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freshpicks YOUR CLIENTS LOOK TO YOU TO TELL THEIR STORY. LOOK TO US FOR INSPIRATION. Become part of FLOR’s exclusive Trade Program. Register at myFLOR.com/trade or call 866-682-5944. FLOR’s innovative system of carpet squares, featuring a vast array of colors, textures and styles, can be conﬁgured in any shape or size. FLOR is the most creative and inspiring way for you to design a ﬂoorcovering that is a true reﬂection of your clients.
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Volume 8 Issue 3
16 Mad For Design By Cathy Whitlock The Design World's New Star: Mad Men's Bryan Batt.
24 Destination: Downtown By Catherine McHugh For daring color combinations and pieces that put the fun in functional, this L.A. showroom is an essential stop for designers.
28 Kelvin LaVerne By Larry Weinberg By looking backward, a sculptor blurs the boundary between art and design.
Volume 8 Issue 3
9 CULTURECALENDAR By Catherine McHugh
Chronicling a Brit's New York years, celebrating a fashion icon, taking a trip to the Himalayas, studying how craft became art, and more exciting exhibitions.tchens, the works of Edward BOOKS&MEDIA By Cathy Whitlock The international designs of Muriel Brandolini, the home within us from southern architect and designer Bobby McAlpine, plus the latest in new apps. Read new tomes from Alexa Hampton and TROVE By Michele Keith Brighten your home with splashes of color under your feet, above your head, and in the kitchen, bath, and living room, and there’ll be no winter doldrums.
30 EATS’N’SLEEPS By Shelley Wolson
Old World meets New World at Gastroarte, celebrate family and tradition at Casa Nonna, and experience Art Deco glamour at The Chatwal.ational and Setai Fifth Avenue are just MYFAVTHINGS Top interior designers share their favorite pieces and accessories of the moment.ce ssories and color choices. GALLERY Land, Sea, and Sky. Colors inspired by the natural world.G oing soft: ARRAY looks at the new pastels. FRESHPICKS The most current products in NYDC showrooms.
56 STYLESPOTLIGHT Featured highlights of craft and design.
64 DEFININGPIECES Items that sum up what a showroom is all about.
72 SHOWROOMPORTRAITS Profiles of some of NYDC’s most familiar names.
76 NYDCEVENTSCALENDAR A look at a few recent celebrations.
78 SHOWROOMDIRECTORY A complete list of who’s where in 200 Lex.
80 BACKSTORY By Shelley Wolson Carolina von Humboldt: An artist helps create a NYDC DIFFA booth to remember.
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Paul Millman Editor-in-Chief/Publisher Saira Kathpalia Creative Director Ted Lambert Executive Editor Cathy Whitlock Features Editor
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Adam Cohen Technology Consultant MacConcierge.com Hardware/Software Consultant Contributors Michele Keith Catherine McHugh Larry Weinberg Shelley Wolson New York Design Center James P. Druckman President & CEO Daniel M. Farr Director Alix M. Lerman Director of Marketing & Communications Leah Blank Senior Marketing/Events Manager Alana Moskowitz Design Services Manager Tracy Waller Marketing Coordinator Susan Lai Assistant Controller Vera Markovich Assistant Controller on the cover: Bryan Batt in the Rivington Hotel. Photo by Andrew French. Grooming by Assumpta Clohessy for Susan Price Inc.
letter from the editor Dear Readers, In the design world it’s important to remain “hands on.” That can mean different things to different people, but for the designers featured in this issue, it translates to staying closely involved in the creative process. You may only know Bryan Batt from his performances on the stage or costarring as Salvatore Romano on AMC’s hit series Mad Men, but he’s also co-owned a home décor business in his native New Orleans since 1989. With his fame as a designer growing along with his notoriety as an actor, he remains true to his roots. In Cathy Whitlock’s cover story (Mad for Design, p. 16), Batt describes how his approach to home design is similar to the process of building a complex, multidimensional character. For David Serrano and Robert Willson, the colorful partners of the L.A. firm Downtown, creative process means having fun and finding ideas all around. Their eye for 20th-century design combined with a here-and-now sense of color has won them fans from coast to coast (Destination: Downtown, p. 24).
Photo by Andrew French
And creative process is the defining aspect of Kelvin LaVerne’s work (profile, p. 28). For nearly 30 years, this third-generation artist collaborated alongside his father, Philip, fabricating distinctive metal tables and sculpture pieces influenced by classical shapes and motifs. For them, process also meant constant experimentation. We all strive to stay connected and involved in our work. These designers remind us how—by finding inspiration in the past while staying perfectly in the moment.
Paul Millman Editor-in-Chief
By Catherine McHugh
Chronicling a Brit's New York years, celebrating a fashion icon, taking a trip to the Himalayas, and studying how craft became art. A Himalayan Expedition The Rubin Museum of Art invites visitors to experience the art of Himalayan storytelling in Once Upon Many Times: Legends and Myths in Himalayan Art, which explores the many themes and forms of visual and oral narratives. This exhibition will present a variety of forms that tell stories of the Buddha, great teachers, legendary masters, spiritual quests, and adventures of heroes painted in thangkas, murals, and told in front of portable shrines. September 16, 2011–January 30, 2012. Rubin Museum of Art, 150 West 17th Street, 212.620.5000, rmanyc.org Seeking a Sign In the first major museum exhibition devoted to his work, the International Center of Photography presents Signs of Life: Photographs by Peter Sekaer, consisting of 88 prints made from 1935 to 1945. The exhibition illustrates how the Danish documentary photographer was a key contributor to the government’s photographic projects during the Great Depression. Though an accomplished and prolific photographer, Sekaer also made a living as a sign painter, and combined a strong sense of advocacy with a highly attuned graphic eye. September 9, 2011–January 8, 2012. International Center of Photography, 133 Avenue of the Americas at 43rd Street, 212.857.0000, icp.org Peter Sekaer. Phrenologist's Window, New Orleans, 1936. © Peter Sekaer Estate. High Museum of Art, Atlanta, GA, purchased with funds from Robert Yellowlees.
Buddhist Moral Tales from Ksemendra's Collection, as designed by Situ Panchecn (1700-1744); Eastern Tibet, 18th century, pigments on cloth, Rubin Museum of Art. Chelpa Ferro: Visual Sound. Chelpa Ferro, Acusma (detail), 2008. Courtesy of the artists and Galeria Vermelho, São Paulo
The Sights of Sound Currently on display at The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum is Chelpa Ferro: Visual Sound. Chelpa Ferro is a Brazilian collective composed of artists Barrão, Luiz Zerbini, and Sergio Mekler, and their first U.S. exhibition brings its fresh and savvy interdisciplinary approach to objects that they transform into animate sculptures and sound-creating devices. The artists integrate high-tech equipment (speakers, cables, computers, and sophisticated computer programming) with traditional Brazilian crafts and domestic objects, providing a new and mysterious visual representation of sound from mundane objects. June 26, 2011–January 8, 2012. The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum, 258 Main Street, Ridgefield, CT, 203.438.0198, aldrichart.org
CultureCalendar Feting a Fashion Icon One of today’s most original fashion icons is the subject of the upcoming exhibition Daphne Guinness at The Museum at FIT. The exhibition will feature approximately 100 garments and accessories from Guinness’ personal collection, plus films, videos, and images, of and by her. Not only a serious collector of couture but also a creative force in her own right, Guinness uses fashion to transform herself. The exhibition’s design, by Ken Nintzel, will be inspired by Guinness’ New York apartment. September 16, 2011–January 7, 2012. The Museum at FIT, Seventh Avenue at 27th Street, 212.217.4558, fitnyc.edu
Mona Williams, 1936. © Cecil Beaton Studio Archive at Sotheby’s. Courtesy Cecil Beaton Studio Archive at Sotheby’s.
The first Celebrity Shutterbug The Museum of the City of New York will present Cecil Beaton: The New York Years, highlighting 130 works from the British-born photographer whose subjects included Truman Capote, Mick Jagger, Audrey Hepburn, and Andy Warhol. The exhibit also showcases his drawings, set designs, and original costumes for theater, opera, and ballet. After arriving in the Big Apple at the height of the Jazz Age, Beaton’s career stunningly—and presciently—blurred the boundaries between art, commerce, theater, high society, and counter culture. October 27, 2011–March 2012. Museum of the City of New York, 1220 Fifth Avenue, 212.534.1672, mcny.org
Clockwise from top left: Shirt and jacket by Daphne Guinness; pants from London punk shop. From the collection of Daphne Guinness, to be featured in the exhibition Daphne Guinness. Photograph courtesy The Museum at FIT. Daphne Guinness portrait, photograph by René Hebermacher. Dress by Chanel. From the collection of Daphne Guinness, to be featured in the exhibition Daphne Guinness. Photograph courtesy The Museum at FIT. Shoe by Alexander McQueen. From the collection of Daphne Guinness, to be featured in the exhibition Daphne Guinness. Photograph courtesy The Museum at FIT.
Get in Gear Currently on exhibit at the Hudson River Museum, Get Your Gears Turning…. The Curious World of Patent Models displays more than 50 intricately crafted, working scale models of inventions that were submitted to the U.S. Patent Office from the 1880s through the early 1900s. From miniature weaving looms, motors, and bridges to common household items such as washing machines, mechanical toys, caskets, and swing sets, these inventions show how a variety of problems were solved with American ingenuity. Each model is shown along with its handwritten original tag. September 24, 2011–January 1, 2012. Hudson River Museum, 511 Warburton Avenue, Yonkers, NY, 914.963.4550, hrm.org Improvement in Electro-Magnetic Motors. Patent #156,920. November 1, 1874. Inventor: Charles J. B. Gaume, Brooklyn, NY. 10
crystal persuasion One of New York City’s prettiest sparkly holiday decorations, the UNICEF Snowflake not only illuminates the intersection of 57th Street and Fifth Avenue, it serves as a beacon of hope, peace, and compassion to the vulnerable children around the world. Designed by Ingo Maurer with Baccarat crystals, the snowflake hangs as a reminder of UNICEF’s commitment to reach a day when no children die from preventable causes. This year the snowflake will go up in mid-November and remain there until the first week in January 2012. U.S. Fund for UNICEF, 125 Maiden Lane, 800.FOR.KIDS, unicefusa.org The UNICEF Snowflake outdoor chandelier, 23' diameter, more than 28' tall, weighs 3,300 lbs. pounds; courtesy of UNICEF 2010. This year, the UNICEF Snowflake ceremony will take place on Monday evening, November 14.
How Functional Became Artistic
Drawing Out Picasso Pablo Picasso was generally acknowledged to be the greatest draftsman of the 20th century, and The Frick Collection’s Picasso’s Drawings, 1890–1921: Reinventing Tradition, aims to take a fresh look at his drawing practice from his early training to maturity. The exhibition will showcase work from the precocious academic exercises the artist rendered in his youth in the 1890s to the virtuoso classical works he created in the early 1920s. October 4, 2011–January 8, 2012. The Frick Collection, 1 East 70th Street, 212.288.0700, frick.org
Presented by the Museum of Arts and Design, Crafting Modernism: Mid-Century American Art and Design begins with the craftsman-designers of the 1940s and 1950s, and concludes in 1969 with innovative works that upended traditional concepts of craft, and included humor, psychological content, and social commentary in provocative works of art. Mass production characterized the period immediately after World War II, so handmade objects offered a humanizing counterpoint, and they eventually added to the ongoing political and social dialogue in American life. October 11, 2011–January 15, 2012. Museum of Arts and Design, 2 Columbus Circle, 212.299.7777, madmuseum.org Top left: Stool. Ray Eames, Charles Eames, 1960. Private Collection. Bottom left: My Mu (Watashi no mu). Isamu Noguchi, 1950. Noguchi Museum. Right: Wendell Castle, 1964. Purchased by the American Craft Council, 1964.
Head of a Woman (Fontainebleau, summer 1921) Pastel on paper 25 x 18 7/8 inches (63.5 x 48 cm). Fondation Beyeler, Basel © 2010 Estate of Pablo Picasso / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York.
Books&Media Michael S. Smith Kitchens and Bathrooms
The World of Muriel Brandolini: Interiors
Martyn Lawrence-Bullard Live, Love, & Decorate
The Home Within Us: Romantic Houses, Evocative Rooms
Michael S. Smith and Christine Pittel Rizzoli 176 pages, $45
Muriel Brandolini with Amy Tai Rizzoli 304 pages, $65
Martyn Lawrence-Bullard Rizzoli 224 pages, $60
Bobby McAlpine with Susan Sully Rizzoli 239 pages, $55
When the President and First Lady tap you to work your design magic on the White House, you know your career has entered another stratosphere. Such is the case of interior designer Michael S. Smith, whose design mix of native California modern style and European tradition has garnered international praise. Besides his celebrity client list, Smith is known for his fabric and tile lines, and he now adds author to the list. His book, Michael S. Smith Kitchens and Bathrooms (written with Christina Pittel, senior editor at House Beautiful), tackles two of the most labor-intensive and expensive rooms of the house. Understandably the two most private and public zones of any residence, Smith feels the kitchen is the epicenter of family life while the bathroom is the place we go to leave the world behind and often the most inspirational room in the house. The book features indepth studies—beach, city/urban and country—analyzing the design process, layout, and details with dozens of examples. Interiors range from an Upper East Side apartment and London townhouse to a California beach house and a Montana retreat. I particularly enjoyed the breakfast and dressing rooms, two of the most sophisticated (and often enviable) of spaces.
