The Color of February // RED in art & design

The color red is filled with meaning.  It’s found in nature - in red roses and robins. It's spiritual -  the symbol for luck and it's the first chakra in Sanskrit.  It has history and special meaning in various cultures around the world.  It’s political - as in the red states, and it's emotional, symbolic of both anger and love.  The red or root chakra provides stability, groundedness and trust, red symbolizes power and strength, it encourages action and enthusiasm. In addition to the inferred meanings, the color red has a significant visual impact  when used in art & design. Artist Anne Raymond, on red and her red paintings,  “Red is strength, it’s the pigment of passion and confidence. Red is energy known, felt and intended.”  Anne spoke with me about the appeal of her red canvases and how some naturally gravitate towards it and others may choose it in small doses.

For those who love it,

or with white, negative space and additional colors, for a quieter canvas, named for the red pigment, Cirrus Cadmium

Photographer Bonnie Edelman captures the natural beauty of red in a stunning sky

Abstract Expressionist  Barnett Newman often used red and other strong flat primary colors in his noted Zip paintings, as in “Who’s Afraid of Red, Yellow and Blue”

I love the contrast of the flowing red scarf in William Wegman’s, “Red to Head”, one of his Weimeraner photographs

Red has found a place in many familiar idioms, Seeing Red, Red carpet treatment, Caught red-handed, Red flag, Red tape and In the red are just a few. It’s pretty interesting to focus on this and see how this color, and the word are in our everyday experience.

Red is in the name of many iconic brands: for a cause - Bono’s (Red), The American Red Cross, in sports - Boston Red Sox, to signify energy - Red Bull, for achievement - Red Ribbon.

Red is used visually  to create strong brand identitly

for New Yorkers, the fun and much adored Milton Glaser designed symbol,

Artists and designers use red to fill an entire canvas, a product, or room -  when the goal is a bold statement to elicit a strong emotional effect or they use it as an accent to provide a stroke of contrast and energy.

In fashion, like art, red is classically used to make a statement.

Charles Louboutin red soles are iconic. The NYTimes, recently refered to”The Little Red (Litigious) Shoes", The company is suing the YSL brand claiming that their red shoes infringe on the trademarked, “Red Sole Mark”.

Louboutin red,  from classic

to outrageous

Designer Donna Karan is identified with clothing that empowers - red from her Spring 2012 advertising campaign

Double red, Reese WItherspoon on the red carpet in a striking red Zac Posen dress

The use of red in home and furniture design provides impact whether used in large amounts, or sparingly. Iconic modern furniture combines strong silhouette and color.

The Egg Chair, by Arne Jacobsen

The Miniature Verner Panton Heart Chair

Heller’s, Marilyn BOCCA sofa, 1972

A bold use of color in a room, walls painted with a saturated deep red, Benjamin Moore’s, Million Dollar Red and red upholstered furniture in a classic room, by designer, Bibi Monnahan

or red as a dramatic and effective accessory, chairs and wall decor in a fresh Hamptons home by Ilene O’Neil

Why RED?  because it’s February and the color is synonymous with Valentine’s Day - red roses and the celebration of love.

Exhibiting in Times Square for the holiday, a 10 foot tall installation with 400 LED acrylic tubes around a big red heart.

“the interactive art piece pulses with a glowing red luminosity whereby, people's interaction with one another intensify the beating of the brightly, burning heart”

and classic RED - 75 gorgeous red roses












Event Photos // JMcLaughlin & SERMO PER EQUUS by Bonnie Edelman

I was talking about what a great event this was, and now, as we are planning to take the installation down this week, I thought I would share a number of photos that will tell the story.

As you enter the store, the mantle sits above two facing sofas, which sets the tone for the warm and inviting space. The key pattern and bamboo are repetitive elements of the JMcLaughlin look.

It was alot of fun to work with Connie, Bil and Bonnie, planning this installation and evening - a great space, beautiful photographs, the good community support and turnout made it a terrific event!

Celebrating Fashion and the Arts // JMcLaughlin with Bonnie Edelman’s photographs

Its been a busy week! Last night, Bonnie Edelman presented photographs from her SERMO PER EQUUS collection at JMcLaughlin in Westport, CT.  A Celebration of Fashion and the Arts - a cocktail event to peruse the beautiful limited edition black and white photographs of horses in Uruguay while also shopping the Fall Collection of equestrian-inspired clothing.

The spacious store is a great backdrop for the well as the clothing. A percentage of the evenings sales were donated to Pegasus Therapeutic Riding whose mission is to provide the benefits of equine-assisted activities and therapies to people with special needs. It was a fun night - alot of support for JMcLaughlin, Pegasus and Bonnie.

I always enjoy seeing Bonnie’s captivating photographs, the same now as when I first saw them several years ago, the beautiful images really convey how gentle and special these horses are.

The photographs will be on exhibit through October 13th.