Monday, February 27, 2012


Matisse, Woman with Hat

It is the best of times and the most prolific of times because New York City’s art lovers need only head for museum mile to find the richest deposit of art treasures in the world. Here’s the scoop!!!

Photo: Liberty House at night in Jersey City.

THE STEINS COLLECT: Matisse, Picasso, and the Parisian Avant-Garde exhibit at the Metropolitan Museum of Art unites some 200 works of art that demonstrate the significant impact the Stein’s patronage had on modern art, albeit collecting relatively unknown artists at the time with whom they became friends. Just as the Steins opened their apartment on Saturday evenings to anyone who arrived with a reference in hand, you too can vicariously enter the Stein’s salon and view the early works of Matisse and Picasso, and scores of other painters such as Pierre Bonnard, Jacques Lipchitz, Henri Manguin and many others. It is the story of one American family not rich, but collectors by nature, who shaped the development of modern art for decades to come. Do stop and see Gertrude Stein’s musical Four Saints in Three Acts with the enchanting models for both settings and costumes by American artist, Florine Stettheimer. Image: Henri Matisse (French 1869-1954) Woman with a Hat, 1905 © Succession H. Matisse/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York.
IN THE COMPANY OF ANIMALS: Art, Literature, and Music. The new Morgan Library & Museum’s exhibition explores how the relationship between animals and the artistic imagination have provided a particularly fertile source of inspiration for artists, writers, and composers for centuries. Animals are everywhere from ancient depictions with fearsome lions and mythical beasts, to Biblical scenes, to more recent portrayals of endearing animal figures in children’s stories, such as Babar and Winnie the Pooh. On view the varied role of animals as symbols, muses, moral teachers, talking creatures and beloved companions and how they communicate important ideas and themes. In Talking Creatures a child’s definition of an animal (1951) “An animal is something you feel like talking to.” Through May 20.
THE QUEEN OF SELF-PORTRAIT, Cindy Sherman is the subject of MOMA’s groundbreaking retrospective of the artist’s career from the mid-1970s to the present. A photographer and filmmaker known for her conceptual self-portraits Cindy gets her due with more than 180 key photographs from the artist’s significant series including the complete “Untitled Film Stills” (1977-80) centerfolds and her celebrated history portraits. Masquerading as a myriad of characters in front of her own camera, Sherman creates extraordinary invented personas and tableaus. Through June 11th. MOMA 11 W. 53 St.
LIBERTY HOUSE…Polly’s restaurant pick of the week is over the river by Water Taxi to Frank and Jeannne Cretella’s landmark hospitality restaurant in Liberty State Park with spectacular views of the New York Skyline at 76 Audrey Zapp Drive, Jersey City. Come spring and summer it’s the perfect vicarious day trip where the food is international with an American twist and the meals are served with an artistic presentation that is as delightful as the food itself. 201.395.0300. Call for directions by car via the Holland Tunnel.
Ta Ta Darlings!!! I was delighted with Florine Stettheimer's costumes and sets for Four Saints in Three Acts and urge you to see the Steins Collect. Fan mail welcome: Visit Polly’s fashion, poetry or determined women Blogs at, just click in the left-hand column on the convenient links.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012


