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The Spring Show NYC Lecture Program Features Museum Curators, Scholars & Interior Designers
April 19, 2011  | 

The inaugural Spring Show NYC Lecture Series features lively discussions by noted museum curators, scholars and prominent interior designers, Thursday April 28 - Saturday, April 30 in the Tiffany Room. Lectures are included with Show admission and seating is on a first-come basis.

Thursday, April 28 

11:30 am
Le Bon Marriage:
The French Alliance of Modernism and the Luxury Trades, 1910-1939
Between 1914 and 1939, Paris was the scene of the last triumphant movement in design intended for the privileged few-originally called Art Moderne and later, Art Deco, this modernist sensibility was shaped by both accomplished individual artisan /designers such as Maurice Marinot and Helene Henry, & globally-positioned firms like Cartier and Lalique. An illustrated examination of this polystylistic movement whose brilliant innovations continue to captivate our popular imagination and inspire architects, designers and museum curators worldwide.

Derek E. Ostergard, Consultant, is a senior expert of mid-eighteenth to mid-twentieth century European decorative arts; former Associate Director and Founding Dean of the Bard Graduate Center for Studies in the Decorative Arts, Design and Culture in NYC; and former faculty member of the Cooper-Hewitt Museum, Sotheby's Education and F.I.T. An accomplished corporate and museum curator and private advisor, Ostergard has served on the board of UNESCO's International Council of Museums: Applied Arts and Design Committee. A prolific editor and author, he has published extensively on furniture, architecture, glass, porcelain and jewelry including Art Deco Masterpieces, (MacMillan); and The Sèvres Porcelain Manufactory: Alexandre Brongniart and the Triumph of Art and Industry, 1800-1847 (Yale University Press) and George Nakashima (Grove Press).

3:00 pm
Architecture for Animals:
Menageries and Aviaries in Eighteenth and Early Nineteenth-Century England
Jacques-Laurent Agasse (1767-1849)
The Nubian Giraffe, 1827
The Royal Collection © 2011,
Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II
Exotic birds and animals had long been prized as pets and curiosities in Britain, but the eighteenth century saw the establishment of menageries and aviaries as a fashionable adjunct to a country house garden or park, with distinguished architects vying to build the structures, including Sir William Chambers, Lancelot 'Capability' Brown, and Humphry Repton. They often took the form of lavishly decorated banqueting houses with adjacent pens and cages for fierce or unusual animals, or brilliantly plumaged birds, but renowned architect Sir John Soane's experience of animal accommodation was a cow house and a chicken coop for the Duke of Leeds! This illustrated survey of menagerie architecture will conclude with the whimsical animal houses of Victorian zoological gardens.

Tim Knox is Director of London's Sir John Soane's Museum; former Assistant Curator at the Royal Institute of British Architects Drawings Collection, and former Architectural Historian of the National Trust. Appointed Head Curator of the National Trust in 2002, Knox was much involved with the restoration of historically significant landscape gardens and the acquisition of architectural landmarks throughout Great Britain.
In 2005, Knox was appointed Director of the Soane.

Co-sponsored by Sir John Soane's Museum Foundation in America
Spring Show NYC Cultural Partner

Friday, April 29 

11:30 am
Beauty and Art in the Living Jewel
Le Dauphin brooch by Verdura, 2009
Baroque South Sea pearl, blue-green tourmalines, diamonds, ruby, platinum, and 18k gold
Image courtesy Verdura
photo: David Behl
From Georgian and Victorian jewelry through contemporary design and from every great jeweler, some of the most dazzling and imaginative jewelry has been created using such living materials as coral, pearls, horn, and ivory. René Boivin excelled at fresh and unusual use of wood in rings, cuffs, and pendants; Lalique launched horn from its humble origins into works of lightness and grace and thus forever shaped the defining features of Art Nouveau; Cartier and coral became synonymous with Art Deco; Verdura made shells noble platters for diamonds and precious stones; and Van Cleef & Arpels has long established its dominion in pearls. Less well known are imaginative objects made with such exotic materials as jet, feathers, butterfly wings, and beetles. Time and again, the choice of materials has inspired some of the most important and beautiful works made by jewelers of the past 200 years. 

Ruth Peltason  
Ruth Peltason, author of Living Jewels, among other titles, is the founder of Bespoke Books, a boutique editorial and design firm in New York. Her thirty-year career in book publishing has included stints at Alfred A. Knopf, Crown, and Harry N. Abrams, Inc., Publishers. At Abrams, the world's leading publisher of art and illustrated books, she was Senior Editor, Director of Design & Style Books.

