Thursday, July 23, 2009
Nan Kempner's TV Dinner
It seems a modern scene and setting, the TV Dinner as re-imagined by Mrs. Thomas Kempner (nee Nan Kempner) for Tiffany & Co. in 1980.
"Here New York style-setter Nan Kempner gives a Sony KP-5000 projection TV a place of high prominence in this setting for a quiet dinner while awaiting guests invited for a glass of champagne.
Although the assertive TV demands and gets attention, Mrs. Kempner retakes possession of the space with overscsaled objects and furniture."
"Her TV tray set with a "Flora Danica" plate, "Shell and Thread" silver, and "Ambassador" wineglass sit on the firestool of a commodious "Wicker-Wicker-Wicker" chaise by Michael Taylor, who also designed the skirted wicker table which Mrs. Kempner covers with an Yves Saint Laurent scarf and sets with Tiffany objects including a "Lily Pad" tray, "Honeycomb" and "Mock Orange" boxes, and a "Basket" dish.
A nineteenth-century Japanese vase holds plum blossoms beside a bronze Buddha."
"Drawings by William Bailey, Henri Matisse, and Larry Rivers back the setting, and a gold-leaf Art Deco screen backs the TV."
- The New Tiffany Tablesettings, John Loring & Henry Platt, 1981
Portrait, Nan Kemper, de Young Museum, Nan Kempner: American Chic
Nan Kempner dancing with Matthew Modine, ABT Spring Gala, 2003. At the time of this photo, Mrs. Kempner was 72 years old.
Nan Kempner, extraordinary hostess, philanthropist, and fashionable luminary, died in 2005 at the age of 74. Her life and legendary style was subsequently chronicled by the de Young Museum of San Francisco in 2005. Read about her here.
For more Thursday "Tablescapes" visit Between Naps on the Porch.
And a reminder: Enter the Taste, Acquiring What Money Can't Buy reader giveaway here, and the ChillinJoy Portable Insulated Wine Cooler giveaway here.