Monday, February 14, 2011

A weekend - la Palma de la Mano de dios.


Just a couple of hours east of LA, and we are in Coachella Valley for a little weekend escape. Home of the desert resort town famous for hosting vacationing celebrities and movie stars in the glorious 50's and 60's, Palm Springs is also a prime holiday destination for any modern day collector of anything mid-century Modern. I only got to pop my head into a couple of the many retro and antique stores in this town - believe me, I'm coming back with a car and a trailer next time! Soooo many bits of furniture I could have gladly owned, let alone all the ceramics and glass. There's a good range here, from the totally kitch to the high-end Danish inspired wares, plus a gallery full of Shag!  Delightful!

Palm Springs also has a healthy contemporary arts community. There was a cute shop on the main strip that featured modern homewares and small furniture pieces constructed from laser-cut coloured acrylic - A.S.I. ("Art. Style. Innovation"). Here I bought a little somethin' somethin' - a ceramic plate from artist Jeffrey Harris, featuring a humorous silhouette design, old Agatha perving on a male life drawing model. She now takes pride of place on my 1920's mantlepiece alongside the Jonathan Adler candle holders.

"Agatha never missed an art class"...and neither should I.

But the environment of Palms Springs and this desert is pretty spectacular too, even without the great design. Surrounded by mountains, sprinkled with a little snow, it really is a "postcard view" wherever you look. And yes, there are palms everywhere.

Check out the Palm Springs Modernism Week, held every year in February - architectural tours, design shows and lectures, plus films on all things Modernist.

And finally, special mention to Oliver, sweetest chocolate lab and MVP of the weekend - when he wasn't being a water hound in the pool or obsessing over his tennis ball, he was patiently waiting for snacks.