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misaki kawai, cave life

I love art and so does Juliet.  We’ve enrolled her in art classes since age 18months and she has happily and proudly made her own art at various school settings and at home ever since!  She often comes running over to us at school pick-up excitedly telling us, “I made this for YOU!!” And we’ve already collected a mountain of her artwork, turning our fridge and sometimes her playhouse into a virtual art gallery.  One way we’ve encouraged her love of art is to take her to art galleries around the city.  Here are the 3 main reasons galleries are great places to take a toddler. 

misaki kawai, cave life

  1. It’s a mommy and me outing that doesn’t SUCK.  There comes a time (usually weekly) where you’ve had enough of the playgrounds and indoor play pits.  Anyone relate to this?  Kids running around, crying and screaming while your mind goes numb and you look into your phone as your only outlet for parental pleasure…  Sometimes you need to mix it up!  Take your kids to a kid-friendly art gallery for some education and culture that feeds both your minds and souls.  How many times can you say you left inspired after leaving the playground?? misaki kawai, cave life
  2. Experience the culture without the overwhelm.  Toddlers (and plenty of adults) have short attention spans.  Instead of trying to cover an entire museum in one day in order to try and get your money’s worth,  (after all you could be forking over $20 admission at a famed NYC museum), you can expect to dedicate anywhere from 10minutes to a half an hour at a gallery for free while feeling the same accomplishment and satisfaction of having completed an artsy, worthwhile experience.  Small doses feel manageable.  Avoid the overwhelm and ensure yourself a happy toddler.misaki kawai, cave life
  3. It encourages curiosity and creativity.  Win mommy of the week award (if there ever was such a thing) by enriching your child’s life with the joy of exploration, curiosity AND creativity.  Juliet actually told me the other day at our last gallery outing, “Mommy, I love going on adventures with you.  this is so exciting!”  You never know what you may find!  In today’s case, we found an all yellow room, with fun painted furniture in the shape of bananas, snakes and bones.  The large-scale paintings, and wall murals seemed straight out of a child’s imagination.  Juliet immediately related and was quick to tell me about her favorite finds.cave life, nyc art, nyc art gallery, 312 bowery, the hole

If you’re interested in checking out this sunny space, go to 312 Bowery to a gallery space named “The Hole” before this “Cave Life” exhibit by Misaki Kawai ends on October 30th.  Note that it is only open Wednesday – Sunday 12pm-7pm and is by the Bleeker Street 6 train and Broadway-Lafayette B, D, F and M trains.

It promises to bring out the kid in all of us.  Juliet and I went home and continued to talk about what we saw and even tried to replicate some of the artwork at home!

misaki kawai, cave life, nyc art gallery, the hole, art for kids

For more of our artsy adventures, check out our posts on  Refinery 29’s NYFW installation, NYC street art, and the Osgemeos gallery exhibit!

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Whether or not you’re an art enthusiast, this newly launched art exhibition in partnership with NYC non-profit, Chashama Foundation, will have you doing double-takes.  Situated at the corner of Broadway and Exchange Place in New York City’s Financial District, Carole Feuerman’s hyperrealistic sculptures placed front and center near the entryway beg for a closer look.

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A quick glance around and you realize there is a quirky swim theme.  “For me,” Ms. Fuerman reflects, “swimmers represent peace, serenity, and survival.”

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Ladies fashioned in vintage swim caps and modest suits share a nonchalant “life’s a beach” sort of vibe that brings you back to your last vacation.

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Wouldn’t these sculptures be so fun sitting on top of a resort pond or reflecting pool somewhere?

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The paintings shared a vibrant, happy tone -something that Juliet could relate to. DSC_7549

Apparently though Carole Feuerman’s sculptures had achieved worldwide fame, this was the first time her paintings and prints were on view to the public.  I thought they were glorious and reminiscent of Andy Warhol’s pop art.

