Newport Treasures Dazzle At Manhattan's Winter Antiques Show

Lady Henrietta Spencer-Churchill, Honorary C0-Chair &

Donald O. Ross, President of the Preservation Society Board

It was a Newport invasion that captured the hearts of the design, fashion, antiques, and collectors' worlds at New York's 59th Annual Winter Antiques show.


Within the tranformed Park Avenue Armory, our own Preservation Society of Newport County created a dazzling loan exhibition, "Newport: The Glamour of Ornament", featuring more than 50 of the finest objects from the Newport Mansions. Showcased in a majestic pavilion were collection highlights, including an 18th century table by Newport craftsman John Goddard and the singularly striking 1905 portrait of Elizabeth Drexel Lehr (later Lady Decies) by the then-arbiter of glamour, Giovanni Boldini.


One of Gilbert Stuart's earliest works, another painting, circa 1770, depicting the King Charles spaniels of Dr. William Hunter of Newport, resting below a tea table, served as a rare example of Newport furniture depicted in an interior setting. Stuart is recognized as one of the foremost American portrait painters of the late 18th and early 19th centuries.


Robin Nicholson with Nina & Peter Taselaar

The Pavilion design, by Jeff Daly, a former senior design adviser to the director of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, was stunning and imposing: With Greek columns framing the entrance, and a large photographic canvas recreating the Great Hall of The Breakers forming the back wall, a grand trompe l'oeil illusion was created that made Newporters feel quite at home.

Director of Museum Affairs of The Preservation Society John Tschirch was busy entertaining questions as the gentleman of the Newport manor.


Preservation Society Executive Director Trudy Coxe spoke with guests at the opening night party. Seen were prominent Newporters Donald O. Ross, Eugene and Lynn Roberts, descendants of William H. Vanderbilt, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, author Carolyne Roehm, designer CeCe Cord, "Ladies of Lila" Melanie Delman, Robin Nicholson, and Geer Messinger, Paul Szapary, Diana Silvaria, Bill and Elizabeth Leatherman, domestic diva Martha Stewart, and a large contingent from The Preservation Society Board, who held a meeting during show hours, as well as PS staff who worked to create yet another chapter in Newport's lustrous, ongoing history. Gilding the Armory, Newport's treasures took New York by storm.

Ms. Coxe's next-day lecture, "The Great Women of Newport", focused on

Ida Lewis, Alva Vanderbilt, and Jacqueline Kennedy.


William Vareika with Tom Eberhardt

In Elle Shushan’s booth, done as a period room with faux walls and a wrought-iron gate, was a porcelain miniature of Consuelo Vanderbilt (the great-granddaughter of Cornelius) and daughter of Alva and William K. Vanderbilt at age 7. The Vanderbilts selected Alyn Williams, president of the Royal Society of Miniature Painters, who painted King Edward VII, to immortalize their young heiress. Newport themes ran throughout the 73 booths, wich included an 1862 letter of Abraham Lincoln's at Kenneth W. Rendell Gallery. and a wonderful John Singer Sargent portrait of Dorothy Vickers at Adelson Galleries. 


The 2013 Winter Antiques Show Committee Chairman was Arie L. Kopelman, Chairman of Chanel, who was there with his lovely wife. Honorary Co-Chairs were Mr. & Mrs. Claudio Del Vecchio and Lady Henrietta Spencer-Churchill, who spoke with Donald Ross before posing for pictures.


Michaela Johnson of "The Rhode Show" with John Rodman

The Opening Night Party ( Newport Seen loved it) Committee Chairs were Kelly C. Coffey and Barry Sommers.

Funds raised from the elegant party and Winter Antiques Show provide crucial financial support for East Side House Settlement House, which offers a variety of social services and educational programs to those living in the Bronx.


