernod butter and fennel bulb confit; lobster Thermidor presented with artichokes, oyster mushroom, parmesan and English mustard cream; and lamb loin and crispy lamb breast with chèvre potato purée and sautéed kale leaves.

We are in serious need of some good ol’ seafood shack staples that we neglected to partake in while exploring Kennebunkport and Portland. And it seems we’ve come to the right place! Finally, a lobster roll done right in our eyes (we sampled many along the way but none seemed to do the trick). Our soft buttered hot dog roll came overflowing with sweet juicy lobster chunks barely tossed with mayo. The freshness of the lobster spoke for itself. New England clam chowder was an unbastardized rendition of the classic made with freshly shucked clams, potatoes, onions, broth and cream. Simple and sensational. Beer batter fish and chips were of the local haddock variety, meaty and flavorful with a mouth-watering crispy exterior. Good tartar sauce and crunchy slaw completed the experience. Or maybe it was the Moxie soda pop that brought it all together. Yes, my travel companion and I are officially addicted to the locally adored beverage which was created by a local Maine doctor in 1876 and is flavored with gentian root extract which is believed to have medicinal benefits. So you see; it’s actually good for us. I say Maine in general is good for us. It proved to be refreshing, detoxifying, revitalizing and stimulating. It’s a country and coastal respite all in one – without giving up the luxury, good food, style and sensibility of the big city.

Our Favorite Things: • Mark’s Hot Dog Stand, Portland – Serving the best steamed hotdogs since 1983, on the corner of Middle Street and Exchange Street. • Spices from Vervacious, Portland – salts, spices, mustards, vinegars, sugars and cocoa • Maine Food Tours guide extraordinaire Randy Judkins – He had us all at “Hello” and thoroughly involved in his city. This comedic vaudeville performer and historian is a super talent and made a believer out of this anti-tour tourist! • Cocktails at The Tides Beach Club, Kennebunkport – Love, love, love the view, the beach, the hip décor, funky furnishings, eclectic artwork and a killer cocktail culture that includes; Vanilla Bourbon Fizz made with vanilla bean infused Buffalo Trace bourbon, Byrrh, orange bitters and club soda; Citrus Kiss prepared with Titos Vodka, house limoncello, grapefruit, citrus, and Izzy’s Sparkling Grapefruit: and the El Diablo comprised of jalapeno infused tequila, ginger liqueur and blood orange. • The ambience and view at Pier 77 and its underground man cave The Ramp Bar & Grill, Cape Porpoise Harbor, Kennebunkport – sleek and sexy upstairs, edgy and eclectic below.

Lobster Roll from Robert’s Maine Grill

We are heading south this time – heading home via Kittery, its many retail outlets and the highly recommended Robert’s Maine Grill. The staff’s warm hospitality is instantly felt the minute we walked through the door. The bi-level space is packed on a Sunday afternoon, buzzing with barside revelers, ladies who “brunch”, and exhausted shoppers in need of a chowda and beer. Robert’s is all about LOCAL, from local ingredients and craft beer, to the local artists featured throughout the space. Maine crab cakes, flatbread with Grafton cheddar, steamers in Allagash White beer and that wonderful local lobster roll are just a few of the menu items marked with a lighthouse to highlight local ingredients.



• Dancing with strange men at the local margarita infused Mexican joint Pedro’s, Kennebunkport • Lobster Roll at Robert’s Maine Grill, Kittery – And everything else at this bustling restaurant and raw bar set among the retail store outlet stretch in Kittery, south of Kennebunkport. • Apple Fritter Doughnut from Congdon’s Family Restaurant & Bakery, Kittery – There’s a drive-thru and everything! Over-the-top fried dough goodness filled with tart apple chunks and covered in sweet glaze. Good for the ride home…








Gallery WATCH

A Chelsea Gallery In The Country

If they are looking for contemporary art, they will make their way to Lionheart! BY CINDY CLARKE

Comanche Dinner, Colored ink and acrylic on paper 30" x 44", 2014

The Lionheart Gallery, a nationally respected contemporary art gallery nestled in a picturesque country hamlet on the border of New Canaan, Connecticut, and Pound Ridge, New York, soars with light. Skylights on high invite ethereal viewpoints, illuminating the larger than life modern-day art that is on exhibition here. Color, in all its hued incantations, from bold and expressive, captivates at every turn. What draws people to the gallery from all over the country is the outstanding repository of contemporary art housed within its walls, giving credence to their comments that “it’s a Chelsea gallery in the country.” Under Director Susan Grissom’s discerning eye, the Lionheart Gallery represents a talented group of contemporary artists and alternative process photographers. They include “dirt” artist Donald Bracken; retired-attorney-turned-artist Whit Conrad, who paints 36


with a satirical viewpoint; exuberant “recovering” lawyer Geoffrey Stein; three visionary women photographers Jennifer Schlesinger Hanson, Ann George and Emma Powell, whose dreamy worlds integrate a shared search for sleep with Gothic Southern Cajun culture and the magic of childhood; classical painter reborn as an inspired modernist Serge Strosberg; painter David Hutchinson who creates stunning modern paintings in code and text; expressionistic painter and Harvard scholar Betsy Podlach and others. Their works line the walls of this gem of a gallery, inviting viewers to pause and ponder works that invariably turn heads and tune out distractions of the world outside. Gallery Director Susan Grissom exhibits the artists’ works in groupings that speak volumes about their inspiration, engaging visitors in artful conversations that continue to draw them back again and again in person and online at, and

Re-pose, Geoffrey Stein 48" x 84", Mixed media painting

Frog Love At Night, 60" x 46", Acrylic and Sand on Canvas on Bracken

The Lionheart Gallery, located in a bucolic country setting with a pond and an bell tower aviary, which has art installations in the spring summer and fall in Pound Ridge, New York, is open Wednesday thru Saturday from 11 to 5; Sunday from 12 to 5 and “by chance.”

The Traveler, Betsy Podlach, 26” x 26”

Heartbeat, Claudia Mengel, 72"x 60", Mixed media painting

Lionheart’s most recent exhibition, held from November through January 2015, featured Westport, Connecticut, painter and printmaker Claudia Mengel’s expansive canvases. They graced the walls with a delicious palette of mixed media paintings, more than 4 to 6 feet high and equally as wide that reflected her personal “visual and emotional perceptions of the world around her.” It is this kind of response on the part of gallery guests that Susan Grissom is a master at “curating.” It is not only visually apparent that she loves what she does and sees. It’s also inherently clear that she shares a passion for the thought and deeds that connect one piece to another. She admires the innovative interplay of materials, eclectic works that are playful and provocative, and finds inspiration and excitement in abstracts that portray originality and alternatives in design and process. But there is also something deeper and richly meaningful at work in the art she chooses to display and it has as much to do with latent talent she discovers in her artists. No matter how different their expression, they share a passion for art and articulate it a variety of mediums and processes that always make their work interesting and relevant. And many found their “artistic” voice later in life after an assortment of intellectually driven careers that left little time for them to indulge in their own creativity. Like Geoffrey Stein who retired from the legal profession to give life to his new role as an irrepressible visual commentator. His 2009 “Irrational Exuberance” portrait series on the economic “actors” with leading

roles on the U.S. financial stage graphically explores, with collaged material, the “incongruity between the news being reported, the individuals’ public images and the experience of the 99% of Americans who don’t work on Wall Street.” Or architect, artist and philosopher David Hutchinson who paints in a code, incorporating translations of text by Jean Genet in his work. His vertical line paintings and achromatic works point out the familiar in unexpected ways that “force the viewer to reevaluate perceptions while revealing the commonplace as exceptional.” His works are visually seductive and enjoyable, always hinting at some deeper hidden meaning that makes even more evocative. Or Donald Bracken who gives viewers the dirt on his thoughts through works, rich and organic, that give new definition to twigs, clay and other unusual materials. His work will be featured at Lionheart from January 17 through March 1, 2015. Whit Conrad, a retired attorney with degrees from Harvard and Yale, a student of the New York Studio School and one of the newest artists to join the gallery, will debut his satirical paintings, which are incredibly fun and provocative, in a March / April exhibition. That renewed sense of fun and freedom of expression from artists like these whose talent emerged later in life from careers far removed from the arts is characteristic of the pieces Susan Grissom, an artist herself, exhibits in the Lionheart Gallery.




Style Scene

Changing The World One Step At A Time

Introducing Pluggz, a new line of good for your body shoes BY CINDY CLARKE When Venü connected with ultra-entrepreneur Sharon Whiteley to talk about her latest venture, we wanted to walk in her shoes, literally. After all, Sharon is the doyenne of retail marketing, with a prescient eye for the next surefire hit in consumer-driven markets and an ear to the ground, always. This time she is listening to the wisdom whispered in the ages, taking a cue from Mother Nature to give all of us a new footing in health, comfort and style with pluggz™. Not your run-of-the-mill footwear and a name some might not think the most evocative for what is destined to be another breakout fashion brand, pluggz is all about shoes that are designed to help you put your best foot forward in terms of well-being and well dressing. Embedded with a proprietary grounding technology that puts the wearer back in touch with the Earth energetically, pluggz recreates that barefoot and fancy free feeling we used to feel as kids on an idyllic summer’s day, while restoring a natural flow of health-inducing electrons between body and Earth. Let’s face it, as we’ve grown older, walking around barefoot is just not an option for many of us for several reasons. Safety from sharp objects lying in wait for an unsuspecting ground ambush is one, geography, hygiene and foot comfort are others. Our inherent desire to look as fashionable and in style as possible is another factor, in spite of how our often-aching feet may feel in the process. Now, thanks to the ingenious and impeccably researched and manufactured line of shoes Sharon Whiteley has fashioned, both young and young-at-heart can reconnect, comfortably, with their former 38


grounded selves – and walk their way into a better healthy state. Those are big promises to make in today’s consumer-savvy world but Sharon has always been a step ahead in her thinking, with results that are not only right on target, but that are revolutionary and ahead of their time. Earlier in her career she was instrumental in developing a revitalized urban marketplace at the historic Faneuil Hall in Boston when she worked with legendary developer Jim Rouse in the late 1970s. It was tagged for demolition until a committed group of Bostonians sought to preserve it engaging Jim Rouse and his team, a dynamic Sharon Whiteley among them, to put their vision in place. The renovation and the marketing innovations the team introduced with it thoroughly changed the face of downtown Boston. Like all of Sharon’s successful ventures, it was the first of its kind, one that spawned imitations in this country and abroad. She spoke of her work in groundbreaking shopping center development in a self-effacing humble demeanor that belies her contributions to a project of its internationally renowned magnitude. As I prodded, she shared personal recollections of her idea to transform vendor pushcarts indigenous to the area into boutiques on wheels for upscale shopping venues, one of many market-shaping, brilliant innovations that was immediately replicated in shopping centers from coast to coast. She launched next into stationery and gift manufacturing and created Peacock Papers, a then revolutionary line of motivational, positive but not saccharin sweet, sayings for tongue-tied consumers, etching her witticisms and wisdom on a range of products from soft goods to quick send cards that could be personalized and sent by wannabe authors and philosophers to

their chosen recipients. What set her business apart, aside from reward-inducing sayings like “A great mom is worth her weight in chocolate chip cookies,” and one of her favorites, “If you follow the flock, you could end up a lamb chop,” was the market research aspect of her business wherein she opened a test “retail store” to accurately ascertain what sells, what’s hot and what’s not and at the same time show her clients, buyers all, how to effectively display Peacock goods in their retail establishments. Like the shopping center developers who banked on the success of location, location, location, she has thrived on getting closer to the customer with innovation, innovation, innovation. Each venture she founded ignited another new entrepreneurial adventure including co-authoring a book for women in business, The Old Girls’ Network: Insider Advice for Women Building Businesses in a Man’s World, founding Eight Wings enterprise with a team of angel investors to help women realize their own potential to recently creating a pampering, “grounding” signature PluggzSPA pedicure for Canyon Ranch Clubs on Celebrity Cruises and the elegant Queen Mary that sought to do what all the life-enhancing products she creates do so well: change lives for the better. After building, from the ground up, five successful market driven companies, serving as the Chair of the National Center on Women & Aging at Brandeis University, receiving numerous awards for her business acumen, including Ernst & Young’s regional Entrepreneur of the Year Award and other organizational affiliations eager to tap into her expertise, she is more intent than ever on delivering beneficial products that speak to the needs of and empower today’s “more health-conscious and informed customers.” To that end, in 2011 she founded LiSTEN Brands, dedicated to the manufacture, marketing and distribution of innovative products that promote health, vitality and enhance overall wellbeing. Her flagship product, pluggz footwear - fashion forward, lifestyle shoes for women, and recently a men’s addition, are the first to step out into the marketplace as they step back in time to those oft-longed for barefoot days and deliver physiological benefits to the wearer. Inspired thinking is an indelible part of Sharon’s persona. Her latest idea for pluggz came about on the heels of a health and wellness conference she attended to gain fresh insights and an up-to-date perspective on healthy living from acclaimed experts and health professionals where she was fascinated by the correlation between compromised health and modern man’s separation from nature. Extensive scientific findings documented by pioneers like Clint Ober, Dr. Stephen Sinatra and Martin Zucker, authors of Earthing: The Most Important Health Discovery Ever! and James

A portion of the sales proceeds from each pair of pluggz sold goes towards supporting inspiring organizations dedicated to improving the health and wellness for people of all ages. For more information, visit Oschman, PhD, a leading edge and highly respected biophysicist who stated, “Grounding and Earthing is as important for our health as sunshine and good nutrition” and added in a documentary film GROUNDED, “it is as important as the discovery of penicillin,” point unequivocally to the positive health benefits of being more closely connected to the grounding properties of the Earth. Sharon concurs, saying that Grounding, also called Earthing, is one of the most amazing health re-discoveries of our time and she is determined to share these feel better findings through pluggz. There is a great deal of substantiating research behind the beneficial effects of grounding and earthing and the natural energy in the form of electrons they deliver back to us. Many studies show that becoming more electrons nourished helps to neutralize the harmful free radicals found in modern-day bodies and aids in healing from the inside out. Reduction of inflammation, a culprit causing many conditions and now even associated with some chronic diseases is a major benefit documented. All we need to do is reconnect with the Earth. “This is what pluggz enables you to do when you walk directly on the ground – grass, sand, soil and even concrete city sidewalks. As importantly, fashionably and comfortably so,” Sharon added. “Most shoes today that boast a comfort feature are athletic-looking, frumpy or downright dowdy -- and most shoes today insulate us from this vital connection”. She explained the technology simply - that all pluggz shoes contain soft black conductive plugs made from a carefully engineered, customformulated carbon and rubber compound that are crafted in to the shoe’s insoles under the weight bearing part of the foot, the metatarsal area, enabling the flow of the Earth’s electrons into your body with each step. “This flow of this revitalizing energy through your feet naturally gives your body what it needs to return to a more normalized body state,” Sharon told me. To feel what she was talking about and get on board with all the buzz about pluggz, I ordered a very cute, always in style pair of black patent leather wedges. As I first put them on, I thought about how I was going to feel more energized, balanced and calmer, how these shoes might banish the fatigue and the nagging aches and pains that have become part of my everyday life over the years. And that I might reclaim that youthful barefoot bounce in my step as I stepped out in my new pluggz. I do know that the cuteness factor was already making me feel like I might possibly turn heads as I walked down the street. But I think what is going to make the most lasting impression on me is the fact that I am following in the footsteps of a lady who continues to change the world for the better and then better still.




