The Cool House: Birthday, Secret, Painting

Sunday, March 09, 2008

Birthday, Secret, Painting

I have been patiently anticipating writing about this for a month now.

On February 10 I received an email from Jake Gorst announcing the opening of artist Jamie Geller Dutra's store on etsy. Jamie is Jake's mother and daughter of Shirley and Andrew Geller, architect of The Cool House. The email came fortuitously as I was looking for something arty and modern for "the guy's" birthday. I fell in love with original abstract painting in shades of green, bright blue, purple, red and gold, quickly purchased it and as soon as it was in my hands I dropped it off at the Framing Workshop in Huntington in the hope if getting it framed by this weekend.

The whole time I wanted to blog about how fabulous the painting was, how the colours would fit perfectly in our bedroom, especially how the abstract reminded me of lakes and mountains, shafts of sunshine and waterfalls, and I couldn't because I wanted it to be a big birthday surprise. I did blog about Jamie's site on 2modern design, but I couldn't add any personal elements in case the guy got wind of it. Very frustrating.

That I'm impatient is no secret but did you also know I am hopeless at fibbing and getting the painting home without the guy finding out would stretch my artifice to its limit? First I had to rope a neighbor into picking up the framed painting because it was too wide to fit in my car; this entailed many secret phone calls and emails and eventually a fictitious trip to look at furniture with said neighbor. The guy was suspicious, and very reluctant to leave the house at all yesterday (normally he's running errands all over the place on Saturdays) but the five inches of rain we had may have been responsible for that. Finally we went out to dinner and per the plan our neighbors snuck the painting into the garage while we were out, hiding it behind my car.

This morning I placed it in the kitchen and he was totally blown away by it. I picked a wood frame with a brushed stainless steel finish that picks up on the cool grey tones and an off-white matte that really defines the colours in the painting. We hung it over the sofa in our room and suddenly the guy understood why I made him rearrange the furniture in there last week. I told him it was so the room would appear larger (which it did) but really it was so the painting could be positioned on this wall and seen from the great room, back stairs and landing.

All this subterfuge was exhausting. I have only the greatest admiration for people who pull off surprise parties for family members, I don't know how they can get everyone to cooperate without letting the secret out. But all the drama was worth it when I saw the wonderful work of art as I walked up the back stairs and the look on the guy's face when he opened his present this morning.


Kat Carroll said...

Beautiful piece of art and of course, Happy Birthday Steven!
loads of love from the Aussie Tribe

Jennifer said...

What an awesome birthday present! Happy Birthday (a little late)

modernemama said...

Thank you both

From the Guy

Anonymous said...

It looks really nice. Like it was made for your home!