In Situ at Chatsworth

Extraordinary sculpture in an extraordinary setting.
In situ at its best.

This would be the perfect moment to stroll the gardens of Chatsworth,
in Derbyshire UK. The Duke and Dutchess of Devonshire are hosting
Beyond Limits, a Sotheby's auction of monumental sculpture , with
30 pieces displayed on the grounds of their ancestral home
.. . through November 1.

I adore the contrast of the contemporary art displayed against
the backdrop of this historical setting.

Do take time to go HERE and see additional pieces, as well as hear
Simon Stock, of Sotheby's, interview the Duke. To learn more
about the artists and the featured pieces, there's also an excellent
article at the online art magazine -theartwolf.com .

As you may know, Chatsworth has several lovely cottages available to let.
Swiss Cottage is usually my favorite -- - quite remote, with it's own private
lake. But, I'm feeling more inclined to stay at the 16th C. Hunting Tower for
this visit. Great vistas overlooking the enchanting Capability Brown park.

Should you decide to join me ... . . I'll be the one strolling with
a parasol and a large white Borzoi.


A Very Small Stack:: The Book Garden II

Sitting near the Very Tall Stack is a Very Small Stack.
Only two books atop a much traveled vintage crocodile suitcase .. .
the top book is one that constantly delights with stunning
photographs and commentary: Allure by Diana Vreeland.

I adore red books - and this is , by far, my favorite.
I like to keep it accessible and often pull it off the
Very Small Stack to leave it open and marvel at the
images within.

So stunning !
The treasures within this little corner of my book garden
take my breath away and never fail to bring a bit of elegance
to my small simple world.
Images of images ... . . all full of the power to transform
& transmute me to another place / another time.
Who could resist Maria Callas, seemingly screaming down
at Madame DV, as she puffs away in her very singular world ?

Could the cover of the book which encompasses such visual power
be anything but R E D ... .. .. .

I think not.


The Very TALL Stack :: The Book Garden I

A stack of books can tell you a lot about someone.
When that stack is over four feet high ... . .

you can start to puzzle about how someone views the world.
(and why they might own two of the same book ... . )

Photographs always help me see that which surrounds me in
a different light. Photos of my own books are a small trip
down memory lane . .. . . remembering each book, when I
read it and , often, who recommended it or shared it with me.

Stack of words. Stacks of images.
I'm always fascinated by other peoples libraries.

Each one is a very personal compilation,
similar to a garden.

Which one would you pick from this small section
of my book garden ?
Nothing that interests you?
Stay tuned for the Book Garden II - III

**Click on each photo to view LARGE**


Just Send the Kid

This vintage photo had been on my desk for a while ... .
it just always made me smile.

The idea that this postman was delivering a small boy
was quite a puzzling amusement. I later found out that
there were several incidents where people actually
attempted to send children through the mail!

Hopefully, I've sent you a moment of amusement today.
(especially after my recent posts full of nothing but
stories of tragedy .. . )

Click on photo to view LARGE & see the details
Mixed media: vintage photo, stitched and layered fabric
with metallic paint - copyright Judith Thibaut


Olive's Brief Flame

Her name was Olive Borden.
Her life began in 1906 and her flame was extinguished
at the age of 41 in 1947.
(Get out your hankie , 'cause this is a True Tearjerker!)

Her story was a Hollywood classic:
- beautiful young girl longs for fame and fortune

- gets a big break and is swept off her feet by
by her leading man, George O'Brien,
( dressed in little more than a few Fig Leaves)

- is betrayed by the leading man

- attempts to pull herself together, but suffers more betrayal and bad luck

Considered one of tinsel towns' most beautiful silent film stars , her
success was a meteoric rise which began in 1926 and had faded by
1930 ... . when she was only 24. Those few years must have been
quite a heady roller coaster ride for this flapper known to be quite
the party girl.

After failed contract negotiations with her studio, she moved to
New York and faced yet more challenges. Several unsuccessful plays
landed her in vaudeville , then into the arms of a stockbroker - in 1931.
Lousy time to find a stockbroker!

She marries the stockbroker .. .
then discovers he is still married to someone else. ( !!! )
He's charged with bigamy and she's on her own again.

Our beautiful Olive filed for bankruptcy in 1941 and found work during
WWII driving an ambulance .. . . . for $12.50 a week.

Olive's story must surely be one of Hollywood's great tragedies.
After her initial big break, her life became a series of big mistakes
and bad luck. Her last stop was the Sunshine Mission for Destitute
Women , on skid row in Los Angeles.

The glamorous photos belie the truth behind Olive's sad life ... ..
perhaps a reminder to look beyond the surface to
find what's real.

Read more about Olive HERE and HERE.
See more about Olives' movies HERE.
Olive has an excellent website, very thoughtfully
put together by a fan, who identifies herself only
as Elizabeth.
Altered Vintage photos of Olive - copyright Judith Thibaut


Golden Glamour :: Who Was She?

Well, I've done it again. While perusing vintage photos I came across this
remarkable image. Who is the elegant woman in this stunningly dramatic
dress? The closer I looked, the more intrigued I was. Each detail of this
portrait , so sumptuous. The satin shoes with the feathered trim... .. .
the subtle metallic sheen to the lace .. . the drama of the long (long!)
tassels .

That plunging neckline implies this was not a Park Avenue
socialite. Much too risque .
Who could she be? And, most of all, what was her story ?

Her name is Olive .

I'm doing my research and will report soon with all the
details. Stay tuned .. . .


Memories of Polka Dots

There was a black and white polka dot shower curtain in a bathroom
with pale golden tiles. Those big cheery dots greeted me first thing
every morning .. . .. and brought an instant smile to my heart.
It's a week later, I'm back at home - and I'm still thinking POLKA DOTS .
One of my all time favorite photos is this classic Cecil Beaton of style icon
Nancy Cunard. Those bracelets ! Those eyes! The remarkable contradiction
between her attitude and the whimsy of all those Polka Dots!

Merci Beaucoup to my dear hostess ( and very special daughter) for
being a constant inspiration ... . . .
and putting up that glorious new shower curtain .

Altered photos copyright Judith Thibaut