Monday, July 27, 2009

Hidcote Manor

Edith Wharton's interest in gardens, gardening, and gardeners was lifelong, and one of most important and influential gardening friends was Lawrence Johnston, an American who emigrated to England and created a number of spectacular gardens. In an article from the Financial Times it is reported that a few years ago a number of diaries and notebooks detailing the life and gardens at Hidcote Manor had surfaced after a long absence. Although we Whartonians should not complain at the moment, due to the recent appearance of the Anna Bahlmann Collection, unearthed after years in obscurity, we at The Mount are still hoping that we will one day find such information about our gardens here in Lenox. We have done a great deal of research and feel that the reconstruction of The Mount's gardens is exactly as Mrs. Wharton would have wanted it, but imagine if we found her own plant lists, notes, observations ...

No, neither Sarah Palin nor James Garner...

Creative Mavericks is a new series being launched this Saturday at The Mount. The word Maverick has come to be used for many things, including the above mentioned former Governor as well as the fantastic TV series of yesteryear featuring Bret, Bart and Beau. The Mount's Creative Mavericks are artists, writers, filmmakers and comedians who work to expand the boundaries of what we call "art". Edith Wharton said in The Age of Innocence "The air of ideas is the only air worth breathing" so what better place than The Mount for our Mavericks to present their works. The Production Front, a group of artists from Toronto, will be performing on Saturday, August 1, in the tented courtyard at The Mount. Click here for details and we hope to see you there!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

The beautiful Mount

For many years The Mount has been fortunate enough to have on staff a wonderful and gifted photographer, David Dashiell. In addition to his many other duties at The Mount, most recently as Publications Director, he has provided us with almost all of the beautiful photographs that we have used in our various publications as well as on our website. David has decided to move on and concentrate on his photography. We wish him all the best and he knows full well that we will be calling on him constantly in the future, not only to pick his brain for his vast knowledge of Edith Wharton and The Mount, but for more and more of his fantastic pictures. We decided to post a few here on the blog, and will be adding more to the main website over the next weeks. Thank you David!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

"Edith Wharton Extravaganza!"

The fantastic interior decor/design blog Surroundings has been featuring a visit to The Mount in recent posts. There are some beautiful photographs of the property and we at The Mount's blog salute them--and in fact have appropriated one of their photographs of the linen closet (above). Thanks to Linda Merrill and her team for their visit and support!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Allons, enfants!!

What better day than le quatorze juillet, Bastille Day, to blog about The Mount's fantastique exhibition next year! We will be hosting a Salute to French Design, thus combining two of Mrs. Wharton's favorite things, interior design and France, in one très très chic package. Some of France's most fabulous designers and architects have agreed to take part and it should prove to be an exciting time. A recent brunch at the French Embassy in New York launched our Salute, and the designers then travelled up to Lenox to see The Mount and begin their preparations.

Mrs. Wharton wrote "The artistic integrity of the French has led them to feel from the beginning that there is no difference in kind between the curve of a woman’s hat-brim and the curve of a Rodin marble ... " and we at The Mount look forward to a great artistic collaboration next year. Vive la France!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

The Triumphant Return of Wharton on Wednesdays!

There is more good news for The Mount today, as we announce the beginning of this season's Wharton on Wednesdays. For a number of years a stalwart Mountie, David Dashiell, as well as being the creator of a great number of wonderful photographs of The Mount, has been the reader for these afternoons of Wharton. We are sorry that David will not be joining us this year, but are very excited to be able to welcome Berkshire Theatre Festival to The Mount. They will be collaborating with us and providing the readers for each week's slice of Whartoniana. The first reading is this afternoon (July 1) at 5:00 pm. Kate Maguire, Artistic Director and CEO of BTF will read Writing a War Story, a gentle satire first published in 1919. Readings will take place every Wednesday in July and August on the terrace, and one is glad to report that the café will be open until the reading begins. A glass of wine, a beautiful view, some of Wharton's best work ... and best of all, it's free!