PaperCity Magazine

February 2016 - Houston

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F or Paris-born interior designer and author Florence de Dampierre, living a chic life is simply her birthright. "The essence of chic is to make things look effortless. It's second nature in France, but not always so here (in America). That's why I wrote the book," says de Dampierre of her latest tome, French Chic Living (Rizzoli, $50). She's resided on the east coast since the mid '80s, but her rapid-fire Parisian accent is still thick and liltingly beautiful. The author of multiple books on French life, interior design and furniture, Dampierre lives in a restored 1876 house in Connecticut with her husband, 18-year-old daughter (two sons are grown) and the French-style gardens she tends herself. "We do entertain a lot, and I really believe you have to make your life organized so that you have a tray ready for drinks or tea, and nuts, olives, homemade jam and vinaigrette in your pantry, and maybe something in your freezer that you can pull out on a moment's notice," she says. "If your silver is in a heap unpolished, or if you have to run out and go to the store, it's not very chic." In her book, Dampierre offers classic French shortcuts and detailed, accessible ideas for maintaining a stylish home, much of it drawn from her mother and grandmother: Grow fresh herbs in your kitchen. Boil tarnished silver in an aluminum pot filled with salt. Wrap candles in aluminum foil and put them in the refrigerator to make them burn slower. Her book is packed with other simple and charming examples, interspersed with Tim Street-Porter's photography. She'll be in town signing her book and giving a talk Tuesday, February 9, at 11 am, at Fabric House showroom, Suite 159 at The Houston Design Center. Gratis and open to the public, but reservations are required. Information, 2ndtuesday, 713.864.2660; The Houston Design Center, 7026 Old Katy Road. Rebecca Sherman Space Race: The mad dash to open galleries locally mirrors a buoyant optimism percolating throughout Texas (you should see what's shaking up in Dallas, especially in the new hotbed of history, community and brave art souls, aka The Cedars). Next month, we round up the recent Houston arrivals that opened after our report on 10 new spaces last fall. Here's a peek at who's on the hot list. Mel DeWees has opened a startling minimalist temple, Gray Contemporary, in the former McMurtrey Gallery space (read more online); Roni McMurtrey has closed her Colquitt white walls after 35 years to take on independent projects. Also notable is the new Isabella Court space of photographer/curator Sarah Sudhoff, who moved in after David Shelton left for 4411 Montrose. Other new blood at 4411 is Cindy Lisica, a Pittsburgh native with impressive curatorial chops, from the Tate to the Warhol, who's opened an eponymous gallery there. Did we mention DiverseWorks' relocation to the freshly minted MATCH (Midtown Arts & Theater Center Houston)? Or Apama Mackey's return as a gallerist plus museum director in adjoining spaces in the Heights? More to come next month. Mission to Mars: Outer space figures sky-high this year, beginning with Contemporary Arts Museum Houston's ode to the Red Planet, curated by Dean Daderko, which focuses on MPA, the cryptic artist and muse of Mars exploration. Currently based in 29 Palms, California, the internationally exhibited installationist promises an interactive experience at CAMH. Dish about Mars via phone — you can dial up the artist directly from the museum hotline in the work that gives the exhibition its title: "The Interview: Red, Red Future" (opening night Friday, February 26, 6:30 to 9 pm; through June 5) … Another form of intergalactic travel is promulgated by the droll au courant solo "Paracosmic Alchemy" by Korean-born, New England-raised JooYoung Choi at Anya Tish Gallery. Choi's puppetry and playful videos, in which she casts herself as heroine, address identity and the necessity of community, while rivaling the inventiveness of Pee-wee Herman or H.R. Pufnstuf back in the day (February 12 – March 12). Looming Faces + Dreamy Palms: Laura Rathe Fine Art's doubleheader at dual locales channels, respectively, a glamorous big sister watching over you (Gavin Rain at BLVD Place, March 9 – April 2) and floating translucent, tropical fronds (Roi James at Colquitt Gallery Row, February 27 – April 2) … Next month, watch for the tale of $700,000 Art Blocks and what's going on with the art fairs. More hot topics, Catherine D. Anspon Art Notes Luxury PROPERTIES. Utmo DISCRETION. M E C O M P R O P E R T I E S . C O M | 7 13 . 