Sunday, October 4, 2020

LOVE IN ACTION By Polly Guerin


Love goes deeper than the heart
Even before dreaming, let's start

To smile a little more each day
Dispel gloom, cheer on and say

"Hello" to everyone you meet
Your message, so kind so sweet

Treat others with unexpected kindness
Lend a helping had to other's blindness

Silently bless a passerby's transgression
Pardon their rudeness and did I mention

Anticipate need before it is requested
Put out your arm, help and elder guest

Share love in a ripple effect it spreads
More love to love from love instead

Send loving energy into this world, I beg
The power of love brings peace instead

Put love in action every minute today
Capture love's rich reward I pray 

Share good new and like spun gold
Everyone's life enriched is foretold

Wednesday, September 9, 2020



nd in the in the world of contemporary art. An African American artist known for her work in the medium of assemblage, Saar is a visual storyteller and an accomplished print maker. She is known best for her incisive collages and assemblage sculptures that confront and reclaim racist images.

Wednesday, August 12, 2020


As New York City slowly opens up people anxious to get out, after months of guarrantine, need only Day Trip it to The New York Botanical Garden, to reconnect with nature. The reopening of Outdoor Gardens and Collections marks a welcome general oublic.  The best way to get there is by public transportation and Metro North where 250 acres and one million plants await your pleasure to experience nature in all its glory.  New safety protocols in accordance with State of New York requirements wearing masks and social distancing.                                                                                                As the great outdoor adventurer John Burroughs wrote "I go to nature to be soothed and healed and to have my senses in order."                                                                                                                               NYBG is an urban oasis and integral part of he cultural fabri of New York City, located in the Bronx. The verdant landscape currently features a trove of vibrant daylilies, hydrangeas, water lilies, and lotuses among its one million plants. Take a leisurely stroll waking paths and trails that crisscross the Garden providing moments of discovery through nature.                                         As the French painter wrote "There are always flowers for those who want to see them."                                                                                                                                                          The  reopened gardens, outdoo collections and natural features include the Native Plant Garden  with its meadow , woodland promenade and centerpiece water feature, Bronx River with its waterfall which runs through the 50-acre Train family forest, layered and colorful patterns and plant group-ings of the Perennial and Herb Gardens, lushly shaded Chilton Azalea Garden, the award-winning Rockefeller Rose Garden, tropical and aquatic plant-filled Conservatory Courtyards and Pools, and so much more to enchant you and soothe your eyes by the glorious colors that have so much significance. As the color therapist's say: Red for life itself, green for healing, blue for spiritual growth, yellow for happiness and sunshine to name a few that remind us that the colors in nature are the perfect tonic to restore one's pent up feelings. As Albert Einstein wrote "Look deep into nature nd then you will understand everything."                                                                                                                The reopening incorporates enhanced safey measures including staff and visitors  over the age of two to wear face coverings and obseerve social distancing pratices; rewuiring time-entry tickets purchased in advance which will promote social distancing and mitigate the risk of crowding in high-traffic areas. TO RESERVE TIMED TICKETS IN ADVANCE visit the NYBG website Visitor Amenities include: Pine tree Cafe (10 a.m-6p.m, limited menu and outdoor seating) Hudson Gardeb Grill Terrace (12-5 pm; snacks and refreshments, including water, and beer.  The Clay Family Picnic Pavillion.  Please check the NYBG websute for a ccmplete list.                                              THE NEW YOK BOTANICAL GARDEN IS LOCATED AT 2900 SOUTHERN BOULEVARD, bRONX, New York 10458.  Visit 


Wednesday, August 5, 2020

HOPE WANTED Exhibit at NYHS By Polly Guerin

Take Care of Each Other, Kings Theater Brooklyn
As New York City slowly gets back on track, the New York Historical Society is the first museum to reopen on August 14 with an outdoor exhibit, HOPE WANTED NEW YORK CITY UNDER QUARANINE.  As the title indicates, the exhibit takes a look back at New York City's traumatic and recent past, its people and environments. Treating the quarantine of New York City as history the New York Historical Society presents images and interviews  relating to the lockdown as early as April of this year.
       Installed in the museum's rear  courtyard located at West 76th Street between Central Park West and Columbus Avenue, the exhibition also includes a quiet seating area, surrounded by plants where visitors can record their own experiences of the pandemic in an open aided story booth. These oral histories will be archived by the New York Historical Society. 
      Admission to HOPE WANTED is FREE, but access is limited, and face masks are required for
entry, with social distancing enforced through time entry tickets and on-site safety measures. Tickets are available online at nyhistory,org/hopewanted. The exhibition will be open on Thursdays 11 am-5pm for visitors 65+ and to the general public on Fridays from 10 am - 8 pm and Saturdays and Sundays from 11 am-5pm. Audio interviews are accessible to visitors though their cell phones, and exhibition text and audio are offered in both English and Spanish.
TIMES SQUARE during Pandemic
"Hope Wanted" is a joint project between writer and human rights activist Kevin Powell and photographer Kay Hickman. At the height of the quarantine they spent and intensive two days, April 8-9, traveling the five boroughs to interview and take photos of ordinary New Yorkers living during an extraordinary 
time of quarantine in New York City.
      Hickman's empathetic photographs of people and their neighborhoods across all five boroughs and Powell's searching interviews  capture both the tragedy of the pandemic as well as the remarkable resilience of New Yorkers---like "Mama Tanya" Fields, an activist and urban famer whose whole family contracted coronavirus, pictured smiling with her six children in the hallway in her Bronx home and photographed on their balcony and in the middle of the street in Queens, Mark Zustovich and Melton Sawyer shar that "self-care has taken anew meaning for us in this era of COVID-19. 
"I'm honored to be part of such a historic exhibit featuring more than 50 of my photographs," said Kay Hickman. "This will be my most important exhibit to date.  In documenting the City at the height of the COVID pandemic you see a rare glimpse of grim and deserted streets, both though Kevin Powell's 12 audio interviews you also get a sense of hope. In viewing this exhibit it is my hope that there is a sense of healing." Kevin Powell is a poet, author and human rights activist and Kay Hickman is a documentary photographer and visionary artist. The exhibition is on views from August 14 to November 29, 2020.
        "Our goal with HOPE WANTED is to honor and celebrate the strength of New Yorkers," said Dr. Louise Mirrer, president and CEO of New York Historical. "We hope this exhibition can offer our visitors a moment of solace to reflect on what they and the city as a whole have experienced in recent months and to better understand this moment in time. We look forward to welcoming everyone back to the New York Historical Society."
       HOPE WANTED is part of All in NYC, Public Art Exhibition, showcasing dozens of programs across the city, and initiative launched by NYC and Company.  The New York Historical Society is located at 170 Central Park West at Richard Gilder Way (77th Street) New York, NY 10024. Follow the museum on social media at @nyhistory on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, and Tumblr

