Monday, May 7, 2012
Hope you had a wonderful weekend! Last week I took a quick trip to Berlin and Dresden, and am readjusting to the time change this morning. On my way to Berlin I had a short stay in New York at Mondrian Soho, which is situated in one of my favorite downtown neighborhoods.
I arrived in time for a fun dinner and drinks at their beautiful downstairs greenhouse restaurant, Imperial No. Nine. If you read my last post, then you got a glimpse of the studio of Oded Halahmy that I visited the next morning after I met up with Markus Linnenbrink, another artist whose work inspires me--it was great to catch up as we share a common friend who passed away earlier this year. Then it was on to Berlin for a quick overview of the city and a fabulous dinner overlooking the city lights at Restaurant 44. Chef Danijel Kresovic, known for his innovative work with herbs came out to explain his dishes and it was fun to taste the new Restaurant 44 wines which will be debuting soon.
My time in Berlin went by like the blink of an eye. I stayed at the luxe and modern Swissôtel Berlin just off the Kurfuerstendamm in the heart of Berlin--for a coffee addict like me, having my own Nespresso machine in the room was a dangerous thing! While I was there I met up with Edward Gordon, who I've written about since he first began his daily painting series. It's hard to believe he's nearing his 2,000th daily painting and he was busy prepping for a show of larger paintings opening this Thursday (it's already pre-selling and the show hasn't yet opened). Thanks to Edward, who lent me his driver, I navigated my way over to the Gerhard Richter show, a retrospective that exceeded my expectations. There was also an extensive mid-century painting and sculpture exhibit happening downstairs and I was fascinated by the way in which the familiar material was curated with a European/German perspective. I had to run through much too quickly and could've spent hours there.
I spent the last part of my trip a few hours outside of Berlin at the new Hotel Swissôtel Dresden Am Schloss, which just opened in the centre of the historical old town in April. I loved the modern Swiss elements integrated into the decor of both the rooms and the luxe spa--a chic simplicity a world away from both East and West Coast American decor. One of my favorite architectural delights in any structure is the merging of contemporary with the the historical--in this case, the element of the bombed sandstone (which turns red in places) was left intact in the underground spa, giving the hotel a deeper integrity and context. A cool aside is that the Dresden magazine featuring Edward's painting on the cover was coincidentally in every room of the hotel!
p.s. You may have noticed that On PCH is back, and although my computer time was limited, I was able to get a post in from Berlin and Dresden. There's another new post today, so please swing by for a dose of pretty painterly color. As much as I can't wait to go back, I'm also happy to be home. I've missed you!
xo Mary Jo