Tali lennox artist new york 400x400 Tali Lennox Artist New York GrandLife Locals Interview

Tali Lennox

Occupation Artist

Hometown London, Majorca, Ibiza

Current Residence Tribeca

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Tali Lennox is a portrait painter with a thing for silk slips, antiques, and martinis—Monkey bar for a dirty, Lucien for an espresso. Here, Tali shares with GrandLife her favorite memories from the city she now calls home, her go-to spots for vintage and homewares, the music currently has on high rotation in her studio, and more.

WHAT WOULD THE TITLE OF YOUR  AUTOBIOGRAPHY BE?
Memoirs of a Vampire Mermaid. 

WHAT CAN’T YOU TRAVEL WITHOUT AND WHY?
A good book and a silk slip. Wearing silk slips just makes everything feel more dreamy, even when you’re just lazing in bed. I just got a beautiful mint green silk with fuchsia lace slip from Agent Provocateur. I love books that are transportive and mind-altering. I’m about to board a flight right now and have brought with me Geek Love, which tells the story of a traveling carnival. 

WHAT’S YOUR FAVORITE TRAVEL DESTINATION AND WHY?
Ibiza where my father lives. I don’t go there for the clubs but for the coves, forests, and vegetables from his garden. It’s a mystical little island that really works its way deep into the soul. The ethos of liberation there is always inspiring…

WHAT’S YOUR FAVORITE THING TO DO ON A SUNDAY AFTERNOON IN NYC? 
Endless realms of magic lie within the Showcase Antique & Design Center on 25th Street—four floors of antique booths. It’s my weekend temple and it’s always quiet. I’ve gotten to know a lot of the sellers who are all fabulously old-school New York. I get my special antique postcards from Jacqueline; she always has new treasures to show me. For accessories and handbags, I go to Pauline and her very old dog, Chardonnay, and I get my slip dresses from Alyssa. I’m obsessed with her vintage lingerie shop. It’s an overflowing emporium of hand-sewn pastel silk and chiffon slips, lingerie, and gowns of the 1920s and 30s. It’s got to be one of my favorite rooms in the entire city. 

IF YOU COULD CHOOSE ONE PERSON TO SHOW YOU “THEIR NEW YORK CITY,” WHO WOULD IT BE AND WHY?
Lois Long, also known as Lipstick; a writer for the New Yorker in the 1920s. Heralded as the ultimate flapper girl, she would document with aplomb the decadence, drinking, dining, and dancing of 1920s New York. I’d do anything to get in a time machine and go for a glittering spin around town with Lois. 

WHAT OR WHO HAS INSPIRED YOU RECENTLY?
Paintings by Gerald Brockhurst. He is a fairly unknown portrait painter throughout the 20s, 30s, and 40s. He would submerge his female subjects into such an eerie reverie, fusing real life with dark surrealism. Heaven. 

WHAT ARE YOUR FAVORITE NYC RESTAURANTS? WHAT DO YOU ORDER THERE? 
A seafood platter at the Grand Central Oyster Bar—beautifully classic NYC, it makes you feel like you’re in an Edward Hopper painting; Omen for pretty much every dish they serve, also the frozen sake; it’s off the menu and tastes like iced angel tears; Steak au poivre at Raoul’s—rare please; Odeon for a tuna burger; Cafe Yemen in Cobble Hill—it’s open late and I love the occasional midnight dinner of slow-cooked chicken, lamb broth with lime, hummus, fresh flatbread, and sweet tea. 

WHAT’S YOUR GO-TO SPOT IN NYC FOR DRINKS?
Monkey Bar for a dirty martini—the decor is so cinematic and so classic New York; Lucien for an espresso martini—be warned: mornings after may be foggy; The Ear Inn for some New York history—it’s one of the oldest spots in the city; Russian Samovar Restaurant and piano bar—a one-of-a-kind spot; you feel like you’re in a David Lynch film; Sake Bar Satsko—tucked-away East Village spot that’s never too full and always so charming; San Pedro in Red Hook for margaritas. 

WHAT ARE SOME OF YOUR FAVORITE NYC BRUNCH SPOTS; WHAT DO YOU ORDER WHEN YOU GO?
I don’t go to brunch much as it’s often so busy and loud in the city. So I like to find low-key spots I can eat at alone with a book. For years it was Souen on 6th Avenue (RIP). Caravan of Dreams on East 6th street is also so charming and feels like a relic of old New York. I like to get my tarot read there over raw vegan cake. I equally enjoy a not-so-vegan steak tartare at the Metrograph commissary after an afternoon movie. 

