Tuesday, May 04, 2010

Oscar & Elton do High Fashion at Olana on a Piano (with the Muppets)-


- "American Woman: Fashioning a National Identity" Opens at the Metropolitan Museum of Art : "The exhibition features 80 examples of haute couture and high fashion primarily from the Brooklyn Museum Costume Collection at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, which was transferred to the Met from the Brooklyn Museum in January 2009. Many of the pieces have not been seen by the public in more than 30 years..." read the full story

- Why Elton John is considered a danger to Egypt :" A move to ban Elton's gig is about fear of social discord. Yet in other ways the Arab world fails to address 'the public good'..." read the full story


May 4, 1655: Bartolomeo Cristofori di Francesco, Italian musical instrument maker and inventor of the piano, was born in Padua. Cristofori worked for Prince Ferdinando de Medici, and in 1700 the first news of his new invention was recorded- "Arpicembalo" by Bartolomeo Cristofori, of new invention that produces soft and loud, with two sets of strings at unison pitch, with soundboard of cypress without rose..." (of course, being in Italy at the time, what was actually recorded was- "Un Arpicembalo di Bartolomeo Cristofori di nuova inventione, ch fa' il piano, e il forte, a' due registri principali unisoni, con fond di cipresso senza rosa...", hence, it is thought, was born the name 'piano'.) One of three surviving Cristofori pianos is pictured above.

May 4, 1826: Frederic Edwin Church, American landscape painter, was born in Hartford, Connecticut. His father Joseph Church was a director of the Aetna Life Insurance Company, but young Frederic would rise above that shameful stigma and become an important figure in the Hudson River School and the youngest Associate of the National Academy of Design. Church eventually designed and built a fantastic home called 'Olana', a Persian-style villa, which overlooks the Hudson River valley, the Catskill Mountains and the Taconic Range. "The main building is an architectural masterpiece- the stone, brick, and polychrome-stenciled villa is a mixture of Victorian and Persian styles. The interior remains much as it was during Church's lifetime, exotically furnished and decorated with objects from his global travels, and with some 40 paintings by Church and his friends. The house is intricately stenciled inside and out; Church designed the stencils based on his travels in the Middle East. Olana is one of the few intact artists' home-, studio- and estate-complexes in the United States; it was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1965."

May 4, 1927: The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences was founded. Oscar was born a year later, and everyone lived happily ever after.


"Head-Gear, Antique and Modern"
By R.H. Wadleigh.
Published in Boston by Coleman & Maxwell in 1879.

The author ran Wadleigh’s Fashionable Millinery and Cap Rooms in Boston, and this booklet presents a broad historical survey of women’s headgear from the ancient Egyptians to the 1850s as well as several plates of “modern” hats which are, of course, available at his establishment.



I think Egypt is nuts. Elton ROCKS!!

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