Monday, September 29, 2008

Renzo Piano's California Academy of Sciences Opened in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park

From Art Daily today:SAN FRANCISCO, CA.- One of the world's most innovative museum building programs—a record-setting, sustainable new home for the California Academy of Sciences—opened in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park. This is the first museum to earn a LEED Platinum certification, the new Academy is topped with a 2.5-acre living roof and employs a wide range of energy-saving materials. More here.

In Tight Times

Venice on Forty Dollars for the Day. Is that possible? CNN Travel says yes here.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Perhaps not the Most Expensive Real Estate But Still Cool

I just came across this great story on 70 of the most amazing houses from around the world. You'll need to pour a cup of joe or your favorite bev because you will be drawn in to take a look at these fascinating homes and their histories. I liked the chapter on Condo's as I've tried to make mine not so cookie cutterish too. All this to enjoy from WebUrbanist.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

The Most Expensive Real Estate

With prices in free fall here in the states here is an interesting story on where the opposite is true. The priciest spot on earth seems to be Monaco according to Luxist. Story here.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

A Well Dressed Capital Man's Video on Bulling

To all my friends included in the side section here at Homer's on being a well dressed capital man, here's a terrific video on the proper way to shine your shoes. Mind you I don't dress as well for this chore the way our dapper instructor does. My Father always told me the first impression a man makes is his shoes and it is so true.

Forward Thinking Architecture in Washington

Photo by Morgan Howarth

Well to be honest this home is in Bethesda, Maryland, but to us in DC it's almost Washington by being inside the beltway. A great looking home and interesting story from this month's Washington Spaces Magazine. Its great to see the picture of the original house, in the website slideshow, and what is possible with some creative thinking.

Monday, September 22, 2008

How Would You Feel If You Lost Everything

These past couple of weeks have us all thinking. My blogging has been lite as I too have been working and facing the fundamentals. Everything will be alright, that's one thing of which I am sure. Here is a wonderful four minute video from David Hoffman filmed at TED. Its a piece we can all learn from. Enjoy.

Dubai from the Burj

Another incredible photo of Dubai. I have to visit this city. Story here.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

From New London Art to an Olde London Visit

Past readers know I'm a fan of Monumental Adventure...okay I love her voice, I want to take her to dinner. Flora Montgomery, the narrator and host of most of their films takes us to the Dennis Severs' House, 18 Folgate Street, Spitafields, London. An American who loved Olde London. A Lovely few moments to enjoy.

I Hope Moses Isn't Watching

Years ago a favorite TV character named Lou Grant said to Mary Richards,"You know, you've got spunk," to which she replied, " welllll yes," to his retort," I hate spunk!"

The Art establishment must be saying the same about artist Damien Hirst. I have never grasped his work fully but none the less glory in a man who can pull off such a success.

from Art Daily..LONDON.- Damien Hirst's bold bet to bypass his galleries paid off for him when Sotheby's sold his works of art for $127 million on Monday night. The top lot was "The Golden Calf", a 600kg bull whose hooves and horns are cast in solid 18-carat gold, which sold for S18.6m, a record for the artist at auction. The complete story here.

More NU For New York

Why can't we start seeing some of this down here in the swamps of DC. We really do have some talent here in town and we're not exactly off the radar of important new buildings..then again. More on this building at Dezeen.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Something NU for NYC

I love my native city and have wished for some dashing new archtiecture to help my beloved Big Apple catch up with what is happening in so many urban centers. Granted those new cities reside in places where zoning and regs might be lax but this is New York City, the first home of the skyscraper. If innovation is an American attribute then our cities should reflect it. Would I live in this building? Hmmm..does a personal gym instructor come with it? Never the less its an exciting idea. For the full story click here on the link to Gizmodo.

Auction Season at Weschler's Returns, the returns.

Although Weschler's is not the only auction house in DC, I do find them to be reputable and always honest. Summer is almost done and the fall auction season is just about upon us. This Saturday, September 13th, Weschler's starts the season with a Jewelry, Watches and Coins and an Art Auction. As I don't wear jewelry, watches and know anything about coins, lets stick to the art. Out of 175 lots up for auction, I've picked 10 pieces that hit my eye and will see how they do. For the full catalogue click here. Results will be posted after the auction. So lets see what I liked and I threw in a clunker for fun. I'm sure you'll catch it.

John Christopher Temple Willis (British 1900-1969) Boats Docked at a Busy Port, watercolor, 8-3/4 x 13 in.
Estimate: $600 - 800 - SOLD for $750.00

Manner of Georgius Jacobus Johannes van Os (Dutch 19th Century) Still Life of Urn and Flowers, oil on canvas, 31-1/2 x 26-3/4 in
Estimate: $5000 - 10000 - DID NOT SELL

Kees Verkade (Dutch b. 1941) L'Eleve, bronze sculpture, height: 12-3/4 in
Estimate: $3000 - 5000 - SOLD for $3,800

Marc Aldine (French 1870-1956) View of the Doge's Palace and the Bacino di San Marco, 23-1/2 x 36-1/4 in
Estimate: $30000 - 50000 - SOLD For $21,000.00...Ah Venice!

John Heber Stansfield (American 1878-1953) Tabletop Still Life with Flowers, oil on board, 23-1/4 x 19-1/2 in
Estimate: $600 - 800 - SOLD For $650.00..may it rest in peace.

Kevin MacDonald (American 1947-2006) Restaurant, Ocean City, color pencil and graphite on paper, 15-1/2 x 22-1/2 in
Estimate: $600 - 800 - SOLD For $650.00...wish I had that one.

Bernard Buffet (French 1928-1999) New York VII (from Album New York), lithograph in color, 28 x 20-1/4
Estimate: $2000 - 3000 - SOLD For $2,400.00.