WHERE DO YOU GET YOUR ART FIX IN NYC? DO YOU HAVE A FAVORITE ARTIST?
The Neue Galerie uptown is one of my favorite places to see art. I think it’s one of the most beautiful buildings in the city and it’s so much more quiet than other museums. No selfies in sight! It specializes in German art, which is one of my favorite eras of painting. Otto Dix, Schiele, and Klimt galore! I love seeing art in transportive spaces. My upcoming solo show, The Ballad of Linda Leven, is at Meredith Rosen Gallery. Meredith’s space is in a beautiful residential brownstone on the Upper East Side, right by the park. To enter, you walk through an old yellow and tiled hallway with a wood and brass staircase, and then down into the basement. Her space is in an old psychiatrist’s office. I love the idea of going to see art and having your senses to the world feel illuminated, your experience that day has been shifted by the work but also by the environment.  

WHAT ARE SOME OF YOUR FAVORITE LATE-NIGHT HANGOUTS IN NYC?
Really, I love being in people’s homes. I occasionally throw parties at my place. The building was a Chinese textile factory built in the 1800s and is a wonderful space for mixing groups of different people, all ages and origins and watching the atmosphere spark. I also love going to my friend Tony’s at the Chelsea Hotel. He is one of the only tenants who got to keep their apartments. It’s a truly magical time machine. It was the home of Vali Myers, the first female psychedelic artist, and the walls are still hand-painted by her. You step into another realm. 

I’ve been fortunate to go to a couple of amazing gatherings at the legendary Dakota Building—a breathtaking landmark with so much history. The photographer Arthur Elgort has a beautiful space for parties in his Grand Street studio; he bought it in the 70s, and it’s absolutely massive. I love looking at the hundreds of prints taken over the decades that he has stuck up on the walls. 

WHAT ARE SOME OF YOUR FAVORITE NYC STORES AND WHY?
Ritual has some great vintage; the 25th Street flea market—lots of trinkets and treasures but you have to have a dig; John Derian Company has the most exquisite homeware and decor pieces; Mast Bookstore has a beautiful selection of second-hand books with wonderful covers— one of my favorite finds there is 1960s Aquarian Odyssey; Alchemist Kitchen is a nice place to go for healthy potions—it calms me down especially after an infrared sauna downstairs or an IV vitamin drip.  

WHAT MUSIC ARE YOU LISTENING TO THESE DAYS? WHO ARE SOME OF YOUR FAVORITE MUSICIANS?
All summer, I’ve been working on my upcoming solo show, “The Ballad of Linda Leven,” and I like to listen to music that transports me deeper into the atmosphere I want to create in the paintings. So it’s been lots of 1920s Berlin sounds like Kurt Gerron and Rudolph Nessen, 1920s New Orleans Jazz, and theremin music from the exquisite and haunting Clara Rockmore.  

WHAT ALBUM OR SONG WOULD YOU CONSIDER YOUR PERSONAL SOUNDTRACK TO NYC?
“Moon River” sung by Audrey Hepburn, scored by Henry Mancini for Breakfast at Tiffany’s. 

WHEN YOU THINK OF NYC, ARE THERE ANY PARTICULAR EMOTIONS OR MEMORIES THAT IMMEDIATELY COME TO MIND?
It’s a small island, and after living here some time you find that every block is a memory portal: a street corner where you kissed a boy, a stoop on which you cried over a long-gone trouble, a building in which you once lived. NYC is a dysfunctional yet perfectly serendipitous doll’s house of memories and stories. 

 

Local Favorites

RAOUL'S

RAOUL'S

food & drink
restaurants
soho
listings
180 Prince St, New York, NY 10012

Note "Steak au poivre—rare please."

Lucien Restaurant in New York City

Lucien

restaurants
east village
listings
14 1st Avenue #1, New York

Note "For an espresso martini—be warned: mornings after may be foggy."

THE NEUE GALERIE

THE NEUE GALERIE

art & design
upper manhattan
listings
1048 5th Ave, New York, NY 10028

Note "One of my favorite places to see art."

JOHN DERIAN COMPANY

JOHN DERIAN COMPANY

shopping
noho
listings
6 East 2nd St, NY, New York, USA

Note "The most exquisite homeware and decor pieces."

Best Rate Promise
Soho Grand Hotel

310 West Broadway
New York, NY 10013

(212) 965-3000
The Roxy Hotel Tribeca

2 6th Avenue
New York, NY 10013

212.519.6600