In Victorian England, the aristocracy elevated leisure time to an elegant artform. With an all-consuming fascination over 19th-Century innovations and inventions in the arts, science and technology, the Victorians changed the face of art and culture. M.S. Rau Antiques, in connection with New Orleans’ 300th anniversary, highlights this age of awakening in its exhibition “Aristocracy: Luxury and Leisure in Britain,” which opened in October.
“It weaves a compelling narrative about the intersection of entertainment and innovation, and is the first of its kind to explore the culture of Victorian leisure on such a grand and comprehensive scale,” said owner Bill Rau in a press release, which lauds it as the gallery’s most ambitious public exhibition.
The show explores four themes: The Great Exhibition, The Grand Tour, The London Season and The Country Estate. Exquisite art, personal and decorative items are all on display, including a pair of silver gilt tazze made for King George III, a first edition numbered copy of the Portland Vase by Wedgwood and porcelain dinner service, which was once owned by the Duke of Hamilton. The show closes on Jan. 20. rauantiques.com
Get in the holiday spirit while also enjoying a glimpse into New Orleans’ historic architecture during the annual Preservation Resource Center’s Holiday Home Tour on Dec. 9 and 10. This year, the tour includes a bonus location: the Jackson Avenue Church at 2221 Chippewa St. The residences included on the tour are the Garden District homes of Susu and Andrew Stall (1136 Second St.); Catherine Newstadt Makk (1434 Toledano St.); Annie and Jeff Strain (1424 Fourth St.); Mark Hensgens and Tim Armstrong (2352 Camp St.); Billy and Leigh Bell (2801 Prytania St.); Nancy and Michael McSween (1422 Harmony St.); and Lauren and Ryan Haydel (3230 Camp St.) Attendees can enjoy live music by local musicians and stop by the boutique and tour headquarters at Trinity Episcopal Church (1329 Jackson Ave.) for a little shopping. Tickets are $30 for PRC members; $40 for non-members; and $45 the day of the tour. prcno.org
Sip & Shop
On Dec.16, the Southern Food & Beverage Museum celebrates the state during Made in Louisiana. Shop, sip and sample the goods of more than 40 vendors of everything from craft beer and spirits to spices, sauces and sausages. The event is from 12:30 to 4:30 p.m. and tickets are $15 in advance, $20 at the door and $12 for SoFAB members. On Jan. 6, catch a book signing and cooking demonstration by Jamie DeMent, owner of the Piedmont restaurant in Durham, North Carolina. DeMent’s first cookbook, “The Farmhouse Chef: Recipes & Stories from My Carolina Farm,” published September of 2017. The event is free with admission. natfab.org
“Personalities in Clay: American Studio Ceramics from the E. John Bullard Collection” showcases the ceramic collection of New Orleans Museum of Art director emeritus John Bullard. The exhibition includes 77 works from 33 artists dating from 1940 through the 20th Century. It charts the evolution of ceramics from decorative and functional to fine art.
Related events include Noontime Talks on Jan. 3, 2018 by curator Mel Buchanan and on Jan. 10, 2018 by E. John Bullard, as well as Friday Nights at NOMA gallery talks by Buchanan Jan. 5, 2018 and by Bullard Jan. 12, 2018. On view through summer 2018. noma.org