Perhaps the most surprising element to this FIDI art exhibit however was the lone man sitting in the corner seemingly watching us observe the female figurines.

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He caught Juliet by surprise as she wondered out loud whether he was also a statue.  True to the artist’s form, she detailed out all the imperfections.  Here Juliet is pointing out his scuffed up sneakers saying maybe someone stepped on him.  hah

fidi art, new york city art gallery, hyperealistic sculptures

If you’re in the area and have a few minutes to spare, I highly suggest you check this out.  It’s a fun, break from the ordinary and makes you re-examine what you know to be true.   See the 3 top reasons to take your toddler to an art gallery here.   And follow us on Instagram to see our daily fashionable mommy and me adventures!

 

 

PERCEPTION – In the Eye of the Beholder by Carole Feurerman
is on exhibit  at the Chasama space at One Exchange Plaza, on the corner of Broadway and Exchange (across the street from Fidelity bank)
on view until March 24th
M-Th 12pm-7pm, Fri 12pm-11pm, Sat 12pm-8pm, Sun 4pm-7pm

 

 

 

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above photo by Plamen Petkov

If you’re looking for an off-the-beat, unique art experience in NY, the gallery at the Cadillac House is a must-see!  For Instagram addicts, this is THE fantasy selfie station.  With all sorts of wacky backdrops including fish wallpaper, crocodile statues, and spaghetti floors, it’ll have you posing and preening in all the nooks and crannies of its psychedelic space!  We loved it because not only did it spur a fantastical imagination, it was interactive!  What child doesn’t want to touch and feel?  This pop-up apartment envisioned by Ferrari and Cattelan encourages you to explore and more!  Here is Juliet jumping on the bed and playing Cinderella by vacuuming the floors!!

And just like with any other apartment, this one required a lot of household chores.  We started our day getting ready at the vanity, then found dirty laundry sitting on the bathroom floor, a kitchen with dinner uncooked, and hungry pets to feed.

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With so much to do around the house, you might just need to, lounge and call a friend from the comforts of your colorful bed.

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Needless to say, this was SUCH a fun place for her and I to play pretend.  We went after school pick up (around 1:30pm) on a weekday and were the only ones there!  I highly suggest going during the weekday with your kids to fully enjoy the space.  After you’re done, you can treat yourself to a little something at the beautiful cafe that they have and also browse the latest Cadillac models!   IMG_1097 IMG_1098

What a fun mommy and me outing this was!  Click here for more of our fashionable adventures around the city!

The exhibition was made possible through creative media agency Visionaire and Toiletpaper MagazineFerrari and Cattelan are co-creators of the latter. Toiletpaper Paradise runs through April 12 and is free to the public.

The Gallery at Cadillac House
330 Hudson Street
New York City

 

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If you’ve read my past post about the 3 top reasons to take a toddler to an art gallery, you know we love frequenting them!  Today, after school, we enjoyed another artsy adventure, this time closer to our home, in Tribeca.  R & Company on 82 Franklin (between Church and Broadway) is a 2-floor, narrow unassuming space that you’d miss easily if not looking specifically for it.  Step inside though and you’ll be greeted with playful bursts of color and sculptures that beg you to reach out and touch them.  As soon as Juliet stepped in, she screamed in delight, “Mommy this place looks like so much FUN!”

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And indeed it was!  The tactile surfaces were fun to explore and luckily, this gallery encouraged not only feeling the exhibits but also sitting, climbing and exploring in them!

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Yes, the artist’s name is actually “Porky Hefer…”

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Isn’t this such a wonderous place for a child to enjoy art?

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It inspires such curiosity and imagination!

DSC_6897“Each piece is meant to be inhabited like a hermit inhabits shells.” He encourages visitors to curl their bodies into the playful, human-scaled shells and nests, or to drape themselves languidly over the leopard’s branch.

