Grades are done and posted, the vacation begins today and there are two trips to look forward to. The first to New York to meet up with my mother-in-law coming in from Scotland, and later in the month together with an old friend flying in from London, volcano permitting, to Pittsburgh for Falling Water and Kentuck Knob and back to New York for theatre and fun.
A more immediate occasion to look forward to, and I so wish my new blazer was ready, is breakfast this morning at the Ainsworth Noah showroom to meet the designer of this room from 1983, Mr John Saladino. I don't think this room was the first interior of Mr Saladino's I'd seen way back when - there was another with a large square column shaft, green in my memory, doing duty as an elevator hallway, that impressed the hell out of me - however, first or not, I found this room magical and to a great degree still do. It is of its time and yet timeless.
All the elements of interiors created by him over the last nearly thirty years are in place: the classicism, the relish for the antique, the understanding of architecture, the apprehension of light, the enlistment of baroque form and texture, the acknowledgement of proportion and, quite simply, the erudition of it all.
I already have his new book, Villa, and am a bit self-conscious about schlepping it to be signed, so I probably shall not. If you haven't got the book in your library I recommend you put it there. It's not a book that will fit a shelf easily, large and squareish, bumptious even, that it is, it really requires a place on a table - preferably a table draped to the floor with a large oriental carpet.
The carpet draped table is something straight of a Johannes Vermeer or Gabriel Metsu painting, something I had not seen in years, certainly outside of the Netherlands, until last week when visiting an acquaintance I saw his large work table covered to the floor in a large carpet and topped with a large Apple machine and keyboard. That juxtaposition of modern technology with an artifact of such ancient provenance was immensely stylish. In fact, the whole place was full of interesting adjacencies - a bust of Pallas Athene atop a glazed medical cabinet in use as china storage, for example - so much so, that it was obvious he had decorated, curated is probably a better way of looking at it, only for his own visual enjoyment and I found it both ritzy and rakish. They were rooms that, if one took the time to understand, said so much about the owner - a rare quality, I feel.
Apropos ritzy and rakish, I found this recipe tucked away in the cocktail cabinet this evening.
1 ounce Campari
1 ounce Martini & Rossi sweet vermouth
1 ounce dry spumante
orange slice for garnish
Over ice but added in this order - Campari first, then the vermouth followed by the spumante. Stir gently.
For the second time this week I cannot attribute the photographer, though I do know the photo is from a 1983 issue of Architectural Digest. I shall seek the name of the photographer.