Fashion stylist–turned interior designer, Muriel Brandolini’s work has been profiled everywhere from Harper’s Bazaar to The World of Interiors. She compiles her exotic, elegant, and fantasy-filled interiors into a beautiful coffee table tome, The World of Muriel Brandolini out this October. Known for her whimsical style, unconventional aesthetic, and high-level taste, Brandolini has become a cult international favorite, and her client list includes the likes of Today Show’s Matt Lauer and Princess Pavlos of Greece. Her multicultural background (Vietnamese, Caribbean, and French to be exact) has contributed to the looks of her dynamic and avant-garde interiors, which include a combination of antique and contemporary furnishings with a vivid color sense. The book features classic Brandolini interiors such as a sorbet-shaded Southampton beach house, complete with sea motifs inspired by Disney’s Fantasia. The former Italian Vogue fashion stylist became an interior designer, and her legendary townhouse was considered a working laboratory where she concocted such signature pieces as a series of striking bookcases of geometric cubes and slipper chairs covered in antique hand-pieced fabrics.
Designer to the likes of superstars such as Cher and Sir Elton John, Martyn Lawrence-Bullard is becoming a celebrity himself. Fans know him from the hit Bravo TV show “Millionaire Decorator” (where he proclaims that decorating is “totally delicious”) and is often touted as this decade’s Tony Duquette. A move from London to Hollywood to pursue acting segued into a decorating career and the rest is history. Known for his eclectic yet sophisticated interiors with a penchant for flea-market finds (not to mention his biting wit), he has created a fabric, furniture, rug, and scented candle line. It’s only natural a book would follow. Live, Love & Decorate does not disappoint and is better than a Hollywood tour with a map of the stars. With a foreword by Sir Elton, the reader gets a voyeuristic peak into the bedroom of the iconic singer, filled with a python-skin bed, green lacquered walls, and mirrored cabinets. Cher’s Malibu Moorish palazzo and Beverly Hills Indianstyle manse and Grey’s Anatomy star Ellen Pompeo’s Mediterranean villa are also featured. Bullard also features his own home that was previously owned by Hollywood royalty, stars Rudolph Valentino and later Gloria Swanson.
Southerners have long known of architect and designer Bobby McAlpine’s work with the Montgomery, Alabama, and Nashville, Tennessee-based firm McAlpine Tankersly Architecture. His serene and sophisticated Saladino-esque country and seaside retreats have resonated with a growing audience and today McAlpine is one of the country’s most sought-after designers. His namesake furniture collection McAlpine Home is available nationwide. Cowritten with southernstyle book author Susan Sully, The Home Within Us explores the concept of the house as an emotional fortress albeit a very romantic one. A McAlpine interior blends a sense of modern and period styles with unexpected materials for an unmistakable look. A varied mix of houses is presented—25 to be exact—and range from a Mediterranean revival estate to a Cape Dutch beach house. The exteriors are worth the price of the book alone and exquisite. McAlpine gives the reader a memoir-like tour of his work, dividing the chapters into topics such as Harmony of Opposites, Ancient Modern, Sanctuary for the Self, and The Way Within. This is not your typical run-of-the-mill design coffee table book as it’s very cerebral and a fascinating read, and the photography is exquisite.
By Cathy Whitlock
The international designs of Muriel Brandolini, and the home within us from southern architect and designer Bobby McAlpine, plus the latest in new apps.
Design Shuffle Blog
Dream Home app
As the old saying goes, one door closes and another opens, and such is the case with the development of the latest online magazine entry, entra. Founded by four former members of the Architectural Digest team (editors Lisa Bingham and Maile Pinkel, photographer Mary E. Nichols, and art director Jeffrey Nemeroff), the magazine offers everything readers came to expect with the venerable glossy, but this time it’s online. A peek inside the lairs of worldwide architects and designers, along with stories on preservation, antiques, exhibitions, books, and the latest in the marketplace, are topics accompanied by images from world-renowned photographers. The breadth of experience of the editorial staff alone sets entra apart from the herd of online magazine entries. Published six times a year, the magazine is subscription only ($12 a year) and the premiere issue weighed in at 280 pages. The debut issue was architect-friendly, offering features on Philippe Starck’s condos in India, Moore Ruble Yudell’s California Ranch renovation, and a Shope Reno Wharton installation in Aspen. The online blog (it is free!) featured a beautifully photographed behindthe-scenes piece on a tiara Prince Albert had designed for his new bride. entra is truly a great collaboration in all aspects.
While admittedly everyone and their aunt appears to have a blog these days, the challenge is to weed out the ones of interest and Design Shuffle is definitely one to bookmark. A community of interior design, home enthusiasts, and other design professionals who use the site to network and showcase their work, Design Shuffle is a combination blog/design website/resource center. Its goal is to “provide a platform for people to easily and elegantly showcase their portfolio, and interact on design subjects” and aims to “free our members from spending their money and energy on building their own websites in order to show their portfolio/ design projects,” which is an excellent idea for the Internet-challenged design professional. Members receive a free blog and the site is fully integrated with social media. The website is also very user-friendly when it comes to uploading your design portfolio. Design Shuffle features the work of members from 10 major cities (Atlanta to San Diego and in between). Designer uploads ranged from images of antique hardware to a modern home in Thailand and a Park Avenue doctor’s office, so there appears to be something for everyone. And did I mention membership is free?
The website houzz.com has long been a design destination for a community of home-design enthusiasts all over the world. Houzz the app is now available —think of it as an online version of “read and rip,” i.e. cutting magazine pictures out and filing them in a folder. Touted as the “world’s most comprehensive source of home decorating and design ideas,” the app features all of the greatest hits from Houzz, including more than a staggering 80,000 original photographs from 13,000 architects, interior designers, photographers, contractors, and other design professionals, and is the world’s largest database of design and decorating ideas. Design pros find the site useful to display their work while homeowners can locate design professionals in their area. And the service is free. Photos can be sorted by room and style, and you can save your favorite photos into your very own personal “ideabook”—great for taking to a client who might be needing additional inspiration. To date, 300,000 ideabooks have been created. The app is available for free on iTunes, and the iPad app allows you to browse through pictures just like the glossy pages of a magazine. Be forewarned—the site is highly addictive!
While the Internet supplies an endless amount of design inspiration, it is helpful to have someone be your guide and Dream Home app does just that. Available on both iPhone and iPad, Dream Home offers a variety of styles (traditional to contemporary and everything in between) to help jumpstart your imagination. You can arrange them by room type, color, and style with a variety of subcategories. I found the Trends section to be most useful as you can submit your own photos, get useful tips, and check out all the latest design trends at your fingertips. You can even place your photos in a slideshow with music from your iPod! I located everything from a “woofer chair” (yes, that would be your speakers) and creative corrugated cardboard furniture to “Ten Ideas to Spruce Up a Home Sale” and a wide choice of outdoor wallmount showers. The latest update to the app is the Summer 2011 package which offers images of state-of-theart recreation—boats, spas, pools, and patios, and even covered a topic I had not seen before—designing the outdoor gym. Described as an app for both interior designers and décor amateurs, there is literally something for everyone.
By Michele Keith
Brighten your home with splashes of color under your feet, above your head, and in the kitchen, bath and living room, and there’ll be no winter doldrums.
01 LOOP DE LOOP A fair-trade product designed in Australia and handmade in India, the Dharti rug is 100% felted New Zealand wool. Shown in orange, it’s a colorful way to set off a conversation area or add cozy cheer in front of the fire. Also available in red and two other motifs. Small: 55 inches x 79 inches. $1,115. Medium: 66 inches x 94 inches. $1,620. Large: 78 inches x 118 inches. $2,380. branchhome.com
decant ye all
03 SLICE IT, DICE IT, CUT, OR CHOP Cooking’s way more fun with aesthetically amusing Technicolor tools. Designed by Italy-based LucidiPevere Studio for Normann Copenhagen, the ergonomically designed, stainless-steel knife is easy to use with one hand and features an accidentprevention rubber cover. Great for herbs, chocolate, veggies, and more. Choose from vivid pink, azure blue, gray, and black. 5.9–inch diameter. $48. aplusrstore.com
Enliven your décor with Joe Cariati’s mix-andmatch Petite Decanters—plum, tourmaline, gray, steel blue, topaz, and amber as seen left to right in the photo—and conversation will flow as easily as the wine. Custom-blown into six shapes— tear drop, low round, tall bottle, wine jug, straight cone, and flask—there’s one for every entertaining moment. The straight cone is the tallest at 21 inches, and the low round the shortest at 11 inches. $385 each. Bergdorf Goodman, New York, and online. joecariati.com
04 mixing mosaics The artists at Mixed-Up Mosaics create designs of glass tiles for the entire house, from bathrooms to backsplashes to fireplace surrounds, in every conceivable hue, and patterns limited only by the imagination, among them birds, lions, florals, traditional, and the client’s own designs. Handmade in the U.S., the tiles “lock” together for seamless installation. $110 and up per square foot depending upon pattern. firstname.lastname@example.org or Gary at 212-243- 9944.
BEAUTIFUL BAUBLES Forget about drapes and screens. The Jewel Box Room Divider by Tracy Glover is practicality with a gorgeous twist. Her handblown glass “jewels” come in five patterns and six shapes, numerous colorations, and sizes up to 7 inches in diameter and 12 inches long. Cascading from ceiling to floor on brushed brass or nickel chain or stainless-steel cable, they reflect light, grace, and glamour. Price dependent upon style. tracygloverstudio.com
LET THE SUN SHINE IN
Talk about putting old aluminum traffic signs, hardware, and champagne corks (the chairs’ foot pads) to good use! Hand-fabricated by Boris Bally, whose work has been exhibited in the Victoria & Albert and Brooklyn Museums among other institutions, these amusing Transit Chairs would add a delightful zing to a hallway, kid’s room, or around the breakfast table. A variety of designs are available. 48 x 16 x 21 inches. $1,100 for the trio. ecofirstart.com
Just one of several styles from Viz Art Glass, the Golden Era Chandelier will add a summertime glow chez vous now and year-round. Custommade in a range of colors, each is unique, composed of small, individually shaped and blown fragments of glass. Large: 38 x 42 x 42 inches (225 watts), approximately $4,350; small: 30 x 36 x 36 inches (150 watts), approximately $3,150. vizartglass.com
08 SOUND SENSATION Leave it to Philippe Starck to conjure up the wireless Zikmu Parrot Speakers. Sleekly shaped, they’re as much sculpture as electronic. Compatible with iPods and iPhones, packed with advanced technology delivering powerful sound with spectacular clarity, they can be found in lime, red, gray, black, and white. Created of ABS, PMMA resin, and acoustically transparent cloth. 12.5 inches x 29 inches. $1,600. conranusa.com
MAD FOR The Design World's New Star:
MAD MEN 'S Bryan Batt
By Cathy Whitlock The mix of heirloom china, chinoiserie mirror and a simple farm table represent big, easy style in this New Orleans dining room. (Facing page) Bryan Batt, actor, author, and interior designer.
Perhaps you recognize him as Salvatore Romano, Sterling Cooper’s closeted art director on AMC’s acclaimed series Mad Men. Or you might have seen him on Broadway in Cats, La Cage aux Folles, or Saturday Night Fever, or on the big screen in films such as Jeffrey and Funny People. p e r h a p s w h at yo u d o n ’ t k n ow a b o u t v e r s at i l e ac t o r b r ya n b at t i s t h at h e h a s a l s o m a d e a n a m e f o r h i m s e l f i n t h e d e s i g n wo r l d .