Downstairs, though was where Juliet’s favorite pieces were.  She got such a kick out of the coin couch because we were just teaching her the value of coins.  “I wonder how the artist made this!” And so we discussed possibilities and she determined, “glue!” haha

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Johnny Swing‘s iconic coin works have been exhibited in museums and institutions around the world. Swing, who is considered a master welder and craftsman, has developed a unique patterning technique that utilizes flat shiny coins to create furniture works. His innovative approach successfully transforms these industrial found coins into biomorphic and natural forms that transcend their material. (excerpt from the exhibit’s website)

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Coins certainly take on a whole new value in the mind of this tiny toddler!

r and company, nyc art, nyc art gallery, art for kids, white animal, beast, beauty and the beast

Juliet’s other favorite find was this fuzzy little beast.  When it was time to go, she said, “but I LOVE him!!”  So I let her stay for a bit and she spent the remaining minutes, cuddling and kissing this crazy fur creature.  “Wait! 3 more hugs!” she exclaimed as motioned for us to go.DSC_6940

If you’re in the NY area, I highly recommend R and Company.  This intimate art gallery will only take you 30minutes of your time depending on how many selfies you take 🙂 and is great to explore with kids!  We went on a Monday afternoon and were the only ones in there!  Woohoo! This exhibit is open until February 23rd.

 

To see more of our mommy and me artsy adventures, click here!

 

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When Juliet says, “Mommy I love going on adventures with you!” She is referring to our little mommy and me field trips where I take her to new and exciting NYC spaces offering arts and culture.  Here, we explored an immersive gallery experience at the Tanya Bonakdar Gallery on 521 W 21st st.  The moment you first view this colorful, web like art structure, curiosity takes over and you can’t wait to get close-up to Ernesto Neto’s work.

nyc art, art gallery, kids art

Titled, “The Serpent Gave Birth To Humanity”, was made up of finger-knitted weaves that evoked the image of an “infinite serpent.”

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It welcomed touch which was so perfect for a toddler with curious hands.

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As you crawled through openings, and slithered through curvy tunnels, it was hard not to appreciate that you were in a special place.

dsc_3177There was also a round, canopied structure, that created a tent-like fort where Juliet found instruments to play with like a guitar and the drum set below.  She even danced to the music made by others!dsc_3185

It was very apparent that the artist considered the energy, sounds and movements made by the inhabitants part of his ever-moving art.  We had so much fun exploring the space, its textures, and its wonders that we hardly realized that an hour had passed!  It’s a great spot to come with kids, or just to sit, relax and reflect on its padded yellow floors.

tanya bonakdar gallery, nyc art gallery

This solo exhibition is on view from October 29 through December 17, 2016 and is free and open to the public.  We hope that you too will be able to experience this vibrant, immersive experience!

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For more video recaps, follow us @fabgabblog on Instagram!

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I can finally see the finish line.  We’ve been living in our new apartment, surrounded by boxes for over a year in anticipation for the almost full, gut-renovation of our NYC apartment to end.  For months, I dreamt of the day, our permits would be approved, then for months I waited patiently for the construction crew to do their thing, and I was delighted when CA closets came in to give me my dream closets.  After being out of town for most of the construction phase, I’m happy to be back and thrilled to finally start organizing things out of their boxes.

Pinterest was my home renovation salvation. It kept me sane through this year long process.  It allowed me to dream about the new nursery’s decor, gather organizational and DIY tips, and escape the dust-filled construction site that was my home.

One of the inspirational themes that I have pinned is the concept of featuring a gallery wall.  As you can see, this not only helps to fill up a bare space, but also allows you to highlight some of your favorite photography and/or art.  Here are some of my favorites from around the web!
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Follow  me on Pinterest or click here for more!

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This marathon TV session that I just finished with David Tutera and My Fair Wedding has left me dreaming of what it might be like to be a professional wedding planner.  I adore event planning (not to mention having over 11 years work experience in it) and I couldn’t get enough of planning my own wedding but could I deal with all the bridezillas out there?  Hmm now that’s another question..

