Great Chaste

Tuesday, September 30, 2014 1 comment
Pawel Pawlikowski's stunningly austere portrait of a young Polish nun on her path to find her family and self before taking her vows may inspire a whole new generation of filmmakers to shoot in black and white. Perhaps the fashion world already took inspiration, too, when Ida toured the festival circuit last year. So many of Spring's best collections have been exceptionally monastic, as you'll see below amidst some of the most remarkable modern monasteries. Watch Ida stream on iTunes and say your prayers that you'll someday don Mary Kate and Ashley's incarnation of a monk's frock on an adventure in Anjou or go Pagan in Pugh in Bellelay. 

The Row S/S15

Mathieu Lehanneur's mind-bogglingly beautiful minimalist masterpiece, St. Hilaire Church, in Melle France via Yellowtrace, one of my favorite sites.

Gareth Pugh, S/S15

Romain Crelier's La Mise en Abîme installation of precise pools of oil in Bellelay Abbey in Bellelay, Switzerland.

Gareth Pugh S/S 15

Gareth Pugh S/S 15

The lobby of the new Abbaye de Fontevraud hotel designed by Jouin Manku inside the Saint Lazare monastery in Anjou, France.

Marni S/S 15

Gareth Pugh S/S15

Steven Alan S/S15

Marni S/S15

The Row S/S15

Steven Alan S/S15

The Row S/S15

(All fashion images from
Travels North (Slightly More West Than Normal), Pawn Shop Miracles and Darwin

Wednesday, September 24, 2014 No comments

For some reason, Porter and her college friends spent four years across the Hudson from Kingston, NY (and even made numerous trips across the Rhinecliff-Kingston Bridge for Target runs and photo supplies), but never really managed to investigate the town...which pre-dates the Revolution and today is loaded with great little antiques shops and one great, still somewhat affordable heap of architectural salvage glory (Jean, it's everything you said and more). It's hardly a secret destination, but compared to the little towns East of the river (which I adore), this seems more local and less touched by the city folk and weekenders. After almost a decade of trips north, she and I finally popped up there last weekend and found a trove of treasures. 

For months, I've been fantasizing about finding a thick gold band to create a stack on my non-wedding ring finger. While this is the least difficult kind of ring to find, I passively thought about the kind of people who wear thick gold rings (happily married men!) and those who don't want those thick gold rings (divorced men!) and the kinds of places where those men might go to get rid of the thick gold rings (pawn shops!). Well, there was Sam's Swap Shop on North Fourth Street where many a man has decided to part with his shot guns, banjos...and, bingo, wedding bands. I went in like a laser and pointed at one of the hundreds propped into the trays. The owner, the granddaugher of the founder (Sam, I suppose), brought it out and that puppy slipped on perfectly like that glass slipper on Cinderella's impossibly small foot (this, I guess, is not normal in the Kingston, NY pawn shop world). In the days since, Porter has been horrified at the fact that I'm currently sporting and ogling a symbol of a destroyed relationship (at best, maybe?) or (at worst, maybe) a piece of jewelry plucked off of a corpse. But I love it and my joy will surely erase all those bad things.   

Across the street from Sam's Swap sits Half Moon Books, a great little used book shop where we both scored stacks of out-of-print gems, including The Book of Cowboys by Holling C. Holling (a man I should've plopped a gold band onto in another life), Louise Fatie's Happy Lion in Africa, which ranks up there with Curious George and Babar, and Alan Moorehead's beautiful look back at Darwin and the Beagle. Critics panned the poor book for being a lightweight of new Darwinian insights, but no one could deny its beauty. It's filled with over 50 prints and illustrations completed around the time of Darwin's voyage. Here are details of a few. You can buy it for mere pennies online.

The end papers.

Das Wiener Whirlwind Pt. 3 | The "That Poor Gardener" Series + Some Art

Sunday, September 21, 2014 No comments

At the Schönbrunn Palace grounds - and even the Palmenhaus - things aren't always perfect. See the downright punk bush second from the left (someone's in trouble). 

There are roughly 1,345,456 canopies and meticulously trimmed paths to walk under and through in this town. Of them all, this was the most severe, literally like green razors slicing the sky (and we saw the sharpening happen).

A shocking lack of Hapsburgian symmetry occurred on the lawn. Someone must've left their ball bushes out.

This modest structure sits atop a massive hill that overlooks the entire city, the palace and the main gardens.

The view of the palace from a top the hill.

A few of the paintings at the wonderful MuMOK seemed perfectly placed amidst the nature. Richard Gerstl | Familie Schönberg | 1907

Across the Danube canal in the second, more residential ward sits Augarten, home to the Vienna Boys Choir, the Augarten Porcelain Factory (seen past the trees), and a series of ominous wrong-side-of-WWII flak tours.

Of all the opulent architecture in Vienna, the porcelain factory was my favorite. 

The hollyhocks were remarkable.

Paul Delvaux | L'école des savants | 1958

One of the flak towers overlooking happy, playing children and cyclists.

Otto Mueller | Mädchen im Wald (Girl in the Wood) | 1920

The Volksgarten