Q: What is the allure of the art sales? A: First, admission to the previews at the auction houses is free, and second, although the viewings take place during five to eight days, they often offer the only opportunity to see works that have been in private collections and likely little exhibited. Depending on the purchaser they may never be lent for public exhibition. So this could be your once-in-a-lifetime chance to see that rare Picasso, just as it is for the collectors, gallery owners, and museum directors.
The much-anticipated Festival degli Scrittori (Festival of Writers) begins tomorrow in Florence, Italy. Now in its third year, the highly praised literary event is the city’s hot ticket this week—and arguably this year.
From June 12–14, 2013, the international culturatti and the intellectually curious will mingle in the heart of old Firenze with some of today’s top authors, translators, critics, and boldface names—all with the high-minded ghosts of the Rennaissance, fittingly, looking on.
Dreamed up by Baronessa Beatrice Monti della Corte, widow of the writer Gregor von Rezzori and founder of the Santa Maddalena Foundation writers’ retreat, the Festival aims to promote and celebrate international literature and the nuanced talents of translation. And this year's line-up promises to be animated—Pulitzer prize-winners Jennifer Egan and Michael Cunningham in conversation; lectures with titles like “Reading and Translating Virgil in the era of Facebook”; even a recital by Jeremy Irons.
One hundred years ago on May 29, 1913, Stravinsky’s Rite of Spring exploded onto the European scene in a celebrated, riotous premiere at the Théâtre des Champs-Elysées in Paris. Ever since, dance companies have taken up the challenge to stage a work that captures the power and the sweep of Stravinsky’s revolutionary masterpiece.
On the day of the centennial anniversary, May 29, 2013, the Richmond Ballet, as part of the Virginia Arts Festival, presents the Rite, in Salvatore Aiello’s sensual staging. While in Paris, the Mariinsky Ballet returns to the scene of the crime, the Théâtre des Champs-Elysées, with a reconstruction of the imagined, original production, choreography and décor newly realized by Millicent Hodson and Kenneth Archer.
Every four years, 30 of the most talented musicians from around the world arrive in Fort Worth, Texas to participate in the Van Cliburn International Piano Competition, May 24-June 9. The young pianists, whose ages range from 19 to 30 and hail from Russia, Poland, Italy, Chile, China, and the U.S., among other countries, are gifted, of course, armed with prodigious technique, and musical personalities that belie their years. They also possess the energy of thoroughbreds.
Three ways to get your New England fix, whether you have a few hours or a whole day.
The Sanctuary: Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum Dodging the hum of the city is a pleasure at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum(pictured), a 1902 Venetian-style palazzo with a glass-and-steel addition by Renzo Piano. The 2,500-strong collection includes masterworks by Titian, Michelangelo, and Matisse, but the real showstopper is the transportive inner courtyard, with its classical statues and abundance of summery bellflowers and hydrangeas. Stop in on a Sunday afternoon, when you can catch a chamber music concert in the museum’s new Calderwood Hall.
What did you learn about that profession? “They work like characters on CSI: hunting for dirt with white gloves, testing the temperature of room-service coffee, ensuring that the time is synced on TV and radio. Only at the end of the journey can they reveal their true identity.”
Do you have any travel essentials? “My Rolex, set to the time in Rome. It’s been with me since I was fifteen.”
The newest franchise of the influential—and see-and-be-seen—fair, Art Basel Hong Kong (May 23–26) marries the banking bling of Switzerland with the balmy weather of Miami. Here, where to mingle with the artists and A-listers.
The Gallery:New York’s venerable Lehmann Maupin just opened a Rem Koolhaas–designed space in the historic Pedder Building.
The Restaurant: Book a table at Duddell’s (852/2525-9191), the much-anticipated arts club that’s opening in Central during the fair.
The Museum: On the site of the future museum M+, in Kowloon, check out an exhibit of large-scale inflatable sculptures.
The Neighborhood: The gritty Wong Chuk Hang area is home to alternative art spaces such as Spring Workshop.
While New York’s Frieze Art Fair will commence tomorrow on Randall’s Island, you may want to make a pit stop in Chelsea. Playing to both the contemporary art and party crowds, German artist Tobias Rehberger has created Bar Oppenheimer in the basement of two-year-old Hôtel Americano. The venue—both a sculptural art piece and fully functioning bar—is a recreation of the watering hole Rehberger frequents in Frankfurt, which sits at the center of the city’s artistic community.
Chelsea’s edition of Bar Oppenheimer retains the essence of its Frankfurt muse (tight dimensions) with reimagined elements. Red accent lines offset the flashy black-and-white stripes adorning the walls, ceiling, and floor of the space.
The artwork will be open nightly to the public starting Saturday, May 11th at 5pm. But be careful when tippling—just stepping into this place will make you think you’re in a kaleidoscope.
Maria Pedone is a digital editorial intern at Travel + Leisure.
Not every mashup makes sense, but we love this one: Colorado’s Stanley Hotel, in Estes Park, was the spot that inspired Stephen King to write The Shining. And through this weekend, the historic hotel is hosting The Stanley Film Festival, with appropriately named films like Macabre and Frankenstein’s Army. There’s also the controversial Room 237, which explores the supposedly hidden meanings of Stanley Kubrick’s film version of The Shining.
It all takes place in the hotel, which has undergone major renovations. When you’re ready for a break from the horror gore, check out the redone antique Whiskey Bar, which dates to around 1909 and now features Colorado’s largest whiskey collection. And when you need some fresh air, step outside and right into one of America’s best national parks for wildlife spotting. Just keep an eye out for any zombies.