*Bearing Gifts
By Joseph Cicio

May 2018
ISBN: 978-1-938461-96-5
9.5×12.25 inches / 192 Pages

$75 USD

In 1994, I was seated next to Sophia Loren, the Italian movie star, at the Japanese fashion designer Issey Miyake’s show in Paris.

(Left) Lord & Taylor, on Manhattan’s Fifth Avenue, is one of the most famous specialty stores in the world. When I was in my early twenties, I remember seeing Lady Bird Johnson, the First Lady, walking in to do her Christmas shopping. (Right) When I was 20 years old, I was completely in awe that I was actually working inside Lord & Taylor’s famous Christmas windows. It was a thrill I still recall today. “Totally show biz,” was what I remember thinking at the time.

Joan Rivers had a wonderful smile that could light up a room—because it was real. She loved being with people but, perhaps even more than that, she loved being with her dogs, including Max, one of her rescues.

The ivory articulated crab, on a small table in the living room, was left to me in Slim Keith’s will in 1990 with a note from her hidden inside it. The photograph is of Slim and Howard Hawks on their honeymoon in 1941.

Once I had the honor of being in the company of Grace Kelly and being able to develop a relationship with her. For me, there was just no question that she was always meant to be royalty. She truly was a princess.

When I embarked on the new addition, every piece had to be planned for placement. My collection of vintage intaglios from France, Italy, and England was meant to decorate the center stairwell.


Lauren Bacall, Bill Blass, Rose Marie Bravo, Carol Channing, Prince Charles, Brooke Hayward Duchin, Erté, Princess Grace, Audrey Hepburn, Lady Nancy “Slim” Keith, The Kissingers, Kenneth J. Lane, Eleanor Lambert, Dawn Mello, Robert Mondavi, Josie Natori, and Joan Rivers, are just a few of the great friends of Joseph Cicio. Friends* *Bearing Gifts is about these relationships and his memories through the beautiful objects they gave him. Featuring stunning photography of Cicio’s Connecticut home, with essays on these friends and their gifts, the book emphasizes the importance of relationships. It is a reflection on a life filled with warmth, beauty, and ultimately exceptional memories. As Nancy Kissingers says in her elegant foreword, “No one understands and articulates the value of friendship more sincerely than Joe.”

About the Author

Joseph Cicio was born in Brooklyn into an Italian-American family. After three years as a monastic monk he returned to the secular world and began his career at Lord & Taylor moving on to Macy’s. Eventually he rose to Chairman and CEO of I. Magnin in San Francisco and later Donna Karan’s President of Retail Development. Other positions followed including top roles at Sun International, Mayors Jewelry, Penhaligon’s, Erno Laszlo, and as a consultant for fashion and home furnishings brands worldwide.

Joseph Cicio lives in Litchfield County, CT. Friends* *Bearing Gifts, his first book, is dedicated to his son Christopher.


See Also

Yellow Cab
The Bald Mermaid
Eleanor Lambert