Posts Tagged: Venice

DESIGN BOARD: CATHERINE M. AUSTIN INTERIOR DESIGN IN CHARLOTTE HOME DESIGN & DECOR

It is always a treat to see one’s own work in print. We were thrilled to see the latest issue of Charlotte Home Design & Decor featuring us in one of my favorite columns where they showcase a different designer each month. Read below for our favorite finds s scouted from around the world…

DAMIAN HIRST: TREASURES FROM THE WRECK OF THE UNBELIEVABLE AT THE VENICE BIENNALE

“You have to step over the boundaries sometimes just to find out where they are.” -Damian Hirst

Ever since I was a little girl, I have been mesmerized by the fantasy of lost treasure. It all began with a beach trip where my little brother and I found a “real life” treasure on one of the North Carolina barrier islands. To a 5 and 3 year old, we could not believe our luck. After hearing the stories of pirates, shipwrecks and buried treasure from our cousins, we were convinced this dilapidated box was indeed pirate booty. An ancient treasure map of the island fell out as we opened it along with old coins, rusted nautical instruments, and other items from the “ship.” It was not until years later we discovered that our fun-loving mother had concocted this adventure with the help of aunts, uncles and older cousins to make our summer unforgettable.

I was incredibly intrigued to read about Damian Hirst’s “Treasures from the Wreck of the Unbelievable” that he had spent over 10 years working on for this year’s Venice Biennale. Lauded as the most expensive exhibition ever created, the show has created much fanfare and controversy in the art world….as only one of Damian Hirst’s can. Always pushing boundaries, the artist’s concept for the show is pure fiction….created in Damian’s imagination and brought to life in a palazzo on The Grand Canal in Venice.

As luck would have it, I happened to be in Venice the opening weekend off the show and got to see the mind-blowing exhibition first hand.  Special thanks to artist and curator Brad Thomas for letting me know about the opening date. See below for the show notes and more details about this imaginary treasure…

INSPIRATIONAL ICON: PEGGY GUGGENHEIM (PART 2)

“I look back on my life with great joy. I think it was a very successful life. I always did what I wanted and never cared what anyone thought. Women’s lib? I was a liberated woman long before there was a name for it.” -Peggy Guggenheim

In looking for images of Peggy Guggenheim, I came across this entertaining article about the “Mistress of Modernism.” Click HERE to read Part 1 of my homage to my favorite art addict and to see her amazing art collection. 

INSPIRATIONAL ICON: PEGGY GUGGENHEIM (PART 1)

“I dedicated myself to my collection.  I made it my life’s work. I am not an art collector.  I am a museum.”-Peggy Guggenheim

Channeling our inner Peggy with Billy Ceglia and Amanda Reynal

Ever since I read Confessions of an Art Addict on my honeymoon nearly 20 years ago, I have been fascinated with the American heiress Peggy Guggenheim. Peggy was a former wife of artist Max Ernst and the  niece of the mining magnate, Solomon R. Guggenheim. She collected artworks mostly between 1938 and 1946, buying works in Europe as World War II began, and later in America, where she discovered the talent of Jackson Pollock, among others.  In addition to being one of modern art’s biggest patrons, she was also quite the character surrounding herself with the greatest minds and talents of the 20th century.

TRAVEL DIARY: THE GRITTI PALACE IN VENICE

 “Live the full life of the mind, exhilarated by new ideas, intoxicated by the romance of the unusual.” – Ernest Hemingway

I am not sure where Ernest Hemingway wrote this, but I would like to think it was on his terrace overlooking the Grand Canal while staying at the legendary Gritti Palace in Venice. We were fortunate enough to stay in this beautiful palace on our recent trip to Venice with the Rubelli Group who had supplied many of the fabrics for the restoration overseen by Donghia’s creative director Chuck Chewning in 2013. My pictures and words did not do this masterpiece justice so I found these wonderful articles from Architectural Digest detailing the process. My own candids follow at the end. 

THE MAJESTY OF ITALIAN MANUFACTURING WITH RUBELLI AND DONGHIA

“I’ll tell you a Venetian story spanning two centuries. Five generations, six brands, five continents: our history, yesterday, today and tomorrow.” – Alessandro Favaretto Rubelli

View from The Gritti Palace, Venice

There is nothing better than experiencing a culture through the eyes of locals. I just returned from an incredible journey with the Rubelli family discovering the majesty of Italian manufacturing seeing their showrooms, mills, projects and archives from Milan to Venice. In between our tours looking at Italian textiles, leather, glass, art, and architecture, they graciously treated us to the most incredible meals, fellowship, and education that makes their Venetian heritage so unique. The Rubelli passion, generosity and hospitality were beyond extraordinary.