Photographs by: Jonathan Wallen

Left, A view of the ramps leading down to the lower level tracks, the food court, and the famous Oyster Bar. Above a bridge connects the waiting room (better known as Vanderbilt Hall) to the main concourse. The nickel and gold-plated Beaux-Arts style chandeliers have all recently been converted to use newer energy efficient fluorescent light bulbs, saving the MTA over $200,000 each year in electricity costs. Right, The cavernous main concourse, constructed of Tennessee marble, Botticino marble, and imitation Caen stone, measures 275 feet long by 120 feet wide by 125 feet tall, and is perhaps New York’s most recognizable “room”.



rand Central Terminal is among a handful of buildings in New York City that is not just an architectural landmark. It goes beyond that. Not only is it a monument in a city, it is also a monument of a city. Along with the Statue of Liberty, the Brooklyn Bridge, and the Empire State Building, these are quintessential landmarks that define and embody, instantly conjuring “New York” to anyone who sees them. However, even before construction was completed, Grand Central was engulfed in scandal. The shot-gun marriage of two architectural firms working together on the design of such an important landmark was a source of controversy, and created a relationship fraught with dissention and acrimony. Although it was Reed & Stem, a St. Paul, Minnesota firm who had initially won the commission and were appointed the lead architects, it was the New York society firm of Warren & Wetmore – whose partner Whitney



BY PHILLIP JAMES DODD Warren solicited his cousin (and president of the railroad) Cornelius Vanderbilt II, to become involved in the project – who were more vocal in taking the credit for the design. The first gambit came upon the death of Charles Reed in 1911. While his business partner Allen Stem, along with others from the firm, left the City to travel to Minnesota to attend the funeral, Charles Wetmore (an attorney by training) maneuvered to have the contract rewritten, installing Warren & Wetmore as the sole owners of the design. In an attempt to set the record straight, Stem sued Warren & Wetmore for betraying the trust and fiduciary agreement between the two firms, eventually winning the lawsuit, and receiving a hefty payment for damages. In the aftermath, Charles Wetmore was expelled from the American Institute of Architects, and the firm of Warren & Wetmore was stripped of its architectural license – forcing the firm to only work on commissions outside of the United

States. Yet despite this, even now, most guidebooks refer to Warren & Wetmore as the sole designers of Grand Central Terminal. On February 2nd 1913 the doors to the great train station officially opened to the public after 10 years of construction and at a cost of more than $2 billion in today’s dollars. Built and named for the New York Central Railroad in the hey-day of American long-distance passenger rail travel, this Beaux-Arts architectural masterpiece remains the largest train station in world, with 67 tracks serving 44 platforms, dispersed over two levels both below ground. Included among those tracks is the now abandoned Track 61. Originally built as an underground freight connection between Grand Central and the nearby Waldorf-Astoria Hotel, it was later utilized by President Franklin D. Roosevelt during World War II, allowing him to secretly enter the hotel for clandestine visits to New York. Many have also suggested that this



STYLE / ARCHITECTURE secret means of entering the City enabled the Now owned by a private equity company, ing of property rights, the Penn Central Railroad President to hide to the world that he was wheel- and leased to the Metropolitan Transportation appealed the decision all the way to the Supreme chair bound due to polio. Authority (MTA), Grand Central is visited annu- Court. In 1978 the Court upheld the landmarks Track 61 is not the only secret hidden behind ally by 21.6 million people making it one of New law in what was then a watershed case. Yet despite its limestone facade. A room, known only as M42, York’s most sought after landmarks. But it didn’t apparently saving the building, Grand Central is located somewhere in the sub-basement. Absent always used to be that way… was left to fall into disrepair, becoming a favorfrom any blue-prints of the building, its very ex- In its hey-day the equivalent of 40 percent of ite destination for the City’s homeless. Not until istence was only acknowledged in the late 1980’s, the U.S. population traveled through the terminal 1994 when the MTA signed its long term lease and its exact location still remains classified. Why every year. Yet after World War II long-distance did the renaissance commence. Led by architects the secrecy? Well, hidden behind its doors are the rail travel fell into a major decline, due to the Beyer Blinder Belle, Grand Central underwent the controls and mechanics (where alternating current growing competition from government subsi- exhaustive restoration and renovation that it so becomes direct current) for New York’s entire dized highways and the immergence of domestic desperately needed in order to return it to its former transportation network – a network that transports commercial airlines. Many felt that the passen- glory. Blackout paint, which had remained since more than one million people each week up and ger railroads had outlived their usefulness, and World War II, was removed from the windows down the eastern seaboard. as these once great companies fought for survival allowing sunlight to flood into the main con Not only designed as a transportation hub, their only means of generating income was to cash course for the first time in 50 years. The ceilGrand Central was designed to convey a sense of in on the real estate that they owned. At one time ing over the main concourse was cleaned of the grand luxury and opulence, nicotine and cigarette smoke echoing the emergence of that had formed over the “Is it not cruel to let our city die by degrees, stripped of all her New York as an internationyears, blackening out the proud monuments, until there will be nothing left of all her history al metropolis on par with once bright constellations. and beauty to inspire our children? If they are not inspired by the London and Paris. Perhaps A single dark patch remains the grandest example of this over Michael Jordan’s Steakpast of our city, where will they find the strength to fight for her new found wealth was the house to remind us of the red carpet that was famously future? Americans care about their past, but for short term gain grime that used to be presrolled out every time the exent. Likewise, a single hole they ignore it and tear down everything that matters. Maybe… this clusive 20th Century Limited is the time to take a stand, to reverse the tide, so that we won’t all remains in the ceiling, just above the depiction of Piarrived. Referred to as The sces, a reminder of a 1950’s Most famous Train in the end up in a uniform world of steel and glass boxes.” NASA rocket that was once World, it ran 958 miles in – Jacqueline Kennedy Onasis displayed in the main con16 hours, departing Grand Central at 6pm and arriving at Chicago’s LaSalle the largest corporation in America, the Pennsyl- course – and which proved to be a few inches too Street Station the following morning at 9am. vania Railroad now took the decision to demolish tall, piercing the ceiling upon installation. Perhaps the most noticeable element of Paul Newman and Robert Shaw famously played its great station, making way for a new subterra- a game of poker while making a similar over- nean train station, a commercially viable office the renovation came when a drawing was disnight journey in the movie The Sting, and Cary building, and the current Madison Square Garden covered, dating back to 1911, clearly indicating Grant and Eva Marie Saint dined aboard in Alfred arena. And so in 1964, a mere 54 years after its that the main concourse was intended to have Hitchcock’s North-By-Northwest. Not content completion, and after being hailed as the great- matching staircases at both its east and west end. with just being the backdrop of some of the silver est architectural and engineering endeavor of its However, when the terminal opened in 1913, screens most famous movies, Grand Central be- time, the demolition of Penn Station commenced. only the west staircase leading to Vanderbilt came the home of the latest invention – television. Its once majestic granite columns and intricately Avenue was built. Permission was eventually grantFrom 1939 until 1964, CBS Television occupied carved marble moldings were unceremoniously ed to add a new east staircase on the proviso that it a large portion of Grand Central (above the main dumped in New Jersey’s Secaucus Marshes, be both compatible with, yet significantly differwaiting room facing onto 42nd Street), from where and later pulverized for landfill. Just two days after ent from, the west staircase – in order to show that they broadcast the CBS Evening News. From this demolition commenced an editorial in the it was not part of the original construction. Leadstudio Walter Cronkite famously reported the as- New York Times justly prophesied that “we will ing up to the mezzanine that now houses the Apple sassination of President John F. Kennedy. In 1966 probably be judged not by the monuments we Store, the new east staircase uses identical materials, and massing, but upon closer inspection lacks the studios were converted into a sports club with build but by those we have destroyed.” In 1968 the two rival railroads, in an attempt the elaborately carved scrolled console present at two tennis courts, which later were operated by to fend off bankruptcy, combined to form the the original west staircase. real estate mogul Donald Trump. Originally built during the American Renais Trumps involvement with Grand Central Penn Central Railroad. With a rising crime rate, started back in 1975, when he purchased the ad- and the City itself in decline and facing bankrupt- sance, the extensive restoration and renovation jacent Commodore Hotel for $10 million, trans- cy, it appeared as if Grand Central would suffer allowed Grand Central to be reborn, becoming forming it into the Grand Hyatt Hotel. As part of the same fate as Penn Station. But the loss of the a symbol of New York City’s renaissance as a the complex tax negotiations, Trump agreed to great McKim Mead and White masterpiece had whole. Once again it occupies its position next renovate the exterior of the terminal in return for enraged New Yorkers, and galvanized a diverse to the Statue of Liberty, the Brooklyn Bridge, an option on the rail yards located on the Hudson movement – led by architect Philip Johnson and and the Empire State Building, as monuments of River between 59th and 72nd Streets, in what would former first lady Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis - to the City. As Vincent Scully memorably wrote of become Trump Place - the largest private devel- protect the remaining station, and other architec- the new Penn Station, “One used to enter the City like a God - one scuttles in now like a rat.” Thanks opment in Manhattan. Trump would later sell his tural landmarks, from the wrecking ball. The New York Landmarks Preservation to the monument that is Grand Central Terminal interest in the Grand Hyatt Hotel for $142 million, cementing his reputation, and firmly establishing Commission was founded, and in 1965 Grand as well as those that dreamed it, designed it, saved himself as a force to be reckoned with in the world Central was designated a historic building. Claim- it and restored it – visitors to New York can still ing the designation was an unconstitutional tak- enter the City like a God. of New York real estate. Phillip James Dodd is a well regarded expert on classical architecture and interiors, whose designs can be found in Manhattan, Greenwich and Palm Beach. He is also the author of the highly acclaimed The Art of Classical Details. His latest book An Ideal Collaboration will be released in Spring 2015.



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Living Gourmet, The Fred Bollaci Way Crowning Thomas Henkelmann & Homestead Inn as Connecticut’s Premier Golden Palate Partners Written by Cindy Clarke The last thing you want to do when you are dining at an award-winning French restaurant is think about your diet. After all just the mere thought of a culinary rich dinner, exquisitely prepared by a chef not only schooled by the masters, but trained at a restaurant that was awarded three coveted Michelin stars makes this verboten anyway you look at it. Except, of course, if you are Fred Bollaci, the most inspirational and fabulously fit gourmet food expert to burst on the mind-your-calories scene with a healthy dining message unheard of to date. An attorney, author and self-styled lifestyle expert, Fred Bollaci ate his way to a 150 pound weight loss in just one year while dining at leading gourmet restaurants in the United States and Europe. His nutritional feast took him from Palm Beach to New York City and the Hamptons, up the



New England Coast, across the country to California and on to Italy. He was wined and dined, feted and fed by the best chefs in the world, savoring and sampling the finest food and wines available today…which is why Venü was especially eager, mouth wateringly so, to join him for dinner at the newly anointed Golden Palate Partner, Thomas Henkelmann Restaurant at Homestead Inn in Greenwich, Connecticut. Discerning patrons from all over the world have flocked here for its contemporary French fare and elegant white glove hospitality ever since owners Thomas and Theresa Henkelmann first invited guests to dinner and an overnight stay in 1997. Monkeys from the St. James Club in the Place Vendôme in Paris playfully pose from nooks and crannies watching over patrons enchanted with the setting. Treasures collected from

the Portuguese Spice Route inspire beverages in the handsome wood paneled bar. Sitting rooms with Zebra club chairs are warmed by fireplaces and striking Moroccan and Indian accents. Bed chambers, spacious and soothing, are constantly evolving to tell storied tales that are personally pleasing and historically fascinating. They come for the food too, of course, where appetizers tease with tastes extraordinaire, entrées are dressed in delicate sauces that are kissed with garden fresh herbs and seasonings flavor full, and desserts promise ecstasy, sinfully

at some of Europe’s finest restaurants as well as his German sensibility to pay meticulous attention to every detail. My grandparents were German so I am familiar with the oft-repeated saying “Wenn schon, denn schon.” Loosely translated, it means that if something is worth doing, it is worth doing right. Half way will

Discerning patrons from all over the world have flocked here for its contemporary French fare and elegant white glove hospitality ever since owners Thomas and Theresa Henkelmann first invited guests to dinner and an overnight stay in 1997.

