Archive for April, 2007

Ahmet, Amen

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Back in 1990, I profiled the late Ahmet Ertegun for the now defunct Sunday Correspondent Magazine in London. Last week’s memorial concert in Ertegun’s honor inspired me to dig out a copy. You can read it here.

Bush League

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Yesterday, an inflatable pig with a top hat and fat cigar sat outside 740 Park Avenue — but it was a union protest of some sort, not a harbinger, even though tonight, as Bloomberg News reports, President George W. Bush will attend a Republican fundraiser at the duplex apartment of Blackstone Group chairman Stephen Schwarzman. Bush expects to raise $1.2 million from the sixty guests who will attend. What Schwarzman expects is anybody’s guess. UPDATE: The Daily News reminds us that even kajillionaires can aspire to more.

Currying Favor

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Touting the new issue of Vogue on the Today show this morning, Ann Curry let promotional zeal get the better of historical fact. The mag’s cover, a Stephen Meisel photograph of what Vogue says are the world’s next top models (take that, Tyra Banks!), features ten barely-known faces (Doutzen, Coco, Chanel, Hilary, Agyness) in what appears to be an attempt to reassert the primacy of mannequins after a decade of fashion magazine covers dominated by actresses. Interviewing a Vogue editor, Curry referred to the magazine’s last model-roundup cover, Patrick Demarchelier‘s “Ten Supermodels of 1992″ (which appears on page 150 of … Continue reading

When Worlds Collide

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I met Ahmet Ertegun at my very first press party in New York back in the dark ages. It was at Raffles, the club that’s now called Doubles in the Sherry Netherland Hotel. I was still in college. The man who turned “race music” into all-American music was introducing his latest signing, the country music star Willie Nelson. Later, I would profile Ertegun, and have the chance to get to know him and his wife Mica a little. I saw immediately that incongruities were like oxygen to him. “One love.” Keith Richards signed off with those words in the message … Continue reading

No Biga Deal

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More confirmation of the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s fervent desire to get the Good Antiquities-keeping Seal of Approval for its new Greek and Roman Galleries, opening later this month. A few weeks ago, Gripebox revealed the frantic negotiations to insure the attendance of diplomats from Greece, Italy and other so-called “source nations,” who would thus be giving their tacit blessing to the objects that will be on display. Turns out, those efforts have been going on for years. In December, 2004, in response to a demand by the mayor of Monteleone di Spoleto for the return of the famous Etruscan … Continue reading

Peevish Piqued Picón

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Carlos Picón, curator of the Department of Greek and Roman Art at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, sounds off against those who would rain on his parade (the opening, later this month, of the Museum’s new Greek and Roman galleries) ad nauseum in Den of Antiquity by Rebecca Mead in this week’s issue of The New Yorker (it’s not online, but there is a slideshow). Its provocatively promising title notwithstanding, the article is a slow wet kiss that gives Picón an open platform for trashing critics around the world who want to see what they call “cultural property” (i.e. antiquities) … Continue reading

Public Lives, Private Spaces

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On Saturday, April 14th , I’ll join interior design savants such as Mario Buatta, Jamie Drake and Wendy Goodman at the Museum of the City of New York for a daylong (from 10am to 4pm with a buffet lunch) event celebrating residential interior design in Manhattan. Tickets are $30 ($25 for members of the museum).

Schwarzman Gets an Upgrade

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Hyperbole has always abounded when describing the best l’il apartment in New York City, at 740 Park Avenue. Built for Mayflower descendent George Brewster, it was then occupied in turn by John D. Rockefeller Jr., Saul Steinberg and now, Steve Schwarzman. But The Business Online has taken real estate inflation to a whole new level with its current description of that apartment, giving it 34 bedrooms (it has 34 rooms) and a last-selling price of $39 million (about $10 million more than Schwarzman paid). Someone should offer author Ian Watson a job selling condos on Baxter Street!