Shelby's Social Diary
It was somewhat of a bittersweet evening at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston earlier this week, during the patrons dinner previewing the elaborate exhibition Gifts of the Sultan: The Arts of Giving at the Islamic Courts. Founding curator for the Arts of the Islamic World Francesca Leoni, who introduced the collection of more than 200 objects to the select gathering, leaves the museum on Monday.
On Nov. 1, she will take up the position of curator of Islamic Art for the Ashmolean Museum at the University of Oxford in England.
On this her last official evening with patrons, Leoni mingled with guests viewing the exhibition, explaining aspects of the various works. During the preview, patrons gathered with magnifying glasses, provided in abundance by the museum, around the intricate paintings, folios and elaborate jewels that were sourced from almost 40 countries and came from museums and private collections.
Welcoming guests to the museum was interim director Gwen Goffe and Frances Marzio, who curated the Houston presentation of the blockbuster King Tut exhibition, which opened last week. Admission to King Tut covers admission to Gifts of the Sultan, which opens Sunday. And hopes are that both exhibitions will benefit from the link.
Sitting down to a tasteful dinner by City Kitchen were Franci Crane, Sima and Masoud Ladjevardian,Cathy and Vahid Kooros, Lily and Hamid Kooros, Monsour Taghdisi, Nancy Abendshein, Isabel Wilson, Jeanie Kilroy, Kathy and Marty Goossen and Catherine and Cenk Ozdogan.