sensual and palate pleasing with every bite. But they are equally enamored with the service and presentation, the beautiful table d’art experience that has earned Chef Henkelmann internationally coveted distinction as Grand Chef, Tradition et Qualite, Les Grandes Tables du Monde by Relais & Châteaux, along with receiving a 4-star rating by The New York Times. Hailing from Germany’s Black Forest region near the Alsatian border of France – steeped in tradition, it’s famous for its wines and cuisine – Chef Henkelmann’s culinary creations are deeply rooted in the soul of the countries where he first lived and worked. They reflect both his classic training in French haute cuisine

never do. Spend an evening at the Inn and these words of wisdom come to life in the impeccable décor of the restaurant, the attentive efficiency of its über-professional, always accommodating wait staff, the outstanding collection of wines, sommelier selected to pair perfectly with its carefully crafted menu choices, and the restaurant’s “passionate commitment to exceptional dining quality.” I am borrowing a phrase here, quoting one of the standards by which Fred Bollaci evaluates dining establishments like Thomas Henkelmann for his Signature Golden Palate Partner awards, a well-earned recognition that is poised to turn the tables on the way diners approach healthy eating and dieting – without sacrificing flavor, finesse or fun. Those restaurants that meet Fred’s standards only use the freshest, highest quality seasonal ingredients for their menus In spite of my trepidations – among them the thought of doggedly declining a glass of my favorite French wine, passing on crusty baguettes warm from the oven, ordering salad sans dressing, and eating a simply grilled fish

or chicken breast, skin off – the scene was set for a night of treats that would prove to be eyeopening, palate pleasing, waist-watching and surprisingly doable. “It’s more about eating gourmet food, your way,” explained Fred as we sat down for dinner together in a restaurant where even the hand-painted plates, exclusively created by artist Annie-Paul for Thomas Henkelmann, looked delicious. Eating healthy should be part of your lifestyle he told me. And if that includes dining out at fine dining establishments most nights, then you might want to know how to indulge without adding an unwanted bulge. Determined to lose weight the way he did and still savor every wonderful melt-in-your-mouth morsel, I vowed to have what he was having. Fred got the night rolling by ordering a glass of champagne to toast our dinner, telling me that denial is not part of his healthy gourmet lifestyle. I switched it up a bit by succumbing to a glass of red wine, 125 calories of French fruit of the vine. As a certified sommelier, Fred’s healthy gourmet approach naturally incorporates fine wine as a complement to most meals. While we were sipping and savoring, out came the chef’s amuse bouche, a bite-size serving of baby shrimp two ways, sautéed in a red wine sauce infused with shallots and embraced by a blush of lobster sauce, that put a tentative smile on my face. I looked over at my coach for his call. “Enjoy,” he said. After devouring that first tasty tidbit I was already prepared to skip the appetizing appetizers. Fred surprised me again by ordering the soup du jour, a medley of organic vine-ripened tomatoes feathered with basil hand picked from the garden out back – without the semolina dumplings. “Soup, filling and fulfilling, is always a great choice to keep you from overdoing it later,” Fred advised. “And you really don’t need the dumplings,” he added, saying that the best restaurants will accommodate your requests. He noted, “Having consommé or broth before meals decreases your cravings for more food.” The soup sounded good but what about the Yellow Fin Tuna, seared rare and served cold with mango-pineapple chutney, micro greens



APPETITE “The best chefs, like Thomas Henkelmann, will go out of their way to make sure their guests are satisfied,” said Fred. “Restaurants that will not accommodate special dietary requests are not places where I want to dine.” Or places that receive the coveted nod from Fred Bollaci’s Golden Palate recommendations I learned. To make Fred Bollaci’s esteemed list, restaurants have to be at the top of their game in every way. Quality is key – organic farmto-table ingredients as well as vegetarian and gluten-free options top the list – as is gracious, unpretentious hospitality. According to Fred Bollaci, what distinguishes a good restaurant from a great Golden Palate partner is the “staff, chefs, and owners who go the extra mile to personalize the dining experience, who take the time to get to know their clients, and anticipate

“Stop eating when you’re a little shy of full,” said Fred. “Listen to your body and learn what you need to stay healthy.”

and light curry vinaigrette, that caught my eye? “Go for it,” said my dining buddy, who affirmed that a small serving of each of these ingredients was well within reason. I was beginning to fall in love my new healthy gourmet lifestyle at this point, wondering what I had to cut out when it came to ordering the main course. Regrettably but wisely, we passed on the bread. I watched as Fred took a sip of water, then another one, slowly soaking in the elegant ambiance of the Inn’s dining room. “Drinking a lot of water between courses helps you feel fuller sooner, negating the desire to eat things you really don’t need.” Like the bread, I thought. Throughout our dinner Fred counseled me with advice hard won and faithfully followed. “Make sure you are modifying your behavior for the right reasons. For example, if you go on a diet to impress someone with your weight loss, your plan won’t likely succeed. The best reason for starting something new is to do it for your own wellbeing. Transformation requires meaningful motivation, personal commitment and self-discipline.” Fred’s transformation included learning to enjoy food and wine more, while consuming less and exercising daily. He reminded me that successful pursuits required focusing on what you can do and not what you can’t do. I made a mental note to remember that. He also said it is important to eat what you like. “Eating healthy gourmet food is not about what you are giving up, but what you are getting that’s important.” Less is more when it comes to gourmet dining so Fred makes it a point to enjoy small portions of the foods he loves, never hesitating to ask the waiters to modify the menu to meet his needs.



their needs. Restaurants, hotels and destinations that truly understand this distinction and do their very best to create an environment where their guests not only feel welcome, cared for and appreciated, but also are made to feel at home, earn the coveted Golden Palate Partners Certificate of Excellence and membership in an exclusive family.” Which bring us back to our gourmet, your way, dinner, where we were just about to order the main course. I was feeling happily satisfied at this point in the meal, having delighted in a midway salad of Boston lettuce, topped with tiny lingonberries and shaved parmesan and kissed by a drizzle of black truffle oil, although I wondered if I would be allowed to imbibe in a second glass of wine with my entrée. I waited for Fred to give me a cue. He ordered a glass of wine with the special striped Sea Bass, a mild white fish, dressed in herbs and finished to melt-in-your-mouth perfection. The menu said it was prepared with jumbo asparagus, leaf spinach and fingerling potato purée; Fred asked our waiter to leave off the potatoes. I mimicked his order, thrilled that I was practicing the mindful dining that Fred espoused. Nirvana on a plate followed, effectively negating any thought of dessert. Is this how Fred did it? It seemed to me that he allowed himself healthy tastes of his favorite foods, tempered his appetite with wise choices, water and waiting, and savored, slowly, the entire dining experience without rushing food from his plate to his fork. Would he order dessert? Fresh berries would typically be his dessert of choice but truth be told, our dinner at the Thomas Henkelmann restaurant in the Homestead Inn proved to be one of the most satisfying and gratifying meals

I’ve had in recent memory, and both of us were too full to eat another bite. As we sat at the table, Chef Henkelmann surprised us with a plate of sweet confections that under different circumstances would be impossible to resist. “Stop eating when you’re a little shy of full,” said Fred. “Listen to your body and learn what you need to stay healthy.” What you need, I learned, is a healthy gourmet lifestyle that is all about quality, not quantity, a credo that Chef Henkelmann also strictly adhered to. “I believe in honest, clean cooking,” he said, authentic in every way and avoiding artificial anything. “I use seasonal vegetables and fruits in my dishes, many from our own garden out back.” He sources his meat from farms faithful to natural, organic practices. His seafood virtually swims to his kitchen. He always checks out each product before serving it to his guests, then he presents it so that it looks inviting in every way. Think Monet of the culinary world and you’ll get an idea of both the artistic vision and impressive execution with which he plies his craft. His menus showcase his passion on a plate, perfected over his 18-year reign at this Connecticut gem. What makes dining here even more memorable is the Chef’s genuine love of cooking and conversation, both of which were stimulating, satisfying and an exercise in good taste. Which, I might add, is very similar to Fred’s philosophy on dining out. I asked Fred where he was headed next, eager to hear about more Golden Palate Partner destinations like the Thomas Henkelmann. He shared an itinerary that sounded like the who’s who of leading restaurants, many of which are spotlighted with recipes in reviews, blogs and videos on his website. His upcoming memoir ~ The Golden Palate Diet and Lifestyle” ™ Your Life Your Way Gourmet!™ ~ includes healthy gourmet recipes from 80 of the nation’s top restaurants from coast-to-coast, and is currently being reviewed by major publishing houses. His memoir and Michelin-esque Golden Palate Guide to Healthy Gourmet Dining, and both due out in 2015-2016. He also recently named 70 Golden Palate Italia Partners throughout Italy and is also currently writing a follow-up book on healthy gourmet living and dining in Italy. In his role as the gourmet guru, he covers a lot of ground, literally. Key to his diet transformation is his dedication to exercise, not with personal trainers, but with a personally motivated regimen of walking, jogging, swimming, and cycling, and the occasional marathon. Some 150 pounds ago, Fred admitted that he had trouble walking into some of his favorite restaurants where he was reluctant to walk away from the table before stuffing himself. “Take that first step,” said Fred, “and keep on going. You’ll be pretty amazed at where it takes you.”

To learn more about Fred Bollaci Enterprises, LLC, the definitive international authority on healthy gourmet living, visit To learn more about Thomas Henkelmann and Homestead Inn, located in Greenwich, Connecticut, visit

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Westport, CT office space with art collection.

Roger Ferris

Essays in Modern Architecture By Cindy Clarke


ew Canaan, Connecticut, by all accounts the quintessential New England village rooted in tradition, boasts white steepled charms, lushly manicured estates steeped in a rich colonial heritage and fieldstone walls, meandering, magnificently, through acres of pastoral landscapes, while safeguarding the homesteads that lie within. But there’s a dichotomy of architectural expression here that defies any predetermined images the uninformed visitor may have. For tucked away in its Elysian fields is a bevy of mid-century modern houses that caused quite a stir in the 1940s and ‘50s when the Harvard Five came to town, with many still standing today to disrupt expectations. It is in this bucolic setting of juxtaposed buildings and glass boxes masquerading as houses that an aspiring architect, who moved to New Canaan from Dallas, Texas, with his family at age 14, found his inspiration. Dare we refer to him as the Harvard 6th?



“I was the kid who built twig towns in the backyard,” admitted Roger Ferris, a graduate and Loeb Fellow of Harvard University’s Graduate School of Design, when I sat down with him in his striking Westport office. He built it too, of course, a marvel of modern design reflecting his free flowing vision and a clarity of purpose and art that first takes shape in a story. Before he starts any project, he puts pen to paper. But not in the way you may think. His architectural narrative initially unfolds in a stream of consciousness blueprint that weaves in and out of time and place in a continuous flowing series of words, imagined images and ideas – visual, physical, associative, and subliminal – that are constantly moving forward in time. The details evolve on the page. The setting, grounded in an earthly landscape, remains constant, although it takes on new life and perspectives as the story emerges. The plot, revealed in its own time, is not as important as the outcome, which, by Ferris’s

own admission, has to be “meaningful in every way.” “Writing makes me think about it deeply. I have to verbalize it, visualize it and wait for it to unfold and explain itself in a more elaborate and detailed way before I start drawing. It has to have real depth before it becomes reality.” Nothing he does is by happenstance. He believes in understanding the foundation of a project from the ground up. He investigates each site physically and pragmatically, determining what informs it, its orientation to natural light, its relationship to the client and its end use, how to honor the land it will sit on. He resists the urge to draw his vision right away, instead imagining what it might be when completed. “I don’t have any preconceived notions when I meet with my clients,” he said, preferring to respond to their needs and visualize what they want while they speak. “As architects, our work operates on many levels that take time to assert themselves.” The results, uniquely voiced, speak

Above; New Canaan art estate with Phillip Johnson’s Wiley House in foreground and private gallery in background with underground pool house showing at left. Bottom; Abstracted Red Barn guest house rendering currently under construction.




Above; South facing public facade of RBS building. Below; The interior private 2 acre courtyard on the 8th floor. Right; Rear view of the Bridge Clubhouse showing individual blades all framing distant water views.

for themselves. In his 30+ year reign as one of the most visionary contemporary architects in the world, his innovative design solutions, both commercial and residential, have turned heads, challenged imaginations and defied convention, while winning more than 70 regional and national awards and international citations for the work spearheaded by his firm. He sees everything architecturally. So it’s not surprising that his passion for designing free spirited, artistically poetic buildings reflect his attitude on life, imbuing each project with progressive architectural elements that herald a bright new future and emphasize a seamless, uncluttered communion with the natural world. As a teenager he worked closely with American architect Victor Christ-Janer, who along with the Harvard Five helped define the Modernist architectural movement in New Canaan. ChristJaner was also an educator, artist and inventor who applied his interests in art, art conservation, teaching, writing, and open space conservation to his work much as Ferris does today. “I accompanied him on his lectures and in the field,” said Ferris, an avid student of building whose admiration of Christ-Janer and his fellow architects is evident in both conversation and practice. His restoration work on the Wiley House in New Canaan, originally designed by ruleshattering modernist Philip Johnson for Robert C. Wiley in 1953, followed the path first set out by its original architect, before going underground and outside the box in a new art barn, pool house and garage. The four-bedroom, 3,000 square foot house, described as a “strikingly simple composition of two rectangular boxes” on six acres of country heaven, had the feel of an art object when Frank Gallipoli, an avid collector of contemporary art, bought in 1994 after it languished on the 50


market because “nobody wanted anything to do with it.” Much of his art was too imposing to exhibit in a traditional residential setting so he contracted fellow art enthusiast Roger Ferris to design a private gallery on the property, along with other renovation work that was needed on the existing house. In keeping with the New England feel of the site, Ferris built the gallery, a study in understatement, meticulous and minimalist, on the foundations of the old barn, calling it the “perfect sculptural form” to house works of art that refused to be upstaged.

