Alexander Scourby – Audiobook Narrator par excellence
I have recently started listening to War and Peace, by Lev Tolstoy, narrated by Alexander Scourby and by all accounts I’ve read, this is the best ever rendition of the book, to the point that people all over the internet consider that his voice is turning this already beloved classic into an even better experience.
Alexander Scourby was an American actor, but he was most famous for his voice and he considered his most important work the 442 books that he recorded for the blind, the most popular one being King James Version of the Bible.
I didn’t know who Scourby was until I stumbled upon part one of the book. I like to choose the narrators, particularly when I listen to such a long book (over 60 hours in total!) and his voice stood out. Still, it wasn’t until I had a look at the comments that I realised this was something special. The rest of the book read by him is not available on YouTube, you need to do a little digging if you really want it, but it’s not impossible to find. Other books by him are available on his website and even on Audible.
My thoughts on the book in a future letter, as I am only seven hours in, but I am indeed enjoying it tremendously. I would never venture to start reading this long novel now, knowing that I rarely sit down with a book for more than an hour, but luckily I have much more listening time available.
I have a feeling I will spend a lot of time with Mr Scourby in the future!
Russian Aesthetic at Max Mara
All images via Vogue
For a few years now I’ve been noticing the Max Mara collections and I’ve just rediscovered these images from their 2021 Resort collection. I would wear all these outfits, even though the colour palette normally doesn’t have much appeal to me. They manage to make brown and camel rich and covetable, rather than old and boring, and the silhouettes are modern, yet timeless. Such an achievement!
I also absolutely love the white elegant background, with all those amazing golden frames just leaning against the walls… works of art in themselves. Understated luxury and precious details – the best kind to have and admire!
No wonder these images immediately spoke to me when I spotted them again this week, the inspiration for the collection, which was supposed to be shown in the gilded salons of the Yusupov Palace in St. Petersburg, was obviously Russian. Having visited the State Hermitage Museum’s Archive, with its creations of breathtaking magnificence belonging to the Russian aristocracy, Ian Griffiths, the creative director, named the collection ‘Reason and Romance’ as if it were the title of a Tolstoy novel.
This is one serendipitous find!
Iconic (Contemporary) Architecture
The Sunac Guangzhou Grand Theatre designed to look like flowing silk
I very much enjoyed reading this article about iconic contemporary architecture that seems, not only to me, it must be said, a bit disconnected and too conceptual, focused mainly on producing visually impactful buildings that will look good on Instagram… until the novelty wears off.
Will these buildings end up being seen in a few decades… centuries even, as cultural landmarks similar to the ones we appreciate today, of which the Yusupov Palace mentioned above is a perfect example? But then, as the author rightly points out, there were other architectural and design movements that were looked down upon when they emerged, and are very much favoured now, like Art Deco.
Still, I chuckled at the title of the article!
The Frame Blog
And since I once again professed my love for ornate beautiful frames (and not for the last time, I am sure!), I wanted to share with you an exquisite find I’ve been holding on to because I haven’t had the time to explore it properly. The Frame Blog is a specialist online magazine devoted to the study of antique picture frames and it has a rich archive of extensive essays, interviews and reviews written by curators and conservators from major museums, as well as art historians and authors with an interest in the field.
I must confess that looking at the archive I was a bit intimidated by the sheer amount of knowledge I can’t even hope to possess, but that is no reason to be discouraged altogether and you might be more courageous than me and venture to explore it all, or simply browse it as I did. Either way, it will be a learning opportunity for sure.
⚜ Uncommon Places to Find Exquisite Gifts ⚜
Seeing that a certain romance-infused gift-giving occasion is upon us, I wanted to share again the full list of Miss Onion’s Uncommon Places to Find Exquisite Gifts. From favourite brands’ websites and live online auctions to online learning and event platforms, I must say that after almost a year of little to almost no entertainment outside the house, the latter sounds most promising.
I hope you find inspiration for your partner, your best (girl)friend or yourself!
If you, like me, have been keeping a keen eye on the time it gets dark since the winter solstice, waiting (im)patiently for the days to become longer, then you will appreciate this platform (via Girlboss Daily) that tells you when the sun will set each day of the year based on your location.
I am so excited to think that we’ll be gaining almost an hour during the short month of February! A few minutes every day add up and at least this natural – and I would dare say guaranteed – mood booster is not dependent on anything else! It is a gift that nothing and nobody can take away from us and there aren’t many other such pleasures around at the moment!
Envelope Full of Flowers
All images via Anna Remarchuk on Instagram
Browsing my archive for the perfect image to illustrate another find, I found one of the images below saved a while back. Such a simple idea and yet such a beautiful result! Anna Remarchuk is the person behind these lovely images and she has a whole series, as you can see, plus plenty more flower inspiration on her Instagram feed.
If this letter has offered you a moment of inspiration, kindly forward it to others who might enjoy it too. And if you have been forwarded it, indulge in all previous Miss Onion’s Exquisite Finds and subscribe to the weekly letter.
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