Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Interior Drawings

This July, while visiting New York my daughter suggested I peruse the remnants of the Albert Hadley interior renderings at the Gerald Bland Gallery, so I braved the record temperature, with great anticipation.  He apologized to little me for the mess, as they were rearranging,  I was captured at every turn, by the amazing eye of this patient, congenial man. After all, I was photographing his art, not buying it! I was thrilled to see the original, energetic renderings of Albert Hadley, the kindly monarch of American decor.

Who can resist, the frisson of joy he brought to this project, with star and sun bursts, bold eclectic style mixes, neatly tied up with a ribbon of earthly branches and shells.  Interior renderings marry two passions of mine, Art with interior design. I love to see the loose scrawl, the concept behind a finished living space and the personality of the person this room was to reflect. I can literally hear this room rocking! 

Design history was launched with this famous library. It is worthy of being donated to a museum. Ten rich gleaming layers of oxblood lacquer were expertly applied with handsome brass trim, to transform a "Park Avenue French" room to a sleek 20th century space. 

The dressy balloon shades are brought down to earth with a comfortable Chintz with strong lines, emphasizing the brass trim. As Gerald and I toured around his jaw dropping gallery, he was very generous with his intellect, sharing not only details, but opinion. I was delighted to turn a corner and see the beautiful interiors by his wife, Mita Corsini Bland

The way Mita Corsini Bland draws us into the room, evokes the feeling that we are actual guests of Mrs. Astor's. This amazing series of watercolors, was commissioned for The collaborative design book: Sister Parish Design On Decorating, written by Susan Bartlett Crater, Mrs. Parish's granddaughter and Libby Cameron, Sister's last protege. These cultured yet practical designers, engage conversation, on the tradition of truly livable homes, with the illuminati of interiors. They are completely to blame for the lateness of our post!

Again, Mita Corsini Bland resists the temptation to record sweeping room views. I feel like we are just about to sit down on that comfortable green sofa with Miles Redd, visual genius and creator of this comfortable space. I love his quote in the living room discussion: 
"There is perfection in imperfection. You want some things to be a little off. When things are perfect it feels like Disney World, in a way."

It is fun to see the whole room at a glance, and the warmth of perspective, in Mrs. Bland's art, conveys the soul of spaces within a room. We feel the fleeting moment. There is a rich tradition of interior renderings, that I've picked up since my happy (albeit boiling) journey to Gerald Bland's gallery. 

Jeffrey Bilhuber demonstrates the art of mixing high and low with multiple era's. MCB does a beautiful vignette of this disparate, yet harmonious look showing luminous color combinations with raw woven textures. 

Mark Hampton: The Art of Friendship, by Duane Hampton, Harper Collins, 2001

In my next life, I am determined to marry the fabulous Mark Hampton or.... Jacques Pepin. This popular book is a cherished gift from my next door neighbor Margaret. I read it often with a smile on my face. This is Lee Radziwill's bedroom in England, decorated by the fabulous Renzo Mongiardino. I love the painted wood floor, a Sister Parish trademark.

Alexandre Serebryakov (1907-1994) painted this charming watercolor titled: Intérieur à Dytchey in 1948. Isn't that chair amazing, so coifed! 

Here we have another Alexandre Serebryakov, via ArtNet. It commemorates the dining room of Mr. Lundberg. It was painted in 1944, and reminds me of the story of Sister Parish, boldly painting her in-laws ebony furniture, for her first house, to their complete astonishment--white! She decorated homes with confidence because of her travels and educated eye. 

In our little corner of the interior design blogosphere, we are all great fans of all scribbles of Patricia Van Essche, aka PVE.  She is an another encouraging big Sister to the new girls and boys, even though she is a member of the "in crowd." While she does wonderful renderings for J. McLaughlin clothing's historic and charming shops, she does energetic and charming drawings for numerous interior design, lifestyle blog banners. This is a tribute to Mrs. Blandings passion for yellow.