He also reimagined the circular pool and underground pool house – like the four bedrooms of the house which are nestled below living areas between exposed stone walls, the pool house peeks out from under stone walls that link the reconstructed 19th century barn – renovated the main house and built a new garage, taking care to revive them as unified, site-specific works of art on a residential campus that hints at the projects Ferris is most at home with. “The house was basically a simple glass box that we took apart and rebuilt to its original specifications. The old stone plinth became the

“Every day brings new experiences that require new expressions. I am not even close to knowing what kind of architectural legacy I would leave. For me, there is no finish line – just endless beginnings.” common element that tied all the new buildings we added together. We carried the walls across the property and built the barn on top of them,” explained Ferris, who said he learns things from every project he undertakes and brings a repository of ideas and thought lessons with him to the next. His recent project, a golf course clubhouse set on a former racetrack in Bridgehampton, similarly fueled his passion for boundary-breaking creativity while honoring the legacy of the site he was building on. Ferris was commissioned by financier Bob Rubin to build an unconventionally informal clubhouse for the conventionally aristocratic game of golf, whose first elite private clubs in the United States made their high society debut in the Hamptons in the 1890s. That Rubin picked The Bridge as the site of his new break-all-therules golf club appealed to Ferris, not only for its craggy landscapes and the vistas of Sag Harbor and Shelter Island that surround it, but also for the stories that emerge from its past history as a famous celebrity racetrack, frequented by Paul Newman and other thrill-seeking speedsters. He describes it as “the most outside-the-box club in the United States,” regaling me with freewheeling images of its site-specific green design, literally and naturally sustainable, with minimal intervention into the preexisting landscape, self-regenerating with native grasses, shrubs and trees. The clubhouse, Zen-like in ambiance and built of harvested cypress and a mix of recycled materials, takes shape in bladelike forms like those of the busted turbine wheel Ferris found on a walk around the 300-acre property. Each “blade” creates the idea of movement as it forms a distinct function room and frames a particular view, letting in abundant natural light that negates the need for artificial daytime lighting. The front is all wood, with artfully designed trellises that

suggest the abstract warmth of a porch. Some of the interior walls are made from cool, sleek Corian. Remnants of the racetrack itself add more whimsy inside the building in billboards, neon signs, movie posters and more. And the service dock, utilitarian by necessity but circular and sculptural in form, bears a deliberate resemblance to the holes found on the surrounding 18-hole course and is linked to the clubhouse through an underground tunnel. True to his intentions, everything he created here has meaning, past, present and future. His eye for green building technologies is not limited to golf greens or residential home sites alone. His penchant for designing space that soars beyond expectations is showcased in the one million square foot state-of-the-art headquarters he and his firm collaborated on for Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) in Stamford. It accommodates upwards of 3,000 RBS employees and 2,000 of their cars, catering to their comfort and corporate culture with such innovative work spaces as an airy 100,000-sq-ft sixth-floor trading floor for up to 1,400 traders with two walls of floor-to-ceiling windows, a six-story glass atrium with escalators that connects the trading floor to the 11th floor and an “amenities floor” that hosts a one-acre roof garden with views of the adjacent Mill River, mahogany and granite surfaces, a full kitchen and 120-person dining facility, a 10,000sq-ft fitness center with sauna and full locker room, a sports bar, coffee shops and restaurants. He spent months contemplating the intricacies and efficiencies of Edinburgh’s imposing Scottish castle, the centuries-old centerpiece of Scotland’s capital city, before envisioning how the palatial US-based project would manifest into present day. He ultimately designed it as a European-style mid-rise office block 12 stories high that forms a J-shape with the majority of

the building’s five stories of above-grade parking camouflaged by the building’s wraparound design. And yes, it too stands as a castle, thoughtfully fortified with renewable energy sources and LEED-certified conservation-oriented technologies, in the middle of a world-class city. Fascinated by our conversation, about conservation and building philosophies, design continuities and disruptions, creativity of thought and architectural inventions, writing, poetry, modern art, permanence and passages, I asked him what he was working on now. He showed me a rendering of a quintessential red barn he is building on one of the most spectacular properties on Connecticut’s treasured Gold Coast, which coincidentally was once the site of the $7 million Labyrinth home built by one of the Harvard Five, John Johansen, before it was unceremoniously torn down to make way for a new home for celebrity owners Marlo Thomas and Phil Donahue. Imagine a perfectly proportioned red barn, 1-½ stories in height, modeling the vernacular form and crimson color of a New England dairy farm barn, but with a contemporary twist. Instead of wood, Roger Ferris’s barn is a study in cement, painted red, from the siding to the roof, with louvered windows that belie their presence on either end to disappear from view. This straightforward design, box-like in its simplicity, is anything but. I was thinking that his interpretation of this iconic red barn epitomizes the essence of Ferris’s work… timeless in nature, rife with meaning, site specific and profound, reflecting the duality of purpose and expression that he is inherently drawn to. Is this the kind of legacy he would like to be known for? After feeling his passion for architectural storytelling and discovering that his mind works overtime when it comes to his projects, I shouldn’t have been at all surprised by his answer. “Every day brings new experiences that require new expressions. I am not even close to knowing what kind of architectural legacy I would leave. For me, there is no finish line – just endless beginnings.” I can’t wait to see where tomorrow’s new chapters take him.




ANGELIKA BUETTNER Uncovering the Cover Girls


nterviewing celebrities, whether they are world-renowned philanthropists, rockers, artists, chefs, authors or so many other notable people who have parlayed their passions into the limelight, is always amazing for me. I look forward to these meetings with the unbridled enthusiasm of a small child on her birthday, so excited to go deep and unwrap those little gems that come up in candid conversations with superstars who, as our stories attest, never fail to turn out to be genuinely friendly, approachable and down to earth. But when Venß asked me to profile fashion photographer Angelika Buettner, whose work radiates a sensuality that literally breathes right off the page, I admittedly was a little intimidated. Angelika is a film star in her own right, not for her work in front of the camera, but what she does from behind the lens. She excels as a commercial photographer, sought after and contracted by consumer giants like Audi, Bacardi, L’Oreal, Maybelline, Frey Willie and Swarovski to make their products irresistibly desirable and ultimately provocative. Her models are mostly women, elegant, feminine and eye-candy luscious, and while their looks are naturally striking, it is how Angelika portrays them to set the mood for her photographs that makes an indelible impression on the viewer. Close-ups reveal lips, lipstick rich, that draw you in with whispered suggestions that make you blush. Doe-eyed faces gaze into your thoughts. Mouths pout and pucker, breasts flirt with strategically draped accessories that exude innocence and bodies, often boldly bare, speak volumes about real beauty inside and out. >

Written by CINDY CLARKE Photography by ANGELIkA BUETTNER



Exhibition of work on display from March 12 - April 9, 2012 Lillian August, 32 Knight Street, CT 203-847-3314 CONTEMPORARY Norwalk, CULTURE//MAGAZINE 53





rofessionally applied make-up and air brushing notwithstanding, it is the inner glow that radiates from every one of Angelika’s posed images that has made her a hot name in the international advertising world, which, after what she has on the books now, is destined to become hotter still. Born and raised in Germany, Angelika, a Bavarian beauty with model good looks herself, has always been drawn to the arts. She studied in Frankfurt, landing her first job at age 23 as an artist right out of University before taking her dreams to Paris where she worked with a premier ad agency renowned for creating some of the best-known and most iconic advertising campaigns of the last century. Her sensibilities as an artist defined her work as one of the industry’s most fashion forward photographers, quickly helping her to chronicle her talents into a showcase of advertising portraits that blur the line between commercialism and art, much like Richard Avedon did. She told me that each assignment was different for her – sometimes she was given full artistic reign over her shoots, freeing her to craft the mood and the models with her sensuous touch. Other times she had to work within strict creative parameters. But no matter the limitations, her eye for visual expression was transformative, putting a whole new perspective on the advertising campaigns she worked on for her clients. Take a look at her European fashion portraits and you’ll feel an immediate intimacy with the models, men and women both, who are selling fragrances, jeans, jewelry, lingerie, watches and more as though they were being caressed by a thoughtful lover, exuding come hither reactions that arouse attention in an ethereal way. Of course, this is the subliminal messaging goal of savvy marketers who know how to appeal to our innate desires by making us think that we will look like that if only we were wearing that perfume, that necklace, those sunglasses. And Angelika Buettner is a pro at making us want what they’re having. Working off her mood boards, Angelika is a master of expressive imagery. Her editorial spreads in premier European consumer and fashion magazines, among them Italy’s Vogue Sposa, are instantly captivating, playing off aesthetically sensual pictorial vignettes rather than words to evoke thought provoking stories of innocence, intrigue and inspiration. Inherently romantic, her work renders me speechless. Self-conscious at first, partly in awe, mostly envious of the beauty she champions – gorgeous women, no, make that goddesses who epitomize the fantasy woman: thin, willowy, sexy, elegant, feminine, desirable, perfectly packaged, naked or clothed, from head to toe – and hugely impressed by her talents, I asked her what legacy would she like to leave as a photographer if she had the freedom to express herself without restriction. >






Inspired by Amedeo Modigliani





his is where our interview let the formalities fall away to bare the essence of her passion… and give us a sneak peek at the nudes she is currently photographing for her new book, all of whom are 40+ and are surprisingly comfortable in their own skin – and just their skin. “All women, no matter how young or old, are naturally beautiful,” she said. True beauty, she says, is heart sent, not man made. She has been photographing young models all her life, who have been professionally styled, primped and painted to look ravishing in print. But the women she sees in everyday life, women who have loved, lived and logged in more than twice as many years as the nubile girls she has photographed, are the ones she finds most inspirational now. She talked about her personal book project where she pairs spirit with flesh, describing it as a spiritual undertaking for which she has no budget or preconceived stories. “My work is intuitive,” she revealed, always leaving space for the unknown to make its way into her vision. “My book is artwork inspired and allows the women I photograph to tell their own stories and speak their own passions, without the trappings of the material world,” she said. The women who have posed for her book, volunteers all, are of varying age and shape but they all share a common intangible characteristic that so many of us strive for but few truly achieve: the courage to let go, be daring, be ourselves and as one of her models said, “become more, not less.” She shoots her mature models outside where they are free to express themselves without any boundaries, literally and figuratively. Here the lighting, as the bodies, is as nature intended. Shadows and sunshine illuminate the women with grace, ensuring an untouched and honest portrayal of life. And while Angelique is very much at home shooting models in all stages of dress or undress, she says she has been captivated by the pure joy she captures on film as the women she photographs find an exhilaration they may not have expected in their nakedness. That unadulterated joy virtually leaps off the photos she has taken and is reinforced by the candid comments her models openly shared about their experience. “There are so many older women out there who should show the world just how beautiful they really are,” she said, and “I would be honored to give them a voice, a visual and a venue to do just that.” What she has already accomplished pays well-deserved tribute to women who are living proof that “a woman who believes in the truth of her beauty becomes truly beautiful, shining forth and radiating from the inside through her poise and confidence.” But you’ll have to wait until the cover comes off her finished project to take a look.




Photo by Michael Geng

Photo by Michael Geng

Photo: Todd Brown

David signals a confident thumbs up from his Pescarolo at Sebring in 2013

David Porter: An Understated Champion By Marianne Brunson Frisch


avid Porter’s genuine, humble and unassuming nature belies his automobile-related accomplishments. With his keen eye for car collecting and good-natured competitive spirit, David modestly clinches awards at car shows and racing events. He consistently commands the racetrack, securing a career 10 racing championships, nine in the United States and one in England. Vintage car racing is David’s passion. “The concentrated pursuit is characterbuilding and instructive on how to be a better driver, not only a faster one. While winning is the goal, victory is achieved through fair-and-square sportsmanship,” he explains. David embraces the Sportscar Vintage Racing Association’s mission to “promote the historical preservation and use of racing cars” with their caveat that “the pleasure of ‘Taking Part’ must exceed the desire to ‘Win at All Cost’.” A September 2014 outing at Watkins Glen International, Watkins Glen, New York, garnered David three wins from pole position in his 2007 Pescarolo Judd LMP1; he dominated the Historic Enduro competition


in the Glenora Wine Cellars U.S. Vintage Grand Prix in the same car that João Barbosa, Stuart Hall and Martin Short steered to fourth place (highest places privateer) at the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 2007. David states, “such cars are intended to be driven. To put this car away and not drive it would be a crime.” He shares Robert Daley’s sentiment in his book Cars at Speed that the car is “for racing only. It is the ultimate. It is bred for speed and glory.” It was a 1953-54 die-cast Cadillac Eldorado Dinky Toy that initially sparked David’s penchant for all things automotive as a young boy in northern England. A gift from his father, the Matchbox-type vehicle whetted his interest and poised him for the excitement of a family friend’s purchase of a 1958 Renault Dauphine and a trip to the Charterhall races in northeast England. Thrilled by single-seater racing, which he viewed from behind protective barrier straw bales, David determined that he, too, would one day master the circuits. Basement slot racing was his first venue, competing among like-minded early teen enthusiast friends with their hand-

built, electric cars. He zipped through the back roads of Scotland at the age of 12 in a friend’s brother’s Morris Minor. Finally legal at 17, David’s father lent him money to buy a 1961 Ford Popular, which he equipped with an accelerator stop to limit David’s speed to 45 mph. David quickly removed the device prescient of his racing endeavors. David’s quest for speed was fed by his daily-driver Minis and Lotus Cortinas and Elans, which also saw some track action. His Formula Ford debut in a single-seater, 120-horsepower Royale RP16 Formula Ford netted him a respectable 21st place David checks on his 1971 Lotus 69 Formula Ford at the Lime Rock Park Historic Festival 2012.