5 5 8 . 3 3 18 COURTESY THE ARTIST AND LAURA RATHE FINE ART JENNY ANTILL CLIFTON JENNY ANTILL CLIFTON COURTESY THE ARTIST AND ANYA TISH GALLERY JooYoung Choi's Watson and the COS Present — Begin Transmission to the Earth, 2015, at Anya Tish Gallery Roi James' Choreographs, 2015, at Laura Rathe Fine Art It's 58 degrees today and raining, but the girl is wearing Rondini sandals — yes, the ones you can only buy in Saint-Tropez. And, yes, she's not even aware of the paradox. That's why we love her. She's made a career out of doing things her way. The girl is Laure Heriard Dubreuil, and she's in town for the unveiling of her sexy new boutique, The Webster at the Galleria. Heriard Dubreuil, who has an international following, is raising the retail bar in Houston by bringing a version of her Bal Harbour and South Beach stores here. Housed in a new freestanding structure directly facing the Galleria on Westheimer, the faint smell of orange blossoms, vintage wall papers and an original Max Snow piece in the entryway that proclaims "Pleasure!" set the stage. A trove of women's and men's treasures fill the space, by designers from Ines de la Fressange to Alexander Wang. If you haven't seen de la Fressange's collection yet, that's because it can only be found in the U.S. at The Webster. As it turns out, the orange blossom scent is one that Heriard Dubreuil concocted with a special Parisian "nose" in an attempt to recreate Marie Antoinette's personal fragrance. The French-born Heriard Debreuil has assembled an elegant mix of more than 115 designers, many of whom have created (either for or with her) exclusive pieces that can't be found elsewhere. The Galleria had originally given the new space where The Webster now resides the working title "The Jewel Box." Now that I've seen the finished product, it makes perfect sense. The Webster, the Galleria, freestanding space facing Westheimer, no phone number at press time, Francine Ballard LAURE'S LAIR Spring sees the imminent fruition of a significant political film biography bearing a fabled art-world connection. The work in question is also relevant in the heat of the election year. Cue Mickey Leland, A Man for All …, a decades- in-the works feature-length documentary. Houston- based executive producer Barbara Friedman says of her magnum opus: "I had a front-row seat to this charismatic and fearless leader. He was a personal friend; my children called him Uncle Mickey. He inspired us all … We have interviewed the folks who were on the front lines with him … including Governor Ann Richards and Molly Ivins." Friedman, who is close to Leland's widow, Alison, began thinking about the project just after the Congressman's death (in a 1989 plane crash while on a relief mission to Africa), as a way to explain his humanitarian legacy to his three young sons. "It has grown into so much more than that," she says. She and her team — fellow producer and director Robert S. Cozens, co-producer Janet Benton and interviewer John C. Brittain — have to date raised almost $200,000 of a $550,000 budget; ETA for completion in late 2016. A preview screening and a call for more underwriting was hosted by SWAMP (Southwest Alternative Media Project) at Midtown's new MATCH late last fall; SWAMP also serves as the umbrella nonprofit for the documentary's fund-raising. The poignant footage includes the story of Leland with his most stalwart believers, the late Dominique and John de Menil. (Step into the Wunderkammer room at The Menil Collection, and in the corner within Mrs. de Menil's desk, you'll see a Leland for Congress button; in another twist of fate, Leland's former campaign headquarters is now the Bermac Building, owned by gallerist Kerry Inman and home to numerous studios.) For details or to donate, Barbara Friedman, 713.225.1361 or, Catherine D. Anspon LELAND COURTESY MICKEY LELAND, A MAN FOR ALL … DOCUMENTARY Mickey Leland in Africa, circa 1970s GROWING UP GALLIC THE LEGACY OF Laure Heriard Dubreuil JENNY ANTILL CLIFTON Florence de Dampierre Gucci Valentino

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