The accomplished actor turned writer turned designer and retailer recently penned his second book Big, Easy Style (Clarkson Potter, October), an illustrated coffee table tome of some of his favorite residences in his hometown of New Orleans, New York, and Los Angeles (Batt was tri-coastal at the time). One might conclude the perfectly appointed ’60s sets of Mad Men jump-started his second and third careers of writer and designer. Actually the die was cast at an early age when his mom Gayle allowed him to skip school one afternoon to watch famed muralist Elizabeth Hadden hand-paint the entrance walls and impressionable young Batt was hooked. As an adult living in New York City, he would be drawn to the design centers like a moth to a flame, stopping to look at the showroom fabric wings or survey antiques at Bergdorf Goodman’s seventh floor while on his way to a Broadway performance. He also jokes that his Upper East Side one-bedroom was crammed with fabric samples for his “nonexistent pie-in-the-sky country house.” His love of design led him to the opening of Hazelnut, a home décor shop and joint venture with his true love of 26-plus years, Tom Cianfichi. (The store replaced his pie-in-the-sky country house). Named in honor of his grandmother Hazel Nuss, the boutique is located on Nola’s fashionable Magazine Street and is the go-to stop for designers and shoppers alike. o p e n e d i n 1989, h a z e l n u t o f f e r s a u n i q u e b l e n d o f h o m e f u r n i s h i n g s , ac c e s s o r i e s , a n d ta b l e t o p i t e m s , a s w e l l a s t h e s t o r e ’ s ow n fa b r i c d e s i g n s t h at s a l u t e t h e s p i r i t o f t h e c i t y . New Orleans Toile features vignette designs based on Batt’s original sketches of the St. Louis Cathedral, St. Charles steamcar, and the steamboat Natchez. Ponchartrain pays a nod to iconic images of New Orleans—Mardi Gras beads, fleur de lis, and crayfish—in a colorful Lilly Pulitzer-like collage. The collection is available in everything from tea towels and ice buckets to butler trays and shower curtains. Originally called Mad for Design, Clarkson Potter first approached Batt with the book idea, aware of his penchant for style and keen eye for detail. Cowritten with Hazelnut manager Katy Danos of, “The book is about things that I love and the designs of friends and designers’ homes that
Clockwise from top left: A stylish blend of home accessories and gifts can be found at Batt’s store Hazelnut on New Orlean’s Magazine Street. Batt’s design New Orleans Toile is shown here on this lacquered tray. Batt drew vignettes of the St. Louis Cathedral in New Orleans for his fabric and accessory line as used on cocktail napkins, serving trays, wastebaskets, and bed linens. The actor/designer’s Café au Lait fabric is used for the bed linens. Hazelnut also carries the Vietri Italian line of ceramics. Pewter owl salt and pepper shakers can be found in their Vagabond House Collection.
Battâ€™s Toile graces the draperies and headboard of a guest bedroom.
Touches of French antiques and a strong pop of color are signature elements of big, easy style.
I admire,” he says. w h e n a s k e d a b o u t n o l a s t y l e , b at t e x p l a i n s t h at “ i t ’ s v e r y e c l e c t i c , f r e e , e a s y , a n d u n f u s s y . t h e r e i s a l ac k o f r i g i d i t y . yo u c a n m ov e a r o u n d i n t h e i n t e r i o r s a n d c a n s i t i n a n y c h a i r a n d h av e a c o c k ta i l !” h e a l s o h u m o r o u s ly d e ta i l s , “ w e l i v e i n t h e h e r e a n d t h e n ow . c o m p l e t e ly ‘ p e r i o d r o o m s ’ a r e f o r t h e m e t r o p o l i ta n m u s e u m . t e l e v i s i o n s a n d p h o n e s d o e x i s t !” As for his own personal taste, does the ’60s styles of Mad Men, eventually wear off? Batt clearly has a fondness for mid-century, and is admittedly in possession of a “sofa that has followed me for the last ten years. It’s a mid-antebellum sofa covered in a lighter shade.” Days on the set of the series made him recall a childhood time of Burt Bacharach on the stereo while his father mixed cocktails on his “pride and joy,” a midcentury bar with a serpentine cypress base and a copper countertop. He also credits 1960s and 1970s icon/English designer David Hicks as a major influence as well as local designer Geri Bremmerman. Big, Easy Style marks his second book in just two years, as this time last year found him on tour with his first book, She Ain’t Heavy, She’s My Mother (Crown, 2010). Penned as a self-professed “momoir, ” the book is a loving tribute to his “steel magnolia of a mother,” Gayle Batt, who passed away last Christmas from cancer and was clearly a major force in his life. b at t ’ s e x p e r i e n c e a s a n ac t o r i s a l s o p u t t o g o o d u s e w i t h t h e p r ac t i c e o f d e s i g n .
a n ac t o r , i l i k e t o ta k e t h e s a m e
a p p r oac h w i t h h o m e d e s i g n a s w i t h p l ay i n g a c o m p l e x c h a r ac t e r , s i n c e b o t h a r e l i k e s o lv i n g a p u z z l e : yo u h av e t o s ta r t w i t h a n o p e n m i n d , d o yo u r r e s e a r c h
t o l e a r n yo u r l i n e s e a r ly ), a n d t h e n b e g i n e x p e r i m e n t i n g ,” he explains in the book.
f i r s t c a s t i n a r o l e , i a lway s
s ta r t b y g at h e r i n g a s m a n y c l u e s a b o u t t h e c h a r ac t e r a s p o s s i b l e f r o m t h e s c r i p t , h i s t o r i c a l fac t s , a n d l i f e e x p e r i e n c e s . a n d a s a n y g o o d ac t o r k n ow s , d e v e l o p i n g a r o l e i s o n g o i n g a n d e v e r e vo lv i n g , w h i c h i s a g o o d p h i l o s o p h y t o a p p ly t o e v e r y a s p e c t o f yo u r l i f e a n d yo u r h o m e .”
What’s next in line for this Big Easy renaissance man? Batt says he would not rule out a line of furniture or a possible third book on entertaining, as acting would always remain a constant: He just returned from a cabaret show in Australia, aptly titled “Batt on a Hot Tin Roof.” And will he return to Mad Men (which has been postponed to 2012)? Producer Matt Weiner hopefully left the door open when he remarked on Sal Romano’s fate—“Well, you aren’t dead.” Hope springs eternal.
Batt loves a strong use of color as depicted by the tangerine backdrop and notes, "I have never bought into the idea that we need to be afraid of color, play it safe, or tiptoe around it. "
"The Downtown Boys" David Serrano and Robert Willson are known for their distinctive 20th-century designs. (Facing page) 1. Frances Elkins Chair (powder coated metal in any Benjamin Moore color). 2. Ventana Lantern. 3. Topanga Chair
By Catherine McHugh
DESTINATION: DOWNTOWN For daring color combinations and pieces that put the fun in functional, this L.A. showroom is an essential stop for designers. In Los Angeles, at Downtown and at Profiles in the New York Design Center, partners David Serrano and Robert Willson love to mix things up. And if you need to add some color to your life, well, you’ve come to right place. The duo opened their showroom in 1996 on a whim—and that sense of whimsy permeates their collections today. “We got into this business accidentally—by buying a house that was built in 1938,” Willson explains. “Then we went about restoring it and finding the furniture and the items. t h i s i s w h at h a p p e n s w h e n yo u c o l l e c t t o o m u c h s t u f f : yo u b e c o m e a d e a l e r !”
Before opening Downtown, Willson had worked in the foodservice industry as an importer and a chef for 20 years. Serrano, a visual artist originally from Mexico, was working in public relations. The two met when Serrano hired Willson to cater a party for his company. “So we both come from backgrounds that centered around sensual businesses: art and food,” Willson says. “David is very visual and very color-oriented—he responds to color and shape. I guess I’m more the academic and respond more to pedigree.”
e a r ly p r o p o n e n t s o f l ac q u e r f u r n i t u r e , t h e d u o q u i c k ly b e c a m e w e l l k n ow n f o r t h e i r u s e o f c o l o r a n d b o l d i n t e r p r e tat i o n s o f
20 t h - c e n t u r y
“ w e ’ r e n o t t y p i c a l 20 t h “ w e lo o k fo r m o r e u n u s ua l ow n s p i n o n t h e m .”
c e n t u r y d e a l e r s ,” w i l l s o n s ay s . objects and then we put our
The company is still located in its original space on L.A.’s primary design street, La Cienega Boulevard, and they opened Outside Downtown in an adjacent building in 2008. In New York, Downtown has about 40 pieces in Profiles at the New York Design Center. And in 2009, they opened another gallery in New York called Downtown at Claremont with the London-based fabric company. “Claremont shows artisan-type fabrics that are all hand-loomed in Italy and France,” Willson explains. “They asked us a few years ago if we would be interested in sharing their space. So now we use all of their fabrics on all of our furniture. Putting a traditional fabric on a modern piece of furniture gives it a new vision. “So we started primarily as a 20th-century gallery of vintage items and antiques in Los Angeles and that continues to be our primary business,” Willson continues. “But we’re fairly decorative rather than being hard-core architect-type dealers, and we focus on the design trade.” About four and a half years ago, the pair started its Classics Collection—lighting, mirrors, and furniture inspired by classic design— that has evolved from the antique and vintage pieces they have collected over the years. “We made a reproduction of our own interpretation of the Frances Elkins “Looped Chair” in wood and we offered it in any Benjamin Moore color,” Willson explains. “That was a good starting point for us to do reinterpretations of vintage pieces. But now we do a lot of our own original designs as well.” One of Downtown’s first big hits was the Victorian/Italian/neoclassical Muirfield bench. “We did that in a lacquer finish—any color that the client wanted,” Willson says. “A lot of people took notice of that so we decided we wanted to find and develop really unique pieces as much as we could. A lot of artists help us with the collection and we are very hands-on with the items.” The collection’s first mirror, called the Plateau, looks kind of like a topographical map. “It’s three-dimensional. That’s been a really fun item. People want fun,” Willson says. “Even though our clients are buying new items through a showroom, they still want to see pieces that are very unique. And we seem to determine success in two ways: the attention that things get and then the number of things that sell. So the Plateau mirror has been very successful and the Plateau torchiere came from that. We’re also working on a coffee table that will come from that same series.” “Another fun piece we did this last year we call the Intersection chandelier—it looks like a giant jack that you would use for a flat tire but with 26
bulbs on it. The response to that has been very strong especially among younger people. So we’re coming out with a new version of that called Infinity, which will have two circles that intersect. Whenever we have a success, we try to build on it.” And although quality is paramount, prices have naturally taken on greater importance in these troubled economic times. “We try to consider the price point of the customer in the whole design process,” Willson says. “In 20th-century furniture, what used to be kind of a bargain isn’t anymore. So even though we are doing vintage pieces, we mix everything in our showroom, all our finishes are hand-rubbed, and many people don’t know the difference.” Willson notes that most people don’t know that L.A. is actually the largest manufacturing area in the U.S. “We’re lucky because we have a huge number of craftsmen who work out of this area, who run family businesses. We have a full-time production manager who works just on the Classics collection. Unfortunately, we don’t have a big factory where everything is made, but we regularly work with the same amazing group of artisans who we use for our vintage furniture. A big part of the enjoyment of the process is working with all of these gifted people. “We do like to mix things up,” Willson concludes. “The collection is fun and young—and we’re still playing with it. We’re big museum followers and our living room is piled with books, so we find a lot of great inspiration every day. I could probably do this until I’m 70. I hope I don’t, but I probably could! I don’t ever dread coming to work. We still have great fun.” 1. Laurel Convex Mirror, a one-piece bent glass mirror made of antiqued glass. 2. Cactus Lamp made of carved and sandblasted oak, inspired by 1930s French Modernism. 3. Intersection Chandelier made of chrome, natural brass, and oil rubbed bronze. 4. Daddy Long Legs Sconce. 5. Kings Road Table. 6 Downtown Booth at the Los Angeles Antiques Show. 7. The Nova Chandelier has 148 arms made of natural glass, oil-rubbed bronze, and lucite. 8. Mulholland Bench.
1. “3 Graces.” Unique sculpture, c. 1960s. Photo courtesy of Kelvin LaVerne. 2 . “Chi Liang” table, c. 1960s. Photo courtesy of Kelvin LaVerne. 3. From “The Poetry of the Soul: Works of Philip and Kelvin LaVerne. Held at the Cristina Grajales Gallery in May, 2008. Photo courtesy of Cristina Grajales Gallery. 4 . Detail from Cristina Grajales exhibition, May 2008. Photo courtesy of Cristina Grajales Gallery. 5. “Odyssey” table, c. 1960s. Photo courtesy of Kelvin LaVerne. 6. Drink table in “Eternal Forest “pattern, c. 1970s. From Galere. Photo courtesy of 1stdibs. 7. “Medici” cocktail table, c. 1970. From Donzella. Photo courtesy of 1stdibs. 8. Low table, c. 1969. From Gary Rubinstein Antiques. Photo courtesy of 1stdibs. 9. Facing page: “Walking Woman.” Unique sculpture, c. 1968. From Donzella. Photo courtesy of 1stdibs. All items showcased are available at 1stdibs@NYDC. 28
By Larr y Weinberg
Kelvin LAVErNE By looking backward, a sculptor blurs the boundary between art and design. Kelvin LaVerne, the scion of the LaVerne atelier, has always seen himself as an artist rather than as a designer, and his output of cast, etched, and inlaid bronze and pewter tables, replete with scenes drawn from the Great Civilizations, as precursors of today’s design/art fusion. It is really not surprising that in the decade following the first Design Miami, the groundbreaking art/design fair, prices for LaVerne pieces have been escalating. Cristina Grajales, a SoHo gallerist and participant in Design Miami, helped fuel interest with a successful exhibition in 2008. Recent results, recession and all, have been stunning: a commissioned console table brought $57,000 at Rago Auction, and a “Les Femmes” cabinet, one of only four or five made, reached $116,000 at Christie’s, a world-record price for LaVerne at auction.