Here are some of my favorite inspirational images for a pretty pastel party.

 

 

 

 

If you like this, come join me on pinterest where I have an entire board under the pastel event header!  Or click here for more blog posts on pastel parties.

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Juliet is no stranger to art.  Together we spot and admire street art, explore museums as a family, enjoy mommy and me art gallery days and get invited to the coolest pop-ups. Through it all, we’ve really developed a penchant for finding cool art around the world.  But our favorite art experience thus far has been Refinery 29’s 29 rooms.  What is 29 Rooms you ask?  It’s a multi-sensory, “interactive funhouse of style, culture, & technology.”  The masterminds at Refinery 29 have partnered with global artists, corporate brands, and fashion designers to takeover and transform a grungy Brooklyn warehouse into the most magnificent fantasy world where you get to feel, smell, create and sometimes literally, jump into the art segmented and found in 29 spaces.

29 rooms, nyc art

With only a 3 hour interval to explore 29 rooms, I calculated that left us with just 6 minutes per room including the wait time to get into each room.  Knowing that made my heart race because there were just so many amazing surprises to discover within this cavernous space.  And having seen it all last year (click here for the pictures from 2016), I knew there was something fabulous and exciting waiting for us in each space.  So without further adieu, I’m going to let the pictures do all the talking in this post.  Feast your eyes on this and tell me what your favorite room is!

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29 rooms, refinery 29, pillows

The 3 hours flew by and we wanted to stay longer!  If you want to see more, check out my Instagram story NOW while it lasts for more video and sneak peeks.

Here are 8 tips for those of you with kids:

  1. Only bring kids if you know they enjoy and appreciate art enough to follow directions about when they can or cannot touch artwork.  If they’re the type to run through breaking or tearing everything like a bull in a China store, it’s best to leave them home (obvi).  I only bring Juliet to so many artsy events and galleries because I completely trust and know that she will respect the artist’s (and my) wishes.
  2. Yes there are bathrooms on-site so no worries that you will have to hunt one down.
  3. No f&b is allowed inside and none is sold at the venue.  We made do by sneaking in some snacks in my purse and by purchasing a $1 bottle of water from the random guy on the street selling to thirsty fashionistas waiting in line
  4. The Wall Street ferry from Pier 11 in Manhattan takes you to the N. Williamsburg stop in about 20 minutes (3rd stop).  Tickets are $2.75 each way and kids under a certain height (43″ I think) are free. From the terminal stop at N. Williamsburg take a left on Kent Ave, walk 3 blocks and take a right on N 9th st. and Whythe Ave will be 1 block away but before you get to Whythe, you’ll likely see a line wrapped around the corner at 9th st. anyways.
  5. Dress light.  There is limited AC and no windows from which a breeze could relieve you.  We went on a perfect 70degree weather day and still found ourselves thankful we did not show up in pants/jeans.  Some rooms felt like saunas.
  6. If you’re a die-hard Instagrammer, bring a change of clothes/accessories and study the hashtag #29rooms beforehand.  By now, plenty of bloggers like me have posted reveals.  Check out their posts for ideas and inspiration and plan accordingly.  (See this post on how to achieve the highly coveted, Instagram-able shot!)
  7. Free up space on your phone and bring an extra portable charger.  You don’t want to be stuck missing out on recording these amazing scenes and memories because your phone just died or you’re out of memory!
  8. Download the new and free 29Rooms Interactive App which will serve as your personal tour guide for inside and outside the 29 rooms area.

If you’re a follower of my FB page then you’ve likely seen my alert the day Refinery 29’s tickets went on sale.  Tickets have sold out at this point but Refinery 29 was conducting social media giveaways so I’d follow them on IG and check Craig’s list for scalpers if you’re dying to get in but were too late to the game.

Now go ahead, what was your favorite room?

