Great Homes and Gardens Lecture Series: Doris Duke's Shangri La, by Thomas Mellins

Thursday 27 February 2014 6:00pm - 8:00pmTickets available
Tickets in the theater are sold out. Please call 202-686-5807 to reserve a $5 space at our special Simulcast viewing.

Location: Visitor Center Theater

Tell your friends:

This is the fourth lecture in the Great Homes and Gardens Lecture Series.

Explore Shangri La, the idyllic paradise of philanthropist Doris Duke, in this beautifully illustrated lecture. The magical personal retreat, located in Honolulu, Hawaii, on five acres of terraced gardens and pools overlooking the Pacific Ocean and Honolulu’s Diamond Head, inventively synthesizes modernist architecture, the lush landscape of Hawaii, and Islamic art. Duke's home powerfully reflects her lifelong passion for the art, architecture, and design of the Islamic world.

In addition to the splendid landscapes, enjoy views of the breathtaking interiors which incorporate unique architectural features such as carved marble doorways and floral ceramic tiles. The decor includes artifacts such as silk textiles, jewel-toned chandeliers, and elaborately carved and decorated ceilings, many collected during her extensive travels. Archival photographs of Duke and friends as well as correspondence and drawings provide a view into a lifestyle defined by the highest sense of aesthetics. Doris Duke’s Shangri La is sure to inspire both art and design lovers.


6-6:45 pm     Member’s reception with the speaker, Mansion open for touring
7-8 pm          Lecture (seating opens at 6:45 pm)   
8 pm             Book Signing: Doris Duke's Shangri La: A House in Paradise: Architecture, Landscape, and Islamic Art

About the speaker:

Thomas Mellins is an architectural historian, author, and exhibition curator. He is the co-author, with Robert A.M. Stern and others, of three volumes in an award-wining book series on the architecture and urbanism of New York City: New York 1880, New York 1930, and New York 1960. In 2011, Mr. Mellins curated “The New York Public Library: Celebrating 100 Years,” which attracted nearly 700,000 visitors to become the most heavily attended exhibition in the library’s history. Mr. Mellins has also co-curated exhibitions at the Museum of Arts and Design in New York, the Museum of the City of New York, Yale University, and the National Building Museum in Washington, DC.

About the Great Homes and Garden's Lecture Series:

The winter chill of February means spring is not far behind. Gather inspiration and immerse yourself in the beauty of some of America’s most splendid homes and gardens with this four-part lecture series.

Thursday, February 6: Longwood Gardens—100+ Years of Garden Splendor, by Colvin Randall

Wednesday, February 19: Winterthur: An American House and Garden, by Christopher Strand

Thursday, February 27: Doris Duke’s Shangri La, by Thomas Mellins

Tuesday, March 4: The Golden Age of American Gardens, by Eleanor Weller Reade

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