Fox-Nahem, and Sal LaRosa. At the time, some auctions referred pieces to Ralph Beatrice of Wooster Gallery. Today, the LaVerne bandwagon includes all the top auction houses, and galleries such as Todd Merrill and Donzella. At last count, 1stdibs, the online powerhouse with a brick-and-mortar presence in the New York Design Center, had several dozen LaVerne offerings. Most of the pieces selling these days, Kelvin points out, are familiar works. The sculptures—the one-of-a-kinds—have not even begun to re-enter the market. When they do, expect prices to soar.
Perhaps due to his own reticence, there is little information available about Kelvin LaVerne, a situation he seems to want to rectify. Kelvin is a thirdgeneration artist. His grandfather was a painter and itinerant muralist. Philip, Kelvin’s father, picked up the mantle, segueing from drawing and painting to furniture design, first in wood, then in glass and plastic, and finally, by the mid-century, in metal. Kelvin grew up in his father’s studio, and went to college to study art history. Wanting to work with his hands, he enrolled at Parsons, where he learned about interior and furniture design, then spent several years at the Art Students League, during which time he encountered the sculptor Seymour Lipton, and the techniques of welding, brazing, and torch work. Kelvin’s full collaboration with his father began around 1960, when he was 23, and continued until Philip’s death at age 80 in 1988. Kelvin still marvels at his father’s restless creativity and ingenuity, recalling constant experimentation, whether with the Asian soils used for patination, or the kinetic balance in an abstract table base. Together, the LaVernes created their best-known work: the line of patinated bronze and pewter tables that merged contemporary shapes with classical motifs; the shock of the new with an ancient Egyptian, Greek, or Asian visage. Kelvin points out that form and pattern are linked architecturally—the base of a Greek table resembles a column, an Egyptian table a pyramid, and so forth. f o r t h e l av e r n e s , t h i s b a l a n c i n g o f n e w a n d o l d s at i s f i e d t h e i r s e n s e o f h i s t o r y a n d t h e i r m u t u a l e m b r ac e o f pa s t c u lt u r e s . f o r t h e m a r k e t , i t p r ov i d e d p i e c e s t h at f i t i n t o b ot h m o d e r n a n d t r a d i t i o n a l h i g h - e n d i n t e r i o r s .
These tables, along with wall reliefs, were exhibited by the LaVernes in New York City, and were represented both here and nationally by Baker Furniture and other galleries. Even at a serial level, the pieces were approached as unique works. Hence, you will find that no two are alike, with variations in both coloration and patina. To a point, the LaVernes continued making these pieces when commissioned. Inevitably, though, their creative energies focused on what Kelvin simply terms sculpture, by which he means abstraction, both figural and nonrepresentational, done as one-of-a-kinds, whether functional objects, free-standing artworks, or wall reliefs. u lt i m at e ly , t h e l av e r n e s s o u g h t t o b r i d g e t h e g a p b e t w e e n d e s i g n a n d a r t , a n ava n t - g a r d e i d e a p r i o r t o t h i s c e n t u r y . A number of these pieces remain visible on the first floor of the unassuming SoHo building that once housed the five-floor LaVerne workshop and showroom. A visit is like a walk through a museum, which is where many of these pieces may wind up. Wooster Gallery was an avid collector of LaVerne work during the 1980s and 90s, keeping it in public view by selling to designers such as Nancy Corzine, OCT
Eats’N’Sleeps Stivale stivalenyc.com 308 Bleeker Street 212.675.2009
Duo duonewyork.com 72 Madison Avenue 212.686.7272
Hospoda hospodanyc.com 321 East 73rd Street 212.861.1038
La Petite Maison lapetitemaisonnyc.com 13-15 West 54th Street 212.616.9931
If you’re looking for a cozy, impressive spot for date night, look no further. Stivale, the latest concept by Experience Hospitality founder Bobby Werhane and Chef Michael Berardino, offers an elegant dining experience and authentic Italian menu, featuring luxurious yet rustic dishes that reflect the southern region’s broad influences from both land and sea. Brooke Maples created a contemporary and sophisticated space that beautifully complements the cuisine. The front room provides an intimate atmosphere with 45 seats, light blue–washed walls, vintage graphic wallpaper and a full bar. The outdoor dining room, a spacious glass-enclosed 40-seat area, is accented with hammered metal and wood tables, hanging lanterns, and potted herbs and plants. It’s a perfect place to enjoy “Spuntini”—snacks of traditional Italian street food—such as Arancini, made with saffron risotto and mozzarella, or N’Duja, Calabrian salume paired with a soft scrambled egg. Move on to one of the unique pastas or head straight to the delicious entrees, such as Lombatello: hanger steak with oxtail, bone marrow, celery, and radishes. Give in to temptation and finish with the luscious Budino di Carrote, with hazelnuts, carrots, cocoa nibs, olive oil caramel, and ricotta. You won’t regret it.
The NoMad district is now home to the dynamic DUO, a new contemporary American establishment. DUO is the brainchild of Lorraine and Sabina Belkin—two adventurous sisters who grew up in the restaurant biz. To bring their entrepreneurial vision to life, the sisters went to Andres Escobar, founder and principal of Andres Escobar & Associates. The result: a velvet-covered wall complete with hand-placed Swarovski crystals, along with floor-to-ceiling columns hand-painted in a metallic crocodile pattern that gives the room extra sparkle. Roomy banquettes, a lush round bar, and a stunning 7-foot chandelier are main dining-room centerpieces; behind the bar, two breathtaking Lauri Blank 8-foot paintings finish the unique look. The menu is equally breathtaking. Start with a delicious duo of ahi tuna: tuna tartare with wasabi avocado mousse and mango, paired with seared tuna, grilled pineapple, and sweet pepper salsa. For your main course, choose the delectable Mediterranean branzino, served with broccolini, oyster mushrooms, capers, and Nicoise olives, all finished with a tangy balsamic reduction. If you’re in the neighborhood at lunchtime and need a takeout meal, the Belkin sisters have devised their own special DUO lunchbox, featuring Chef Hok Chin’s menu specialties.
In the mood for a Slavic dining experience? Czech out Hospoda, which specializes in contemporary Czech cuisine and is now open in an extraordinary landmark building—the Bohemian National Hall. Traditionally the word “hospoda” is used to describe a convivial beer hall or restaurant that serves as a hub for social gatherings. Hospoda is no exception. Guests enjoy Chef Oldrich Sahajdak’s delightful reimagining of his homeland’s cuisine, such as housesmoked beef tongue, marjoram, and chickpea puree, or Prague-style ham with horseradish foam, poached egg yolk, and shallots. The restaurant’s exceptional beer program follows suit, featuring the celebrated Pilsner Urquell, which, from its creation in Plzen, Bohemia, to the glass of the Hospoda diner, travels across the ocean in a matter of weeks, maintained at its optimal temperature of 44.6°F. All this in a chic-cool atmosphere: black wooden paneled walls engraved with backlit images by Czech pop artist Masker, depicting abstract graffiti scenes. The unique bar, custom-built by PH 5 Atelier and shipped from the Czech Republic, is a refrigerated cabinet made entirely of glass designed to display kegs of pilsner. Just beyond the bar, guests can view the subterranean beer cellar through a glass floor. Na zdraví!
A splendid taste of Provence has landed on our shores. For more than 20 years, La Petite Maison has been one of the most beloved restaurants in Nice, France. Now, celebrated owner and creator Nicole Rubi has opened the Manhattan outpost of her culinary creation with David Barokas, a Cannes restaurateur. To capture the flavor, literally, of the original, the owners appointed Nice native Alain Allegretti (Allegretti, Atelier, and Le Cirque) as consulting chef, and Arno Basquet, chef at the famed La Guerite in Cannes, as chef de cuisine with amazing results; visitors can choose from a fabulous list of La Petite Maison signature dishes. The restaurant’s location is fabulous as well, tucked into an old townhouse that previously belonged to the Rockefeller family. On the main floor, guests can relax at the bar or small adjoining tables for a casual bite, while downstairs patrons walk through an intimate lounge with furniture designed by artist Yves Klein, whose work is on display across the street at MoMa. Beyond it lies the impressive main dining room that unfolds under a vast atrium showcasing an open courtyard, flanked by wooden shutters, with walls covered in contemporary works from renowned international artists.
By Shelley Wolson
Old World meets New World at Gastroarte, celebrate family and tradition at Casa Nonna, and experience Art Deco glamour at The Chatwal.
Casa Nonna esquaredhospitality.com 310 West 38th Street 212.736.3000
Gastroarte gastroartenyc.com 141 West 69th Street 646.692.8762
The Chatwal thechatwalny.com 130 West 44th Street 212.764.6200
YOTEL yotel.com 570 10th Avenue 646.449.7700
Paying homage to Nonna, the Italian matriarch, Casa Nonna embraces family and tradition with its sensational selection of Roman and Tuscan fare. At this authentic Italian cucina, Chef de Cuisine David Amorelli executes a vast array of antipasti, pasta, and Neapolitan-style pizzas, as well as hearty entrees, all served in a comforting, homey atmosphere. Guerin Glass Architects designed the original Casa Nonna in Washington, D.C., and have recreated their vision in the New York location. Upon entering the open and inviting space, guests are greeted by an 11seat, marble counter pizza bar with a full view of the open kitchen and mosaic-tiled and wood-fired pizza oven. The restaurant also boasts a 43-seat bar area and two main dining rooms that contain tables built from old wine crates and are paired with comfy brown leather banquettes. It’s a great setting to enjoy starters such as Polipo (grilled octopus, potato, lemon, and celery) or one of the daily house-made pastas, including Gnocchi All’ Aragosta, made with lobster, chanterelles, pancetta, and garlic greens. For a main course, go with the Costoletta alla Milanese— pan-fried veal chop, tomato and watercress. Don’t skip the dolci: Try Torrone Semi Freddo, a combination of Italian nougat, almond sponge, and chocolate crackle.
Celebrated chef Jesús Núñez brings modern Spanish cooking to New York with Gastroarte, fusing old-world recipes with new-world preparations. Núñez built his reputation for artistic and contemporary cuisine at his highly regarded Madrid restaurants Polenta and Flau, and is hailed as one of Spain’s culinary leaders for his innovative blending of authentic flavors and nontraditional techniques—a mix of Mediterranean and molecular, if you will. The menu showcases such dishes as a gorgeous beets and goat cheese mosaic salad made with beets in all colors, shapes, and textures, including beet powder-covered goat cheese squares. The not-your-average egg, pisto (kind of a Spanish ratatouille), and butifarra (Catalonian sausage) features a soft-boiled “egg” made with a real yolk but a white created from cauliflower or cabbage. The food reflects his youth as a graffiti and fine artist, and he draws inspiration from his love of urban design and street art. Garrett Singer Architecture and Design collaborated with Núñez to translate the chef’s plating artistry and graffiti sensibility onto the walls, using color variations, transparency, and surface layering. Chilean-born graffiti muralist Dasic completed the setting with explosions of vibrant color and intrigue throughout the restaurant.
When you step into The Chatwal, you return to the elegant glamour of early 20th-century architecture. The iconic Stanford White-designed landmark building originally opened in 1905 for the Lambs Club theater organization; it was meticulously restored by world-renowned architect and interior designer Thierry Despont, from the property’s front door through each of its 83 guest rooms. White would be pleased to see the subtle nods Despont has made to the building’s theatrical and historical origins, including the striking floor-to-ceiling 19th-century stone fireplace White gave to the Lambs as a gift, which now acts as a centerpiece for the hotel’s restaurant. Distinctive elliptical doors, originally part of the Grill Room, have been restored and reinstalled in The Chatwal’s private function room. The façade of the building has also been restored to its former glory, complete with original marble ram heads and a marble plaque heralding the club’s glory days. Exquisitely appointed guest rooms continue the New York–style Art Deco theme. Each room features built-in cabinets wrapped in faux leather, designed to resemble beautiful pieces of luggage. The walls are upholstered in luxurious ultra-suede fabric, and all hotel baths are clad in tinted mirrored bands, adding to the unique experience.
