July 07, 2011
We didn't think it was possible, but Paris just got a little bit chicer with the July 4 opening of La Maison Champs-Elysées, a 57-room hotel (and the 19th-century home of the Duchess of Rivoli) near the Golden Triangle whose ground floor was designed by the style gurus at Maison Martin Margiela. All common areas, including the lobby, restaurant La Table du 8, red-lit bar, cigar room and garden terrace, feature artistic techniques ranging from trompe-l'oeil to silver-foiled walls. Margiela's team also designed 17 "couture" rooms bearing the fashion house's signature stark minimalism, with mostly white rooms outfitted only with zen-like basics, as well as Apple Mac Minis. Rooms from $500 at 8 rue Jean Goujon; 33-1/40-74-64-65; lamaisonchampselysees.com.
Photo Martine Houghton
September 29, 2011
Carlos Diniz's Monarch Bay Homes, Laguna Niguel (outdoor dining terrace), 1961. Photo © Carlos Diniz Archive Photo © 2011 Museum Associates/LACMA
A Don Draper type lounging poolside; boxy, streamlined homes dotted among the Hollywood Hills; sleek, minimalist decor. Los Angeles in the 1950s conjures strong imagery when it comes to the revolutionary aesthetics of that time. But post-World War II, SoCal fashion, architecture and design had more to do with embracing a certain ethos than it did with expressing a particular style—or so asserts "California Design, 1930-1965: Living in a Modern Way," on view at the Los Angeles Country Museum of Art starting October 1. The exhibition—one of dozens opening over the next few months in conjunction with Pacific Standard Time, a Getty Museum-initiated citywide celebration of L.A. art and design—includes furniture, ceramics, jewelry and architectural drawings by such renowned midcentury designers as Richard Neutra, Greta Magnusson Grossman, Rudolph Schindler and Charles and Ray Eames. Be sure to browse the LACMA gift shop on your way out for related items and works by the artists themselves. Our favorite: the iconic Eames dining room chair, available for $860. 5905 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles; 323-857-6000; lacma.org.
Plus! L.A. Lately
January 31, 2012
Courtesy John Houshmand
“I’ve always been interested in developing combinations of wood
with materials like glass, fine metals and acrylic,” says furniture designer
John Houshmand, 57, who lives and works on a 950-acre farm in Hobart, New York.
“Then recently I thought, What if I make a mold of one of the magnificent
pieces of wood and poured in aluminum?” The result is a cast-aluminum
table made from a giant slab of mulberry wood, anchored by sturdy black walnut
legs—undoubtedly one of the most romantic and bold pieces of furniture
to emerge this year.
This Cast Aluminum Low table is $19,750 and can be purchased at Houshmand’s
showrooms in New York (31 Howard St.) and West Hollywood (8687 Melrose Ave.).
For details, call 212-965-1238 or go to johnhoushmand.com.
January 12, 2012
Courtesy Red Cross West Palm Beach
Interior design lovers are gearing up for the opening of West Palm Beach’s 36th Annual American Red Cross Designers’ Show House, one of the region’s most hotly anticipated events in home design. Located in an expansive, Southern-style mansion—the oldest original home in the historic Old Northwood neighborhood—the Show House gathers the best of the best designers, both nearby and national, for a showcase to benefit the localRed Cross. The event runs from January 19 to February 18, but for those looking to get a sneak peek before it opens to the public, there is the preview party on January 18, where socialites, philanthropists and designers will have the opportunity to browse over cocktails and hors d’oeuvres. redcross-pbc.org
March 01, 2012
Ron Lessard / Courtesy Interiors by Olatz
For more than a decade, Olatz Schabel has been celebrated among New York’s design cognoscenti for two reasons: first, for her role as the longtime muse and partner to celebrity artist Julian Schnabel; second, for her own line of opulent bespoke linens and loungewear (sold out of an expansive, checkerboard tile-floored shop in the West Village). Now, the art world has a third reason to keep Olatz top of mind: the launch of her new interior design firm, Designs by Olatz. As of this month, Olatz and her team will be bringing her signature aesthetic—an eclectic mélange of vintage furnishings, artworks, and crisp textiles in colors that recall the Mediterranean port towns where she’s made her part-time home—to discerning home and commercial property owners. Among the services she’ll offer her clients (besides the traditional selection of furnishings, fixtures, and fabrics) are custom product design, branding consultation, and obtaining one-of-a-kind pieces (or “objets trouvés”). Interiorsbyolatz.com.
May 16, 2012
© Jordan Kisner
The Kips Bay Decorator Show House, an interior design bonanza held each year to benefit the Kips Bay Boys & Girls Club, opens its doors on May 16 with an eye-popping display of various styles and aesthetics. Thirty prominent designers have taken over two bi-level units at the Aldyn Residences on Riverside Boulevard, each choosing a room and making it his or her own.
For many participants, the experience is quite personal. “Normally when I design, it’s a collaboration between myself and clients,” says Lynne Scalo, whose white lacquered retreat features oversized portraits of Steve Jobs and Andy Warhol. “But here, my only collaborator is the architecture, and that’s a really wonderful opportunity to showcase my point of view as an artist.”
That connection is apparent throughout the house: Alexander Doherty’s version of an art collector’s inner sanctum features several pieces from his own art collection on the wall, and a mirror-paneled library by Jamie Drake is filled entirely with his own books.
For others, the 40th annual showcase is an opportunity to escape into fantasy. Raji Radhakrishnan composed her corner unit as though it were the private home office of the head curator of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, incorporating Art Deco and modernist elements, custom photo murals of the King’s Chapel at Versaille and a gilded plaster ceiling medallion designed by Radhakrishnan herself. Charlotte Moss turned her suite into a taste of the French countryside, layering trompe l’oeil wallpaper and garden photography, freestanding trees and an immense antique birdcage from her own collection.
Even without the lavish interiors, both units are impressive, with oversized pools and sweeping views of the Hudson River. But with the addition of each decorator’s dream pieces—witness the $115 million antique desk in David Scott’s sophisticated, richly textured gentleman’s study, or the massive 1820s Neoclassical secretary from Germany in a dining room by Patrik Lönn—the scene is fairly stunning. May 16–June 14; 60 Riverside Blvd.; kipsbaydecoratorshowhouse.org.
October 09, 2012
Photo courtesy of Foscarini
The lamps developed inside Foscarini’s stark white research laboratory shine far brighter than the average desk light. Each is produced in collaboration with a world-renowned artist, like Luca Nichetto, winner of the 2008 Gran Design Award, or Giulio Iacchetti, who was presented the Premio dei Premi by Italian president Giorgio Napolitano in 2009. The Venice-based lighting company itself is no stranger to awards. In addition to a slew of Compasso D’Oro and Red Dot award winners, pieces from its line were selected for inclusion in the permanent collection of New York’s Museum of Modern Art.
Foscarini’s fall lamps take their cues from nature. German designer Werner Aisslinger’s Behive suspension lamp (shown here; $1,136), with soft light diffused through stacked white polycarbonate rings, brings to mind a dangling beehive. And from Ludovica+Roberto Palomba, designers of the Birdie lighting family, a ceiling light (from $608) combines the elegance of a chandelier with the simplicity of the outdoors, its adjustable steel arms recalling the thin branches of a young tree. 17 Green St.; 212-247-2218; foscarini.com.