Left, David rounds a turn in his Pescarolo on the way to first place victory in a 2013 Daytona Historic Sportscar Racing outing. Below left, David won first place in the Sebring Historic Sportscar Racing endurance event, 2013. Photo by Max Itin

David’s road cars are often invited to concours shows: 1958 Jaguar XK150S, 1970 Lotus Elan and 2008 Ferrari 599 GTB Fiorano.

Photo by Michael Geng

out of 125 entrants at Mallory Park, England. He secured the National British Champion title at the 1987 British Racing and Sports Car Club (BRSCC) championship in an Elden Mark X. In 1988, David was a sponsored Argo JM6 driver on a Formula 3 team. Regrettably, his professional career ended after five races when the team owner withdrew funding due to an economic downturn. A business-related relocation brought David to Connecticut in 1989 and to the track at Lime Rock Park, Lakeville, Conn. An adept rain driver on the English circuits, David outpaced his competitors by 71 seconds in the pouring rain in his Hawke DL20 to win the Sports Car Club of America (SCCA), North Atlantic Road Racing Championship Runoffs that year. David and his “wings and slicks” FF2000 car saw United States Auto Club and SCCA action from 1992 through 1994. David charged onto the vintage racing scene in 2005 after a 10-year racing hiatus, competing in an open-wheel 1979 March 79B Formula Atlantic car in the tradition of racing greats Bobby Rahal and Gilles Villeneuve. The March and his 1971 Lotus 69 Formula Ford, one of only 19 built, have continually been favored cars for David in

the Lime Rock Park Historic Festival races. His powerful Lola T97/20 Indy Lights car brought David wins in the 2011 and 2012 Historic Indy Lights Championship. David and his 2007 Pescarolo Judd LMP1 captured first place in a two-hour, endurance Historic Sportscar Racing (HSR) event at Daytona International Speedway, Florida, in November 2013. A month later, he handily finished first in the Sebring HSR endurance race at Sebring International Raceway, Florida, in the same car. He has logged laps and achieved additional success at the challenging Circuit Mont-Tremblant in the Laurentian Mountain, northwest of Montreal; Road America, Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin; Road Atlanta, Braselton, Georgia; and Mid-Ohio, Lexington, Ohio. On- and off-season finds David maintaining and servicing his road cars, a labor of love and time. With no formal training, he has mastered the track and garage, drawing inspiration and his proclivity for Lotus cars from fabled racer Jim Clark, a Scot who hailed from 10 miles from David’s hometown. Winning and camaraderie draw David to his motoring pursuits. Focused, determined and competitive, he fondly recalls a contest with Paul Wallace at the 1987 BRSCC Pre-74 Formula Ford Championship. After racing closely for 16 rounds, David and his Lotus 69 snatched first place in the final race to beat Paul and his Crossle 16F by one-tenth of a second. Tied for the Championship, David captured the title with an extra point earned for driving the fastest lap, a record that stood unbeaten for many years. A 2012 meeting at the HSR Daytona against Andy Wallace, Paul’s brother and 24 Hours of Le Mans, Rolex 24 At Daytona and 12 Hours of Sebring winner, brought sweet

victory for David and a shared hearty laugh for them both as they emerged from their cars at the race’s end. Tightly pitted in first and second place in the qualifying rounds, David and his Pescarolo won the feature race, passing Andy and his Audi R8 LMP1 during the second-to-last lap. Friends gather and socialize at each race to then go flat out against each other on the track. A tight-knit community, vintage racers share tips and lend each other parts—even spare engines—as needed. Children crowd around and climb in the racecars to their and David’s delight. “The social aspect of the car-related community is fantastic,” shares David. David and his wife Patricia participate in motoring enthusiasts club dinners and rallies. The scene shifts from Connecticut to Sarasota, Florida, for the winter months where David and his colleagues continue their automotive conversations. David is a welcomed entrant at car shows and concours events with his spectacular 1958 Jaguar XK150S, 1970 Lotus Elan and 2008 Ferrari 599 GTB Fiorano, earning awards at the Greenwich Concours d’Elegance, Greenwich, Conn.; The Alden Sherman Classic car show, Weston, Conn.; the Lime Rock Park Sunday in the Park Concours, Lakeville, Conn.; British Wheels on the Green, Madison, Conn.; and the Scarsdale Concours d’Elegance, Scarsdale, New York. No trailer queens these beauties, as they get exercise on Sunday mornings and as occasional daily drivers on runs to Whole Foods and Starbucks. David is well-liked as well as respected and admired by his peers for his achievements on the racetrack and show field. His modest and gracious demeanor in his success, however, is what most distinguishes him among champions.






rcadia Yachts – the innovative and unique “eco-friendly” Italian shipyard – has the pleasure to announce the successful US debut of Arcadia 85 in its US edition (hull #8). The layout and the functional living concepts of Arcadia 85 US Edition are the result of a construction evolution: the linear design of the superstructure and the vertical line of the bow allow a better use of every single available internal/external space. Living capacity is wider than other yachts of the same size. The uniqueness of Arcadia’s project is finding in the design solution to integrate solar panels into a yacht with navigation performance. Arcadia’s passion for solar technology and clean mobility is finally expressed in this 26mt length and 7.15 width yacht equipped with 40sqm of photovoltaic panels each composed of hundreds of high performance solar cells. That’s how and where any Arcadia yacht get all the energy for the equipment on board: showers, wc, fridge and lights.



The design of Arcadia 85 reflects simple and understated styling with an harmonious blend between the indoor and outdoor areas. Her deckhouse has been made almost entirely out of double layered reflecting glass, giving the interior a bright and airy feel. The sliding over-head and lateral blinds can provide privacy and shade, as required by the owner and his guests once in port or in bay. Arcadia 85 impressive aft-deck lounge (8,50mt in length) features a wellprotected cockpit, perfect for dining, as well as large sunbathing area towards the stern of the yacht. Arcadia 85 is a semi-planing yacht. Its particular hull (NPL) is named after the National Physical Laboratory of England where tests were conducted to determine the best shape hull and the best ratio length-beam in terms of hydrodynamic efficiency. Studies and tests were implemented by Arcadia’s technical department as well as hull shape - prior to adopt the NPL as Arcadia’s Hulls with the result of excellent

sea keeping qualities and noise reduction for an exceptional comfort while cruising or at anchor. Arcadia 85 hull is built in gel coat and reinforced fiberglass with vinylester resin for the three external layers. Sides are built in PVC sandwich with fiberglass. This particular structure makes an Arcadia yacht considerably light and durable for its size. The advanced semi-planing hull which allows efficient performances together with the very light superstructure in aluminum significantly reduces weight and fuel consumption and related running costs of its low-power engines . The 25.90 meter (84.95ft) Arcadia 85 has a full load displacement of 67 tons. She is powered by twin MAN diesels R6-730hp each (optional engines 2xMAN 800hp), giving her the maximum speed of 18.5 knots and she can comfortably cruise at the speed of 16.5 knots, as well as 12.0 knots. Her range is approx. 850NM @12.0 knots. Arcadia 85 is designed to be a family yacht, which combines different exterior

idea that has combined together functional design and “ethical sense”, appreciation and respect for the environment. An “ecological idea” which translates into ecofriendly solutions, that reduces consumption and environmental impact. To enjoy the sea in a more free and responsible way. Because the future of yachting is a little greener every day. ECOTECH - The most advanced technological research and the best Italian creativity to generate innovative and efficient solutions which define a new “sustainable” frontier in yachting: • FUNCTIONAL DESIGN with a distinct personal touch, to better integrate shapes and components and reach the highest eco-friendly performance; functions in one single deck, giving guests more possibility to spend time together. While interiors profit by the advanced aesthetic sensation of “open space” and closer contact with nature thanks to the full “floor-to-ceiling” windows. Yacht has four guest cabins at the lower deck, including the spectacular owner’s cabin adminship. The room is unusually large with a stunningly beautiful en suite head. The large VIP cabin forward is fitted with double bed and dressing. And there are also two more twin cabins. The bow of the yacht offers space for 4 of crew, which can be accessed through the wheel-house. Yacht assured a remarkable space has been assigned to the crew and technical areas, including the tender garage where a 4+ meter tender and 2 seater Jet Ski can easily be stored. Arcadia 85 main saloon is more intimate and provides space for up to 8 guests. However, the aft deck being well protected against the elements, gives a larger possibility to guest to spend most of the time there, instead of inside. The interior of the yacht features modern furniture by well-known best of “made in Italy” design brands, such as Poltrone Frau, Cassina and Schiffini. Almost all the interiors

are composed of loose pieces of furniture, thus giving the option of modular layouts. In the US version, Arcadia 85 has an openspaced galley to the dining area. Access to the wheelhouse is on the left side. With Arcadia 85 US edition, arrives in US as well, a new way to experience the sea, with innovation and ethical values. Because sailing is a privilege that should be experienced without ostentations, rushing or any kind of waste. To enjoy the sea whilst respecting Nature and the economic value of every single action. A real commitment made of style and substance. A project that has become a new point of reference for the market sector in just a few years. This is our “ecological dream”, which takes place in three different key steps: starting from the ECOTHINK philosophy to ECOTECH innovations, up to a new onboard experience, ECOLIVING. ABOUT ARCADIA YACHTS ECOTHINK - A “green” approach reflects in everything we do, in our everyday life, at work and when making big decisions. This is a lifestyle that Arcadia Yachts has managed to bring into the nautical sector through an

• Double glazing PANELS integrated within the superstructure. This feature ensures maximum comfort whilst re charging the batteries and powering all utilities and services on-board. This is the only way to reduce the use of generators; • HYDRODYNAMIC EFFICIENCY of the semi-displacement hull which requires limited engine power, guaranteeing low consumption, emissions and maintenance costs; • SOPHISTICATED SYSTEMS which provide waste water treatment to avoid pollution; • Optional HYBRID PROPULSION to sail up to 8 knots with “zero emissions” in absolute silence; • ARCADIA ASSEMBLING SYSTEM which minimizes the waste materials during the building stage, the use of paints, and helps reduce construction times. For further information: Contact HMY Yachts at Arcadia’s exclusive dealer in the USA.



by Matthew Sturtevant


On The Block: Smashing Contemporary. The Right Wong. Rubies Are Red Too.

Courtesy of Christie’s Images Ltd. 2014

Smashing Contemporary Christie’s New York Post War and Contemporary fall sales continue to dominate the market. Several world records were set for masterpieces sold on Wednesday, including $30.4 million raised for “Smash” by Ed Ruscha, regarded as one of the leading lights of the American pop-art movement. American photographer Cindy Sherman, 60, also set a record with her “Untitled Film Stills,” which fetched $6.8 million. Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama’s “White No. 28” earned $7.1 million, smashing its estimate of between $1.5 million and $2 million. Pop-art legend Warhol’s “Triple Elvis” -- a 1963 silkscreen depicting three images of the King of Rock and Roll posing as a gunslinging cowboy -- sold for $81.9 million at their November sale. The seven-foot tall work, derived from a publicity still for the 1960 Don Siegel-directed Western “Flaming Star,” had been estimated to fetch $60 million. The final sale price topped out at more than $20 million above the estimate after six minutes of frenzied bidding. It was a similar story for the other Warhol classic sold Wednesday, “Four Marlons,” a giant set of four images of the legendary actor taken from his 1953 motorcycle gang classic “The Wild One.” Both of Wednesday’s auction prices however were well short of the all-time record for a Warhol work set by “Silver Car Crash (Double Disaster),” which fetched $105.4 million



in November last year at Sotheby’s. A flurry of bids also greeted the sale of Cy Twombly’s “Untitled” from his blackboard series, which went under the hammer for the first time. The painting - a series of energetic looping spirals resembling chalk scribblings on a school blackboard -- sold for $69.6 million, the highest amount ever paid for a work by the American, who died three years ago in Italy. Revered British artist Francis Bacon’s “Seated Figure” meanwhile sold for $44.96 million, in the lower range of price estimates set between $40 million and $60 million.