                                                                -- Linda Phillips



New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg with Newport

Seen's Linda Phillips

"Ladies of Lila"  Melanie Delman & Robin Nicholson

Portrait of Elizabeth Drexel Lehr by Giovanni Boldini

Antiques Show designer Jeff Daly, formerly of the Metropolitan

Museum of Art & assistant

Ted & Hillary Macklowe

Wilbur &  Hilary Ross

Thomas Jayne & Tom Savage, of the Winterthur Museum

Donald Ross, Kelly Coffey, Barry Sommers, Lucinda Ballard, Arie

Kopelman, Lady Henrietta Spencer-Churhill, Trudy Coxe, Peter Standish,

Debra  del Vecchio & Claudio del Vecchio on the "red carpet"

Winter Antiques Show principals

Bill Cunningham of The New York Times

 Lynn & Eugene Roberts, descendant of William H, Vanderbilt,

with his ancestor's chair, displayed by Associated Artists

A sculpture by Gertrude Vanderbilt, founder of The Whitney


The crowded, elegant cocktail party

The floor map of dealers

Greeting guests with champagne

Guests in the Pavilion with John Tschirch

John Tschirch, Director of Museum Affairs  of The Preservation Society

Maureen Bousa & Karl Nold, of Historic New England

The elegant Kentshire display

Kentshire offerings

Portrait by John Singer Sargent

Bill Cunningham on deadline

Friend, David Ford & Molly de Ramel

Exquisite jewelry

Martha Stewart and companions

Robert Turner & designer CeCe Kieselstein-Cord

Art Deco furniture

Pat & Patsy Callahan

Paige Bart & Diana Silvaria

A suit of armor from Peter Finer, London

Ivan Colon & Andrea Carneiro, of The Preservation Society

The glorious Preservation Society pavilion greeted guests

Musicians playing in the entryway

The Armory's hallway

Unpacking Preservation Society literature

Melanie Garcia & Claire Phipps of the Preservation Society

The pavilion during show hours

Ronnette Riley & author Carolyne Roehm

Nancy Wilson & Jeff Moore

Rare autographs

The champagne station

Announcing the "Great Women of Newport" lecture

by Preservation Society Executive Director Trudy Coxe

Actor Joseph Jefferson, by John Singer Sargent, at Adelson Galleries


Wonderful jewelry at Didier LTD, London

China from Paris at the Hirschl Adler display

Nancy Wilson & Paul Miller

Mary Kozik & Angela Fischer at the "Great Women of Newport"


The audience for Trudy Coxe's lecture

Ms. Coxe showing a graphic of Newport Harbor

James Gaffney after  the lecture 

 Mary van Pelt, Henry Sharpe Lynn, Jr. & Muffett Blake

Trudy Coxe with Natalia Quintavalle & Aniello Musella ,

the Italian Trade Commissioner

Mr. Musella, Ms. Coxe & Ms. Quintavalle at the Pavilion

Mr. Tschirch with Ms. Quintavalle & Mr. Musella

A job well done




Notes on Newport:

Winter Antiques Show guests entered the special realm of Newport, with its reputation for beauty, magnificence, pleasure, and all sorts of interesting things. Did Newport seduce? Most certainly. What has drawn people to Newport’s great houses? Beauty? Interesting things to see? Intriguing glimpses into lost worlds???All of this is in the eye of the beholder, but the display showed and hinted at the things that make Newport enduringly seductive.

Some enlightening historical  commentaries:

1. Spectacular natural scenery that inspired Jedidiah Morse to comment in The First Geography of the United States (1789), “The Island is exceedingly pleasant and healthful and is noted for it’s fine women. Travelers, with propriety, call it the Eden of America.”

2. A treasury of American architecture from superbly crafted colonial houses to 19th century cottages in every conceivable style lining Bellevue Avenue, Ochre Point and Ocean Drive. Newport was hailed as the “Queen of Resorts” in Harper’s Magazine (1872) while Munsey’s Magazine (1900) both critiqued and praised at the same time. “Nature made it the most beautiful summer resort in the world; man has made it a monument to his colossal vanity. But it has the merit of being a beautiful and magnificent monument.”

3. People, from society beauties, swaggering sportsmen, and suffragists to statesmen, financial tycoons, craftsmen, artisans, sailors and fishermen. Munsey’s Magazine (1897), so often reporting on the Newport scene, stated that, “Society in Newport is always on dress parade.” The mystique of millionaires, legendary architects, and debutantes who became duchesses, has overlaid the town with a mystique and glamour that still lingers.


For information on The Preservation Society of Newport County, go to


For information on The Winter Antiques Show go to











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