The latest newcomer to the hustle and bustle of Times Square is the U.S. flagship of YOTEL, the radical UK hotel concept. Located on 10th Avenue and West 42nd Street in Manhattan’s vibrant theater district, the property features over 669 stylish and reasonably priced “cabins,” the innovative rooms offered as a nod to the sleek, modern design of first-class airline cabins. To design its first U.S. outpost, YOTEL came to NYC’s Rockwell Group, renowned for projects like the JetBlue terminal at JFK Airport and hospitality destinations worldwide, to collaborate with London architecture firm Softroom. The mission: To transfer the efficiency, flexibility, and cuttingedge technology of their London and Amsterdam airport hotels into a hip, urban, affordable place to stay in the Big Apple. They’ve succeeded in a big way. Besides the standard premium cabins, which have motorized moving beds, a monsoon shower, and “Technowall” with TV, music, and power services, among other amenities, YOTEL New York has 19 first-class cabins and 3 VIP suites, many with private terraces, jacuzzis, and amazing Manhattan skyline views. Yotel has also partnered with Richard Sandoval Restaurants, featuring his distinctive Latin-Asian cuisine at all the hotel’s restaurant operations.
Top interior designers share their favorite of the moment.
pieces and accessories
Amanda Nisbet (Amanda Nisbet Design) On my radar as one of my favorite things: “I like the oil-rubbed bronze articulated 12-arm chandelier that can be found at Downtown in Los Angeles. It is an original design by the owners: David Serrano and Robert Willson and one of 10 pieces to be included in their new fall collection. It is available through Profiles in NYC. As a bling-a-holic, I naturally gravitate towards all that shimmers and sparkles. However, my radar of late has been set to the darker family of metallics such as copper and bronze. They imbue both the warmth of wood and the cool, slick elements of metal. Very diplomatic!” Daddy Long Legs Sconce by Downtown available at Profiles.
Drew McGukin (Drew McGukin Interiors) “Lately I’m loving this lamp from Arteriors—new by Laura Kirar. There’s something quite tribal about this lamp. It feels almost Aboriginal to me. I’m attracted to its play between earthiness and elegance. I love the tonal values in the finish, and I think the texture and patterning are quite stunning up close and from across a room. Lamps are tough because you can really go easy or basic, and it works—but the ‘right’ lamp or special lamps really make a room feel rich and collected. Lamps never get enough credit in my book! There’s also a floor lamp version that’s equally as stunning.” Baroque Antiqued Gold Leaf Lamp from the Laura Kirar Collection for Arteriors Home.
Tara Seawright (Tara Seawright INC./ interior design) “I love this set of three nesting coffee tables from R&Y Augousti. All three tables have bronze bases and the tabletops are made of pen shell (black) and shagreen (white and green). I chose these tables because while they use natural forms and materials, they are incredibly glamorous at the same time. And it’s nearly impossible to find a glamorous coffee table.” Nesting tables available at R & Y Augousti.
Kevin Isbell (Kevin Isbell Interiors) “My latest inspiration was the Alexander McQueen exhibit Savage Beauty at the Metropolitan Museum. http://blog.metmuseum.org/alexandermcqueen/ His fearless creativity and use of unconventional materials provides endless inspiration. Everything from his couture detailing to the museum’s gallery designs were amazing. The accompanying book is required for any tastemaker bookshelf.” amazon. com/Alexander-McQueen-Savage-BeautyMetropolitan/dp/0300169787 Clockwise from top left: Gallery View-Romantic Gothic, Gallery View-Cabinet of Curiosities, Gallery View-The Romantic Mind, Gallery View-The Romantic Mind, Gallery View Title Gallery All images courtesy of The Metropolitan Museum of Art.
Katie Lydon (Katie Lydon Interiors) “My new favorite thing is outdoor living and anything to do with porches and gardens. Christopher Farr has an amazing indigo Ikat fabric for outdoor use that is just so pretty and fun and I love Tolix chairs for outdoor dining. The restoration hardware 120-inch Provance outdoor wicker sofa is also fabulous.” Tolix chairs, Pottery Barn, Belfour Azzurro Ikat fabric by Christopher Farr.
Additional photography by Andrew French
L A N D, SE A and sk y. colors ins p ired by t h e nat ur al world.
Kinkou Linen Tall Cabinet available at Bolier, 212.684.0070
Spire Bottles available at at Global Views, 212.725.8439
Bamboo Bed available at Louis J. Solomon, 212.545.9200
Custom Swirl Lever by S. A. Baxter available at S. A. Baxter, 800.407.4295
Repose Lounge Chair from Barbara Barry Realized by Henredon Collection available at Henredon, 212.679.5828
Red Sand Dollar from the Reo Spruce for Odegard Collection available at Odegard, Inc., 800.670.8836
PUDDLE Table by Gary Hutton available at Profiles, 212.689.6903
Correa Bed available at Century Designer Showroom, 212.479.0107
Pietra Caliza available at Porcelanosa, 212.252.7370 Facing page, clockwise from top left: Demi-Lune Console available at Colombo Mobili USA., Inc., 212.683.3771 Pearson: Chair, Hassock, Sofa, Tall Cabinets, & Drinks Table available at Hickory Chair Pearson, 212.725.3776 Espen Eiborgâ€™s Totems available at Tucker Robbins, 212.355.3383 Cravings from Maxwell Fabrics available at Flourishes, 212.779.4540 Brindille Pendant available at Metropolitan Lighting Fixture Co., 212.545.0032
Helsi Casegood Collection by Altura Furniture available at Dennis Miller Associates, 212.684.0070
DwellStudio by Global Views Ceramics available at at Global Views, 212.725.8439
Campaign Collection end table available at Grange, 212.685.9494
Gray Indigo flooring available at Kasthall USA, Inc., 212.421.0220
Humphrey Chair from Michael S. Smith Collection available at Baker Knapp & Tubbs, 212.779.8810
Dag-Natt Thunder available at Kasthall USA, Inc., 212.421.0220
Loft Sofa by Adriano Piazzesi available at Atelier Interior Design, 212.696.0211
Candler Twin Bed, Linwood Side Chair, Belvedere Chest, Belvedere Dressing Table by Suzanne Kasler available at Hickory Chair Pearson, 212.725.3776
Malachite Lamp available at Dennis Miller Associates, 212.684.0070
Fully Upholstered Transitional Dining Chair available at Louis J. Solomon, 212.545.9200
Venetian Swirl/C rug available at Kravet Fabrics & Furniture, Inc., 212.725.0340
Zag Bar Stool available at Brueton, 212.838.1630
Commode Grenoblaise available at Côté France, 212.684.0707
Looking Glass Cabinet from Barbara Barry Realized by Henredon collection available at Henredon, 212.679.5828
Carlo Credenza available at Bright Chair Company, 212.726.9030
freshpicks TH E M O S T CURR E N T p r o d u c t s i n n y d c s h o w r o o ms .
Cozy Little Nests Made from coconut shells, the Nest Cocktail Tables at Century create infinite arrangement possibilities with their oblong oval shapes. Sold as a set of three—a large, medium, and small size—any living room quickly takes shape around this versatile centerpiece. Century Furniture Showroom, Suite 200, 212.479.0107, centuryfurniture.com
Finish Line Grange has launched a line of 78 new wood stains and color finishes, including 20 fresh colors in three different levels of antiquing. Now you can custom create complementary looks to treasured pieces or create your favorite new ones. Grange, Suite 201, 212.685.9494, grange.fr
freshpicks Crush On You Inspired by vivid art photographs of crushed vegetables, Stephanie Odegard created the Himalayan wool and silk Somoroff III Carpet, named for the photographer whose work inspired them. Stephanieâ€™s interpretation is energetic and expressive while maintaining the attention to detail and saturated color found in the original photographs. Odegard, Inc., Suite 1206, 800.670.8836, odegardinc.com Perfectly Cast The Lâ€™Oiseau Lamp by Marian Jamieson at Profiles makes centuries-old art into 21st-century illumination. Created from 18th-century Japanese candlesticks by lost wax casting, the lamp features bronze birds, snails, bamboo branches and roots, plus a black hand-lacquered drum shade with ivory interior, black lacquered wood base, and glass bell jar. Profiles, Suite 1211, 212.689.6903, profilesny.com
Happy Feet Happy, from Kasthall, is a colorful and charismatic woven rug of wool and linen with stripes that provide both harmony and contrast. A charming relative of the Doris Rug, the name Happy was inspired by the lovely sensation you get when you walk on it. Kasthall USA, Inc., Suite 611, 212.421.0220. kasthall.com Texture Times Two Natural Influence from Maxwell Fabrics is an exclusive collection of two complementary but individual textures, Primary and Principal. Primary is a tightly plaited texture resembling an epingle weave and almost looks braided. Principal was developed to look and feel like 100% linen, but is extremely easy to use and maintain. Maxwell Fabrics available at Flourishes, Suite 414, 212.779.4540, maxwellfabrics.com
Dwell on It Global Views and DwellStudio partner up to make several unique decorative accessory items based on iconic DwellStudio patterns. These Decal Glasses use two of the patterns from the line and exemplify them in 16K–24K gold or real silver. Global Views, Suite 613, 212.725.8439, globalviews.com
Look Ma, No Feet Mondart Modular Bath Vanity from Porcelanosa is wall-mounted with zero footprint. Its modular style allows for custom configurations and sizes. Mondart’s sink is made of white Corian, with lacquered cabinets. The mirror becomes part of the installation, as it is the same size and depth as the cabinetry. Porcelanosa, Suite 609, 212.252.7370, porcelanosa-usa.com
Setting the Bar Whether used for organization or as a discreet bar for entertaining, the Social Study from The Barbara Barry Collection at Baker Knapp & Tubbs is offered with an upper shelf pinned in place by a brass gallery. The shelf is perfect for a set of glasses or books. Baker Knapp & Tubbs, Suite 300, 212.779.8810, bakerfurniture.com
Shaping Mio The leather on the Mio Sofa from Rolf Benz at Atelier Interior Design is finished with a light wax coating to give it a pleasant feel, a fashionable vintage look, and to make it grow even more beautiful with use. The exceptionally gentle finishing technique and extra-long shaping process make the leather delightfully soft. Atelier Interior Design, Suite 202, 212.696.0211, atelier-nyc.com
Side Man The Braydon Sideboard at The Bright Group is from the Douglas Jennings Collection. It is shown here in a walnut body with white lacquered doors and a brushed stainless-steel base. The body and doors are available in any standard hardwood and the base is available in brushed nickel, brass, and bronze finishes. The Bright Chair Company, Suite 902, 212.726.9030, brightchair.com
Organic Reproduction This large sculptural and organic-looking reproduction wall sconce from Côté France is from the Bronze D’Art Francais Collection. The solid bronze design is crafted using age-old techniques of casting and carving of details. This example is gilded with a patina of 24K gold, one of ten finely applied and polished finishes. Côté France, Suite 1201, 212.684.0707, cotefrance.com
Local Tradition The Traditional Sofa Series at Louis J. Solomon comes in multiple customizable shapes and sizes, and all of them are available in COM. Every piece is crafted by Solomon in North Carolina. Louis J. Solomon, Inc., 911, 212.545.9200, louisjsolomon.com
Nearer to Nature The Solid Lounge at Tucker Robbins is hand-carved from a solid piece of salvaged acacia by the Igorot tribe in the northern region of the Philippines. With its clean, meditative simplicity and natural oil finish, this lounge is ideal for covered outdoor spaces. Tucker Robbins, Suite 504, 212.355.3383, tuckerrobbins.com
Hit Single This one-light Table Lamp from George Kovacs Lighting at Metropolitan is made of a column of stacked, variably sized glass pieces which shimmer in the light thatâ€™s diffused by the white linen shade above. Their shine is complemented by a gleaming chrome finish on the rest of the base. Metropolitan Lighting Fixture Co., Suite 512, 212.545.0032, minka.com
Benchmark This Tufted Bench from Hickory Chair Pearson combines the lines and details of the wood frame, tufted cushion, and the rolled inner arm. Over 1,000 fabrics and leather options are available as well as COM, and 37 finish options to use on the beautiful exposed wood base and legs. Hickory Chair Pearson, Suite 102, 212.725.3776, hickorychairpearson.com
New Vines This intricate doorknob, made in New York by S.A. Baxter, is an updated Victorian-era design, but these handcrafted vines are also taking root in many contemporary homes. Shown in dark antique bronze, one of 26 finishes. S.A. Baxter Architectural Hardware, Suite 1205, 800.407.4295, sabaxter.com
Dover Scroll The cleverly designed Dover Bench/Coffee Table from the Acquisitions Collection by Henredon has graceful scrolled-out sides and splayed legs, plus plain rosettes and clean, fluted apron details. Made of mahogany solids and cherry veneer, it proves that simplicity can also be versatile. Henredon Interior Design Showroom, Suite 616, 212.679.5828, henredon.com
Sumptuous Functionality Sophistication and creativity are evident in the design of this French Transitional Chest of Drawers from Colombo Mobili USA. The chest is manufactured with a combination of palisander, bubinga burl, exotic and lemon woods, and designed with nine drawers, handmade inlays, bronze mountings, and a Giallo Siena marble top. Colombo Moboli USA, Inc., Suite 809, 212.683.3771, colombomobili.com
Modern Tibetan Debonair is one of 11 new additions in modern colors and styles to the Custom Tibetan Carpet Collection at Kravet. As the name suggests, everything in the collection can be custom-ordered in any size and color. Kravetâ€™s Tibetan carpets are made in Nepal. Kravet Fabrics & Furniture, Inc., Suite 401, 212.725.0340, kravet.com
Fringe Benefit The Fringe Console, designed for Brueton by J. Wade Beam, is a unique wall console melding traditional influences with modern aesthetics and technology. The undulating stainless-steel apron, trimmed horizontally in stainless-steel fringe, provides a sensuous architectural appeal. Brueton, Suite 1502, 212.838.1630, brueton.com
Sail Back Hailing from Norway, the Spinnaker Chair at Dennis Miller Associates was inspired by the curvature of the cruising sailboat. Shown in the most popular design, black leather, it is also available in a variety of combinations, including sail or fabric backings with the option of complete customization, and an ottoman. Dennis Miller Associates, Suite 1210, 212.684.0070, dennismiller.com
Luxury Liner Designed for Boliers & Company by Richard Mishaan, the Modern Luxury Credenza is made of Macassar ebony veneer with a black Marquina marble top and brass accents. Bolier & Company, Suite 1216, 212.684.0070, bolierco.com
STYLESPOTLIGHT F eatur ed hi ghlight s of cr af t and des ig n .
1. I’m a Maze (facing page) With a Cupid’s bow crest and a fretwork back and legs, the Maze Arm Chair from the Michael S. Smith Collection at Baker takes a Chinese Chippendale Chair beyond the dining room. 2. Circular Drive The Circle Cabinet from Hickory Chair Pearson serves as either a dining room buffet or cabinet for a flat-screen TV and its components. OCT
3. Windswept Walls (facing page) The waved pattern in Creta Ceramic Wall Tile from Porcelanosa mimics windswept waves of sand in the dessert, while the slightly textured finish creates a soft, natural look. 4. Deco Divine With its architectural shape and cascading angles, this 12-arm Czech Crystal Chandelier at Metropolitan Lighting resembles the Chrysler Building. The deep cuts in the thick glass result in high brilliance. 5. Homeport The Alex Table by Marian Jamieson at Profiles was inspired by traditional nautical lanterns. Alex can be dressed up or down—more formal with a marble top, more casual in an iron base. 6. Far Out The Kinkou Far East Occasional Table by Jiun Ho at Bolier is molded aluminum in a burnished bronze, copper, or silver powder coat finish. 7. Sleep Program The entire Custom Upholstered Bed and Headboard Program at Louis J. Solomon can employ in-house fabrics or COM. Beds are available in multiple shapes, heights, and styles, including headboard only.
8. Corona Light The Corona Pendant from Jonathan Browning at Atelier was originally designed in 1940s Vienna. The piece was selected from the company archives by Browning, and updated for today’s market. 9. Good Vibes Stephanie Odegard lent her expertise in hand-felted rugs to collaborate with Californiabred artist Dan Golden on his idea for a design collection based on the New Age movement of the 1970s. 10. Over the Edge The SMT Table, designed for Brueton by J. Wade Beam, features a diagonally cantilevered glass top complemented by truncated stainless-steel panels that compose the base. 11. Small Talk A petite version of the Conversation Sofa from the Barbara Barry Realized By Henredon Collection, the Conversation Settee is worthy of its namesake—it’s the perfect spot for an intimate exchange. 12. Wild at Heart Untamed, Maxwell Fabrics’ exclusive collection of faux pony hair adds rich texture and a natural touch of style to every room.
13. Roman Virtues The Vitruvian Doorknob, from a suite designed by Robert A.M. Stern for S.A. Baxter, is named for the famous Roman architect, whose guiding principles were durability, utility, and beauty. 14. Softer Nature Monroe, a sparkling bouclé rug with a luxurious feel, was inspired by starry skies, frosty ground, and shimmering seas. Made in Sweden by Kasthall. 15. Seek Hide Hide Bookshelf at Atelier Interior Design is a simple, basic container of striking design: The door only partly conceals the inside, leaving the rest on view. 16. Sweet Cane Beauty and simplicity embody this Armchair from Colombo Mobili USA, handmade with cherrywood and designed with caned-seat and back-seat cushions upholstered in COM. The armchair’s intimate size makes it very convenient and versatile.
17. Play Footsie The juxtaposition of soft tufted top and a Macassar ebony base creates the playful tone of the Vilmos Ottoman, part of the Juan Montoya for Century Icons Collection. 18. Nepalese Customs Taiko, like all the bold new offerings in Kravetâ€™s Custom Tibetan Carpet Collection, is available in any custom size and color desired. 19. To Each His Own Grangeâ€™s Tray Chic Table is outfitted with flush cabinetry that expands to make individual raised place settings. The unique design is customizable for any family room.
20. Money in the Bank Bank Wallpaper, from Alpha Workshops at Dennis Miller Associates, comes in five rich colors: Bullion, Nickel, Note, Penny, and Tender. 21. Top Drawer The Petit Ecritoire Side Table from Côté France is embellished with solid bronze trim and a pierced brass gallery. The top front drawer has a leather-topped pullout that becomes a small writing desk. 22. Light Catcher The Toraja women of Sulawesi, Indonesia, created this form to catch fish. Now they continue their beautiful tradition of weaving rattan to catch light in the Teardrop Chandelier from Tucker Robbins. 23. Sweet-Smelling Geishas These Four Geishas at Global Views are artisan-made fused glass that come with a Japanese blossom vial of oil and diffuser sticks. Later, the holders can be used as bud vases.
De. FIN. ingPieces i t ems that sum u p what a showroom is all a b out.
Dennis Miller The Chatsworth Reading Chair by Powell & Bonnell is a contemporary wing chair with a tall tapered back, offering the perfect place to cozy up. Available in Powell & Bonnell textiles, leathers, and wood finish; COM and COL are also available. Dennis Miller Associates, Suite 1210, 212.684.0070, dennismiller.com
Maxwell Fabrics Lincoln Park is a multipurpose linen-like texture, designed and developed in Italy exclusively for Maxwell Fabrics. The finely slubbed weave mimics the look of natural linen and provides a subtle surface texture, adding depth and dimension to the fabric. Available in the newest fashion colors alongside naturals and neutrals. Maxwell Fabrics available at Flourishes, Suite 414, 212.779.4540, maxwellfabrics.com OCT
DefiningPieces Atelier The Monterrey Relax Chair is a classic armchair revised with a fresh design. The wide and welcoming back grants the utmost comfort, and its stitching enriches the simple, sinuous style. Also pictured is Link, part of a set of small tables in painted metal with endless chains that intertwine like Escher stairways. Atelier Interior Design, Suite 202, 212.696.0211, atelier-nyc.com
Kasthall USA A woven wool rug with a retro character, Greta, from Kasthall, comes in two color scalesâ€”a bright group inspired by the cotton fabrics of the 1960s, and a more natural color group. Each rug contains more than ten different yarns that together create a beautiful, vibrant impression. Kasthall USA, Inc., Suite 611, 212.421.0220. kasthall.com
Colombo Mobili USA Inc. This Secretary is handmade with plume walnut, a drop-front desktop with interior drawers, and two large bottom drawers. The design focuses on the aesthetic importance of the 19th-century style. It is decorated with 18K gold leaf accents and an antique mirror in the top door. Colombo Mobili USA, Inc., Suite 809, 212.683.3771, colombomobili.com
GLOBAL VIEWS A new collection of accessory items from Global Views is based on iconic looks from DwellStudio. FIfteen different patterns are screen-printed on trays and come with a wooden cleat so that they can be hung on the wall as art, too. Global Views, Suite 613, 212.725.8439, globalviews.com
Porcelanosa Carrara Blanco Brillo Tile provides the look of real marble with the durability and the easy care of ceramic flooring. This porcelain tile is suitable for commercial flooring. Its rectified edges allow for a tight fit between tiles, and the multidimensional veining effect truly mimics the look of real marble. Porcelanosa, Suite 609, 212.252.7370, porcelanosa-usa.com
Baker Knapp & Tubbs The charming Tusk Table, from The Bill Sofield Collection, is created in ideal, intimate scale. Crafted in maple solids, this extraordinary piece is a classic study in simple sophistication, and is offered in obsidian, ivory, or silver. Baker Knapp & Tubbs, Suite 300, 212.779.8810, bakerfurniture.com PROFILES The Seniah Chair by William Haines was originally created in 1955 for movie moguls Mervyn and Kitty LeRoy. Seniah (Haines spelled backwards) remains a favorite design from this Hollywood silent actor turned designer to the stars. It’s the perfect seat for screening an old Haines and Mary Pickford movie on DVD. Profiles, Suite 1211, 212.689.6903, profilesny.com
Hickory Chair Pearson Inspired by one of Hickory Chair’s finest 1930s pull-up chairs, the mahogany Martin Host Chair is a high-back chair with narrow wing extensions, narrow pleated rolled arms, a welt-less boxedged loose seat cushion, and slender tapered legs. Also available in ash, without arms, and with a tight seat. Hickory Chair Pearson, Suite 102, 212.725.3776, hickorychairpearson.com 68
Century The Juan Montoya for Century Icons Collection reflects the designer’s love of noble materials, European craftsmanship, and clean lines. The Branch Credenza commands attention on the front of the four doors. Here, the soft cream leather highlights the organic, branch design, while the black-and-white combination creates a compelling contrast. Century Furniture Showroom, Suite 200, 212.479.0107, centuryfurniture.com
Metropolitan Lighting Fixture Co. The George Kovacs Bling Bling Island Light, designed by Alecia Wesner, sparkles in any setting. The design features an oval shape with perforated steel holes. Crystal glass over the holes allows light to shine through, creating a glittering effect. It has four lights and is adjustable in height. Metropolitan Lighting Fixture Co., Suite 512, 212.545.0032, minka.com
Tucker Robbins Made from a salvaged cross-section cut of acacia with a salvaged satinwood log serving as its base, this dining table evokes the magical spirit of the Sri Lankan forests where the trees were felled. Playing on the found nature of the pieces, the wood has been finished to a weather-worn gray. Tucker Robbins, Suite 504, 212.355.3383, tuckerrobbins.com
The Ginger Table offers a refreshingly different approach to the pedestal high table. A stainless-steel cylinder is capped by a conical form that terminates at a sphere. The sphere, in turn, supports a closed shallow bowl upon which rests a glass top featuring a unique doublebevel edge. Brueton, Suite 1502, 212.838.1630, brueton.com
HENREDON Beauty meets smart design in the walnut and faux parchment Matinee Media Console from the Barbara Barry Realized by Henredon Collection. With four center drawers and two side cabinets, there is ample room for all media needs. Additional shelves are concealed behind doors, and the piece is equipped with an infrared eye. Henredon Interior Design Showroom, Suite 616, 212.679.5828, henredon.com
Bolier The Kinkou Linen Dry Bar, designed for Bolier & Company by Jiun Ho, is available as shown with a natural linen wrapped case with burnished bronze metal handles, a smoked mirror back, and LED lighting. Bolier & Company, Suite 1216, 212.684.0070, bolierco.com
Côté France This Louis XVI period two-door buffet is a beautiful example of how Côté France pieces blend traditional details with a touch of French modern. This buffet has simple lines and fun details, like the raised “beads” around the doorframes and the unusual zigzag of the apron. Côté France, Suite 1201, 212.684.0707, cotefrance.com
Louis J. Solomon This Occasional Chair has multiple fill options and is offered with a swivel or rocker. It is available in a selection of in-house fabrics and COM. Manufactured by Louis J. Solomon in North Carolina. Louis J. Solomon, Inc., 911, 212.545.9200, louisjsolomon.com
GRANGE The Victoria Dining Table is crafted and named to pay homage to Queen Victoria of England, who was admired very much by Louis Philippe. This transitional collection mixes the essence of Louis-Philippe styling and Restoration period elements and is crafted from French cherrywood and stocked in a brown tint cherry finish. Grange, Suite 201, 212.685.9494, grange.fr
Odegard For her Pangden Collection, one of Stephanie Odegard’s signature carpet designs, colorful hand-woven flat weaves are sewn together to create mismatched stripes and patterns inspired by the aprons married Tibetan women traditionally wear over their dresses. Made from hand-carded, hand-spun Himalayan wool. Odegard, Inc., Suite 1206, 800.670.8836, odegardinc.com
S.A. Baxter This Ornate Patterned Dooknob from S.A. Baxter is flexible enough to suit classic, rustic, or contemporary applications. It is shown here in dark antique bronze, one of 26 finish choices. Made by Baxter in New York. S.A. Baxter Architectural Hardware, Suite 1205, 800.407.4295, sabaxter.com
BRIGHT The Preston Side Table, from the Douglas Jennings Collection, was inspired by an 18th-century French “Gueridon” table. Details include hand-drawn, tapered stem and saber legs that are hand-cut and welded, not cast. The table was finished in polished nickel to give it a glam look, and the top was made from mercury mirror to pay homage to its traditional roots. The Bright Chair Company, Suite 902, 212.726.9030, brightchair.com
KRAVET Maiko is from the Custom Tibetan Carpet Collection at Kravet. In addition to traditional wool and silk combinations, Kravet’s Tibetan carpets are now available in wool and banana silk. Banana silk is made from the stalk of the banana tree and offers a similar sheen and texture to traditional silk for price-conscious budgets. Kravet Fabrics & Furniture, Inc., Suite 401, 212.725.0340, kravet.com
ShowroomPortraits Profiles of Some of NYDC’s Most Familiar Names
APROPOS Suite 710
ATELIER INTERIOR DESIGN Suite 202
BAKER KNAPP & TUBBS Suite 300
BENJAMIN MOORE & CO. Suite 714
Apropos is a fourth-generation showroom to the design trade. Serving the design community for over 25 years with uncompromised service and product offerings, Apropos strives to be a leader for future generations to come. Apropos, Suite 710, phone 212.684.6987, fax 212.689.3684, apropos-furniture.com
Atelier offers an exceptional selection of residential and contract furniture, lighting, accessories, and artwork. The contemporary designs offered are advanced in quality, comfort, functionality, and aesthetics. Atelier's mission is to provide a plethora of lifestyle alternatives in contemporary living and provide highly personalized service and inspiration. Atelier Interior Design, Suite 202, phone 212.696.0211, fax 212.696.0299, atelier-nyc.com
Founded in 1902, Baker Knapp & Tubbs, Inc. remains one of the largest wholesale distributors in the industry with 17 showrooms located in major design districts throughout the United States and at the Chelsea Harbour Design Centre in London. Product assortment spans from historic reproductions dating back to the 17th century to modern designs from today’s most recognized independent designers. Baker Knapp & Tubbs, Suite 300, phone 212.779.8810, fax 212.689.2827, bakerfurniture.com
Benjamin Moore has opened the doors of its new designer showroom for the New York City design community. This to-the-trade showroom brings the company’s color design tools and color consulting directly to the New York City market. The goal is to be at the heart of the design community—to provide convenience, accessibility, service, and inspiration when it comes to color selection. Benjamin Moore & Co., Suite 714, phone 212.684.2001, fax 212.684.2115, benjaminmoore.com
