Antiquing in Hudson

Patrick Parrish and Alex Gilbert, Antiquing in Hudson

If you’ve never visited the upstate town of Hudson, New York, its defining attribute is the dozens upon dozens of high-end antique stores that are crammed into a single, 7-block stretch of its main road, Warren Street — one-stop shopping for the droves of interior designers, collectors, and antiques enthusiasts who make the 2-hour trip up from the city each weekend. Quite often among them, these days, are Alex Gilbert, design specialist at Artsy, and Patrick Parrish, owner of the eponymous Manhattan gallery, who travel there primarily to relax and escape the city, but often spend time trawling the local shops while doing so. On a recent blazing-hot Saturday afternoon, we joined them, documenting all the objects and furnishings that managed to stop the couple in their tracks, which — considering their level of expertise — is no easy feat. Their favorite finds are below, but first, some background:

“Our friends Mark McDonald and Dwayne Resnick are responsible for our love of Hudson,” they note. “Mark first visited in the late 1970s and was one of the pioneer furniture dealers to set up shop in town. Dwayne teaches yoga at the exceptional Sadhana studio. Several years of weekending in their mid-century guest house has convinced us to start looking for a house of our own. Just two hours north of the city, serviced by its own Amtrak station, Hudson was once a prosperous whale-oil producing town, and as a result, it’s rich in every American architectural style of the 19th century.

“These days it offers two adorable food markets, a number of notable restaurants (Fish & Game, Swoon, Food Studio) and several cool hotels (Rivertown Guest Lodge, Wm. Farmer and Sons, and ZeZe Hotel). Within an hour’s drive, there are also loads of art and design-related destinations, like MassMOCA, The Clark, Opus 40, Olana, Dia Beacon, and Manitoga, to name a few. But our favorite Saturday activity is shopping Warren Street — which is flush with design and antiques dealers, as well as an increasing number of contemporary art galleries like Zach Feuer and Jeff Bailey — for great vintage finds.”
HNY_8577Philippe Starck, The Royalton bedside tables, ca. 1988 (Moderne)

Patrick: “Seeing these side tables brings back memories of going to the Royalton for the first time. While not so practical today, I still love the idea of the phone and accessories (pencil, pad, etc.) being central to the design in an era before text messages and cell phones.”

Alex: “In her recent Instagram series ‘Design and Hotels’ Alice Rawsthorn astutely pointed out that the Royalton was unique when it opened — the first ‘designer hotel’ for a younger generation. In 2007 the owners sadly stripped away the Starck furnishings and finishes and replaced them with an anonymously bland interior, which explains how these bedside tables found their way to Hudson. I love the high/low use of marble and rebar!”
HNY_8571Robert Venturi, Sheraton Chair, 1984 (Moderne)

Patrick: “While I’m not a huge fan of this series, I think this is a great example and graphically one of the strongest with the black frame and bright Sheraton details.”

Alex: “For the line of Postmodern furniture Venturi designed for Knoll he tackled a variety of historical furniture styles–in addition to Sheraton he riffed on Chippendale, Queen Anne, Empire, Hepplewhite, Beidermeier, Gothic Revival, Art Nouveau and Art Deco.”
Percival Lafer, Armchair, 1970s (Gris)

Patrick: “I really appreciate these Percival Lafer chairs because people have such strong reactions to them, often calling them ugly. I think this chair is ‘ugly’ like a bulldog.” Fun fact: while common in the United States, his designs are rare and desirable in Brazil because he exported almost 100% of his output.”
Vintage textile, ca. 1900 (Colonia)

Alex: “There wasn’t much information about this textile. It’s a beautiful example of Japanese indigo, with a patina that makes me think it’s probably from the turn of the century.”
Vintage circus costume, ca. 1930s (Five and Diamond)

Alex: “The owner of Five and Diamond only stocks true vintage clothing. This circus costume from the 1930’s immediately captured my imagination and if I weren’t pregnant might have been my Halloween costume this year.”
Pierre Cardin, Stacking rings, ca. 1970 (George Antiques)

Alex: “I would have bought these silver and stone rings in a second, but they’re they’re waiting for someone with slender fingers to come claim them! A set of six were gifted by Daphne Farago to the Museum of Fine Arts Boston.”

Patrick: “Underappreciated and definitely undervalued. Pierre Cardin’s jewelry from the ’60s and ’70s is always innovative and stylish, and ahead of it’s time even now.”
Folding chair, early 20th century (George Antiques)

Patrick: “These campaign-style folding chairs were on Ray and Charles Eames’ patio at their house in the Pacific Palisades. There’s a famous photo of the couple entertaining Isamu Kenmochi in this chair minus the zebra print fabric, although I think Charles and Ray would have approved of the zebra.”
Arp, California Design/Nine, and L’Art Abstrait books (John Doe Records and Books)

Alex: “This record store is a lot of fun. The owner had some rare art and design books behind his desk. Monica went home with the Arp book and Patrick with L’Art Abstrait, which actually features a cover by Arp.”
American hooked rugs, ca. 1930s-1950s (Henry)

Alex: “This dealer knows everything about textiles, from Shaker to Modern. These little rugs are similar to two that that we have at home. The brighter one is freeform and the one underneath was made from a pattern. Hooked rugs of this scale were popular from the Depression era onwards.”
Gaetano Pesce, UP 1 chair, 1969 (Hudson SuperMarket)

Patrick: “UP chairs are hard to find, especially in this kind of condition. They were flat-packed and then you would open them up and they would expand into three dimensions in front of your eyes. We went back the next day and this had sold. I wasn’t surprised.”

Alex: “This chair, along with the more recognizable Up 5 and 6, appears in this month’s Vogue story “A House Less Ordinary” in the drawing room of the Thurn und Taxis family castle. If it’s good enough for a princess…good enough for me!”
Stanley Tigerman, Armchairs, ca. 1980 (Mark McDonald)

Patrick: “I love these Postmodern chairs because they bring together the best of Mackintosh, Hoffmann, and Saarinen without copying them.”

Alex: “These would make strong head-of-table dining chairs. They’re timeless.”
HNY_8658Salvatore Fiume, ceramic sculptures, ca. 1960s (Mark McDonald)

Patrick: “These biomorphic ceramic sculptures were produced in editions of 150 but all hand built rather than cast. Fiume was an interesting guy: an architect, writer, stage designer, and sculptor who lived in Milan and collaborated with Gio Ponti on the Andrea Doria ocean liner, which sunk off the coast of Nantucket in 1956.”
A. Lawrence Kocher, Side table, 1942 (Mark McDonald)

Patrick: “Extremely rare demountable table by the American architect who designed the famous Studies building for Black Mountain College. You can always count on my friend Mark McDonald to have modernist jewels like this. The only problem is catching him when the gallery is open.”