Never at a lost for cultural pursuits New Yorker’s need only turn to their inner city diversions to augment their entertainments. From Spunky Opera Broads to the storied past of Scribner’s it’s the Best of New York my friends, the very Best in everyday variety and diversified venues. Here’s the scoop!!!
SPUNKY OLD OPERA BROADS Some of opera’s most ‘over the top’ ladies strut their stuff this Friday, February 24 in the Chelsea Opera’s showcase of Spunky Old Opera Broads. One took off all her clothes to obtain her heart’s desire, another seduced a French corporal, and yet another threw a baby into the fire. Quelle Horror!!! These are women with big voices and big personalities. Meet Azucena, the Three Magic Flute ladies, Turandot, Ariadne, Marcellina and many more. At Christ & St. Stephens Church, 120 West 69th St. (Btwn B’way & Columbus). Gen Adm. $20 adv/$25 at door, Snr/Stdt $15 adv/$20 door. 212.260.1796.
FASHION WEEK’S OXBLOOD A new dark sensuous red, named Oxblood, Blood Red, Crimson Madness and even rich Burgundy or good old-fashioned Maroon is likely to be an important vibrant new shade this fall in both men’s and women’s clothes. It mixes well with almost any other color and is flattering to almost any skin tone. Derek Lamb sent out an intriguing deep maroon leather pants on the runway, Rodarte offered chunky sweaters and Oxblood leather gloves were all the rage. Stunning was L’Wren Scott’s beautiful, shimmering claret red velvet cocktail dress. A new take on basic black, invest in Oxblood and recharge your wardrobe with drama and sensual allure.
RENOIR, IMPRESSIONISM Henry Clay Frick’s former mansion, an elegant oasis in the heart of museum row, 1 East 70th St., let’s you step back in time and revel in its treasures, while the delightful fountain arcade tinkles back to a time when Jean Auguste Renoir’s full length paintings were dernier cri de la salon. Renoir developed the so called ‘rainbow palette,’ from which black was eliminated. These delicate renderings include Les Parapluies and Le Moulin de la Galette. Soothe your artistic senses and pay a visit on Sunday'a pay-as-you-wish policy and FREE on Friday night from 7 to 9pm.
RAY STAFFORD, RARE BOOKMAN The Grolier Club, a bastion of historical reference offers a look into the storied New York firm Charles Scribner’s Sons and the literary, rare book world’s turn-of-the-century New York through the collection of Ray Safford, a consummate rare bookman and book collector. He joined the company in the mid-1880s when the business was on Broadway and by 1912 he was the company’s rare bookman. Safford introduced authors and illustrators including Maxfield Parrish, Henry van Dye and Howard Pyle to name a few of the luminaries of his day as well as Mark Twain, Robert Lewis Stevenson, and Lewis Carroll. FREE Open Mon.-Sat., 10am-5pm. at 47 E. 60th St.
Ta Ta darlings!!! I’m off to catch those Spunky Opera Broads this Friday evening. Hope to see you there. Fan mail welcome: Click into Polly’s Blogs and never miss a beat on what’s happening at
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Monday, February 13, 2012


Fashion heats up the red carpet runways as New York’s Fashion Week is in full gallop and the shows kick into high gear at Lincoln Center and other venues including the Glory of Spanish dress and the CFDA celebrates America’s celebrated designers. It’s the Best of New York, my friends. All eyes are on New York, the fashion capital of the world. Here’s the scoop!!!
THE FALL 2012 COLLECTIONS As New York Fashion Week unfolds runway shows introduce new designers who shape style in colors, cuts and fabric that bring fresh energy to new fashion designer collections. Strange new names like Thakoon Panichgul mixed ‘old-school’ elegance of New York in wearable ensembles with a twist, while old-time Tommy Hilfiger’s ‘military prep’ made the mark for new style options. Prabal Gurung is another designer who tapped into New York with a ladies-who-lunch approach to lunch dresses that go to office as well. Norma Kamli’s new KamliKulture collection brings out career classics while Suno layered imaginative mixed prints. The chic pile up of some 200 up-to-the-minute fashion shows are featured in more photos and reviews at
OSCAR DE LA RENTA CHANNELING JOAQUIN SOROLLA The ‘Glory of Spanish Dress’ at the Queen Sofia Spanish Institute’s exhibition, curated by the celebrated designer, Oscar de la Renta and Vogue’s Andre Leon Talley is a ‘must see.’ Joaquin Sorolla’s life-size paintings feature traditional clothing, ceremonial costumes and jewelry of each region from Seville to Navarre to Castille. The most splendid wedding dress from Christian Lacroix’s final show in 2009 in center stage on the 3rd floor is a compelling toast to haute couture influenced by Spanish dress, while rich embellishment surfaces in a fiery mix of ribbon, bows, tassels, fringe, lace and gold bullion. Many pleats, gathers and voluminous fabrics of magnificent vintage seemingly move to the rhythm of the Flamenco. Though March 10. At 684 Park Ave. @ 68th St.
CFDA WAVES THE FASHION FLAG “Impact; Fifty years of the CFDA,” The Museum at FIT’s spectacular exhibition gives us cause to salute the talented American designers who have had an “Impact” on fashion over 5 decades with 70 garments on display and some accessories. The garments displayed against the museum’s walls feature themed vignettes, an evening wear group includes Oscar de la Renta’s stunning yellow taffeta ball gown with black guipure lace top, pictured here. Traina-Norell’s evening ensemble, a sequined camel silk jersey sheath dress with hand applied sequins is paired with a cashmere coat lined with sequins. Diane von Furstenberg’s leopard printed wrap dress circa 1974 transcends time with ‘ wear it then wear it now’ function, and the same could be true of Arnold Scassi’s 1955 theater/opera ensemble, a beige coat lined with a rose printed taffeta to match the dress. Through April 17, 2012. Admission is FREE. Location: 27th Street and & 7th Avenue, Tuesday through Friday, noon to 8pm; Saturday 10-5pm. Visit
A FRAGRANT FASHION AROMA The Dillon Gallery in Chelsea has plenty to smell about in the work of perfumer Christophe Laudamiel, who has designed fragrances for Ralph Lauren, Estee Lauder and Tom Ford, to name a few. Mr. Laudamiel in his DreamAir laboratory is testing the commercial possibilities of establishing perfumery as a fine-art form. You can test your olfactory senses. Concealed electronic boxes use lightly compressed air to pump out vaporized smells. Mr. Laudamiel has created what is called ‘scent sculptures’ that conjure a diversified range of aromas including citrus, a musty cave and a banana monkey smell. At 555W. 25th St. (11th Ave.) Open Tues-Sat. 10am-6pm. 212.727.8585.
Ta Ta Darlings!!! I’m overwhelmed with Fashion in New York and my olfactory senses yearn to smell a Polly fragrance. Fan mail welcome: Visit Polly’s Blogs at and click on the links in the left-hand column, such as