Sunday, August 2, 2020

Serenity in GREEN-WOOD CEMETERY: By Polly Guerin

Serenity in a Cemetery? You may have reason to consider that question, but let me remind you
that within the wrought iron walls of American cemeteries, beneath the oak trees and glorious tombs here you will find a sacred space to escape the cacophony of the city. 
Tranquility Garden Koi Pond Green-Wood
While some people came, as the earliest did, to honor the deceased, individuals of the still-
breathing sort gathered in the cool comfort of a cemetery, to rest, read and even picnic in peace. During the 19th century and especially in its later years, snacking in cemeteries, beneath the shade of oak trees and tombs happened across the United States. Since many of the towns lacked proper recreational areas, many people even had full-blown picnics in their local cemeteries. The tombstone laden fields were the closet thing, then, to modern day public parks. Of special note, Green-Wood's popularity helped to inspire the creation of public parks, including New York City's Central  and Prospect parks.
        Like the Victorians, though picnics are not encouraged, today we can find sanctuary in a cemetery for these places  offer sacred spaces where one can find serene serenity and only the gentle wind will caress your face. Although I am writing about Green-Wood Cemetery, just about any park-like cemetery with magnificent ancient trees, winding paths and  wild flowers might be more convenientbecause Green-Wood Cemetery is located in Brooklyn, New York. 
       Wherever your destination for contemplation or meditation, I suggest that like any other outdoor excursion, that you bring a bottle of water.  In some instances you may find a bench which may at one time welcomed the bereaved and now may serve to accommodate your visit. So sit down and center yourself and release the cares of the day that  are shouldering your thoughts and weighting you down. Breathe in the clean un-polluted air and clear your mind for a refreshing meditation that releases you from the mind wrenching grip of the city.             
Green-Wood Cemetery Winding Path
There is no more peaceful place than a cemetery and Green-Wood with its 478 spectacular 
acres of hills, valleys, glacial ponds and winding paths provide one of the most  sacred and serene areas in which to sit down and contemplate, restore one's
equilibrium and emerge refreshed and inspired. 
         And you will be in good company, too. Among the permanent notables are baseball legends, politicians, artists, entertainers and inventors.  Leonard Bernstein. Louis Comfort Tiffany, whose stained glass adorns many tombs, the artist Jean-Michel Basquiat rests there as do many other celebrities of stage and screen and prominent families including the Roosevelts.
        Green-Wood's spectacular acres of hills, valleys, glacial ponds and paths presents four seasons of beauty from century and a half old trees and the largest outdoor collections of 19th and 20th-century statuary and mausoleums.
        You will be in good company among the  permanent residents who will not disturb your
privacy or deep thinking meditation.     
Fort Hamilton Gatehouse Green-Wood
Although the focus of this feature is Green-Wood with its sacred spaces there is first time news that is rather exciting. Over its nearly two-century history Green-Wood has served as inspiration for countless artists--from musicians, to poets, to painters.  Quite recently they announced their first ever
ARTIST-in-RESIDENCE PROGRAM. One artist will have the opportunity to create in Green-Wo0d's Fort Hamilton Gatehouse, using Green-Wood's landmarked cemetery as their muse.
       Applications remain open through September 2. 2020.  It's an extraordinary opportunity for emerging or mid-career artists in the visual or performing arts. The nine-month residency will run from January through September2021.  The selected artist will be provided with a $7,500 honorarium, a private studio space in the Gatehouse, and access to the cemetery's professional staff and archives, and historical collections. For further information please contact: 
      In conclusion: Green-Wood Cemetery is located at 500 25th St., Brooklyn, NY 11232, It is a NYC National Landmark and is listed in the National
Registry of Historic Places

Wednesday, March 11, 2020

STUDIO 54: NIGHT MAGIC at The Brooklyn Museum: Review By Polly Guerin

The first exhibition to trace the groundbreaking artistic achievements and social politics of the 
historic nightclub Studio 54 takes center stage in the NIGHT MAGIC: STUDIO 54 exhibition at The Brooklyn Museum through July 5, 2020.
With its lasting influence on nightclub design, cinema and fashion STUDIO 54 remains a nostalgic reminder of the revolutionary creativity, expressive freedom, and sexual liberation celebrated at the world-renowned nightclub. You can be there vicariously viewing over 650 objects ranging from fashion photography, drawings, and film to stage sets and music. Behind the velvet rope, partygoers of all backgrounds and lifestyles could come together for radiant nights of music, dazzling lights, and the popular song and dance, "The Hustle."  Image: Bianca Jagger riding a white horse at Studio 54. Photographer Rose Hartman. 
        LOCATION/LOCATION: Set in a former opera house in Midtown Manhattan, with the stage innovatively re-envisioned as a dance floor, Studio 54 became a space of sexual, gender, and creative liberation, where every patron could feel like a star.
     Studio 54's cutting edge décor and state-of-the-art sound and lighting systems set it apart from other nightclubs of the time, attracting artists, fashion designers, musicians, celebrities whose visits were vividly chronicled by notable photographers.     
The Brooklyn Museum presentation which takes cues from Studio 54's famed interior design, presents the nearly 650 objects drawn from both the Museum's collection and Studio 54 cofounder Ian Schager's personal collection. Featuring fashion photography, film, original blueprints, music and never-before-exhibited costume illustrations, set proposals, and designs, STUDIO 54: NIGHT MAGIC documents the 33 months that the club was open, and the talented stage and lighting designs, DJs, artists, fashion designers, and who brought the iconic showplace to life. Image: A party reveler in costume.
       Although it was open for only three years---April 26, 1977 to February 2, 1980---Studio 54 was arguably the most iconic nightclub to emerge in the twentieth century. Set in a former opera house in Midtown Manhattan with the stage innovatively re-envisioned as a dance floor, Studio 54 became a space to be seen and to mingle among the multiple personalities of stage, screen and celebrity. STUDIO 54 has come to represent the visual height of disco-era America: glamorous people in glamorous fashions, surrounding by gleaming lights and glitter dancing the night into dawn away in a magical night. 
       STUDIO 54 was founded in 1977 by Brooklyn-born entrepreneurs Ian Schrager and Steve Rubell, who met while students at Syracuse University. They had dreams of opening of opening a nightclub in in the center of New York City, where roller-skating rings, Black and Latinx dance culture, and gary underground were gaining popularity.       
From the moment STUDIO 54 opened, its cutting-edge décor and state-of-the-art sound system and lights set it apart from other clubs at the time, attracting the fashion intelligentsia, musicians and celebrities to bask in its limelight. Celebrities including Andy Jackson, Bianca Jagger, Cher, Elizabeth Taylor, Farrah Fawcett, Liza Minelli, Michael Jackson, Mick Jagger, Truman Capote. Singers Grace Jones, Diana Ross, and Donna Summer all performed at Studio 54.  Fashion designers Stephen Burrows, Diane von Furstenberg, Halston, Norma Kamali, KENZO, Calvin Klein,  Issey Myaki, Claude Montana, Zandra Rhodes, Yves Saint Laurent, Fernando Sanchez,  and Georgio
Sant'Angelo were frequently present. Image: Celebrity visitors: Jerry Hall, Andy Warhol, Debbie Harry, Truman Capote, and Paloma Picasso at Studio 54 in New York City. Photo: Getty Images.
      The design of th exhibition itself is inspired by SUDIO 54's original lighting and features innovative sets and audio elements that highlight the popular music and film of the era---including chart-topping songs like "Le Freak" famously written after the band Chic was denied entry to the nightclub's 1977 New Year's eve party, and "I Will Survive," Gloria Gaynor's B side that became an anthem after it was championed by Studio 54 DJ Richie Kaczor. STUDIO 54 IS A TIMED TICKET EXHIBIITON. The Brooklyn Museum, 290 Eastern Parkway. 718-638-5000.
      Ta Ta Darlings! Let's wear some outrageous outfit and trip over to the Brooklyn Museum
where vicarious thrills of a bygone era will ignite STUDIO 54: NIGHT MAGIC once again.
Fan mail welcome email 

Monday, March 9, 2020

THE NATURE OF COLOR at American Museum of Natural History: Review By Polly Guerin

Color is around us, shaping our emotions, our actions and our surroundings yet, we pass through each day unaware of the great impact color has on all aspects of our lives and the living species in nature.
      . THE NATURE OF COLOR, which opens today at The American Museum of Natural History, simutaneously celebrates its 150th anniversary.  The museum demystifies the meaning and influence of color , with a new interactive exhibition that  lets visitors explore the role and the power ot color in the natural world, in human cultures, and in our personal lives. It's vibrant, it's entertaining, and answers questions that stir up our emotions as we learn: Why do colors make us happy, while others make us, well blue?  How did pink come to be associated with femininity in Western culture and blue become America's favorite color?  This fun, family-friendly exhibition resonates with all the child-like wonder of discovery. It is immersed in color themes with models, cultural objects, interactive exhibits that invite visitors to play, experiment and explore the science of color, how colors make us feel, and how plants and animal use color to help them survive and reproduce.  
Interactive Color Paytime
FEELING COLOR: Color affects our mood, our perceptions and our behavior. The color red for example may elicit emotions and dramatic behavior, red correction ink may be negative but a stunning red gown by American fashion designer, Brandon Maxwell introduces a dramatic, entrance-making statement. The dress was the finale in Maxwell's Fall -Winter 2020 show, which was hosted by the Museum during New York Fashion week in February COLOR IN NATURE  Visitors will be able to see an example of camouflage in the Nature of Color with live leaf-tailed geckoes, which evolved to
blend with dried leaves and tree bark. Color is just as important in the plant world, where pollinators get cues on which flowers to visits based on the color. Humminbirds, for example, prefer red flowers, bees are attracted to blue, moths seek white and other light-colored blossoms, and flies are drawn to dark flowers. PHYSICS OF COLOR explores the physics of color in an immersive color-changing room and a ight lab with hands-on activities to discover that white light is actually a mixture of colors, play a video interactive---on kiosks or from their mobile devices---that examine how colors affect emotions and "paint" without the mess in a floor to ceiling color play interactive just by moving
your hands. 
FEELING COLOR; Colors affect our mood, our perceptions, even our behavior. There is plenty of evidence that colors inspire deep feelings in almost everyone.  For this reason
marketers choose colors carefully, as consumers often make up their minds based on color alone. An example, BLUE is the most popular color for corporate logos, as this color is often associated with trustworthiness and competence. In this section visitors will explore the different feelings colors can evoke by arranging colored tiles to create pleasing or clashing combinations and share their personal reactions to colors on a big screen. MAKING COLOR: The Nature of Color explores the rich history of BLUE PIGMENTS in particular, with objects from the Museum's anthropological collection and an interactive that will demonstrate the process of dying indigo fabric. Natural indigo has been used o create some of the blue hues of Japanese artwork, African textiles, and the first blue jeans. 
       Ta Ta Darlings. THE NATURE OF COLOR resonates with interest for everyone with exploration and entertainment whilst demystifying the colors in our daily life. Fan mail always

Monday, March 2, 2020

EILEEN GRAY at Bard Graduate Center Gallery: Review by Polly Guerin

The designer and architect  Eileen Gray, whose highly original and daring designs anticipated many of today's modern design, receives due homage at the Bard Graduate Center Gallery, located at 18 West 86th Street on view through July 12, 2020.
      This is the first in-depth exhibition in the United States to examine her total oeuvre with
200 works, including never before exhibited furniture, lacquer works, architectural drawings and archival material. Gray's long and distinguished career began in the early 1900s and continued until her death in 1976.  On view are rarely seen architectural drawings and photographs of Gray's most famous house, E 1027, and other architectural projects. EILEEN GRAY was a pioneer in modern design and architecture, and one of the few women to practice professionally in those fields before WWII.  Although she was born into a distinguished household in Ireland Gray remained steadfast to her creativity at first in London and later in Paris. By 1910 Gray and fellow schoolmate Evelyn Wyld, established a workshop to produce carpets and wall hangings. Gray's interest in Japanese lacquer forged an alliance with Japanese craftsman Seizo Sugawara with whom she formed a successful partnership, and Gray's lacquer screens attest to her achievement as a superb lacquer artist.  
Eileen Gray Dresser 
In 1922 she opened in Paris, Galerie Jean Desert, at 217, rue du Faubourg-Saint-Honore, where she sold furniture and rugs. Distinguished luminaries of the day including James Joyce, Ezra Pound and Elsa Schiaparelli were among her customers. The Galerie also served as an exhibition space for modern art, making Gray, albeit under a male pseudonym, one of the first
female gallerists. Image: Eileen Gray Dresser, 1926-1929. Painted wood, aluminum, glass, cork, aluminum leaf. Centre Pompidou, Musee national d 'art modern, Paris. Purchase, 1922, AM 1922 -1-6, (c) Centre Pompidou, Mnam-CCI, Dist. RMN-GP, Jean Claude Planchet,
        From the 1920s Gray produced architectural projects for private the public commissions. In  1926 she started work on a new holiday home near Monaco on the French Riviera where she
planned to live with her lover the Romanian architect, Jean Badovici.  Together, they experimented with ideas about modern, vernacular architecture, and worked on Architecture Vivante, one of the first French magazines devoted exclusively to architecture.  The construction of thei house took three years was named E 1027, a code for the lovers' names.  
E 1027 Above the Bay of Monaco
The multiple facets of E 1027---an iconic work of modern architecture---are presented though drawing, photographs, and furniture.
Located above a dramatic site above the Bay of Monaco, Gray created furniture for the house that elucidates her unique approach to modern design. Eleven pieces of furniture Gray designed specifically for E 1027 include the Transat Chair, an adjustable side table and a dressing table with pivoting drawers. Image: View of the South façade of E 1027 taken from the sea, Roquebrune-Cap-Martin, n.d. Centre Pompidou, Bibliotheque Kandinsky, Paris. Fond Eileen Gray. A replica of E 1027 is on display. 
      The exhibition reveals Gray's versatility as a designer of many types of furniture including the Bibendum chair which resembled the Michelin man with tube-like shapes sitting on a chromed steel frame. GALLERY PROGRAMS and EXHIBITION TOURS and for information about hours and admission visit:
     Ta Ta Darlings!!!  Eileen Gray is as modern today as she was in the Art Deco era. Her designs
resonate with collectors and new buyers discovering her today will find her furniture a perfect fit in modern interiors.  Fan mail weleome: 

Monday, February 24, 2020

The Book of Ruth: Medieval to Modern at The Morgan: Review by Polly Guerin

A stunning modern artistic take on The Book of Ruth is the focus of a major attraction at The Morgan Library & Museum and you have until June 14, 2020 to see the exhibition THE BOOK OF RUTH: MEDIEVAL TO MODERN.
     The story of Ruth has been recorded in ancient manuscripts but this exhibition introduces an interpretation of remarkable skill and innovative interpretation. It celebrates the gift of Joanna S. Rose of the Rose Book of Ruth to the Morgan Library & Museum. The accordion-fold vellum manuscript, measuring nine inches tall and an astonishing eighteen feet long was designed and masterfully illuminated by New York artist Barbara Wolff who worked tirelessly on the project two years  (2015-17). The complete biblical text of the book of Ruth is written in Hebrew on one side and in Engish on the other side the work of Izzy Pludwinski  The Hebrew side features twenty colored illustrations and a continuous landscape with accents and lettering in silver, gold and platinum; the English side has forty executed in black ink. The manuscript is housed in a modern "treasure binding" a custom designed box in shot silk and decorated with 24-carat gold lettering that reads "Your people shall be my people and your God shall be my God in Hebrew.  The Book of Ruth speaks of  courage and devotion. Ruth and her daughter-in-law craft the means of their survival, and their strength helps build the foundation of the House of David. 
      Visitors will discover how Wolff was inspired by the techniques of medieval illumination. Her approach iconography, however, differs from that of her medieval forebears. Medieval illuminators illustrated pivotal events in the biblical narrative by depicting people involved, mainly Naomi and her family, Ruth and Boaz---arranged like characters on a stage set. Wolff takes a different approach. On the Hebrew side of her manuscript she paints few human figures, illustrating instead such elements as a landscape, harvest grains, flowers, a sandal and a significant wedding belt to tell the story. Image: The Barley of  Beth-Lechem. The Joanna S. Rose illuminated Book of Ruth in Hebrew and English. United States New York, and Israel, Jerusaleum 2015-17. Commisioned by Jonnna S. Rose, written by Izzy Pludwinski, designd and illustrated by Barbara Wolff, Ms M 1210. fol 9r. Gift of Joanna S. Rose, 2018. The Morgan Library & Museum. Photography by Rudi Wolff. Artwork (c) Barbara Wolff.  The vignettes on the English side function almost like an archaeological gloss to the text, illustrating tools, weights, pottery and other artifacts of the early iron age, in which the story is set. With no Jewish tradition for illustrating the book of Rufh, Wolff created her own illustrative scheme, one in which the characters are evocatively conjured up by the objects they would have touched, handled or worn.         

The Book of Ruth is presented in conversation with twelve manuscripts from the Morgan's holdings, that unfold the
the Christian traditions for illustrating the story of Ruth
during the Middle Ages. Through the juxtaposition of the modern manuscript with these ancient works, which date from the twelfth to the fifteenth century and include three
leaves from the Morgan's famed Crusader bible, the exhibition brings into focus the techniques of medieval illuminators that inspired Wolff , as well as her innovative
approach to iconography. IMAGE: Ruth threshing and bringing grain to Naomi. Naomi counseling Ruth workers
threshing grain. Ruth lays at the feet of Boaz. "Crusader
Bible," added inscriptions in Latin, Persian and Judeo-Persian . France, Paris ca 1250. MS M 638, fol. 18r. Purchased by J. P. Morgan, 1916. The Morgan library & Museum. Photography by Janny Chiu, 2018, RELATED
PROGRAMMING:Your People Shall be My People Illuminating the Book of Ruth March 27, 7 pm, May 19,
3 pm and June 8, 7 pm. Lectures and Discussion: Join Roger Wieck, Melvin R. Seiden Curator and Department head of Medieval and Renaissance
Manuscripts and artist and illuminator Barbara Wolff at they discuss Wolff's contemporary work  and the ancient historic traditions. For detailed info contact IMAGE: Ruth departing the tent of Boaz.
     Ta Ta Darlings! This is jewel of an exhibit.  I suggest you bring a magnifying glass to get a closer view of Wolff's delightful objects that serge as storytelling images of what people wore or the work they engaged in Biblical times and their interaction with one another.  Fan mail welcome:  

Monday, February 17, 2020

THE ORCHID SHOW, Jeff leatham's Kaleidoscope at the New York Botanidal Garden: Review by Polly Guerin

Jeff Leatham
The multi-fascinating colors in nature at THE ORCHID SHOW, at the New York Botanical Garden, immerses the visitor in a wonderland where thousands of orchids are on display in dazzling creations by icon and floral designer to the stars Jeff Leatham.
        Leatham's captivating designs and installations have transformed each gallery of the exhibition, in NYBG's historic Enid  A Haupt Conservatory, into a different color experience, like the turn of a kaleidoscope.
    THE ORCHID SHOW: JEFF LEATHAN'S KALEIDESOPE, on display through April 19, 2020, invites you to get out of the chill of winter and be greeted by purple verandas suspended above a 10-foot-tall mirrored orchid sculpture with a fountain of water streaming into a black pool. Other galleries and spaces of the exhibition, each designed in its own color
scheme, include plantings of green and white cymbidiums aid grasses, yellow orchid arches, and a kaleidoscope of
       "Color is the first and most important aspect of my work, always," Jeff Leatham said when describing his creations for THE ORCHID SHOW. "I want every gallery to be a different color experience for visitors as they move from through them, like looking into a kaleidoscope. I loved kaleidoscopes as a child. You start dreaming as you look through one. People have seen the interiors of the conservatory already, but with this exhibition, I want them to look through them like never before."        
Kaleiescope Installation
     The popular Orchid Show now in its much anticipated 18th year, thousands of orchids provide bursts of forms and colors---in purples, red, oranges, and hot pink---revealed through overhead arches, vine-inspired ribbons, mirrored sculpture, and dramatic lighting, and other artistic embellishments. Leatham worked with horticulturists from NYBG, including Senior Curator of Orchids Marc Hachadourian, to assemble orchids from its collections as well as from the finest growers in the world. 
       ABOUT THE DESIGER: Jeff Leatham has been creating a sensation with his floral installations since he began his career in 1995. His work is a combination of his love for flowers and passion for design Leatham has produced spectacular displays in Paris for nearly two decades and among his accolades in 2014 he was knighted with The Order des Arts et des Lettres---the highest honor for artists and others who have made a significant contribution to French culture. His client list includes the most celebrated movie stars and personalites.  His books remain best welling design books worldwide.   
 Beautiful Orcchid
STYLISH ORCHID EVENINGS, A DEISGNER TALK and more:  During Orchid evenings on select dates, throughout the run of THE ORCHID SHOW, Jeff Leatham's Kaleidocope adults 21 and over can experience the exhibition at night with music, cash bars and light bites. Top of the list, Princess
Lockerdoo teams up with renowned musician Harold O'Neal for a fierce and fabulous performance. You are invited to come dressed in your boldest floral-inspired fashion. Advance ticket purchase is recommended to gain admission to these special events, Visit: evenings/ for more details.
     Other exhibition programming includes Orchid Basics Q&A Saturdays and Sundays, 1-4 p.m. at the NYBG Shop where staff help customers select the best orchid for the home, and Orchid Care Demonstrtions on Sundays at 1 and 2 p.m. in the Haupt Conservatory GreenSchool where orchid experts provide advice on how to choose and successfully grow these elegant plants. FOR MORE INFORMATION ABOUT THE ORCHID SHOW: JEFF LEATHAM'S KALEIDOSCOPE and to purchase tickets visit:
     Ta Ta Darlings! Nothing like taking a color immersion to inspire and warm up our imagination
in Leatham's kaleidoscope world of wonder and fascination. Please send your comments and
fan mail to   

Monday, February 10, 2020

Jean-Jacques Lequeu Visionary Architect at The Morgan: Review By Polly Guerin:

Jean-Jacques Lequeu 
A builder of architectural fantasies, Jean-Jacques Lequeu, (1757-1826) dreamed of becoming an architect and draftsman. With the zeal of youthful endeavor he began his career working on building sites, but ultimately he spent the majority of his life as a bureaucratic draftsman. However, before he died in poverty and obscurity, Lequeu donated one of the most singular and fascinating oeuvres of his time to the Bibliotheque nationale de France.                                                 Lequeu's oeuvre is rampant with curiosity, mystery and fantasy. Whether you are an architect or merely a voyeur, Lequeu's work deserves a look beyond the ordinary into the realms of extreme interpretation. You will not be disappointed, but perhaps be transfixed and mesmerized by the magical quality of his interpretations.  The exhibit has much to offer young architects today.
     The MORGAN MUSEUM & LIBRARY  is the first institution in New York City to present a selection of these works in the exhibition, JEAN-JACQUES LEQUEU: VISIONARY ARCHITECT,  through May 10, 2020. Some sixty of Lequeu's several hundred drawings are now on view in the first museum retrospective to bring significant public and scholarly attention to one of the most imaginative architects of the Enlightenment. IMAGE: Jean-Jacaues Lequeu (1757-1826) HE IS FREE, 1798-1799. Pen and black ink, brown and red wash. Bibilotheque nationale de France, Department des Estampes et de la photographie. A semi circular niche from which a nude woman leans out to free a songbird.
Draftsman's /Tools
Lequeu's meticulous drawings in pen and wash include highly detailed renderings of  and
imaginary monuments populating invented landscapes. Solitary and obsessive, he created fantastic worlds shown in his drawings without ever leaving his studio, and enriched them with characters and stories drawn from his wild imagination and his library. Working on his own, Lequeu produced animated self-portraits, erotic drawings and over one hundred designs for imagined projects. It is said that his drawings demonstrate a remarkable degree of skill and creativity, as well as an inventiveness inspired by antiquity and the Enlightenment. IMAGE: Jean-Jacques Lequeu (1757-1826) Draftsman's Tools, from Civil Architecture,.1782. Pen and ink, brown and gray wash, watercolor, Bibliotheque nationale de France, Department Estampes et de la photographie. 
       Lequeu's brilliant career was upended by historical
He was born during the reign f Louis XV and was witness
to the death throes of the ancient regime, the upheavals of the new order established under Napoleon's Empire. His work created in solitude, and fueled by self-study, reflects his troubled times and his vision of architecture that defied
academic boundaries. The exhibition is accompanied by a 192-page hardcover volume in French. The publication provides unique insight into an extraordinary time, and allows the reader to follow Lequeu on the his obsessive and solitary course. 
Tomb of lsocrates
 IMAGE: Jean-Jacques Lequeu (1757-1826) TOMB OF Isocrates, Athenian Orator 1789. Bibliotheque nationale de France, Departament des Estampes et dela phtographie.  Related programming includes WHERE IN THE WORLD IS JEAN-JACQUES LEQUEU? Meredith Martin, Associate Professor at New York University will explore various ways that Lequeu's corpus has proven to be fruitful for scholars as well as architects over the past two centuries. Wednesday, April 29, 2020, 6:30 pm. Then, too, there is a Curator Guided Tour on April 3, 2020 at 1 pm. for more information about this exhibition, tours and admission, visit  The Morgan Library & Museum is located at 225 Madison Avenue at 36 Street. 
TA TA DARLINGS!!! It's amazing how solitary work can produce such unique  renderings
of imagined architecture and with such draftsmanship finesse. Don't miss this exhibit, It's a thrilling adventure into the realm of fantasmagorical imagination.
Fan mail welcome at

Monday, February 3, 2020

ALFRED JARRY: The Carnival of Being at the MORGAN: Review by Polly Guerin

Alfred Jarry
An artist who would play a seminal role in the radical upheaval in the arts, more than a century ago, ALFRED JARRY stands on Terra Ferma as a exceptional artist who worked beyond the bounds of restraint and carved an important place in art history.  He was an inspiration for Dada and Surrealism and a touchstone for the Theater of the Absurd. 
        Alfred Jarry's remarkable and innovative body of work is presented in the first major United States exhibition at the Morgan Library and Museum though May 10, 2020. Jarry was a multifaceted creative force unto himself. He was a puppeteer, a critic, a novelist, an artist and a bicycle fanatic. His works suggested that technology, popular imagery, and the performance of everyday life could constitute works of art.  Jarry's statement that "living was the carnival of being," embodies his anti-authoritarianism and subversive theatricality expressed in being larger than life itself in excess, wordplay, alter egos, and the unfettered imagination. Since his death in 1907, Jarrry's eclectic works and ideas have continued to 
Les minutes de sable memorial
for figures of the twentieth- and twenty-first avant-gardes. Image: Alfred Jarry, ca. 1894-96. Attributed to Nadar. Photograph courtesy of Thieri Foulc. ALFRED JARRY: The Carnival of Being celebrates the gift to the Morgan Library and Museum of the books and manuscripts in the Robert J and Linda Klieger Stillman Pataphysics 

       The exhibition considers some of Jarry's many innovations by his engagement with printed matter and the graphic arts.  On of the first writers to experiment with visual typography, Jarry forged new relationships between image and text in the experimental approaches to book and magazine design.  His use of assembling anachronism, collage, and appropriation are bellwethers of modern and contemporary practices. Image: Alfred Jarry (1873-1907). Les minutes de sable memorial (Paris: Mercure de France, 1894). The Morgan Library & Museum gift of Robert J and Linda Klieger Stillman, 2017. PML 197917 . Photograph by
Janny Chu. Drawing primarily on the Stillman's collection, the exhibition is contextualized with other objects in the Morgan's collections as well as loans from private and institutional lenders, comprising manuscripts, drawings, photographs and ephemera. Paintings and prints by figures in Jarry's circle, such as Henri Rousseau, Pierre Bonnard, and Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec are also featured. 
Alfred Jarry" Ubu roi"
JARRY is best known today for his revolutionary play Ubu Roi (1896). With only one legendary  performance recorded it remains one of his most significant works. The final portion of the exhibition points to ways in which Jarry's writings have inspired pataphysical organizations and visual artists at particular historical moments, featuring works by Marcel Duchamp, Mary Reynolds, Joan Miro, Dora Maar, Max Ernst,  Thomas Chimes, and William Kentridge, among

others. Gallery Talks, Readings and Performances including a Symposium, Alfred Jarry: Paraphysicist and Prophet on Saturday, April 25th. For more information about the exhibition visit

        Ta Ta Darlings!!! Alfred Jarry accomplished an astonishing body of work in his short life.
THE CARNIVAL OF BEING will jolt your creative juices, visit the Morgan's  celebration of the iconoclast Alfred Jarry.  Fan mail welcome at

Sunday, February 2, 2020

VAUGHAN WILLIAMS FESTIVAL: March 8: Canterbury Choral Society

With its nod to spring and glorious music, the Canterbury Choral Society presents the VAUGHAN WILLIAMS FESTIVAL on March 8, 2020, at 4 p.m. at the Church of the Heavenly Rest, located at 1085 Fifth
Avenue at 90th Street. Tickets are available on EVENTBRITE, or at the Door, $25 General Admission, $20 Seniors and $l0 Students with ID.
        With a stellar vocal cast and conductor Jonathan 
De Vries leading, the Canterbury Choral Society presents Toward and Unknown Region, Dona Nobis
Pacem, Sancta Civitas and the piano Concerto in C
with concert pianist, Steven Graff. 
       This is a rare and delightful opportunity to hear Vaughan Williams' masterful works as he is among the best known British symphonists and his large scale choral pieces soar to the heights of musical achievement.
Jonathan De Vries

In addition to fulfilling the Canterbury Choral Society's mission to revive and present important music, conductor and artistic director De Vries is a multifaceted artist. He is also affiliated with the Upper School Choral and is Musical Theater Director of the Greenwich County Day School in Greenwich, Connecticut.      
Steven Graff
PIANO CONCERTO IN C: A special presentation, on this Festival occasion, is the performance of the Piano Concerto in C with Steven Graff who has not only been affiliated with the Canterbury Choral Society for twenty years, but he has appeared on the stage, over the airwaves and in the classroom and serves as Professor at Hunter College and
t the Macaulay Honors College of the City University of New York.
      Soloists include a stellar cast with soprano, Hannah Spierman who has appeared in major roles with Canterbury Choral Society on numerous occasions, and has been Soprano One Section Leader since 2017.  
      Tenor Blake Friedman returns to the spotlight. He sang most recently in the Canterbury Choral Society, November 2019 production of J S Bach's Christmas Oratorio. His voice has been cited by the New York Times for its "plummy fullness and dusky hue.:  He has been heard in performances at Chautauqua Opera singing the role of Almaviva in both Il Barbiere de Siviglia by Rossini and The Ghost of Versailles by John Congliano.  
          The third soloist, Robert Balonek has been praised by Opera News as having a "commanding, steely baritone and a direct crystal clear delivery."  Among his many credits, last season he performed in the Canterbury Choral Society's revival of Ariani's Oratorio di San Francesco.
        The Canterbury Choral Society looks forward to presenting the Vaughan Williams Festival.
Be there, are in for a most inspiring and entertaining afternoon.


Monday, January 27, 2020

THE WINTER SHOW at the Armory: Review by Polly Guerin

The WINTER SHOW,  steps forward into the limelight eliminating the word "antiques" from its title, and in its 66th year it remains the quintessential show with plaudits not only from New York City. but as an international icon in cultural and art circles With its refreshing facelift the show sparks with bright lights and innovative booth presentations that entice visitors with eye-popping wallpapers and reflect the theme of the artifacts on display. Speaking of wallpaper, Carolle Thibaut-Pomeranz, noted for antique wallpaper panels is also represented. 
THE WINTER SHOW On view through February 2, 2020, at the Park Avenue Armory,  offers visitors a rare opportunity to step into the ever fascinating  world of art, sculpture and antiques. Whether one is a collector, an antique enthusiast or an individual with novice interest, the show offers an opportunity to view, up close, artifacts from ancient times to modern paintings and sculpture.
UNRIVALED  Hispanic Society Museum and Library
The show's UNRIVALED loan exhibition from the Hispanic Society Museum and Library greets visitors at the entrance features masterworks from across the Hispanic world and is co-curated by the esteemed art historian and curator, Philippe de Montebello, Chairman of the Board of the Hispanic Society Museum and Library and acclaimed architect Peter Marino  At the press opening the sage Mr. Montebello alluded to the fact, "I do not think many of you know about the Hispanic
Society Museum & Library but the exhibit UNRIVALED represents significant masterworks from the Paleolithic age to the 20th century."
Elle Shushan  Exhibitor
THE WINTER SHOW is indeed UNRIVALED and with over 70 exhibitors to visit there's more than a day's visit to explore the booths.  Other highlights include Daniel Crouch Rare Books display of over 50 terrestrial and celestial globes dating from the 16th to the 20th century, Joan B Mirviss LTD, presents Kin to Gin/Gold and Silver, Luster in Japanese modern art, Lobel Modern, Inc. focuses on mid 20th century design while Peter Fetterman Gallery highlights vintage and contemporary photography. The show range of art and antiques includes international booths including Keshishian (London) brings a selection of rare carpets and tapestries.  Visit THE WINTER SHOW online at For full events and programming, exhibitor information visit
      TA TA DARLINGS!!! THE WINTER SHOW is owned and produced by East Side House Settlement a community-based organization serving the Bronx and Northern Manhattan. Visit to learn more.  The Winter Show, 2020, is a breathtaking experience, not only 
the antiques, but the decorative arts and a gentle sweep into modernism gives it an upbeat flair
that is refreshing and inviting to everyone.  Fan mail to:

Monday, January 20, 2020

VIDA AMERICANA &The Mexican Murialists: Review By Polly Guerin

Diego Rivera UPRISING 1930 
Art speaks of social and political upheaval and this tenet especially bore witness when Mexico underwent a dramatic cultural transformation at the end of its revolution in 1920. Artists responded by creating art that spoke directly to the people about social injustices and national life. You may not remember, but following the decade-long Mexican Revolution that ended in 1920, the muralist movement emerged when president Alvaro Obregon's administration established a public art program. Painters such as Rivera, Orozco and Sigueiros were offered walls to create frescoes that in large part paid tribute to the heroism of everyday Mexicans. While many post-war American artists traveled south to take in the street-art sights, the trio became  the toast of New York City art circles in the 1930s and exported the homegrown Mexican art form abroad. Image: Diego Rivera, UPRISING 1930 (c) Banco de Mexico-Rivera-Kahlo ARS. Reproduction authorized by the National Institute of Fine Art and Literature (INBAL) 2019. 
         VIDA AMERICANA: MEXICAN MURALISTS REMAKE AMERICAN ART 1925-1945 at the Whitney Museum will be on view from February 17 to May 17, 2020 in a stunning exhibition that will reveal the profound impact of Mexico's three leading muralists---Jose Clemente Orozco, David Alfaro Siqueiros, and Diego Rivera---on the style and subject matter of art in the United States during 1925-1945 With more than 200 works by more than 60 Mexican and American artists showcases the influences of Mexican artists on American counterparts. 
The murals and easel paintings that will be on display will be on loan from Mexico, Japan, Argentina, and the
Orozco's BARRICADA 1931
United Kingdom. These include works that are rarely exhibited in the United States, including Rivera's two  1932 studies for "Man at the Crossroads," Rivera's controversial fresco commissioned by New York's Rockefeller Center. After paying the full contract fee $21,000, Nelson Rockefeller had the mural demolished because Rivera

refused to remove a likeness of Vladimir Lenin from the composition. Borrowed from Mexico City's Museo
Anahuacalli, the two sketches will be exhibited in the United States for the first time, Other artists represented include Maria Izquierdo's My Nieces (1940) and Siqueiros's Proletarian Mother (1929) on loan from the Museo Nacional de Arte, and two paintings by Japanese-born artist Eitaro Ishigaki, on loan from Japan' Museum of Modern Art in Wakaayama. Image: Jose Clemente Orozco's Barricada 1931 Artist Rights Society (ARS) New York SOMAA Mexico City image (c) The Museum of Modern Art/Licensed by SCALA Art Resources, New York.  The Whitney's ongoing initiative to improve access for Spanish-speaking visitors include a number of resources in both English and Spanish. A family guide will feature texts and in-gallery activities. The Whitney also announced plans including a full-day symposium featuring artists, curators, educators and scholars presenting new perspectives on the role of Mexican Muralists in the United States. For further details contact COMMUNITY AND ACCESS
Alfredo Ramos Martinez CALLA LILLY VENDOR
PROGRAMS: Tours for Immigrant Families Feb 1, March 7,
April 4, May 2, 2020 with Spanish speaking staff. Immigrant Justice Night, April 20, 2020 6-8 pm and COMMUNITY PARTNERSHIP MURAL PROJECT with The Door and Sophia Dawson. The mural will be painted over four sessions by students at The Door.  Participants will also receive a guided tour of Vida Americana. Mexican muralists in particular had a "seismic influence" on the development of social conscious art and street art, says Barbara Haskell, curator of Vida Americana: Mexican Muralists Remake American Art, 1925-1945. "This exhibition seeks to turn art history on its head," she said. "It's a good time to assess the creativity and aesthetic innovation that came out of the relationship between artists from Mexico and the United States," she explained, framing the show as a counterpoint to the physical and psychological borders that the Trump administration is seeking to enforce between the neighboring nations.  Image: The painter from Uruapan, Alfredo Ramos Martinez 1929., University of Arizona Museum of Art. TA TA DARLINGS!!! This is a ground breaking exhibition, timely and provocative. The new Whitney exhibition pays tribute to the Mexican Muralists too-long-forgotten legacy. Fan mail welcome at

Monday, January 13, 2020


Self-Portrait Asleep in a Tomb of Mereruka Sakkara
Contemplative, confessional and comedic the six-decade retrospective of photographer, Duane Michals, ILLUSIONS OF THE PHOTOGRAPHER at the Morgan Library & Museum, transcends the  conventional audience of photography and is an emotional tour de force.
       On view through February 2, 2020 the exhibition features the artist's choice selection of works from all corners of the permanent collection.  The exhibition takes viewers on a tour of the artist's mind, putting work from his expansive career in conversation with Old Masters and modern drawings, books, manuscripts, and historical Objects. Imge:
Self-Portrait Asleep in a Tomb of Mereruka Sakkaram 1978, The Morgan Library & Museum, 2018.42 (c) Duane Michals, Courtesy of DC Moore Gallery, New York.
       A storyteller, Michals is known his picture sequences, inscribed photographs, and more recently films that pose emotional, conceptual  and cosmic questions beyond the scope of the lone camera. Since the early 1960's, Michals worked past what he sees as the limitation of the camera. He writes in the margins of his prints, creates sequences of images that explore intangible human
dilemmas (doubt, mortality, desire), and derives poetic effects from technical errors such as double exposure and motion blur.
A Letter From  My Father 1960-1975
In this first retrospective on Michals to be mounted by a New York City institution, the exhibition is organized around animating themes in the artist's work: Theater, Reflection, Love and Desire, Playtime, Image and Word, Nature, Immortality, Time, Death and Illusion. It showcases his storytelling instincts both in stand-alone staged photographs and in sequences Image: Duane Michals A Letter From My Father 1960-1975. Gelatin silver print. The Morgan Library & Museum. Gift of Duane Michals, 2019.78 (c) Duane Michals, Courtesy of DC Moore Gallery, New York. 
       For Michals photography is not documentary in nature, but theatrical and fictive: the camera is one of many tools humanity uses to construct a comprehensive version of reality In his imaginative, visually rich photographs, the artist exploits the medium's storytelling capacity. For example, the six images in I Build a Pyramid (1978) find the artist in Egypt, staking stones in a modest pile that, from the camera's perspective appears to reveal the scale of the ancient pharaoh's monument. Michals reveals that the scenario echoes his childhood habit of  building stones in his backyard in McKeesport, Pennsuylvania  
A Story About A Story 1989
In the exhibition, Michals staged scenes are juxtaposed with those of his creative heroes, who include William Blake, Edward Lear, and Saul Steinberg. In his dual role as artist and curator he matches wits with writers, stage designers, toy makers, and his fellow portraitists of the past an present. Image: Duane Michals
A Story about A Story, 1989 The Morgan Library & Museum, 2018.47 . (c) Duane Michals, Courtesy of DC Moore Gallery, New York. 
      Since 2015 Michals has focused his creative efforts on filmmaking, a natural outgrowth of his directional habits as a photographer.  On a screen in the exhibition, three short films are featured amid a cycle of over 200 photographs  from the series
Empty New York (1964-65), the project through which the artist first recognized his theatrical vision of reality. Illusions of the Photographer: Duane Michals is accompanied  by a 88-page soft-cover catalog featuring a wise ranging interview with the artist and illustrations of seventy works, including his selections from the Morgan's collection and the previously unpublished 1969 title sequence.
      TA TA DARLINGS!!! Just to on view till February 2, it's time to view Duane Michals artistic storytelling in photographs to amuse, entertain, and bewilder. Fan mail Visit Polly's other Blogs visionary men, women determined to succeed, fashion historian and poetry at, click on the links in the left-hand column.