1:30 - 2 pm
A Birdeye View of Jewelry at the Fair
This 30-minute tour by Ruth Peltason will provide an intimate look at jewelry that ranges from Victorian to Retro, includes conversations with dealers, and best of all, an up-close view of some of the most beautiful pieces on display. Register for the tour at the Will-Call desk. Attendance is first-come and is limited to 10 people.

3:00 pm
Decorating with Antiques for Today
Mario Buatta
Mario Buatta, the ebullient internationally acclaimed interior designer, will discuss how to successfully blend antiques with contemporary furnishings.

Mr. Buatta is one of America's foremost decorators. He was born in New York, studied architecture at Cooper Union and attended Parson's School of Design in Europe. Examples of Mr. Buatta's work may be seen in recent issues of Architectural Digest, Country and other publications. Interviews and photographs of this work have appeared in The New York Times, Avenue, New York, USA Today, Vogue and many others here and abroad, and his private clients have and do include Henry Ford Jr., Malcolm Forbes, Barbara Walters, Mariah Carey, Mr. and Mrs. S. I. Newhouse, and Billy Joel.

6 - 7 pm
Buddhist Art as Evolutionary Technique
Dr. Robert Thurman
Is Buddhism a pessimistic philosophy? Does everything in the world lead only to suffering? What use do Buddhists have for art, if it is just a futile effort to make life less miserable? In fact, the opposite is true, Buddhism is itself an "art of happiness." A huge variety of highly sophisticated methods using every medium available to help people "blow their minds," that is, to achieve the Nirvana that is blissful freedom from the suffering that relentlessly afflicts the unenlightened egotist. We will look at a few examples of Tibetan Buddhist art to try to discern these methods at work.

Dr. Robert Thurman is one of the world's leading experts on Tibetan Buddhism, the founder of Tibet House, the President of the American Institute of Buddhist Studies, and the Jey Tsong Khapa Professor of Indo-Tibetan Buddhist Studies at Columbia University.

He was the first American ordained as a Tibetan monk and Time magazine named him one of the 25 Most Influential People in America. Dr. Thurman's Wisdom & Compassionis acclaimed as the most important book ever published on Tibetan painting and sculpture, it illustrates, explains, and celebrates 241 of the finest examples of Tibetan sacred art of the 9th to 12th centuries, and offers insights into the religious meaning and use of tangkas, Buddhist iconography, and the aesthetics of tangka paintings, sculptures, and mandalas.

Presented by Geographic Expeditions  Spring Show NYC Cultural Partner

Saturday, April 30 

11:30 am
Marie-Antoinette in America:
Her Royal Treasures in the New World 
Maker: Jean-Henri Riesener (French, 1734-1806); Maker: Mounts attributed to, Pierre Gouthière (French, 1732-1813/14), Desk (Sécretaire), 1783, Oak veneered with ebony and Japanese lacquer; interiors veneered with tulipwood, amaranth, holly, and ebonized holly; gilt-bronze mounts; 57 x 43 x 16"
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Bequest of William K. Vanderbilt, 1920 (20.155.11) Image © The Metropolitan Museum of Art

This illustrated lecture features 53 sumptuous works housed in 14 U.S. museums, which originally adorned Marie-Antoinette's apartments at Versailles, Fontainebleau, the Tuileries, Saint-Cloud and other royal residences before the outbreak of the French Revolution. Japanese lacquer, exotic wood veneers, jewel-like gilded bronze, as well as porcelain from the Royal Porcelain Factory at Sèvres distinguish these magnificent and historically significant examples of furniture, decorations and useful objects. Marie-Antoinette's lacquer furniture when it was at Erlestoke Park, Hamilton Palace and in Mr. and Mrs. William K. Vanderbilt's mansion on Fifth Avenue is discussed. Mention also is made of Edulji F. Dinshaw, the Parsi collector in mid-20th-century New York, who in his Fifth Avenue townhouse, reunited, for the first time in more than 100 years, Marie-Antoinette's breathtaking mother-of-pearl cylinder desk and matching small table, which are, once again, in their original setting--Marie-Antoinette's Boudoir at Fontainebleau.

Ronald Freyberger  
Ronald Freybergeris an author and researcher and has lectured in the United States, England and Scotland at venues including The Metropolitan Museum of Art, J. Paul Getty Museum, University of Edinburgh and the Rothschild Collection at Waddesdon Manor.