The Right Wong The highlight of Doyle New York’s Contemporary November 11 sale’s was a 1989 large-scale tondo by Martin Wong (American, 1946-1999) titled Liberty Mourning the Death of Her Sister – Beijing. This powerful painting attracted international attention, and the resulting competitive bidding sent the work soaring past its estimate of $20,000-40,000 to achieve a stunning $137,000, a world auction record for the artist. The price almost tripled the prior record for the artist of $47,500 set in February 2013. A Chinese-American artist living in New York’s Lower East Side, Martin Wong famously championed the pre-gentrified landscape of his decaying neighborhood, as well as the heroes of his heritage. This work, created for inclusion in the Asian American Arts Centre’s

group show, “CHINA: June 4, 1989 An Art Exhibition,” was his sobering reaction to the Tiananmen Square massacre that had become an international incident just a few months prior. To the cheering of 100,000 onlookers, student protestors wheeled a 33-foot high papier-mache sculpture they dubbed “Lady Liberty,” their embodiment of the Statue of Liberty. In Martin Wong’s work, the Statue of Liberty collapses in sorrow, reacting to the existential death of the protestors’ Lady Liberty, and in kind, the death of their hopes for democracy, freedom of speech and much more. Martin Wong arrived in the Lower East Side from the San Francisco Bay Area in 1978, setting up a studio for his self-trained painting in a crowded apartment. His work documents the Lower East Side of the 1980s and ‘90s -- the fire-trap tenements, rusty gates and spray-paint encrusted handball courts. He was beloved in the New York art world and an essential figure in Downtown art history. He attended every key art event in Manhattan and even secretly gave his artist friends free supplies while working at Pearl Paint. As famed for his own artwork as for his intense collecting habits of other artists’ work, Martin donated his legendary collection of Graffiti art in 1994 to the Museum of the City of New York. Martin succumbed to the AIDS virus in 1999, just one year after a career retrospective of his work at New York’s New Museum. Rubies are Red Too Sotheby’s Geneva November sale of Magnificent & Noble Jewels was led by the “Graff Ruby” from the Collection of Dimitri Mavrommatis. The 8.62 carat cushion-shaped gemstone soared above estimate and set a world auction record for a ruby at CHF 8,285,000 ($8,600,410), as well as a record price per

carat for a ruby at $997,727* when it sold to Laurence Graff (lot 470, est. CHF 6.5 - 8.56 million / $6.8 - 9 million)*. This spectacular gemstone displayed the coveted “pigeon blood” red color associated with the finest rubies from Mogok in Burma, arguably the rarest of all gemstones. Another highlight of the evening was a natural pearl and diamond necklace formerly in the collection of Joséphine de Beauharnais, Queen of Sweden and Norway (18071876) and likely once the property of Joséphine de Beauharnais (1763-1814), first wife of Napoleon Bonaparte and Empress of the French. Comprising 111 pearls, the necklace achieved CHF 3,301,000 ($3,426,669) (lot 431, est. CHF 765,000-1,340,000 / $800,000-1,400,000). Commenting on today’s results, David Bennett, Chairman of Sotheby’s Switzerland and of the Jewelry Department for Europe and

the Middle East said: “The Graff Ruby mesmerizes all who view it. It is truly a gem among gems, and quite simply the greatest ruby of its size I have ever seen. The record price achieved tonight is also a tribute to the discerning eye of Dimitri Mavrommatis and his intense passion for beauty in all its forms”. Shortly after the sale, Laurence Graff made the following statement: “It was a natural thing to do. Graff deals in the finest gemstones in the world and this is the finest ruby in the world. We are very proud to have it in our possession for the second time.”



furniture Lighting textiles jewelry art antiques accessories •

Nancy McTague-Stock Paintings, Unique Prints, New Media 203.856.3528



furniture Lighting textiles jewelry art antiques accessories •

Margot Nimiroski

Beneath the Surface #2 Acrylic and oil on cut canvas, 43î x 43î (framed size) 2014 203-907-8881



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A Chinese Coromandel Lacquer Four Panel Screen, Late 19th century 72 1/4” H 64 3/4” W. A Pair of Restoration Gilt Bronze Candelabra, Circa 1825 28” H. One of a Pair of Louis XV Style Walnut Fauteuils, Stamped JANSEN, Circa 1940. A Louis XVI Gilt Bronze Mounted Mahogany Boulliotte Table, Circa 1780 29 1/2” H 32 1/4” dia.





(203) 451- 3066

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61$0.*/( -*7& "35 "6$5*0/4



AQUARIUS 871 Post Road, Darien, CT 06820 203.655.7303



Gallery + Museum GUIDE

CT Bridgeport

City Lights Gallery 37 Markle Court, Bridgeport Tel: 203.334.7748 Web: Hours: Wed - Fri 11:30am-5pm; Sat 12- 4pm, or by appointment City Lights Gallery presents local, regional and emerging artists to Bridgeport and its visitors. The gallery hosts various community-based exhibits and events such as: Artists’ Receptions, Arts/crafts classes, Open Studio Workshop, Lunch Time Art Demonstrations, Movie Night Series, Concerts and Music, Private and Corporate Rentals. _______________________________________ Housatonic Museum of Art 900 Lafayette Blvd., Bridgeport Tel: 203.332.5052 Web: Hours: June/July/August, Monday through Friday 8:30am-5:30pm; Thursday evening until 7pm The Museum has one of the most significant collections of any two-year college in the country and includes works by master artists such as Rodin, Picasso, Matisse, Miro and Chagall. Both art enthusiasts and casual observers have the rare opportunity to engage daily with original works of art and artifacts on continuous display throughout the College and campus grounds. The Museum also presents lectures, programs and changing exhibitions in the Burt Chernow Galleries for our students and the community at large, serving as a rich cultural resource for the Greater Bridgeport area. _______________________________________ Schelfhaudt Gallery University of Bridgeport 84 Iranistan Avenue, Bridgeport 203-576-4696 The Schelfhaudt Gallery at the University of Bridgeport produces a varied and eclectic number of shows each academic year. Exhibits include works from students, alumni, local, regional and nationally known artists and associations such as the New York Type Directors. The Schelfhaudt Gallery is also host to the Innovators Entrepreneurs events, film screenings and multiple symposiums.





Geary Gallery 576 Boston Post Road, Darien Tel: 203.655.6633 Web: Hours: Wed - Sat 9:30-5:00pm

Abby M. Taylor Fine Art 43 Greenwich Avenue Tel: 203.622.0906 Web:

A preeminent Fairfield County gallery for representational art. We are friends to artists, spotting talent and market appeal, and nurturing careers, with a art exhibits that rotate approximately every five weeks.

Fairfield Fairfield University 1073 N. Benson Road Tel: (203) 254-4046 Bellarmine Museum of Art Gari Melchers: An American Impressionist at Home and Abroad (opening on March 5, 2015 ) Hours: Monday-Friday, 9:30-4:30, and select Saturdays Web: Thomas J. Walsh Art Gallery (Quick Center) John Mendelsohn: The Passing Paintings (through February 27, 2015). Ghosts in the Landscape: Vietnam Revisited (March 26 – June 6, 2015) Hours: Monday-Friday, 11:00-5:00 Web: _______________________________________ The Fairfield Museum + History Center Explore the Past, Imagine the Future 370 Beach Road, Fairfield Tel: 203.259.1598 Fax: 203.255.2716 Web: Hours: Open daily 10 am - 4 pm Believing in the power of history to inspire the imagination, stimulate thought and transform society. _______________________________________ Southport Galleries 330 Pequot Avenue Tel: 203.292.6124 Web: Presenting a selection of enduring American Masters and Contemporary artists, we invite new clients and seasoned connoisseurs to explore the values of fine art collecting. _______________________________________ Troy Fine Art 3310 Post Road, Southport (Fairfield) Tel: 203.255 .1555 Web: Hours: Mon - Fri 9:30 am-5 pm, or by appointment in your home or office at your convenience. Fine Art Gallery, Exceptional Design, Conservation Framing, Perfect Installation. _______________________________________

Abby M Taylor Fine Art LLC is a dealer in investment quality American and European paintings, sculpture, works on paper and photography from the 19th century to the present. Most of the inventory is owned by the gallery and we stand behind anything represented at the gallery as being exceptional or of a particular merit. _______________________________________ Bruce Museum 1 Museum Drive, Greenwich Tel: 203.869.0376 Web: Hours: Tue-Sat 10-5’ Sun 1-5, Closed on Mondays and major holidays A regionally based, world-class institution highlighting art, science and natural history in more than a dozen changing exhibitions annually. The permanent galleries feature the natural sciences that encompass regional to global perspectives. _______________________________________ Samuel Owen Gallery 382 Greenwich Avenue, Greenwich Tel: 203.422.6500 Web: Hours: Mon-Sat 10:30-6:00; Sun 11-3 Likened to, “a little bit Chelsea on lower Greenwich Avenue”, Samuel Owen Gallery specializes in paintings, photography and prints by American and European midcareer and contemporary artists. Regularly scheduled artist receptions fill the gallery to capacity with a colorful crowd. _______________________________________ Anam Cara Gallery 382 Greenwich Avenue, Greenwich Tel: 203-869-2824 Web: Hours: Tue-Sat 10:30-5:30; Sun 12-5pm Anam Cara Gallery offers a selection of Fine Art, Modern Art, and Fine Jewelry Inspired by Energy, Light, and Color in an environment aspiring to Elevate the Spirit. _______________________________________ Flinn Gallery Greenwich Library, 2nd Floor 101 W. Putnam Avenue, Greenwich Web: Tel: 203.622.7947 Hours: Mon-Fri 10am-5pm Thur 10am-8pm Sat 10am-5pm; Sun 1pm-5pm The Flinn Gallery is a non-profit, education oriented exhibition space that presents art in all mediums from a wide range of periods, visions and techniques. _______________________________________

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F e at u r e d G a l l e r i e s , M u s e u m s & C r e at i v e S e rv i c e s


Johanna W. McKenzie, Wild Iris South of Commons, Oil on Panel, 6 x 9

93 Main Street, New Canaan CT 203-966-7660

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New Haven

Weber Fine Art 24 West Putnam Avenue Tel: 203.422.5375 Web: Hours: Tue-Fri 11am-5pm, Sat 11am-5pm, Mon by appointment only

Fred Giampietro 315 Peck Street New Haven, CT 06513 Tel: 203.777.7760 Web: Hours:Tue-Fri 10-4pm, Sat 11-4pm

An important source for 20th Century Modern Masters and Contemporary American Art, Weber Fine Art’s inventory consists of paintings, drawings, sculpture, and prints by artists such as Wolf Kahn, Hans Hofmann, Lynn Davis, Helen Frankenthaler, Esteban Vicente, Jim Dine, Milton Avery, Sam Francis, Robert Motherwell, Frank Stella, and artists represented, James Meyer, Shawn Dulaney, Joseph McDonnell, Alexandra Eldridge, Shirine Gill.

91 Orange Street New Haven, CT 06511 Tel: 203.777.7707 Hours: Wed – Sat 11-6

New Canaan

The Gallery is free and open to the public. _______________________________________

Handwright Gallery & Framing 93 Main Street, New Canaan Tel: 203.966.7660 Fax: 203.966.7663 Web: Hours: Mon-Sat 10-5:30pm Handwright Gallery & Framing provides a full range of framing and installation services for the Fairfield County area. The gallery offers original paintings including watercolors, oils, and pastels along with sculpture from traditional to contemporary. Our gallery represents emerging and award-winning regional artists. _______________________________________ Silvermine Arts Center 037 Silvermine Road New Canaan, CT 06840 Tel: 203.966.9700 Web: Gallery Hours: Wed-Sat 2pm-5pm; Sun 1pm-5pm New Member Show: January 11 – February 17 Featuring the work of: Moshe Bursuker, Robert Calafiore, Susan Cox, Edhu Nascimento, Kiyoshi Otsuka, Gina Piccirilli-Hayden, Ronnie Rysz, Michele Shibley, Dora Tomulic, Cris Xavier, Joan Zagrobelny Plus, selections from the Gabor Peterdi International Print Collection: New acquisitions and Highlights. Artist Talk: New Members Tuesday, February 3rd at 6pm February 22 – April 5 Opening Reception: Sunday, February 22, 2-4pm Preview of 10” x 10” artwork for Signed, Sealed & Delivered, small works fundraiser. Plus, selections from the Gabor Peterdi International Print Collection and Flat Files. ______________________________________

_______________________________________ Yale Center for British Art 1080 Chapel Street Tel: 203-432-2800 Web: Hours: Tue-Sat 10am-5pm Sun noon-5pm

Yale University Art Gallery 1111 Chapel Street (at York Street) Tel: 203-432-0600 Web: Hours: Tue-Fri 10am–5pm Thu (Sept–June) 10am–8:00pm Sat–Sun 11am–5pm The Gallery is free and open to the public.

Norwalk Artists’ Market 163 Main Street, Norwalk Tel: 203.846.2550 Fax: 203.846.2660 Web: Hours: Mon-Sat 9-5pm; Thu 9-8pm; Sun 12-4pm Artists’ Market is an oasis of art, an exciting blend of a gallery, a museum, and a busy framing workshop. Here you’ll find artistic creations in a variety of media: classic contemporary handmade American crafts, exquisite fine art and photography as well as custom framing for those who want to show off something special or preserve heirlooms for future generations. _______________________________________ Center for Contemporary Printmaking Mathews Park 299 West Avenue Norwalk, CT 06850 Tel: 203.899.7999 Web: Hours: Mon-Sat 9am-5pm; Sun 12- 5pm | Admission Free Dedicated to the art of the original print, the Center annually hosts 4 major exhibitions, a members’ exhibition, artist talks, over 75 printmaking workshops, and programs for schools and colleges. Print studio rental is available for private and corporate functions and to members who work independently. _______________________________________

Leclerc Contemporary At Fairfield Co. Antique and Design Ctr. 19 Willard Road, Norwalk, CT 06851 Tel: 203.826.8575 Web: Hours: Monday-Saturday 10-6, Sun 11-5 and by appointment. Brand new upscale contemporary art gallery located just off Westport Avenue. Featuring new art exhibits every 6 weeks. _______________________________________ Lockwood-Mathews Mansion Museum 295 West Avenue, Norwalk Tel: 203-838-9799 ext 4 Web: A new exhibit of watercolors by artist Mimi Adams Findlay opened on June 18, 2014, 12-4 p.m. at the Lockwood-Mathews Mansion Museum at 295 West Avenue, Norwalk, CT. The exhibit will run through October 31.

Stamford Fernando Luis Alvarez Gallery 96 Bedford Street, Stamford, CT Tel: 888-861-6791 Web: Hours: Mon by appt. Tue-Sat 10am-6pm Sun closed The Fernando Luis Alvarez Gallery was founded by contemporary artist Fernando Luis Alvarez with the goal of providing other artists with what he always yearned for from a gallery, yet which he never received.