BOLIER Suite 1216
THE BRIGHT CHAIR COMPANY Suite 902
BRUETON Suite 1502
CENTURY FURNITURE SHOWROOM Suite 200
Presenting a “modernist’s view of classic form,” Bolier offers a select portfolio of classic forms inspired by traditional fine furniture and shaped for contemporary lifestyles. Each piece reflects a dedication to design, materials and authentic craftsmanship and is created to be of lasting value. Bolier, Suite 1216, phone 212.684.0070, fax 212.684.0776, bolierco.com
The Bright Group, now on 9, represents a distinctive collection ofAmerican designed and manufactured furnishings, all providing the ability to customize to clients' specific needs. Above is the beautifully sculpted and tailored Lorae Lounge Chair which is also available as a swivel chair, a sofa, or a settee. The Bright Chair Company, Suite 902, phone 212.726.9030, fax 212.726.9029, brightchair.com
Brueton, a U.S. manufacturer based in New York, manufactures a full line of contemporary furniture including sofas, tables, chairs, case goods, and accessories catering to residential and commercial clients. In addition, Brueton offers vast custom capabilities, including fabricating the simplest to the most complicated stainless-steel products and architectural metals for architects and designers. Brueton, Suite 1502, phone 212.838.1630, fax 212.838.1652, brueton.com
Founded in 1947 and now a third-generation family-owned company, Century is located in Hickory, North Carolina. From the frame construction to the hand-application of finish and distressing, to the sewing and application of the fabric or leather, each piece of Century Furniture passes through the hands of some of the most experienced artisans and craftsmen in the industry. Century Furniture Showroom, Suite 200, phone 212.479.0107, fax 212.479.0112, centuryfurniture.com
COLOMBO Mobili USA, INC. Suite 809
CÔTÉ FRANCE Suite 1201
COUTURE SHOWROOMS Suite 715
DENNIS MILLER ASSOCIATES Suite 1210
Family-run since the 19th-century, Colombo’s tradition of handcrafting exquisite pieces has made the company the face of classical furniture. The headboard displayed here is carefully adorned with 18K gold-plated mountings. It is manufactured as every Colombo piece is, with devotion to handmade quality and exceptional attention to detail, making it an heirloom of the future. Colombo Mobili USA, Inc., Suite 809, phone 212.683.3771, fax 212.684.0559, colombomobili.com
Visit Côté France for quality, style, and originality. The company’s French workrooms proudly boast generations of families continuing a tradition of fine handcraftsmanship. In addition to classic French reproductions in authentic finishes, Côté France brings tradition into the 21st century with vibrant colors and unique painted designs. They have also just introduced a garden collection of unique 18th-century designs made of teak. Côté France, Suite 1201, phone 212.684.0707, fax 212.684.8940, cotefrance.com
Couture Showrooms is now on the 7th floor. In addition to carrying the wellknown Vladimir Kagan Couture line, they have now expanded their offerings to encompass other prestigious names such as A.S. Morris, Spectrum West, Ron Seff, Axis Mundi, and Custom Designs by Luigi Gentile. Fabric and leather lines are available for your selection from their local workroom. Couture Showrooms, Suite 715, phone 212.689.0730, fax 212.689.1830, coutureshowrooms.com
Since 1983, Dennis Miller Associates has offered innovative furniture and lighting collections designed by architects, interior designers, and artisans. Its showroom provides a continually evolving showcase of contemporary and 20th-century classic design excellence. Its popularity with top designers speaks for itself. Come see the recent additions to Dennis Miller Fabrics, Lighting, and Rug collections. Dennis Miller Associates, Suite 1210, phone 212.684.0070, fax 212.684.0776, dennismiller.com
FLOURISHES Suite 414
GLOBAL VIEWS Suite 613
GRANGE Suite 201
HENREDON INTERIOR DESIGN SHOWROOM, Suite 616
After 57 years, Maxwell’s reputation is rock solid. Now they have a new face and a fresh look as a younger generation of the Maxwell family sets the pace. They have unique insight and awareness into emerging new design trends, while presenting modern classic fabrics that add distinction, value, and vitality to projects. Maxwell Fabrics available at Flourishes, Suite 414, phone 212.779.4540, fax 212.779.4542, maxwellfabrics.com
Global Views is a home decor wholesale company with collections that blend various styles to make pieces that are elegant, exotic, refined, and casual. They offer a wide assortment of fashion-forward products from furniture to accessories that fit every price range. Global Views, Suite 613, phone 212.725.8439, fax 212.679.4927, globalviews.com
Grange, introduced in the United States in 1982, has a commitment to the techniques of master artisans. Each piece is handcrafted using 19th-century methods and materials and 21st-century green practices. Grange uses waterbased paints and varnishes to reduce emissions and good-sense forestry practices that honor the 60- to-80-year rotation. Since 1904, the factory has been based in the foothills of Lyon, France. Grange, Suite 201, phone 212.685.9494, fax 212.213.5132, grange.fr
The mission of the Henredon Interior Design Showroom is to service the design trade at the highest possible level, while offering a fashion-forward shopping experience. The showroom represents Henredon Furniture, Barbara Barry Realized by Henredon, LaneVenture, Maitland-Smith and LaBarge. Founded in Morganton, North Carolina, in 1945, Henredon now offers hundreds of beautiful wood and upholstery designs for every room. Henredon Interior Design Showroom, Suite 616, phone 212.679.5828, fax 212.679.6509, henredon.com
Hickory Chair-Pearson Suite 102
KRAVET FABRICS & FURNITURE, INC. Suite 401
LOUIS J. SOLOMON, INC. Suite 911
MCGUIRE FURNITURE COMPANY Suite 101
In September, Hickory Chair celebrated its 100th birthday. Starting out as a manufacturer of dining chairs, the company motto was “Chairs made better than seems necessary.” Today, Hickory Chair offers 18th-century reproductions, collections that are inspired by 19th-century European arts and crafts and American antiques, and designer collections by Thomas O’Brien, Mariette Himes Gomez, Alexa Hampton, and Suzanne Kasler. Hickory Chair Pearson, Suite 102, phone 212.725.3776, fax 212.725.3763, hickorychairpearson.com
Kravet’s showroom strives to create a unique shopping experience for every designer in order to be the primary resource in the decorative fabrics and furnishings industry. Their goal is to create a comfortable workspace and resource center for designers that serves as an extension of their own design studios. Product selections are presented in an environment that is both functional and stimulating. Kravet Fabrics & Furniture, Inc., Suite 401, phone 212.725.0340, fax 212.684.7350, kravet.com
For more than 75 years, Louis J. Solomon has been an important source of traditional fine reproduction furniture to the trade. They specialize in producing 18th- and 19th-century French and English antique reproductions that have been carefully rescaled and restyled to appeal to the modern lifestyle. They are an important source to interior designers, high-end furniture retailers, and designer showrooms throughout the United States. Louis J. Solomon, Inc., Suite 911, phone 212.545.9200, fax 212.545.9438, louisjsolomon.com
The name McGuire is synonymous with style and elegance. For almost 60 years, McGuire Furniture Company of San Francisco has built a reputation for design and quality as gracious and lasting as the furniture it makes. McGuire consistently pairs classic and modern materials with innovative designs to provide a repertoire of furniture that has withstood, and will continue to withstand, the test of time. McGuire Furniture Company, Suite 101, phone 212.689.1565, fax 212.689.1578, kohlerinteriors.com
METROPOLITAN LIGHTING FIXTURE CO., Suite 512
ODEGARD, INC. Suite 1206
ORREFORS KOSTA BODA Suite 602
PALECEK Suite 511
Metropolitan Lighting Fixture Co. has been illuminating fine interiors since 1939. Now part of the Minka Group, the Metropolitan showroom represents lighting from all Minka companies, including George Kovacs, as well as products from other quality lighting manufacturers. Its large showroom offers one of the most comprehensive selections of designer-oriented lighting in the industry. Metropolitan Lighting Fixture Co., Suite 512, phone 212.545.0032, fax 212.545.0031, minka.com
Odegard is a leader in bold design and color innovation in the production of high-end, hand-knotted carpets. It has recently added the multiline Stephanie Odegard Collection featuring furniture, lighting, antiques, and decorative accessories from across the globe. In all her products, Stephanie Odegard requires strict adherence to social responsibility, raising standards of living for thousands of craftspeople in developing countries. Odegard, Inc., Suite 1205/1206, phone 800.670.8836, fax 212.545.0298, odegardinc.com
Orrefors designer Martti Rytkonen likes to give his clear crystal designs a narrative theme. Even in experiments with form and execution, his collections are always designed in true “Orrefors spirit.” In his Fashion series, he re-creates the grid pattern of the city’s streets and avenues, while the subtle optics and finely rendered cuts suggest something of the pace and pulse of the exciting Manhattan scene. Orrefors Kosta Boda, Suite 602, phone 212.684.5455, fax 212.684.5665, orreforskostaboda.com
Since 1975, Palecek has built a reputation for creating distinctive handcrafted designs from the finest sustainable, natural materials. Founder Allan Palecek has developed an extensive global network of talented artisans, who together have created award-winning products that have made Palecek synonymous with a lifestyle encompassing beauty, innovation, and an appreciation for quality. Express yourself with Palecek. Palecek, Suite 511, phone 212.287.0063, fax 212.287.0066, palecek.com
PORCELANOSA Suite 609
PROFILES Suite 1211
RESTORATION TIMBER Suite 436
S.A. BAXTER ARCHITECTURAL HARDWARE, Suite 1205
PORCELANOSA, a leader in the manufacture and distribution of tile, kitchen, and bath products, provides cuttingedge designs of unparalleled beauty, uncompromising quality, and dependable services to clients. Porcelanosa, Suite 609, phone 212.252.7370, fax 212.252.8790, porcelanosa-usa.com
Serving the design profession since 1980, Profiles’ workrooms in the USA and Europe create pieces of uncommon beauty and imagination for residential and contract customers. They offer a full spectrum of furniture in a variety of woods, metals, and finishes, as well as finely tailored upholstery—all to the designer’s specifications. Profiles, Suite 1211, phone 212.689.6903, fax 212.685.1807, profilesny.com
Restoration Timber offers a wide spectrum of materials, including reclaimed wood flooring, wainscoting, beams, siding, and stock for furniture and cabinetry. Naturally weathered by a century or more of use, Restoration Timber provides wood rich in history, unparalleled in beauty, and solid with age. Environmentally responsible reclaimed wood adds warmth, depth, and character to almost any installation. Restoration Timber, Suite 436, phone 877.980.WOOD, fax 212.679.5408, restorationtimber.com
From handles to hinges, from levers to latches, S. A. Baxter manufactures hardware of exquisite complexity and finishes to adorn the doors and windows of luxury homes, chic hotels, and upscale retailers. They offer the deepest palette of patterns, metals, and finishes, and deliver the highest quality, custom-designed pieces for the upscale residential and luxury commercial markets. S.A. Baxter Architectural Hardware, Suite 1205, phone 800.407.4295, fax 212.252.1031, sabaxter.com
SALADINO FURNITURE, INC. Suite 1600
TED BOERNER Suite 515
TK COLLECTIONS Suite 410
TUCKER ROBBINS Suite 504
Established in 1986 by renowned designer John F. Saladino, the Saladino Furniture collection currently has over 75 original designs of upholstery, case goods, and lighting. The line is available exclusively through its New York showroom among select antiques and accessories. A 75-page catalog may be purchased via the Web at saladinostyle.com. Saladino Furniture, Inc., Suite 1600, phone 212.684.3720 x31, fax 212.684.3257, saladinostyle.com
Ted Boerner, Inc., New York offers a diverse and captivating variety of home furnishings and artwork. The showroom includes collections from the following renowned designers and artists: Ted Boerner, Lesley Anton, Tracy Kendall, Christopher Farr, Michael Shemchuk, and Rick Chapman. Ted Boerner, Inc., Suite 515, phone 212.675.5665, fax 212.675.5654, tedboerner.com
For over two decades. TK Collections has been the sole importer of the classic French handcrafted rattan café chairs and stools along with French sidewalk café tables. In addition, its new collection also includes decorative wroughtiron table bases, coffee tables, and cast-bronze lighting made in France. TK Collections, Suite 410, phone 212.213.2470, fax 212.213.2464, tkcollections.com
The Tucker Robbins showroom features products from all over the world, developed by Tucker and indigenous craftsmen. Inspired by Jean-Michel Frank’s work in the early 20th century, the Cubist Chest is a classic piece of minimalist home-ware. The clean lines and cubist qualities contrasting with the undulating grain of the pickled oak marries the ideas of nature and art effortlessly. Tucker Robbins, Suite 504, phone 212.355.3383, fax 212.355.3116, tuckerrobbins.com
NYDCEvents Calendar Tr adHome L aunch Part y On April 16, the New York Design Center celebrated the launch of TradHome, with its founders Traditional Home and LONNY. The new online magazine is a combined effort from both the editors of the print and innovative online publication. The premiere issue featured the stunning interiors of 20 “New Trad” designers, many of whom attended and socialized with the who’s who of the design industry in the 1stdibs@NYDC showroom. Following the celebration, Traditional Home Editor in Chief Ann Maine and LONNY Editor in Chief Michelle Adams awarded the 20 New Trads in the Grange showroom.
