My head is still spinning from my Parisian design adventure filled with inspiration, ideas, and awe. What began as an initial visit to see Deco-Off, Maison et Objet and shopping the Marche aux Puces turned into a full fled art immersion with so many amazing exhibits taking place in Paris at one time. It was truly an art lover’s dream and I have never felt pulled in so many directions!
I have been immersed in Sue Roe’s book In Montmartre this summer learning about the birth of modern art in intense detail. I always thought I understood the basics influences and philosophies, but the author brings the era to life with the passionate personalities and eccentric characters that shaped this defining time in art history. The ardent competition between Picasso, Matisse, Derain, Modigliani and other artists searching for innovative ways of expression, the influence of African sculpture, the patronage of the Stein family and the community they fostered are beyond fascinating.
I was delighted to see the new introductions from Bungalow 5 capture the essence of these influences with their furnishings, art and accessories. Bugalow 5 does a wonderful job explaining the influence behind each piece and they have added several pieces that will work in any interior. I have selected several of my favorites below along with other pieces that highlight the colors and complement the lines in the artwork.The Hearst silk painting is a cubist composition of triangles and other geometries in prismatic blues, grays, greens, charcoals, pinks and golds. Paintings like these sought to modernize art by remixing 400 years of three-point perspective. The dense, energetic, three-dimensional results represented the world as they saw it. Each unique image is a great design solution that captures the spirit of fine art in beautiful hand painted silk.African aesthetics were a powerful influence on jazz, Cubism, Surrealism, Modernism and Lost Generation artists who wanted to move beyond western representations. Cocteau Tables are made of solid mahogany to capture the spirit of Paris between the wars. They feature graphic zig-zag legs, pretty bronze-finish solid brass stretchers, all-over hand-gouged texture and rich color.
The Safira Lamp is a modified Yaolingzun or “Mallet-Shaped” vase that originated in the Ming Dynasty. Our version has a long, elegant neck with a slim, rolled collar atop the flared base. Available in light blue or white porcelain with antique gold leaf base and finial.The monumentality and mystery of Cycladic sculpture like our Delos Head inspired generations of artists like Picasso, Modigliani, Brancusi and Cezanne who admired the ancient style’s sophisticated abstractions. Great as bookends or decorative objects at home or office.The Avignon silk painting is one of those beautiful 1940s French experiments into the optical effects of color. Rectilinear planes of houses at dusk flatten into watery blue, gray, charcoal, rose and soft yellow. This abstracted vision of Avignon, France reflects in mirror image on the Rhone river’s flowing surface. Each hand painted image is a great design solution, which captures the spirit of top-level art in beautiful, décor-friendly materials.
The elegant, medium scale Kaylin Lamp has a classic amphora shape and horizontal banding for texture. Artisanal Chinese porcelain delivers luminous color, updated styling and a modern spirit to a traditional form. The base and finial are gold leafed. Shade sold separately.The Bouquet Collection is a curvy, deco-inspired design that appeals those who want polished, decorated rooms. The romantic, serpentine front profile is finished with lacquered grasscloth that resembles the look and texture of a painted strié finish.The Felix statue is inspired by Alberto Giacometti’s 1951 “Cat” sculpture which arose from a memory of his brother Diego’s pet moving, “just like a ray of light”. Giacometti’s most important works consist of rigidly frontal, radically simplified forms. The emaciation and anonymity were recognized as metaphors for the human condition in post-war Europe. Great at home, office or sophisticated kid’s menagerie.Castelli silk paintings are sophisticated, large-scale calligraphy that capture the spirit of blue chip art in beautiful, hand painted colorways. Each gestural, graffiti-inspired painting bridges antiquity, traditional notions of European beauty and post war American painting.
The Union depicts two standing figures that merge into one. This statue emerges from the visual language of Henry Moore and generations of post WWI artists who sought to make sculpture that was relevant to the times. Great as decorative object at home or office.
The Janak, large 4-door cabinet is a super-glamorous, high-style design that bridges Bauhaus principles and mid-century styling to create a craft intensive version of Hollywood Regency. The design features colored, textured grasscloth sheathing and a shaped top with two central doors that emerge to break the long surface with pretty dimension and matched, diamond patterned nail heads.
The smoky, Silhouette figure might have been seen in Paris during the spring of 1911 at the first Cubism exhibition in the Salon des Indépendants. We see an alert standing figure that explodes three-point perspective into abstract planes.This unique image captures modernisms inventive spirit in beautiful, hand painted shades of griege on silk canvas. Calm. Strong. Fashionable.
The Karl Collection appeals to lovers of texture, contrast and a refined ancient-modern vibe. Skilled craftsmen carve planks of solid mahogany into legs with a tiered shingle detail that displays maximum grain. Each leg has a sawtooth profile edge that narrows toward the top from a wider base. An artisan-made antique glass mirror top complements the design’s warm, natural appeal.
The Marseilles French sailors are realized in beautiful hand painted cobalt blue and crimson red on silk canvas. They interact in a flattened cubist style, which emphasizes bold color and graphic lines that maintain the effect of a third dimension. Each dynamic image is a great design solution, which captures the spirit of blue chip art in beautiful, décor-friendly materials. Vivre a la Jazz!The Demi Statue of an interwoven circle captures the energy of Lost Generation modernism, which sought to make sculpture relevant to its times. Our design is similar to small studies by sculptors like Barbara Hepworth, Henry Moore or Constantin Brâncusi that show the artist’s hand on every surface. Great as bookends or decorative objects at home or office.