Here is a painting of a friend's stylish terrace, done as a party invitation. Speaking of parties, the picture below is my favorite. 

I love an interior with the human element!
Thanks for coming to our party, we appreciate your visits, following, and comments! 
All the Best, from our coterie, 
Liz, Viive, Benji


  1. Wow, wow and wow! What an amazing collection to get to see in person. So glad you shared it with us. I would love to have every single one framed in my house. That chair - oh heart be still!

  2. Sorry, the black openwork back chair - at the green table. Swoon.

  3. I just figured out, why I literally can't wait for your next post. They are like the grandest Oscar winning production and I feel like I've just sat through an epic motion picture. Almost like I need an invitation to be witness to the layers and layers of loveliness that you splice together :) I enjoyed. And Miles Redd..always nails it doesn't he?!

  4. Love the saying "There is perfection in imperfection". But this post IS perfect!

    ps...Liz, go for one of those fried green tomato BLT's - they are perfection!

  5. What an honor to be included here. I do hope on your next NY trip we get to meet in person. Thank-you for your kind words. The IN-crowd, love it.

  6. Oh, the last illustration was done for "The Winter Antiques show" - for Sloan Kettering Cancer Society invitation. I had a blast doing that one of the IN People!

  7. Loved every minute of this! Thanks so much for sharing. These images are beautiful!

  8. How wonderful are those drawings and how beautifully they capture the aesthetic of each designer. Albert was our first interior design client and has remained a good friend and PVE's work is so lovely!

  9. I just devoured this post, and thinking I will go back and linger a bit longer over all these charming and gorgeous rooms and illustrations! And...is that a Lutyens post? I need to carve out a whole lot of time to spend here today! :)

  10. Hi, I just found your blog via Good Life of Design.
    Love this post! Can't wait to see more!

  11. Such beautiful illustrations! First time to your blog and to be greeted with such display of talent is amazing! Love this post.

  12. My daughter's Godmother commented via e-mail:
    I'll pass on the information!

  13. Another friend via e-mail:
    Liz…….read your latest post…..so happy you have found Mita …….she has visited us in the mountains and here in Atlanta this past May. She has done interiors of our house, and working now on our new house in Atlanta which Norman Askins helped us with……she is so talented and very down to earth. A couple of my friends in Atlanta actually visited her this summer in Italy while they were there.
    Her Mother is an American expat living in Italy and she used to work for the OSS……she and Berny had lots to talk about……
    Lots of Love ………I always look forward to your post……

  14. Thank you for hosting such a beautiful party.

  15. Beautiful illustrations...all of them! But, I must admit a soft spot for those by my friend, Patricia, the ever-talented pve!
    xoxo elizabeth

  16. This makes me wish for the days when we all had a little more time (and clients had a little more money) to do beautiful renderings for our clients. Now we put together mood boards on line, and have hard edged CAD drawings to view. The space renderings are like art, and when they are gone from design, it will be a real shame.
    thanks for sharing such lovely work, Liz

  17. I do love PVE...the Library sketch is amazing, really stunning. Thank you for popping over and visiting Housewife Bliss and our giveaway. I really enjoyed your post, stunning.

  18. What beautiful works of art! Excellent taste:)
    Studying art, I really appreciate the various types and styles.
    Have a great weekend!!!

  19. I also just found your blog. Love your beautiful pics. Such an interesting post too. I can't wait to visit again and see more. Thanks also for following my blog. I really appreciate it and can't wait to get to know your better. Hugs, Marty

  20. Hello:
    thanks for your note. I would love to speak with you as I do my manufacturing in NC now and always looking for new great atisans or manufacturers. Will be in NC on the 17th to check out my new designs for the latest collections.
    will try to capture new insirations from the shows....Francine