Old Lyme Chauncey Stillman Gallery Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts 84 Lyme Street, Old Lyme Tel: 860.434.5232 Fax: 860.434.8725 Web: Hours: Mon-Sat 10-4pm Exhibitions, free and open to the public, include a broad spectrum of professional, student and alumni artwork throughout the year. _______________________________________ The Cooley Gallery 25 Lyme Street Old Lyme, CT Tel: 860-434-8807 Web: Hours: Tue-Sat 10am-5pm _______________________________________ Diane Birdsall Gallery 16 Lyme Street, Old Lyme 860 434 3209 Web: Hours: Wed-Sat: 12-6 pm Sun: 1-4 pm _______________________________________ Florence Griswold Museum 96 Lyme Street, Old Lyme Tel: 860.434.5542 For hours, admission, special events visit: “Home of American Impressionism.” Historic boardinghouse of the Lyme Art Colony, modern gallery with changing exhibitions. Gardens and grounds to enjoy. _______________________________________



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Gallery + Museum GUIDE

Ridgefield The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum 258 Main Street Tel: 203.438.4519 Web: Hours: Tue-Sun 12-5pm The Aldrich is dedicated to fostering innovative artists whose ideas and interpretations of the world around us serve as a platform to encourage creative thinking. The Aldrich, which served an audience of over 37,700 in 2011, is one of the few independent, non-collecting contemporary art museums in the United States, and the only museum in Connecticut devoted to contemporary art. _______________________________________ Ridgefield Guild of Artists 93 Halpin Lane, Ridgefield Tel: 203.438.8863 Web: Email: Hours: Wed-Sun 12-4pm For a complete calendar of events and offerings, please visit our web site at _______________________________________ Watershed Gallery 23 Governor Street, Ridgefield Tel: 203.438.44387 Web: Hours: Tue-Fri 11-6; Sat 11-5; Sun 1-5 Watershed Gallery represents artists from around the world – and around the corner – in a range of media, from painting, printmaking and works on paper, to photography and sculpture. Rotating shows highlight artists who produce abstract and loosely representational art, and who create an emotional connection with the viewer.

Westport Amy Simon Fine Art 1869 Post Road East, Westport Tel: 203.259.1500 Fax: 203.259.1501 Web: Hours: Tue-Sat 11-5:30 and by appt. Amy Simon Fine Art specializes in work by mid-career and emerging artists, contemporary blue chip editions and Asian contemporary art. The gallery’s inventory and exhibitions reflect its eclectic interests and expertise in these areas. Amy Simon works with collectors worldwide. It is our mission to introduce clients to work that we are passionate about. _______________________________________ Picture This Custom Framing & Fine Art and Nylen Gallery 606 Post Road East, Westport Tel: 203.227.6861 Web: Hours: Mon-Fri 10am-5:30pm Sat 10am-5pm _______________________________________



Westport Art Center 51 Riverside Avenue, Westport Tel: 203.222.7070 Fax: 203.222.7999 Web: Hours: Mon-Fri 10-4; Sat 10-5; Sun 12-4 _______________________________________ Worrell Smith Gallery 611 Riverside Ave, Westport CT Tel: 203.297.3059 Web: Hours: Monday-Saturday 10-6PM Westport’s newest gallery for contemporary and modern. Featuring a rotating exhibition schedule as well as a constant offering of modern sculpture, ceramics, jewelry, and art.


Pound Ridge The Lionheart Gallery 27 Westchester Avenue Pound Ridge, New York Tel. 914-764-8689 Web: Hours: Wed-Sat 11 am - 5 pm; Sun. 12- 5 pm and by appointment or by chance. Winter Exhibition Claudia Mengel - New Works on Paper and Paintings Nov 1- January 4, 2015 Donald Bracken - Parallel Realities January 13th - March 1, 2015


A.I.R. Gallery 111 Front Street, #228, Brooklyn, NY Tel: 212-255-6651 Web: Hours: Wed - Sun 11 am - 6 pm

“Wild Woods and Whirligig Girls” Nancy Lasar, Recent Work October 2 – 26, 2014 Opening Reception: Thursday, October 2, 6 – 8pm

Larchmont Kenise Barnes Fine Art 1947 Palmer Avenue Tel: 914.834.8077 Web: Hours: Wed-Sun 12-6pm We are a gallery and consulting firm that represents emerging and mid-career investment-quality artists. Our program includes over thirty artists working in a variety of mediums. The gallery mounts seven exhibitions annually, and participates in art fairs in Miami, Santa Fe and New York.

ManhattAn Castle Fitzjohns Gallery 98 Orchard Street, NY, NY Tel: 212-260-2460 Web: Hours: Mon-Sun 12-7pm Located in a 3,000 square foot two story locale situated in Manhattan’s Lower East Side (LES), Castle Fitzjohns Gallery represents a wide range of emerging and midcareer artists, as well as select secondary market pieces from our collection. _______________________________________

Purchase Neuberger Museum of Art 735 Anderson Hill Road, Purchase Tel: 914.251.6100 Web: Hours: Tue-Sun 12-5pm; Closed Mondays and Holidays. Admission: Adults $5, Students $3, Seniors (62+) $3. Westchester County’s premier museum of modern, contemporary, and African art and an integral part of Purchase College. From the mid-century American art and African art that form the core of the collection to the presentation of about ten changing exhibitions each year that range from retrospectives of the work of one artist to thematic surveys of contemporary art to newly-commissioned artist projects, we continue the commitment of founding patron Roy R. Neuberger (1903-2010) by championing the art of our time.

RYE The Rye Arts Center 51 Milton Road, Rye, NY Tel: 914-967-0700 Web: Hours: Mon-Fri 9:30 -7:00pm Sat 9:30-1:00pm _______________________________________

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ANGELIKA BUET TNER Women March 12 - April 09, 2015 Lillian August 32 Knight Street, Norwalk, CT

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Art Who Does Botero, Deredia, and Carbonell Have In Common?... By Susana Baker

... Lazaro Valdes, “The Emperor of Bronze and Patina”


nce you step into ASUBRONZE, a foundry founded in Hialeah in 2002 by Lazaro Valdes, your jaw immediately drops, a sense of warmth begins to set in and your emotions jump onto a rollercoaster that just continues to go higher and higher much to your delight. Welcome to the Land of Oz of the Arts! As you walk through ASUBRONZE foundry, you stumble on to a foot, but not just any foot. This foot belongs to Idan Zareski Bigfoot, created by a renowned Master Sculptor from Israel. Walk further in to be wowed by the 8 foot sculpture of Holland’s Master Sculptor, Cornelius Zitman, where his beautiful “the Woman of Gana” towers over her neighbors, the majestic Carbonell figures that are sitting next to the great Columbian Master Botero! Just when you think it couldn’t get any better than this, I personally became overwhelmed seeing one of my favorite sculptors, Enrique Martinez Celayas. As a “Tourator” (tour Guide educated in History / Curator educated in Arts) for Miami’s Art Experience, my job is to bring visitors to discover some of the best art in Miami. One of the sculptures I love to curate can be found at the crosswalk to the Museum of the Art and Design of Miami Dade College (Freedom Tower, downtown Miami, formally Ellis Island for Cuban Refugees). The “Tower of Snow” by Celayas honors the 50th anniversary of Operation Peter Pan that brought 14,000 children to be fostered in the United States in pursuit of freedom and stability. Many of these children never saw their parents again. A powerful piece, it serves as a poignant remembrance for the very united Cuban community in Miami. It also serves as a monument for the many who left their homelands and roots in search for freedom and new oppor-



tunities. This brings us to Cuban artist Lazaro Valdes and his life changing turning point. Lazaro decided to change his life and follow his dream after being awarded a two-month arts residency program in Venezuela. When Artes Venezula ended, with a return ticket to Cuba, Lazaro Valdes decided to change his destiny and follow not only his dreams but listen to his soul. Lazaro’s final destination was Miami. The year was 2000 and the celebration of the new millennium symbolized a new era for Lazaro Valdes. Within a week of situating himself in Miami, he sought out to meet artists to offer his craft and talent. In less than one month, he met and was commissioned by Damian Gonzalez. Damian Gonzalez had an idea and wanted to

see if Lazaro Valdez would be able to make it a reality. Lazaro had the reputation of being an incredible detail sculptor working with wood in Cuba and also working with casting and molds. Lazaro offered to do the fiberglass casting of 75 sculptures that stand 5 feet in height, the iconic colorful Roosters that graced the streets of the famous Little Havana in Calle Ocho (8th Street), Miami. It proved to be a great start for newcomer Lazaro as his first commission! The rest is history! A most memorable moment was when renowned Costa Rican Sculptor Jimenez Deridia walked into the foundry seeking to commission Lazaro. Being a huge fan of Deridia and seeing him walk into his foundry represented a historic moment for Lazaro for this commis-

Photo by Michard Guillaume

Above, Lazaro works on Monumental sculpture of Vigas. Below, ASUBronze member work on new masterpiece.

sion represented the rewards for the fruits of his labor and the achievement of his dreams. (The latest masterwork of Lazaro’s making is scheduled for delivery during the month of Love, in February, when Lazaro will celebrate the birth of his 2nd child with his life partner Esmelin Candelo.) Lazaro began his dream in 2000 by landing in Miami in pursuit of opportunity. By 2002, he rented 300 square foot warehouse to begin his foundry. In 2014 the foundry has outgrown their current 11,000 square foot facility. Lazaro continues to raise the bar at ASUBRONZE and works with his talented family – his father the master rubber caster, his mother, brother, sister, cousins and his partner Esmerlin. With their combined efforts, they create the mold, cast, welding, sandblasting and administer the final finishing magic touch of Lazaro Valdes’ patinas, which have catapulted ASUBRONZE into the limelight as one of the best foundry’s in the world. For more information on ASUBRONZE go to and for private tourator art tour to foundry and other great art districts in Miami go to

Photo by Michard Guillaume




Music VIta Bergen

Affecting & Emotional Indie ROCK By Jacob Andersen

sound more indebted to North American indie than the brand of Scandinavian electronic pop usually associated with Sweden in the past couple of years Vita Bergen stands out in the crowd. Merging anthemic indie with folky and electronic elements Vita Bergen may have just started, but are already working on a higher level. On the strength of “A Picture of Before” Vita Bergen instantly became one of the most sought after bands in the Swedish industry, receiving offers from both major labels and indies before finally opting to sign with indie label Telegram Studios. After a year of slowly building their reputation as a live band with exclusive shows for the likes of VICE, Vita Bergen have emerged as one of Sweden’s most talked-about live acts in the past few months. Transforming from a duo to a full-scale indie rock orchestra consisting of eight musicians, William Hellström and Robert Jallinder are joined by a band consisting of Bénédicte Piauger, Jakob Kullberg, Andreas Jallinder, Hampus Bergh, Dan Augustsson and Gustaf Gunér for the live shows. With a fully-fledged sound of

With the release of their self-titled debut mini-album ‘Vita Bergen’ the duo have properly introduced themselves as one of the most exciting new Scandinavian acts around.


ailing from Gothenburg, the second biggest city in Sweden, Vita Bergen’s brand of affecting and emotional indie rock has already won over fans and journalists around the world. The duo, consisting of William Hellström and Robert Jallinder, first introduced themselves last year with the home-recorded



and self-released “A Picture of Before”, which immediately picked up attention from some of the most influential music bloggers in the world. With the release of their self-titled debut mini-album ‘Vita Bergen’ the duo have properly introduced themselves as one of the most exciting new Scandinavian acts around. With a

cinematic proportions Vita Bergen’s live performance is a truly stunning experience, usually ending in emotional breakdown between the two enigmatic frontmen. “Curtains”, the opening track from ‘Vita Bergen’, have already been picked up by blogs around the world, hailing the band as leading a new wave of Scandinavian indie. While the first two tracks on the mini-album, “Curtains” and the single “Disconnection”, pays tribute to sprawling arena-sized indie rock its second half offers up a more subdued side. “Pictures” showcases the band’s folk rock influences (complete with a Nebraska era Bruce Springsteen harmonica), with the electronic leanings of “On the Run” adding a new intricacy to the band’s sound. With attention coming in from far and wide and the band already getting ready to tour internationally early next year, the ‘Vita Bergen’ mini-album is only the beginning. Turning listeners and journalists alike into rabid fans, Vita Bergen have converted every audiences so far, and with new material in the works 2015 is set to be the year of Vita Bergen. Having already gathered attention from international tastemakers like Pigeons & Planes, NME and Clash Magazine for their affecting take on large-scale indie Vita Bergen are gearing up to be the next big thing coming out of Scandinavia – certainly a band to keep your eyes on.


Theater The New Christmas Classics

Three New Holiday Tales Vie for a Place In Our Hearts... and Wallets By William Squier

Theater producers are forever on the lookout for other yuletide tales that they can turn into dependable moneymakers.


t holiday time, Americans apparently have an insatiable desire to see live stage productions of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol. Whether it is performed as a drama or a musical, theaters around the country can count on Tiny Tim and Mister Scrooge to attract a crowd every December and, by doing so, to help the often cash-strapped institutions meet their bottom line. Even Madison Square Garden mounted a lavish musical for nine years that starred a sting of celebrity misers: from F. Murray Abraham and Tony Randall to Tim Curry and Roger Daltrey! And, 171 years after the publication of the original novella, the public’s interest is showing no sign of flagging. It’s little wonder, then, that theater producers are forever on the lookout for other yuletide tales that they can turn into dependable moneymakers. Various attempts have been made. Here’s Love, the musical stage version of the film Miracle on 34th Street eked out just short of a year of performances on Broadway in the sixties and hasn’t been seen much since, despite writer Meredith Willson shoehorning his hit tune “It’s Beginning to Look a lot Like Christmas” into the score. And various screen-to-stage transfers of It’s a Wonderful Life, including one by no less than Sheldon Harnick of Fiddler on the Roof fame, have failed to make much of an impression. But, in the last decade, a trio of movie adaptations have not only made it to Broadway, they’ve also toured the country successfully and are beginning to turn up in regional productions. The three shows – How the Grinch Stole Christmas, A Christmas Story and Elf – seem to have found a way to satisfy fans of the original films while also attracting families in search of a bit of holiday fun. The Grinch – which is officially known as Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas The



Musical – not only has the longest title of this new crop of Christmas Classics, it also has the longest pedigree. It was first performed in Minneapolis at the Children’s Theatre Company in 1994 in a version that was commissioned by the theater. Converting the tale of the misanthrope who discovers that “maybe Christmas doesn’t come from a store” into a live stage spectacular was no easy task. “The animated version is, I believe, 22 minutes long,” says composer Mel Marvin. “Our musical is 82 minutes long. And, of course, we used only the book as inspiration. So, the principal challenge was turning a children’s book that takes about 12 minutes to read out loud into a musical that is more like an hour and a half long.” Even more daunting was the fact that perennial broadcast of the 1966 animated special was penned by no less than Dr. Seuss himself! “Most of the book and lyrics in the piece come from the brilliant head of Tim Mason, who was able to “channel” Seussian language into an extrapolation of character, giving full, round personalities

to all the members of the Who family,” Marvin feels. “I think one of the great things about the collaboration Tim and I have is that we are each able to get in touch easily with our ‘inner child.’ My daughter, Kate, was nine years old at the time I wrote the show and I essentially wrote the score for her.” The Grinch finally made it to Broadway in 2006 with Patrick Page playing the title role .

