Wednesday, March 25, 2015

JEWEL BOXES: Boca Raton, FL: stellar destination for architecture & design

We were drawn recently to the sleek and stylish Boca Raton Museum of Art
located in trendy Mizner Park, by The Wandering Veil -- a large-scale exhibition of 
shimmering painted fabric by Israeli artist Izhar Patkin. 
First, though, a bit of wandering outside ...

                                                         A quiet corner of Mizner Park 

A stop for coffee and pastries at très élégante Le Macaron ...

                And on to the Boca Raton Museum of Art

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                                                                                     Ballerina panel, ink on tulle, by Izhar Patkin

The Wandering Veil isghostly, mesmerizing visual narrative of Israeli and Jewish 
history -- everything from the story of modern-day Tel Aviv to extinct birds to 
Cervantes' hero Don Quixote. It is told through murals of softly pleated tulle, 
printed in black ink; the story they tell seems to whisper to the viewer 
gently, yet insistently. Interspersed within the fabric art are 
sculptural works in glass, and oil painting on wire mesh 
that reproduces the look of Oriental rugs. The exhibition runs through April 5.

Above and below: Panels from The Wandering Veil

To hear a conversation with the artist, originally broadcast on 
WAMC/Northeast Public Radio, link here.

Below are some fanciful objects from the museum's permanent collection ...

Mobile by Dutch artist Fré Ilgen

    Swarovski crystal tree by Wendy Wischer, 
       from Angels & Ancestors I series, 2007

from the museum's extensive collection of black & white portrait photos

                                                                   Raoul Dufy, Le Jardin à Caldes de Montbui, au Soleil      
 [The Garden in the Sun at Caldes de Montbui], 1945-46 

We rounded out our day with a leisurely drive through Boca's dreamy 
Old Floresta neighborhood.

Created in the mid-1920s by Florida's premier designer Addison Mizner, 
this area of Boca is a perfect marriage of landscape and architectural form. 
Palm trees and cycads harmonize beautifully with stucco archways, 
balconies and wrought iron gates. Some homes are designed 
in a Mediterranean style, others are Modernist; 
some artfully combine the two.

Old Floresta was declared a Historic District in 1990, 
insuring that its splendid homes and charming narrow streets 
will be protected from further development.

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Saturday, March 14, 2015

JEWEL BOXES: The Norton Museum in West Palm Beach, FL

   Persian Sea, Chihuly glass ceiling
A standout installation at the Norton Museum
Photos by Michael Schonbach, unless otherwise noted

During a recent visit to South Florida, I spent quite a few enjoyable hours at the Norton Museum of Art in West Palm Beach. Their special exhibition "Coming Into Fashion: A Century of Photography at Condé Nast" was the big draw for me, but I discovered that their regular collection and the venue itself are stellar as well! The Norton is located at the heart of the city's arts district, where we found numerous shops, galleries and cafés. 

Norton Museum, West Palm Beach, Florida

A luminous three-story atrium features a cantilevered spiral staircase. 
Photo courtesy of Norton Museum

              Entrance to fashion photography exhibit

John Rawlings, American Vogue, 1943 © Condé Nast 

American Vogue covers, 1960s -1970s © Condé Nast 

1960s supermodel Verushka   © Condé Nast 
            Love, Solve Sundsbo, 2011
         Photo courtesy of Norton Museum

And from the museum's permanent collection:

Frank Stella, Yazd II, 1968

Wayne Thiebaud, Neopolitan Pie, 1963

Above and below: West Palm Beach Arts District 

    Design Within Reach studio on Clematis St.

Lunch at Pistache Bistro
Unfortunately, it was a bit early for ...

Maybe next time. :-)