Lane Mirrors in beveled antique mirror with copper cabochons are a fashionable take on Egyptian Revival styling. The exuberant mirror-on-mirror ziggurat shape has gem-like cuts with intricate faceting that suggest wings that might have surrounded the inspiration jewelry. Available in two sizes.
The Red and Black is painted in Russian avant-garde style, which comes from a time of utopian experiments in art and politics. Here we have a figure that completely breaks with the traditions of western academic painting. This new aesthetic is abstracted to its modern, dramatic essentials. High-contrast red, black and cream capture the spirit of great art. Get your manifesto on.
Like its namesake country, the Malta dining table is a cosmopolitan mix of Spanish, English and African influences. This rhythmic design in solid mahogany and mahogany veneers features very decorative, downward-facing crenellated and pegged stretchers. The lyre-shaped legs have interesting, inward-facing rounded corbeil feet that repeat in reverse where they meet the simplest tabletop.
The Quartet silk image depicts a period in early cubism when the art of its time exploded the boundaries of easel painting. This modern image in graphic black, white, cream and pale blue celebrates the energy of African art in Paris between the wars. Interlocking, all-over figures capture the spirit of great art in beautiful, hand painting on silk canvas.The Bomeo Collection is hand carved of cape-lilac mahogany. Details like architectural reveals, sender legs and geometrically textured carved fronts give it the spirit and lightness of Italian mid-century designs from Gio Ponti and others.
Like its namesake, the solid mahogany Zanzibar Side Table is a spicy mix of textured global influences. This dynamic design displays hand carved planes of positive and negative space ornamented by a pattern of vertical chisel scoops. The architectural vibe is grounded by a circular top and bottom with matching vertical chiseled edges. Totally totemic.
The Ernst Lamp is inspired by a1930s classic from the Giacometti brothers for Jean-Michel Frank. Available in matte white or black resin that is a convincing substitute for the original plaster. Shade purchased separately.
Please feel free to contact the studio if you are interested in any of these items. For more of my design inspiration, please be sure to follow along on Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, and subscribe to Bespoke Banter. Thanks for reading and please come back again!
|Three Quintains (Hello Girls), 1964
Sculpture by Alexander Calder
Installation by Frank Gehry
Sheet metal, paint, motor
|Penetrable in Neon Lime by Jesus Raphael Soto|
Before the official festivities commenced, we had some time to explore the LA art scene…First stop, The Los Angeles County Museum (LACMA) that holds over 120,000 works covering the expanse of art history and the globe. The museum is situated on 20 acres in Hancock Park and is comprised of several buildings devoted to different aspects of the collection which are each unique in architectural style.
|Eli Broad Contemporary Art Museum
designed by Renzo Piano
|The Sheaf by Henri Matisse, 1953|
|The Sheaf at the home of Frances Lasker Brody|
It is always a thrill to see something first hand that you have admired or studied in the past. I was very pleasantly surprised to see so many favorite works of art at LACMA that I was not aware resided there. The Matisse mural above is one example. The Brodys had commissioned the artist to do the mural when he was 83 years old. This prospect cheered the ailing artist. He used his cut out techniques that he had mastered in paper and applied the same skills to the ceramic mural. He created a paper maquette before he began working with the ceramics. He heard no feedback from the Brodys and was so inspired that he created two other murals that now reside at the Musee Matisse in Nice and Moderna Museet in Stockholm. When he finally met with the Brodys to show them the maquette, they rejected it and asked the master of modern art to try again. The result was “The Sheaf”which was made by ceramic artist Partigas from Matisse’s designs. The mural measures 12′ by 11′ and is the largest work that LACMA holds by a classic modernist.
|The Five Sculptures of Jeanette by Matisse, 1910-13|
|The Disks by Fernand Leger|
|Oldenburg cueing up in front of Warhol|
|East 9th Street by Joan Mitchell, 1956
Oil on canvas
|Phoenix by Alexander Lieberman|
|Trace by Nancy Stevenson Graves, 1981
Steel and aluminum
|The Ivy’s Colorful Champagne Bar|
Next stop, The Ivy in West Hollywood for a ladies’ lunch with Holly Phillips and the dynamic duo of Cloth & Kind. We were so proud of Tami Ramsay and Krista Schwartz who had designed their first window for the Legends event, a huge honor for these two talented designers. Each year LCDQ selects a theme and invites designers from around the world to participate in designing one of the store windows in the design quarter. This year was “Novel Interiors” and each window was based on a different book.
The Cloth & Kind crew chose Goldfinger and their window was beyond chic with its modern take on blue and white with a gilded touch. A stunning Sally King Benedict painting provided a vibrant focal point for the window at the Sydney Harbour Paint showroom.
Our home away from home was the legendary Sunset Tower Hotel. Designed in 1922 by Leland Bryant, this Art Deco gem quickly became a hotspot because of its location on the Sunset Strip and proximity to the hottest nightclubs and restaurants of the 1930s and 40s. Its list of residents reads like of “Who’s Who” of Old Hollywood…Howard Hughes, John Wayne (who kept a cow on his patio for fresh milk), Marilyn Monroe, Elizabeth Taylor, Frank Sinatra, and gangster Bugsy Siegel. Today, it still remains a celebrity destination due to the discretion of its staff and a no camera policy in the dining rooms and bar.
|A Warm Welcome|
|Art Deco Details|
|Chateau Marmont View|
Finally, a lovely dinner at Bouchon with childhood friend Benton Weinstock of SetSipServe, a fabulous entertaining site and new friend Lizzie Wibbelman of Holland & Sherry sold through Harbinger, my new favorite LA showroom.