  21. Hey Liz!
    Just posted a story
    and when I checked my
    comments from yesterday,
    I had to pop right over.
    LOVED your sweet poem
    about your Newfy! My
    grandma used to live in
    Glen Cove and my mom
    graduated from Locust Valley...
    Small world! I also had
    NYC on my mind as I wrote
    this morning, so it is a
    real treat to read your
    post. I just ate up all
    of those images from such
    classic designers and I
    love Patricia's artistry!
    Especially the last picture!
    When I tour historic homes,
    one of the things that stands
    out is how large the bedrooms
    were and I envy that. I'd
    love to have a tea table by
    a fireplace right in my boudoir!
    Thanks for the smiles : )
    Happy Weekend,
    xx Suzanne

  22. These are absolutely stunning! I love them, will always have a weakness for Park Ave. style, as I call it. Could you imagine having a set of these gorgeous illustrations framed? Amazing! XX!

  23. What a beautiful party! I wish I was there. I love renderings and I am starting to learn some techniques through Michelle Morelan blog "A Schematic Life".
    Thanks for your (and your daughter's) enthusiasm in participating to my Quiz and I added your name as the third right answer. Ciao.

  24. Hi Liz,
    Thank you so much for all your support and kind comments. I hope you are enjoying your long weekend.

  25. LIZ! THANK YOU FOR YOUR ENCOURAGEMENT! And....these renderings are fabulous...I draw and this quick pen and ink with slight colors is MY STYLE! Wonderful post and thanks for coming by! I need to join you and follow; you have great taste! Anita

  26. Lord have mercy those are fab! That library*swoon*!!
    thanks for sharing!

  27. Great post and images... I noticed on Shari's blog you're looking for recommendations of great hotels in Paris. St. Germain de pres is a fab area and there's this hotel: Hotel de l'Abbaye Saint-Germain.
    10 rue Cassette | 06 Arr., 75006 Paris, France
    T +33 01 45 44 38 11

    Used to work loads in Paris, but that was ages ago... this ones not bad. If you get stuck have a look on Trip Advisor.


  28. What a beautiful post. I LOVE Gerald Bland's place - as you've now discovered, it is truly spectacular. And I never put together Mita Corsini Bland's name with the gallery. Her work is lovely as is Patricia's. I'm so glad to have found you and your blog, with your charming logo.

  29. These illustrations are wonderful! I just recently purchased Mark Hampton's Legendary Decorators of the Twentieth Century, so this blog was a special treat for me... Thanks for your nice comments on our blog-thrilled to have found you, especially since we are neighbors.

  30. Thanks for visiting my humble blog as it brought me here... and I love it here!

  31. Thank you for stopping by. I love your blog!
    I have this book, and I love every inch of it. Now on to Lutyens post.
    Have a nice day!

  32. Miles Redd said: (in my e-mail)
    Hey Liz,
    Love your blog- thanks for including me! Send love to my Corpening girls- love them so!

  33. Hi Liz,
    Love your blog, I can't wait to spend time going back over all of your old posts. This one is great--I've always loved Albert Hadley's drawings.

    Someone commented on hotels in Paris--it's been a few years, but we always stayed at the Hotel Lotti, sandwiched between the Hotel Intercontinental and the Ritz Carlton on rue de Castiglione, near place Vendome. I know, I know, it's Italian, but it's a great location, and the rates used to be reasonable, (haven't checked in about 4 years.)

    My daughter loved going there, Angelina's is a block away, known for their hot chocolate, and of course you need a pastry... My husband would go get us breakfast and bring it back to Hotel Lotti, it gave him something to do waiting for the girls to get ready. Or we'd go into the Tuileries across the street.

    Writing about this has made me want to plan a trip. I wonder what Paris is like in the winter? Can it be any worse than Portland, Or?


  34. Mita Bland said in e-mail:

    Thank you for posting me. The comments are very encouraging!

  35. Gasp! What a pleasure to see these drawings!

  36. Just stunning those framed drawings! I love it!!

  37. Oh my goodness! Liz, these paintings are amazing. I bought the SIster Parrish book for the paintings, and thoroughly enjoyed Mrs. Bland's work! All of these artists are perfection.
    Thank you for sharing.


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