Michelin in New York…Bacanovic’s Plea…Art-Market Moves

May 10, 2004

Dueling Guides: French Invasion
En garde, Nina and Tim Zagat! The Michelin guide—France’s big, red gastronomic index—is coming to New York. Envoys have recently been spotted schmoozing with chefs at the city’s top restaurants. “Daniel [Boulud] prepared a special menu for them!” says one rival chef, adding that he was told by the Michelin men that Michelin’s Manhattan guide will probably be ready by 2006. (Boulud confirms he made a tasting menu for the group, but says he learned who they were only later.) Tim Zagat, reached in Italy, where he was attending the opening of a cooking school—in the company of Michelin representatives—said they had just told him about the New York edition. “The public benefits every time you have another good guide,” he added gamely. And after all, Zagat already has a Paris guide in French. Michelin didn’t return calls by press time.

Judge-Writing Etiquette: Bacanovic’s Plea
Peter Bacanovic’s sentencing for his role in the ImClone insider-trading scandal is set for June 17—but the deadline for his friends to write letters to the judge on his behalf is May 7. Bacanovic’s lawyer, Richard Strassberg, asked for the letters and issued a memo with strict letter-writing guidelines. Among other things, it notes that “your letters must come from you.” As for “What Not to Say in Your Letter,” Strassberg writes, “Judge [Miriam] Cedarbaum has been a judge for many years and she is well aware of her obligations in connection with sentencing. It is not appropriate (or helpful) to make statements like ‘it would be unfair to send Peter Bacanovic to jail when we read daily stories in the newspapers about people who commit murders … and get off with a slap on the wrist.’ ” Nor, apparently, is it helpful “to write about matters in Peter’s life of which you have no specific knowledge (e.g., ‘I understand that Peter had a successful undergraduate experience at Columbia.’).”

Art-Market Moves: Off The Marks
Art dealer Matthew Marks has lost two of his top-tier artists. First Larry Gagosian snagged Willem de Kooning’s estate. And now Marks will no longer represent Lucian (grandson of Sigmund) Freud, whose etchings he had shown for fifteen years. Bill Acquavella, who has handled Freud’s oil paintings since 1993, now represents all of his work. Marks (who just acquired sculptor Robert Gober) insists the split with Freud was amicable. “We’re all friends,” he says, adding that his arrangement with Freud was “unusual” since artists are usually represented by only one gallery. “But he is an unusual artist. And he only makes, like, one etching a year.”

Hearst vs. Condé Nast: Bag Brouhaha
Shop, Etc., the new Hearst magazine being launched this year, is not going to be a clone of Condé Nast’s Lucky, Hearst executives have said. (The products will be more “upscale.”) That said, the Shop, Etc. ad campaign showcases a $400 Rafe Birkin–style bag—the same bag featured on the cover of The Lucky Shopping Manual, a companion book to Lucky. “Their ad campaign says CHIC AND YOU SHALL FIND, and indeed they found it on our cover,” sniped a Condé Nast source. But don’t expect an apology from Shop, Etc. editor Mandi Norwood. “ ‘Boo-hoo!,’ ” said a Hearst spokeswoman. “That’s what Mandi told me when I asked her about this.”

Michelin in New York…Bacanovic’s Plea…Art-Mar [...]