Larry Rivers (American 1923-2002) May Opening, National Collection of Fine Art, Smithsonian, lithograph in color, 29-1/2 x 23 in
Estimate: $500 - 700 - DID NOT SELL..well its DC.

James Abbott McNeill Whistler (American 1834-1903) Old Westminster Bridge, etching and drypoint, 3 x 8 in
Estimate: $2000 - 4000 - SOLD For $1,400.00

Sunday, September 14, 2008


from Nothing left to say.

My Focus on Fashion is Finite

But I love the Satorialist and it's his week, so please visit one of my favorite bloggers. He makes it look so easy and we all know how hard that is.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

The Commons

Thanks to The Bearded Roman, "A new and exciting historical photography source is now online. (Yes, I used “historical” and “exciting” in the same sentence.) Called “The Commons,” it is a collaboration between the Library of Congress, Smithsonian, and several historical societies to digitize historical photographs and make them available online."

A tremendous resource.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

More Beyond Limits

A wonderful video from Sotheby's on the Chatsworth Exhibition.

Monday, September 8, 2008

A Great Fall Sale For DC Natives

To my loyal DC readers who may be looking for some great deals in home furnishings here's a quick post. Starting on Friday,at the Kellogg Collection,is the semi-annual sale. (But if you come in this Tues or Wed and ask for Homer, I'll pinpoint some great deals out to you.) Just an inside tip to those in the know. See ya there.

My Favorite House

Thanks to Pigtown Design for posting about this exhibition. It is so much what Homer's about that I had to also post about the Beyond Limits at Chatsworth. I've never been to this great home and it has always been high on my list. Oh to be across the pond to see it!

Friday, September 5, 2008

Another Staircase fan

I am reposting an older story about my love of staircases because tonight I was alerted to a new blog dedicated to flights of stairs. My love of staircases comes from being lucky enough to grow up around some very fine homes and their staircases always made an impression upon me. So it is great fun to find a blog that is only about staircases. Don't be turned off by its name,"," there is no pornography on the site. I loved it and will have to link to it. IT'S STAIRCASES!

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

A New Bridge in Venice

Due to be inaugurated this month in Venice, the new bridge by Santiago Calatrava, of whom I am a great fan, crossing the Grand Canal, seems to be causing controversy amongst the Venetians. Gee, who would have thought. I think its beautiful. Remember the controversy over I.M Pei's glass Pyramid at the Louvre? Yet how could it not be. The story here at Art Daily. I will grant that money needs be spent to stop the flooding of one of my favorite places on the planet.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Rather Cool Design

Just what I thought a house in Mongolia should look like. Now, can you wrap it up and move it as need be? From Dezeen.

A Devine Interlude

Here is a quick story on what I did on my summer vacation. Last Saturday found me up in the Catskill Mountains of New York in the small winter ski town of Windham, which I have been going to since I was a small lad.

Windham Mountain has an interesting history. Too many years ago, we're referring to the sixties, Windham Mountain was opened as a private ski resort by the Sheridan family. They were and are part of that old Irish Lace crowd that dominated the New York metropolitan area with lots of kids, relatives and neighbors. In its heyday the Windham Club was a virtual sea of freckled faces with blonde,redhead and blue eyed families. The mountain was full of old names like McDonnell, Murray, Skakel, Sullivan, Carey and too many to mention. It was a great time but it was only a short time. Today Windham is a great newly owned facility that is only a couple of hours from Manhattan and is experiencing a rebirth, thanks to some good cold winters and plenty of folks looking for a weekend place not so far away from the city. But I digress.

Not far away and across the mighty Hudson lies the very pretty town of Kinderhook. In Dutch, for which it's name comes from means, "Children's Corner." The goal of an hour's drive to Kinderhook was to meet and see Michael Devine, whose blog is linked to this site. Michael has opened a jewel of a home design store in Kinderhook and I for one sing its praises.

Saturday was a perfect afternoon for a day trip and after winding across the Hudson River Valley we arrived, children, parents, godfather and dog in Kinderhook. The town has some fantastic old homes to view and a quaint small village center where "Michael Devine Home," resides. Through the archway between store and office a young man stood who I assumed was the proprietor. I asked if he was Michael Devine and was affirmed with a hearty hello.

I introduced myself by my proper name and then mentioned that I might be better known as Homer. Michael immediately recognized what I was referring too and gave us all a hearty welcome and a tour of the store. I was also lucky enough to be given a tour of the beautiful garden behind the store/home and of the back shed turned summertime dining room covered in one of his newest fabrics. The place looked great! Aside from the store Michael has become well known for his hand-printed fabrics. His is the first boutique American company to be asked to show at the prestigious Maison & Object Editueres in Paris.

Let me say, I really liked the line of fabrics on display but loved some finished drapes hanging in the back yard over some wicker furniture. Imagine a cotton/linen white fabric with hand blocked chinoiserie pagodas done in a preppy blue. I can only assume they'll be hanging next summer in the finer summer homes around the country. Michael told me he's also got a contract to sell in Australia, hey Anna Spiro, famed for " Absolutely Beautiful Things," keep your eyes out,you'll love this, along with London and Paris of course.

We chatted about the blogosphere and the sites and friends we have come to know and where all this work might take us. I warned him, as he is relatively new to blogging, about what a beast it can become, with knowing nods from his partner Thomas Burak.
With a recommendation for lunch at "Pi" just down the street, which was wonderful, we left vowing to stay in touch. It was a great road trip to visit a very talented man.You can learn more at Michael's blog, "The Devine Life," here.

Thank you to "All The Best," for this photo.