Week of July 1, 2024

A weekly Saturday recap to share with you our favorite links, discoveries, exhibitions, and more from the past seven days. This week: We’re taking a deep dive into the first ever LA Design Weekend, plus a stellar new London hotel draped in Bode tapestries, a gloriously tangible furniture collection by a digital artist, and a summery group show at Tiwa Gallery in New York that takes its cues from the mossy ancient forests of Wales.

LA Design Weekend

Los Angeles is teeming with design talent these days and so much of it was on display at the very first LA Design Weekend earlier this month. The three-day celebration, founded by Holland Denvir of Denvir Enterprises, unfolded in multiple neighborhoods and aimed to be a car-free experience – a chance to explore both the city itself along with what’s going on creatively, with opportunities to meet designers and “peek behind the curtain.” The events included the following standout shows.

Project Room and Terremoto curated Garden Party, an exhibition at the outdoor space at Terremoto’s office in Northeast LA. The show highlighted the space where the built environment collides with the natural world, featuring works like Rachel Shillander’s Happy Face Masonry stool, Hyunuko’s psychedelic ceramic planter, Ryan Belli’s carved wood bench (which make us think of very refined, sculptural Lincoln Logs), Lily Clark’s meditative, beautiful water fountains, and powder-coated chairs by Waka Waka placed atop stacks of concrete.

On the terrace of the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed Hollyhock House, BZIPPY and Laun set up an ode to indoor/outdoor California living, with Laun’s Ribbon powder-coated curved sofa, chair, and circular bench mingling with BZIPPY’s large ceramic Ruffle planters and Cloud and Hex side tables.

 At the Cummings Estate in Los Feliz, To the Trade, a networking community founded by interior designer Jess Mardi, and Chet Architecture, which brought the property back to life in 2017, collaborated on Creatively Curated. The event brought together a whole host of superlative work from local designers and artists, including (but hardly limited to – way too much to list!) glass vessels by Ethan Stern, Amanda Stern, and Hue 42, a ceramic totem stack from Ben Medansky, glass art by Ben Tuna, furniture from Kalon Studios, Dona Nati, Michael Felix, Laun, BZIPPY, and Phase Design, rugs by Erik Lindstrom, sculptural pieces by Taylor Kibby and Orrin Whalen, sculptural lighting from LGS Studio and Katrien van der Schueren, and artwork like Liesel Plambeck’s trippy checkerboard.

The Mind Meld group show, curated by Laun’s Rachel Bullock and Holland Denvir, featured thirteen pairings of artists and designers; each designer selected another work as a jumping off point to create a new collaborative piece. The matchmaking results include a tiered serving tray from Adi Goodrich and Debbie Bean, Cuff Studio and textile studio Anza’s silk and leather upholstered Kelp Forest chair, a trompe l’oeil painted fish lounger from Kalon and Hopie Stockman Hill, a club chair with batik fabric panels by LAUN and Adam DeBoer, lamps from Ryan Belli and Amy McKay, and a Sam Klemick and Sydney Cortright stool.

For five years, Object Permanence, co-curated by Denvir and Leah Ring of Another Human, has been coordinating shows by giving a prompt to designers and eliciting their interpretations of specific objects. Past editions have included piggy banks, picnic baskets, and clocks; the latest iteration is cookie jars and 10 gorgeous variations on the theme have been served up. With Cindy Hsu Zell’s version, you don’t risk getting caught with your hand in the proverbial cookie jar; it’s more like reaching into a mysterious portal. Studio Hanego’s has a vintage feel with its green candy stripes and draped glass lid. Hubba Hubba’s is less of a jar than an elegant column, Meghan McNeer’s is all joy in stripey papier maché, while Nicolas Simone’s geometric, textured ceramic container preserves some mystery.

At the Open House group show, curated by Soft-geometry and inhabiting a historic French-Gothic style home hosted by GLB Properties, 13 artists and designers explored the idea of openness and what it could mean in both a spatial and emotional framework. Works included Lookout & Wonderland’s site-specific installation of fabric, largescale sculpture in cedar and redwood along with seating by Hunter Knight, Mansi Shah’s solid walnut Mouth chair, Jialun Xiong’s Skeleton Chair and Half Table Lamp, Parsa Razaee’s Aftercare bathroom hardware series, floral balloon arrangements from Studio Mei Mei and Danielle Armstrong’s floral installations, photography by Madeline Tolle, pieces from Soft-geometry’s own Molecule furniture series, Paramorph’s mirror and lighting, an immersive VR experience from Annabelle Schneider, an Alyssa Geerts painting, and a custom rug from Rug Dept.

