Design News

Margaret De Patta (1903-1964) Salt and Pepper Shakers, c. 1960 ceramic. Photo: Courtesy of the Margaret de Patta Archives, Bielawski Trust, Point Richmond, California

Knives Out
Dissatisfied with existing flatware options, designer Margaret De Patta (1903–1964) decided to make her own, a modernist style firmly rooted in the Bauhaus tradition (so, simple yet functional). “Space-Light-Structure: The Jewelry of Margaret de Patta” opened this week at the Museum of Arts and Design (2 Columbus Cir., at Broadway; 212-299-7777) and runs through September 23. This retrospective surveys De Patta’s jewelry, of course, including pins, pendants, and rings, but also her flatware and ceramics—a first for both artist and museum. General admission is $15, students and seniors $12, and children 12 and under free.

Going Once, Going Twice …
Break out the checkbook: Phillips de Pury & Company is hosting its New York Design auction on June 15 (450 Park Ave., at E. 57th St.; 212-940-1300). A number of 20th- and 21st-century works are up for grabs, including pieces by French designers Jean Royère and Émile Jacques Ruhlmann and artist Ken Price. The top lot is a set of four bronze-and-epoxystone sheep sculptures by artist François-Xavier Lalanne, estimated at $350,000 to $500,000. Scope the collection (gratis!) in advance of the auction from June 6 through 14 at 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday and noon to 6 p.m. Sundays.

Worldly View
Anthropologie antiques buyer Keith Johnson has spent the last twenty years combing the globe for objets d’art. Some of his most striking finds, however, could only be captured with a camera. “Past Ports,” a collection of his snapshots, is on view at the Anthropologie Gallery in Rockefeller Center (50 Rockefeller Plaza, at W. 50th St.; 212-246-0386) through July 31. The photos are presented in a very Anthropologie-esque way: backlit and displayed in cabinet drawers and crates. Love what you see? Visit to buy one of ten limited-edition prints ($98); proceeds benefit Pennsylvania’s SPCA.

Park Life
What’s a city to do with a riverside park that, on the one hand, has loads of potential (bike trails, gorgeous landscaping, benches galore) but, on the other, a mess of problems (like sinkholes)? That was the question pondered by urban planners, landscape architects, and even students as part of an ideas competition held by Civitas. The nonprofit received more than 90 submissions proposing ways to overhaul and reinvigorate the East River Esplanade between 60th and 125th Streets. See the winning entries at the new “Reimagining the Waterfront: Manhattan’s East River Esplanade” exhibition at the Museum of the City of New York (1220 Fifth Ave., at E. 104th St.; 212-534-1672), on display through October 28. Suggested admission is $10 for adults and $6 for students and seniors.

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