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Capturing that coveted Instagram-able photo has taken on a new level of importance.  It’s no longer enough to just snap a quick shot for your own memory.   Secretly, you want to take a shot worthy of showing off through social media!  Whether it’s that cool new find, place or happening, or heck, simply our outfit of the day nowadays, you snap and share!  Here are my 3 top tips for getting that Instagram-able photo and guess what….it all has to do with the styling!  So don’t worry about this getting too technical with photography tips.  There are plenty of other articles on general photography how – tos.  These are easy-to-apply styling and fashion tips to take your photography to the next viral level.

Find photogenic backdrops that compliment your outfit.  Consider your backdrop ‘cuz your cluttered room isn’t cutting it.   I usually favor a real simple white or plain colored wall to make my OOTD shot really pop. mommy ad me matching outfit, minime, fashionable mom, fab mom But I also really love a stunning graffiti wall,

lovewall, heart wall, hearts, happy valentines

a cityscape,fab moms, cherry blossom photo, sakura, cherry blossom festival

and a beautiful nature scene.
DSC_8510What I also seek out is modern art.  As soon as I saw this stunningly lit artwork pop up in my feed, I was inspired to take J there in her favorite outfit of all time – her Elsa costume.

when life imitates art, minifashionista, kids art, nyc art gallery, instagramable nyc

As if she read my mind, the minute she saw the art piece, she knew exactly how to pose with it.  Transforming herself into Elsa, and pretending the room was her ice castle, she immediately went to work with her wand.  Preparing the perfect outfit with this shot in mind created the wow factor I was looking for.

Similarly, the below shot was staged with an enormous star (from the FrankStella collection) to echo the sparkly star-like swirls on her dress.

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And the Gagosian Gallery called my name with this awww-inspiring bow.  I just had to take J there dressed in her favorite Janie and Jack bow sweater and Amour Bows headband.  I like big bows and I cannot lie….5.16

Sometimes all it takes is a little research, outfit planning and prop preparation.  Before heading to your next cool destination, research it, check out the hashtags.  Perhaps you’ll re-think that outfit which you now know clashes with the background, or maybe you’ll be inspired to create a special outfit customized for the destination or want to bring a prop to pose with.  Check out what others have photographed through location geo -tags and destination hashtags.  And you’re bound to find additional motivation to get the shot right!

I hope some of my photos inspire you to take a moment to reflect on elevating your next shot.  For my personal inspiration, I like to follow the following IG feeds!

  • fomofeed (for the coolest, local NYC backdrops and art)
  • artfullyawear (you think I like to match art? wait til you see THIS!)
  • dressedtomatch (when life imitates art)  Tag them in your matching art photo and you’ll get featured like we did!

Have a great day and happy photographing!  Comment below with your favorite Instagram feeds that you like to follow for inspiration!

 

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We are so lucky to live in Manhattan and have such easy access to all the amazing art in the city!  Today, after school pick-up, we enjoyed the unseasonably warm 80 degree fall weather with a little artsy adventure.  Lehmann Maupin on W 22nd street showcased a wildly colorful exhibit featuring Brazilian artist duo OSGEMEOS that we just had to see for ourselves.

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Twin brothers Gustavo and Otavio Pandolfo transformed multiple rooms in an immersive installation that combined drawing, painting, collage, mixed media sculpture, and kinetic and audio elements.

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We found the vibrant art to be so much fun to explore with its playful, quirkyiness!  Ever hear of the man in the moon?  Well here’s a toddler too!

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The exhibition offers “a heightened multi-sensory experience that embraces the power of human imagination and the vast possibilities in visually interpreting the subconscious.”  It certainly did feel a little dreamy, that is if you dream in full, technicolor fashion!

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Osgemeos’s signature yellow characters and intriguing patterns felt accessible and understandable to all ages which is why I highly recommend it as a fun outing for moms and kids.  I love that I can instill the appreciation of art and exploration through NYC exhibits like this!

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Check it out, even if it’s just for all the Instagram-able floor-to-ceiling art walls!     silence of the music, nyc art, nyc gallery

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