Monday, February 6, 2012


New York City is a living museum of art and culture. One need only step into a landmark building and find the most exquisite art treasures as chronicled at MOBIA or put yourself in the front row of the runway shows during Fashion Week. It’s the Best of New York my friends, the very best to cultivate our minds with beauty and culture. Here’s the scoop!!!
WALLS SPEAK: THE NARRATIVE ART OF HILDRETH MEIERE New York is a virtual museum, a living testament to its reputation as the Art Center of the World. Just walk into any of New York Metropolitan areas most iconic places of worship and view the liturgical designs that adorn Temple Emanu-El ; Saint Bartholomew’s Church; St. Michael’s Passionist Monastery Church in Union City, New Jersey and other religious landmarks and discover the versatile Art Deco muralist Hildreth Meiere (1892-1961). Image: Meiere's Raindeer Her path-breaking work is the focus of Meiere’s magnificent work for synagogues and churches and is the subject of MOBIA, the Museum of Biblical Art’s new exhibition Wall Speak on view through May 20, 2012. You will rediscover a major American muralist whose cutting edge approach to design, material and technique propelled her to prominence at a time when few female artists had gained acceptance and whose artistry richly enhanced sacred places. Read Polly’s biographical article on Hildreth Meiere Google: MOBIA is located near Lincoln Center at 1865 Broadway at 61st Street. Suggest admission $7, FREE on Sundays. Visit
HAPPY BIRTHDAY, CHARLES DICKENS Just mention Dickens’s 200th birthday on February 7th (he was born February 7, 1812 in Portsmouth, England) and you will receive FREE ADMISSION TO THE MORGAN LIBRARY & MUSEUM’S celebration of the great writers bicentennial year. Free Admission applies to every exhibition at the Morgan, so after viewing the exhibition, you are welcome to explore the rest of the museum. The Morgan’s collection of Dickens manuscripts and letters is the largest in the United States and one of the greatest in the world. It’s a great chance to view Charles Dickens at 200, an exhibition that captures the art and life of a man who literary and cultural legacy ranks among the giants of literature. Original manuscripts of A Christmas Carol and Our Mutual Friend (a portion of which Dickens retrieved from the wreckage of a train crash), letters, books, photographs and original illustrations await your pleasure. On view through February 12th.
NEW YORK FASHION WEEK begins this Thursday and while fashion weeks were once invitation-only trade show events, where department store buyers, magazine editors and fashion cognoscenti were the privileged patrons, don’t fret if you're not invited. Now you can get in on front row viewing of the runway events by live-stream shows and mobile apps, making it possible for you to view designer collections on the runway just as they are taking place. While most of the 200, Fall 2012 Fashion shows will take place at Lincoln Center the season will also reach consumers overseas, particularly the wealthy Chinese, who have become prodigious fashion buyers. After New York, the Fashion Capital of the World, the shows move on to London, Milan and finally Paris, ending in March. For more info:
IMPACT: FIFTY YEARS of the CFDA celebrates the 50th anniversary of the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA), the leading fashion trade organization in the United States, with approximately 100 garments and accessories designed by the CFDA’s most impactful creators of the last 50 years will be on view from February 10 through April 20, 2012 at The Museum at the Fashion Institute of Technology. FREE admission. Also included in the exhibition are visual images and acknowledgment of the nearly 600 designers who have been members of CFDA for the last 5 decades. The exhibition is organized thematically to illuminate the broad spectrum of American creativity, from functional sportswear to couture-quality evening wear. Museum hours: Tues.-Fri. noon-8pm; Saturday 10-5pm.
Ta Ta darlings!!! I’m spreading my wings and taking it all in this week. MOBIA for one is an enriching experience. Fan mail welcome: Visit Polly’s Blogs at and click in the left-hand column the link to the Blog of your interest. Suggestion: