Chinese fretwork first appeared in Britain in the early eighteenth century on garden fences, but it was not until midcentury that the vogue for fretwork on furniture erupted.
Here, the three-dimensional angular pattern seems to float in midair to support a small, six-sided tray. The exact design for these candelstands comes from the first edition (1754) of Thomas Chippendale’s Gentlemen and Cabinet-Maker’s Director.
This Pair of Mahogany Candlestands (Circa 1755 – 60) Was Photographed in the Metropolitan Museum of Art in NYC.
In a city that loves to eat, Chinese is among the most popular cuisines in Manhattan. From Chinatown to Midtown, I frequent a handful of Chinese restaurants that consistently serve my favorite dishes with no disappointments, but there is always room to add one more to that list. Open since late August 2019, Red Peony, located in the heart of midtown’s upscale shopping district, is an elegant Chinese restaurant that feels like a secret oasis within the congested urban landscape. Specializing in both Cantonese and Szechuan-style dishes, Red Peonyaims to be fully inclusive of every palate; with an extensive menu featuring both familiar favorites and exotic-sounding, visually tempting dishes I’ve not seen on other menus. Judging by the number of Chinese families gathered at its large round tables on the night of my visit, Red Peony offers a truly authentic dining experience.
The peony is the unofficial Chinese National Flower. It stands as a symbol of spring and female beauty, and it also represents richness, honor and high social class. A Red Peony specifically represents life and celebration, and you will find all of these values reflected in the restaurant’s opulent interior decor. The first floor dining area features the above pictured, tufted seating in vibrant red fabric, flanking ample-sized tables for two. Larger round tables in the center of the room can accommodate families and larger parties, and there is also a second floor, which is ideal for events and special occasions.
Second Floor Dining Room With Windows Looking Onto 56th Street
It is no secret that shopping at Pearl River Mart is my jam, because that store has everything. Earlier this year, Pearl River opened a new location in the Chelsea Market, and that is where I discovered this breathtaking decorative display of Pink Chinese Paper Lanterns and colorful paper parasols, which inspired today’s ‘pink thing’ post. These lanterns can be used (and re-used) in place of balloons as festive party décor, don’t you think? They are so lovely.
Chinese Paper Lanterns in a variety of colors and sizes are available for super cheap at both Pearl River locations (Chinatown and Chelsea) and they can also be purchased online at This Link!
Red Envelope Art By Ike Sanchez (All Photos By Gail)
The Red Envelope Show is an amazingly fun annual art exhibit that pays homage to the red celebration envelopes distributed by the Chinese community during the Lunar New Year. The show was curated, as it is each year, by Bert Chau of Brooklyn’s Grumpy Bert gallery. Although getting to the show involved a nearly 90-minute subway adventure to arrive at Flushing Town Hall in Queens, it was totally worth it! This was the show’s fourth year, with the exhibit running from January 5th through January 27th!
Flushing Town Hall
Red Envelope art submissions by local visual artists were displayed and for sale in Flushing Town Hall’s spacious gallery, with pieces by community and school groups also displayed throughout the building for all visitors to enjoy. Additionally, 25% of the proceeds from sales of the Red Envelope artworks goes towards support of Flushing Town Hall’s visual arts programming!
Partial Installation View
While the artwork theme was not restricted to images of Pigs, I do love pigs, and it is, after all, the Year of The Pig in Chinese Astrology, so I decided to focus on the envelopes depicting pigs. As you will see, the participating artists got very creative! Please enjoy a selection of my photos from the show!
Piglet Kicks The Big Bad Wolf’s Ass, Set By Adrian K
The story of The Three Little Pigs, or just a grouping of Three Pigs was a popular theme among many of the artists, as you may notice.
Three Little Pigs By Kush Wright (Kid Mind)
Three Pigs Student Submission
Three Pigs By Matt Stanton
Three Pigs By Lou Pimentel
Three Pigs By Aaron Meshon
Pigs In Disguise By Kick or Treat
Three “Boss Hogs” By CMYKharma
Here are a few more Student Submissions, which are all excellent.
Ice Skating Pig By Student Abigail Lee
Piglet By Unknown Student
Olivia The Pig Piglet By Unknown Student
There were well over 500 Red Envelope artwork submissions from artists, and almost that many from student and community members! It was great fun to browse through all of the art, which was obviously created with much love.
Trio By Diana Vuong
It was also fun to see work by many Asian artists.
Duo By Kevin Chan
Duo By Shawn Cheng
“Classy Pigs” By Cong Rong Zhou
Pig Flowers By Dingding Hu
Pig Duo By Aimee Pong
Year of The Pig By Frank Chang Pig in Hat By Derrick H; Pork Products By Carina Yuen
This Littler Piggy ByJane Wu; Sausage Pig By Andrew Bell
Showering Pig By Cameron Cundiff
Trio By Vinnie Neuberg
Flying Pigs By JosL J0sL
A Day in The Life of a Pig By Deepti Sunder
Year of the Pig Series By Kathy Ferguson
Pig By Not Cool Co.
3-Envelope Set By Rodmex5
Thanks for the great art Red Enevlope Show! Happy Year of the Pig, Everyone!
Ai Weiwei’s Gilded Cage in Central Park (All Photos By Gail)
Chinese artist and activist Ai Weiwei has a new series of public art sculpture installations up in Manhattan and across the five boroughs, which is called Good Fences Make Good Neighbors. Inspired by the international migration crisis and current geopolitical landscape, the ambitious project is installed in over 300 locations, including two monumental sculptures situated within in highly-trafficked Manhattan parks, along with security fences on top of, and in between, buildings (such as The Cooper Union), and several bus shelters. In addition, there are also graphic and photographic works on flags, billboards and lamppost banners. I saw a lot of these banners along Chrystie Street, which is where I also got my first glimpse of one.
Rooftop Fence Installation at 189 Chrystie Street
Ai’s metal fence is designed as a modular form, readily adaptable to the existing architecture, to span and partition the space.
You can still see the fences at night, because they are illuminated.
Rooftop Fence Installation on Bowery
Don’t forget to look up!
Bus Shelter at Ave C and E 6th Street
While it’s fun to spot the fences, it’s the interactive sculptures in the parks that really bring the Instagram Moments. Gilded Cage located at the Doris C. Freedman Plaza, Central Park (at 5th Avenue and 60th Street) can be entered on one side.