Visionaries and Illusions
Jim Thompson's "Illusion" zebra-stripe silk seems to be the coveted fabric of the moment. So I thought I'd draw attention, again, to an interesting blog post written by the legendary Thai-silk purveyor's great-great niece, Frances Merrill.
In the late 1950s and 60s, Thompson -- a Western expatriate living elegantly in Thailand -- was renowned as Bangkok's leading host. His guests included Somerset Maugham and Doris Duke. About Thompson's home and vast Southeast Asian art collection, Maugham said "You have not only beautiful things, but what is rare you have arranged them with faultless taste."
Many scholars see Duke and Thompson as visionary kindred spirits because both seriously collected Southeast Asian antiques at a time when their Western peers had little interest in the area.
Above, Duke is pictured in Bangkok, 1957, at the home of Francois Duhau de Berenx. Image copyright, The Doris Duke Charitable Foundation. For more information specifically about Thompson silks available today, visit jimthompson.com. Pillow image courtesy Jen West.
These images of Kelly Wearstler and her home, as seen in Domicilium Decoratus, (first two) and Modern Glamour: The Art of Unexpected Style, (third) remind me of Duke and Thompson.
Trina Turk's Burmese silk from her summer 2008 collection.