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2016 Annual Antique Events Caleendar

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24 Water Street
Palmer, MA 01069
1-800-432-3505


 

May 2016

IN THIS ISSUE

In My Opinion
It’s No Longer 1984

John Fiske

What do Hulk Hogan, Erin Andrews and an antiques dealer on 1stdibs have in common? However much that sounds like the opening of a bad joke, it isn’t. They’ve all suffered from our lack of a common definition of privacy in the age of surveillance. Hogan and Andrews had “intimate” (to say the least) videos of themselves posted on the internet where they were seen by millions. The 1stdibs dealer has “private” conversations listened to and controlled by 1stdibs.

Hogan was awarded more than $100 million in damages, and Andrews more than $50 million. If the 1stdibs dealer went to court, he’d lose. The juries who awarded lottery-sized fortunes to the celebrities explained to TV viewers that keeping private life private was, in their eyes, a fundamental right and that they wanted to send a strong message about how important it was.


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In My Opinion Archives

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The Most Romantic Garden in the World
The Garden of Ninfa

Jan Fiore

The story of Il Giardino di Ninfa (The Garden of the Nymph) began in 1297 when the Caetani family purchased the fortified town of Ninfa, located a few miles from Rome, the capital and cultural heartland of Italy. Founded in the eighth century, the town thrived for 600 years before a violent siege sacked and completely destroyed Ninfa in 1381. What remained of the abandoned town and castle fell into ruin; streets became covered in undergrowth, and over time the tiny Roman temple that once stood at the edge of the garden, sank into the lake bed. The site that has belonged to the Roman Caetani family since the thirteenth century lay undisturbed for the next 500 years, until three exceptional gardeners of this century reincarnated Ninfa, and created the “most romantic garden in the world.”

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Mt. Cuba
Gardens with a Purpose

Barbara Miller Beem

“I want this to be a place where people will learn to appreciate our native plants and to see how these plants can enrich their lives so that they, in turn, will become conservators of our natural habitats.” Pamela Copeland.

There was something about the old cornfield that struck a chord within Pamela and her husband, Lammot. Although there were few trees on the land, its gentle Appalachian Piedmont topography took her back to another time, another place, stirring up fond childhood memories of walking through the woods with her mother and grandmother. As for Lammot duPont Copeland, the location, albeit off the beaten track, would ensure his being close to his family and its ever-growing enterprises in and around Wilmington, Del. Could the couple have had any idea that their decision to call Mt. Cuba home would lead to gardening on a higher level?

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Romantically Dressed
From Gothic to Goth

Joy Hanes talks with Lynne Bassett
All images courtesy of Hartford Atheneum.

Lynne Zacek Bassett has long dreamed of putting together an exhibition highlighting the fashions of the Romantic era and tying it in to all aspects of cultural life of the time. Her dream has come true at the Wadsworth Atheneum in Hartford, Conn., where her exhibit Gothic to Goth: Romantic Era Fashion & Its Legacy is on view from March 5−July 10. The exhibition focuses on the fashions of the era, but also encompasses the fine and decorative arts, literature and architecture. I was fortunate to be able to visit with Bassett and have a conversation about the formation of the exhibition, as well as many of the interesting stories about how the exhibition has come together, including the glitches that she encountered in producing it.

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Preservation as Found
Charleston’s
Aiken-Rhett House

Jan Fiore
All photographs courtesy of Historic Charleston Foundation. Photography by Rick McKee
.

Brandy Culp is the curator at Aiken-Rhett Museum, and believes strongly in the concept of “preservation as found.”“It’s a philosophy that’s growing in weight,” said Culp. “This site is a learning laboratory; all layers over time have been preserved and they are there for analysis and study. In addition to having this amazing resource, this is one of the few sites in America with such intact outbuildings, so it allows us to look, in a comprehensive manner, at all the people who lived and worked at the Aiken-Rhett house.”

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Yours Sincerely

John Fiske

Ruth Goodman is my sort of historian. She doesn’t take showers. Hey, before you jump to conclusions, let me explain. In not bathing, Goodman was merely following doctor’s orders. In 1547, Thomas Moulton, in his book This is the Myrrour or Glasse of Health, ordered: “Use no baths or stoves; nor swet too much, for all openenth the pores of a manne’s body and maketh the venomous ayre to enter and for to infecte the bloode.”

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Yours Sincerely Archives

 







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