Page would later attain notoriety for once again donning green makeup as “The Green Goblin” in the ill-fated Spiderman The Musical. By the time The Grinch reached New York the songs from the television special “You’re a Mean One, Mr. Grinch” and “Welcome Christmas” had also found their way into the score. Over the years, The Grinch has become a holiday staple, turning up regularly at performing arts centers across the country, including many visits to its’ birthplace at the Children’s Theatre Company. “The sets and costumes are pretty much identical to what you see on the page,” Marvin reports, “With a black and white set, red and pink Whos just like the drawings, and the nasty Green Grinch. We hope it’s an exhilarating, funny, slam-bang Christmas experience for the audience.” Lyricist Chad Beguelin says the he and his composing partner, Matthew Sklar were tapped to contribute the score for Elf The Musical when they were hard at work converting a different film into a musical. “We were writing The Wedding Singer for New Line / Warner Brothers and they approached us,” Beguelin reports. The pair were teamed with the equally stage savvy authors Tom Meehan (Annie, The Producers) and Bob Martin (The Drowsy Chaperone) and the project was off and running. But, despite their combined experience, turning a film that had served as a starring vehicle for comic Will Ferrell into an effective evening in the theater had its’ challenges. Job number one was make sure the story could be told without enlisting the services of a former star of Saturday Night Live. “We knew that people had to fall in love with Buddy the character or the musical wouldn’t work,” Beguelin explains. “We realized that the most lovable, charming aspect of his character is how innocent he is. One of the first songs we wrote was, “The World’s Greatest Dad”. It sets up Buddy as a

character who can only see the good in people. His enthusiasm has no bounds. It also gets the audience on Buddy’s side. Buddy dad is basically a Scrooge-like presence. It takes Buddy’s complete belief that there is good in everyone to save the day.” The 2010 Broadway premiere led to a return to New York in 2012 and the show has been sent out on tour every winter since. Its’ ticket sales have, at times, rivaled those of mega-hits The Lion King and Wicked. But, one of the greatest satisfactions for Beguelin is the opportunity that he has to revisit the show each December. “The moment when Walter finally tells Buddy he believes in Santa Claus still gets me every time,” he says. A Christmas Story The Musical first found its way to Broadway in 2012 after going through three years of productions in the hinterlands and

changes in the creative team. After a false start at the Kansas City Repertory Theatre in 2009, Benj Pasek and Justin Paul were invited to collaborate with book writer Joseph Robinette to revamp the musical for a production at the 5th Avenue Theatre in Seattle, WA. The musical opened on Broadway in 2012 with high profile director John Rando (Urinetown) and choreographer Warren Carlyle (After Midnight) joining the creative team. Even the films original “Ralphie,” Peter Billingsley stepped in as one of the show’s producers! Though A Christmas Story had only played a limited engagement in November and December, it was honored with TONY Award nominations for “Best Book,” “Best Score,” and “Best Musical” along side the long-running musicals Kinky Boots and Matilda. So, if you’re looking for a break from A Christmas Carol this season, you might consider taking in one of the above when they turn up at a theater nearby. The 2014 national tour of The Grinch kicked off in Oklahoma City in October and will continue to travel around the country through December, spending the last month at Madison Square Garden in New York (www. Elf will also spend the last two month of the year in city’s as far flung as Grand Forks, ND, Austin, TX, and Utica, NY ( And A Christmas Story will round out the triumvirate with stops in five cities from November through the first week of January ( “The film and the musical are very different,” Chad Beguelin concedes of Elf. “It’s great to know that fans of the movie can enjoy the musical version, even though it departs from the film’s plot in places.” Mel Marvin reports much the same reaction from fans of The Grinch. “There are some people who follow the show around from year to year,” he says. “It’s pretty feisty and edgy, in many places, which both adults and children seem to love.” But, the popularity of these three musicals can perhaps be best explained by a quote from Buddy the Elf, “The best way to spread Christmas cheer is singing loud for all to hear!”



Film + Entertainment

Fox on Film by PETER FOX:

Left to right: Miles Teller as Andrew and J.K. Simmons as Fletcher. Photo by Daniel McFadden, Courtesy of Sony Pictures Classics


Written and Directed by Damien Chazelle Starring J.K. Simmons, Miles Teller, Melissa Benoit and Paul Reiser. A Sony Classics Pictures release. 106 minutes.


hyper-ambitious drummer, Andrew Neiman (Miles Teller), gets more than he bargained for when he meets band conductor Terrence Fletcher (J.K. Simmons), in Whiplash. Writer-director Damien Chazelle’s second feature length effort will leave you exhausted, as it breaks the mold of the stand and deliver, student/mentor motif with inventive pacing, a tightly



scripted story and powerhouse performances. From the opening scene, Fletcher, expertly played by J.K. Simmons, makes it known to young Andrew, that success or failure in his jazz ensemble can make or break his career. Eager for success, Andrew joins the band, but quickly finds his ego and mental health on the line as Fletcher assaults him from every angle; verbally and

sometimes physically, as he attempts to lift Andrew out of mediocrity; moving him towards perfection through the use of humiliating tactics. The project was born from a script that was written in 2012. As financing efforts sputtered in 2013, Chazelle produced and directed a short film comprised of three sequences from the feature screenplay. The short film went

on to earn rave notices at the Sundance Film Festival. From there, the project gained a new lease on life and quickly gained full financing. “If it is a teacher’s duty to push a student to greatness, then at what point is enough enough?, asked Chazelle. “Did Charlie Parker need to be jeered off the stage in order to become “Bird”? How do you make someone great? To capture the emotions I felt in my drumming years, I wanted to shoot each musical performance in the movie as though it were a life-or-death contest -a car chase, say, or a bank robbery. I wanted to showcase all the details I remembered - all the dirt and grime and effort that go into a work of music. The earplugs and broken sticks, the blisters and cut hands, the

incessant counting and the beeping metronomes and the sweat and fatigue. At the same time, I wanted to capture those fleeting moments of beauty that music allows-and that film can so movingly capture. The subtext of the film is not about drumming, but about just how far someone will go to become the best. Andrew’s character descends from a long line of mediocrity (embodied by his non-competitive father, well played by veteran actor/ comedian Paul Reiser), but is on a mission to add his name to the list of great jazz drummers. Andrew plays obsessively, and manages to catch the attention of Terence, despite the fact that he is only a freshman. Fletcher gives him a seat in the band and Andrew’s transformation begins. At first, Andrew is an “alternate,” confined to turning the pages of the “core” drummer. But at the band’s next competition, in an act of either serendipity or sabotage, the core drummer’s sheet music is misplaced. Having committed the music to memory, Andrew gets the opportunity to play. Though the act further alienates him from his fellow musicians, the band nonetheless wins the competition, and he seems poised to become Fletcher’s new “favorite son.” Emboldened by this acceptance, Andrew summons the courage to ask out Nicole, the counter girl at his local theater for whom

he’d nursed a silent and unrequited crush. But on that date, Andrew’s musical preoccupations threaten to derail even his most genuine romantic overtures. Andrew’s maniacal effort to achieve perfection is further fueled by Fletcher’s psychological brinksmanship. Andrew’s family can barely recognize the stone-faced obsessive sitting at their dinner table. Andrew even elicits a sharp word from his otherwise mild-mannered father. One naturally assumes that talented musicians play for the sheer pleasure of their art, but “Whiplash” suggests that fear is far and away their best motivator. For those seeking perfection, one tiny slip threatens to jeopardize the ensemble as a whole. As a result, Fletcher’s strategy is to humiliate the stragglers in front of the entire group -the sort of abuse more commonly associated with locker rooms and war movies, whose high stakes Chazelle brings to bear on this more civilized arena. Fletcher is even more intimidating in front of the studio band, where he lets fly torrents of emasculating and openly homophobic invective directed against any and all who disappoint. The character is capricious and cruel, making him a volatile force in Andrew’s life, even in scenes where the conductor isn’t physically present. “There are no two words more harmful than ‘good job,’”

Left to right: Miles Teller as Andrew and J.K. Simmons as Fletcher Photo by Daniel McFadden, Courtesy of Sony Pictures Classics

Left to right: J.K. Simmons and Director Damien Chazelle Photo by Daniel McFadden, Courtesy of Sony Pictures Classics

Fletcher confides at one point, explaining how encouragement breeds complacency. By contrast, fear of verbal abuse -or the occasional flying chair -keeps the musicians on their toes, and Simmons has no trouble performing the vitriolic putdowns that the role requires, channeling some of his old “Oz” persona. By contrast, the unsung supporting cast does wonders with little dialogue, letting subtle body language convey the intensely competitive dynamic, where “core” players perform while alternates turn their pages. Chazelle exhibits the ability to deliver a visually compelling story without being heavy-handed. Every camera move was storyboarded, from beginning to end. He explains: “There was no other way to do it. I wanted the transitions between the songs to fit to-

gether with the music. I wanted certain camera moves to fit well with the songs, so I just storyboarded the whole thing.” The jazz competition sequence is assembled with the artful touch of a veteran director, and it is here that Gazelle makes his mark by focusing on Teller’s Oscar worthy, powerhouse performance. However, as much fun as Fletcher is to watch, his behavior is nothing shy of monstrous, and one can sense the clash brewing between the conductor and his new favorite student far in advance. Surface intrigues aside, however, the film is ultimately about a rivalry not between Andrew and his instructor, but the rivalry between his own fears and ambitions. Teller is spot on in this regard. The result of his inner struggle; the crazed, obsessed young drummer aching to be, in confrontation with Fletcher in scene after gripping scene, is covered in a visual style that is both grand, yet minimal. A journey that can be seen alternately as a descent into madness, or as an ascent to greatness comes to a crescendo on the biggest platform for Andrew’s talents-the unforgiving stage of Carnegie Hall. (See this film on the big screen, if you can). In “Whiplash”, Chazelle poses questions about the price of fame, perfection and all great works of art: Is the pursuit of art’s perfection worth complete sacrifice of the mind and soul? He doesn’t give away the answer, but the journey through which he asks the questions makes for great cinema.




MCHF’s Hope Diamond Ball Raises $6 Million

Left, Diamond Ball chairs Ana Figueroa Cisneros and Tony Cisneros; Center, Lucy Morillo, artist Romero Britto; Right, Christy and David Marti.

Close to 900 celebrities, community leaders, philanthropists and supporters of Miami Children’s Hospital came together at the JW Marriott Marquis, as Miami Children’s Health Foundation hosted the Hope Diamond Ball Affair. Their most glamorous, black tie gala ever, was topped off with record-setting fundraising. Ana Figueroa Cisneros chaired the MCHF signature event with husband Tony Cisneros. Internationally renowned pop artist Romero Britto joined the ranks of Walt Disney, Dwyane Wade, Dr. Jonas Salk and Beyoncé Knowles when he was inducted into the Ambassador David M. Walters International Pediatric Hall of Fame for exemplifying his passion for helping children throughout the world. More than $6 million was raised at the gala, including announced gifts that will help support world-class care at Miami Children’s Hospital and will continue to position them as a global destination for pediatric health and wellness. Left, Board president George Lindemann, Bass Museum Director, Silvia Karman Cubiñá, grand benefactors Diane and Alan Lieberman; Right, Architect Alberto Latorre, collector Cricket Taplin, artist Carlos Betancourt.

SAHF Celebrates 31 Years of Helping El Salvador 109

The Salvadoran American Humanitarian Foundation (SAHF), a nonfor-profit organization hosted its annual gala to commemorate its 31st anniversary with an elegant black-tie celebration at The Ritz Carlton Hotel in Coconut Grove. SAHF raised nearly $300,000 during the gala “to help thousands of underserved Salvadorans in El Salvador,” said Executive Director Carlos Reyes. The evening included a silent auction with all proceeds going towards health-related and human development programs, which the organization carries out through its sister Foundation, FUSAL. Approximately 250 personalities representing an international community of top business, media and philanthropic circles attended this year’s event. Celebrity DJ Mauricio Parra kept the crowd dancing all night.

Bass Museum’s 50th Glitters With $1 Million Gift Talk about golden! Diane and Alan Lieberman, owners of the South Beach Hotel Group and arts patrons donated $1 million to the Bass Museum. It was announced at the 50th anniversary gala, delighting the crowd. Board Members and gala co-chairs Criselda Breene and Soledad Picón joined Executive Director and Chief Curator Silva Karman Cubiñá in welcoming some 285 guests who embraced the spirit of the evening by adding touches of gold to their attire. The current exhibition at the Bass, GOLD, added to the gala theme. Artist Carlos Betancourt, one of the artists in the exhibition was in attendance as well. Museum galleries were elegantly transformed by Le Basque Catering and Production helmed by Alejandro Muguerza. After dinner, the dance floor was packed till the wee hours. Follow Daisy on Twitter @DaisySociety, for more on Miami society



Left, SAHF Executive Director. Carlos Reyes (l), Brian Bovard (r); Right Carolina Lanao, CEO of Conde Nast Mexico & Latin America Eva Hughes, Marie-Cecile & Javier Pineda​.

Walk up the stairs. Turn right. Relax.

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