Left to right: Traditional Home publisher Beth Brenner and Editor in Chief Ann Maine pose with NYDC President and CEO Jim Druckman; the TradHome logo emblazoned above computers displaying the premiere issue; New Trads Lauren Gold and Sasha Adler of Nate Berkus Design; designers Vicente Wolf, William Yi, Janet McHugh, and Robert Passal; designers Brad Ford and Kevin Isbell pose with New Trad Lisa Sternfeld; Nate Berkus with LONNY cofounders Michelle Adams and Patrick Cline; New Trads Nicki Clendening and Callie Jenschke of Scout Designs with Traditional Home’s Jenny Bradley (center); NYDC’s Alana Moskowitz with Amy Preiser and New Trad Ryan Korban; New Trad’s Tom Delevan and Erika Powell at the Grange after party; New Trad Jayne Michaels with Darren Henault and New Trad Sara Gilbane.
S e v enth Annual First LOOK The New York Design Center presented the Seventh Annual first LOOK™ 2011 on July 13. Over 22 contract showrooms provided a first look at their newest products. In attendance were 1,300 of the A+D industry’s top principals, architects, and designers. In addition to the new product introductions, attendees were given a chance to win one of 5 iPads and MoMA memberships for two.
Left to right: NYDC’s Leah Blank with Interior Design magazine publisher Mark Strauss; Clifford Brown and Tom Buck of the Buck Agency; Bruce Golden from Stylex with Chris Abbate of Novita PR in the Levine Calvano showroom; Casey McNamara highlights new product features in the Napier+Joseph+McNamara Ltd. Showroom; Pam Mathias (left) and Scott Schwinghammer (right) of Versteel with Karen Donaghy and Helene Oberman of Interior Design magazine; Luna Textiles displays new product in the new showroom; Ricardo Costa and Akua Lesesne of DIRTT with NYDC’s Dennis Cahill (center); Atlas Carpet Mills’ selection of new products hangs in the showroom; Mike McLean and Mark McLean from Spec; Jeremy Saltzman prepares to introduce new David Edward seating to The Switzer Group’s Dorcas Roehrs. Photos by Darren Ornitz 76
B rig h t S h ow room Expands
Over 100 of the country’s top design bloggers traveled through the New York Design Center on May 16 as part of Blogfest 2011, Kravet Inc.’s inaugural social media conference. The three-day event showcased the best in NYC design, and the NYDC was thrilled to give these influential bloggers a tour around the building with a scavenger hunt that ended with “Sweet Endings” and a surprise appearance from distinguished designer Thom Filicia.
On May 11, the Bright Chair Company celebrated their new showroom on the 9th floor of the New York Design Center. After nearly two decades on the 15th floor, the company expanded to a create an environment more conducive to showcasing their products in a residential setting. The new, 9,000-squarefoot showroom was designed by Douglas Levine, and carries the company’s own upholstery and case goods collections, as well as lines from many other American vendors. Visit the new Bright Chair in Suite 902.
Left to right: Bloggers Amy Beth Cupp Dragoo, Jonathan Legate, Raina Kattelson, and Jen Powell of Kravet Inc.; Beth Greene and Lisa Kravet of Kravet Inc. both with surprise guest Thom Filicia; the sweet ending candy display; bloggers Tobi Fairley and Scot Meacham Wood with Ann Feldstein of Kravet Inc.
Left to right:Douglas Levine and Lisa Ariotti pose in the new showroom; guests mingle and enjoy cocktails; the Eno lounge chairs and settee surround the Woo table, with the new Aaron ottoman in the foreground; the Ted lounge chair and ottoman are accompanied by an Evan Lewis Console and Mirror, also pictured is the Undergrad Slat Back Armchair.
RIS D Te x t i les new Talent MFA Event The New York Design Center hosted the RISD Textiles New Talent event on June 8th. The 10th floor exhibition space was transformed by 12 MFA students from the Rhode Island School of Design’s [RISD] Textile Department. The incredible work was largely hand-produced, and two students received recognition for their work with the Sherri Donghia Award of Achievement: Vedrana Hrsak and Malik Eric Wagenseil.
Left to right: Sherri Donghia and Jim Druckman; the intricately designed work of Vedrana Hrsak on display; Sherri Donghia awards Vedrana Hrsak an award of excellence; Elizabeth Lamb’s work.
For a list of NYDC's upcoming events, visit nydc.com. OCT
ShowroomDirectory A Complete List of Who’s Where In 200 Lex SHOWROO M
Korts & Knight Kitchens by Alexandra Knight
Access To Design
S HOWROO M
Kravet Fabrics & Furniture, Inc.
Antique Rugs, Jerry Livian Collection 806
Lexington Home Brands
Louis J. Solomon, Inc.
Atelier Interior Design
Atlas Carpet Mills, Inc.
Mannington Commercial Carpets
Auffray & Co., Inc
Maxon Furniture, Inc.
Baker Knapp & Tubbs
McGuire Furniture Company
Metropolitan Lighting Fixture Co.
Benjamin Moore & Co.
M. Topalian, Inc., Antique Carpets
Napier + Joseph + McNamara, Ltd.
Boyce Products, Ltd.
The Bright Chair Company
Orrefors Kosta Boda
Century Furniture Showroom
Cliff Young, Ltd.
Pennoyer Newman Distinctive Decorative Pots
Colebrook Bosson Saunders
Colombo Mobili USA
Cosmopolitan Entertainment Systems
Delivery By Design
David Edward/Blueridge Carpet
Renaissance Carpets & Tapestries, Inc.
Dennis Miller Associates
Riservato & Co.
Rooms by Zoya B
DIFFA DIRTT Environmental Solutions
Roubini Rugs and Furniture
R & Y Augousti Paris
Disegno by James DiPersia
S.A. Baxter Architectural Hardware
Saladino Furniture, Inc.
Sanford Hall Carpets
Gibson Interior Products
Smith & Watson
Studio Dekor Lighting
Giorgio USA, Inc.
Sun Decor Fabrics
The Levine Calvano Furniture Group, Inc.
Vladimir Kagan Couture
In House Kitchen Bath Home
Wood & Hogan, Inc.
Wood Mode, Inc.
Kasthall USA, Inc.
New York Design Center
Keilhauer Primason Symchik, Inc.
backstory CAROLINA VON HuMBOLDT
By Shelley Wolson
an A RTI ST H EL Ps CREAT E A N Y DC D I F FA BOOTH TO RE ME MBE R
Clockwise from top left: Installing the NYDC booth by Coffinier Ku Design, coffinierku.com, for the DIFFA Dining by Design event; the finished booth ready to go with kimbuk slab tables from Tucker Robbins, chairs from McGuire, and custom benches made by Munrod Interiors with Kravet fabrics; table set with Kravet fabric napkins and floating orchids in Global Views bowls; an inside view showing how the painting work created a classical feeling in a nontraditional way, set off by an Arteriors chandelier, Profiles mirrors and Orrefors glassware.
Carolina von Humboldt is an exquisite trompe l'oeil painter, who turns bare walls into masterpieces. Von Humboldt has been painting since she was a little girl, and has turned that talent into an amazing career. She worked as a young textile designer for D. Porthault and Eliakim in Paris in the '90s, and it was there that she developed her interest in painted surfaces. She began her vocation creating intricate wall designs for houses on Mexico’s Pacific coast, and in between studies in Paris and courses in Rome and Milan, her reputation grew. Since moving to New York five years ago, she has become one of the most sought-after trompe l'oeil artists. She specializes in this technique as well as contemporary and traditional faux finishes. You'll find her work in homes across the country and all over the world, as well as in hotels such as the Four Seasons. No project is too large or too small, and she has done everything from backsplashes and small walls to entire resorts. Whether the job is a specific client request or an original idea of her own, von Humboldt has worked with many successful architects and celebrity clientele to produce beautiful results. She finds her work constantly exciting: “always a new story, a new adventure, and a different place, light, and atmosphere.” So when it was time to find the right person to paint the NYDC booth for the 2011 Design Industries Foundation Fighting AIDS (DIFFA) Dining by Design event, Etienne Coffinier and Ed Ku of Coffinier Ku Design knew who to ask. “Jim Druckman did us the huge pleasure of asking Ed and I to design the NYDC booth for DIFFA,” says Coffinier. “He showed us an inspirational picture of Christian Bérard’s work for Guerlain, but it had to seat 20 guests. We worked on the concept of a garden pavilion, an 18th-century folie, that would 80
be temporarily built to host one very extraordinary dinner al fresco. I drew a very classical architecture design that had to be treated in some fresh and irreverent way. All the 18th-century style columns, moldings, and flutes were to be nothing but a suggestion thrown by a brushstroke. Fortunately, we knew the right person to call for help: Carolina von Humboldt.” Coffiinier says he knew von Humboldt would understand the concept of a very “classicist but fresh, new, and lighthearted design. It had to be sketchy but precise, whimsical but on a very grounded basis. This is why we like working with Carolina, she gets it. She gets it before you even say it, she has the flair for the right answer, the right mood, and her execution technique is masterly. She always amazes me.” Von Humboldt was thrilled to be asked to help. “The site was by itself extraordinary, since the studio was located at the Brooklyn Navy Yard. To get there was already a whole experience,” she recalls. “The construction of the booth had been perfectly accomplished and I started painting the decor with the colors I had previously prepared free style, which I believed was to be the theme of the whole project.” She adds that one of best things she enjoys about her work is that every project is different from the previous one, and this one was no exception. “The additional difference this time was that the whole booth had already been constructed and shipped to the DIFFA site. I generally paint in situ, but with this project there was an extra 'movement.' ” The result was extraordinary. You can check out the rest of her portfolio at her website, carolinavonhumboldt.com.
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