Vessel, a show that started in SF and then moved to LA for the festivities, was curated by Anand Sheth and featured artists with strong ties to the Bay Area, including Caleb Ferris, who made a snake-bedecked cherry and silk urn; Joe Ferriso, who posits his paintings as vessels for color; and NJ Roseti whose vase blends a hand-built mahogany top with a computer-tooled base.

Also in LA: Femme Reflections, from the Rhett Baruch Gallery at Cuff Studio, opened last weekend, showcasing the work of four female artists and designers interrogating and celebrating notions of femininity, set in and among Cuff Studio’s curvaceous and glamorous furnishings. On view through the summer: paintings by the late Pat Berger, bronze wall sculptures by Daniella Algarate, glass vessels and sculpture by Austin Fields, and mirrored acrylic pieces by Dutch artist Lisette Schumacher that somehow capture both stillness and movement.

And design studio Wall for Apricots launched their debut wallpaper collection, Catalogue. The four patterns – Beads, Tulips, Windows, and Rosettes – nod to the past while feeling thoroughly fresh and are available in three or four unexpected but just-right colorways.


Centrally situated in Paddington, the Grand Hotel Bellevue offers a city retreat, overlooking Norfolk Square. Paris-based Italian architect Fabrizio Casiraghi designed the interior spaces of this five-floor Victorian townhouse to be a kind of cocoon, creating an atmosphere that’s enveloping, calming, and restful while still intriguing in its details. For French hospitality group Lignée Hotels’ first British venture, Casiraghi marries old school elegance, dark lacquered woods, and intricate moldings with 70s tones – deep oranges, dusky blues, olive greens and earthy ochres – in a way that feels fresh and contemporary.  With 60 rooms in all, the smaller singles make the most of their dimensions, snug and shipshape, as a cabin on a boat; the larger rooms and a suite take advantage of high ceilings, generous proportions, and an abundance of natural light. The classic warmth of the fireplaces in the reception area and Pondicherry Bar merge with sense of mystery in the evocative, transporting wall tapestries by BODE.

Berlin interior design studio Vaust’s redesign of a private residence in Dusseldorf balances the old with the new but also turns that whole dichotomy inside out with a hefty dose of postmodernism. The S24 Apartment preserves the space’s neoclassical elements but mixes in pieces like Phillipe Starck’s Dr. Sonderbar chair, Shiro Kuramata’s steel mesh How High the Moon sofa, and Shigeru Uchida’s Tenderly floor lamp. The iconic designs induce some jaw dropping while also designating spaces within the flow of the open-plan, Bauhaus-influenced interior. And there’s more seating that deserves a shoutout: Mario Botta chairs, an Ekstrem chair, a Rietveld Zig Zag chair. Vaust worked with Dusseldorf’s Gusch to source the furniture and the Meierbach gallery for artwork like paintings by Corey Mason. Photos: William Jess Laird


The second group show curated by Alex Tieghi-Walker at his TIWA Gallery in Tribeca references Tieghi-Walker’s own Welsh heritage. It’s titled Coetir – Welsh for “woodland” ­– and takes the enchanted forests of Celtic folklore and Pagan mythologies as a jumping off point for an exhibition of over 20 international artists. The show fittingly opened on the solstice and features works like leaded stained glass by Zachary White, the Le Dos chair from the Marrow series by Rafael Prieto and Loup Sarion, Max Zinser’s footed Tem pedestal and cast glass pieces, ceramic sculptures by Jim McDowell and Jeff Martin, a mobile from Andrew Pierce Scott and Leo Kaspar, chairs from Vince Skelly and Min Jae Kim, vessels from Emily Frances Barrett and Christabel MacGreevey, and lighting from Earth Landing Project. Up through July 20. Photos: Brian W. Ferry


Blocky and geometric, Charlotte Taylor’s furniture at Lisbon-based studio and gallery Garcé and Dimofskicould be called minimal, but that might obscure the fine, intricate wooden joinery details that characterize pieces like her “Sturdy” chairs of stained and lacquered pine and a lamp made of pine – not just the base but the shade, too. Then there’s Taylor’s coffee table, whose top takes the concept of wooden joinery and applies it to interlocking ceramic pieces like a jigsaw puzzle.