The lobby of the John-Richard High Point Showroom this April showcased furniture and lighting designs as well as art by Mark McDowell. The visual effect was that of a luxurious penthouse curated by the most culturally refined collector. The combination of warm woods, textural finishes and stunning art motifs on glass, gave a cohesive chicness to the setting
These new introductions had a subtle Asian feel and there are other global influences like the Moroccan patterns on the door fronts of the Almeria Sideboard. The design aesthetic was like an art gallery with complimentary, coveted pieces that are not overly matched. There was a common theme of artistic geometry as seen in the embellishments and rich, sensuous finishes.
Dallas Market Center, producer of the ARTS Awards, and ART, the creative home furnishings network, announced that John-Richard was one of the finalists in the portable lamp category for the 29th annual ARTS Awards.
The ARTS Awards, presented each January during the Dallas Total Home & Gift Market, is the premier awards program in the U.S. honoring top manufacturers, retailers, designers, and sales representatives in the home industry. The 29th annual ARTS Awards winners will be revealed during a gala event on Friday, January 19, 2018.
“These finalists are the industry’s best representatives and reflect the highest level of creativity, passion, innovation, and dedication,” said Cindy Morris, president and CEO of Dallas Market Center. “We congratulate all of this year’s finalists and look forward to a wonderful evening of celebration.”
“The 29th ARTS Awards finalists include legends and impressive new leaders,” adds Sharon Davis, executive director of ART. Sharon has been a trailblazer in the industry whose passion, creativity and drive inspires everyone in the design community.
Here are some new lighting introductions that showcase the breadth of design in this category.
Mark McDowell, who designed this lamp exclusively for John-Richard, talks about inspiration and the creative process. Take a moment to enjoy the video that reveals the original idea that culminated in the finished product that was brought to Market.
Marcel Breuer was a Hungarian-born, modernist, architect and furniture designer. Known to his friends and associated as Laikjó, Breuer left his hometown at the age of 18 in search of artistic training and was one of the first and youngest students at the Bauhaus – a radical arts and crafts school that had been founded by Walter Gropius in Weimar just after World War 1.
Breuer was immediately recognized by Gropius as having immense talent and was quickly placed at the head of the carpentry shop. Ultimately Breuer left Bauhaus to start his own firm. Best known later in life for his iconic chair designs, Breuer often worked in tandem with other designers, developing a thriving global practice that eventually cemented his reputation as one of the most important architects of the modern era.
Breuer’s affinity for concrete made him a key figure in the emergence of brutalism, which has drawn much criticism due to his designs heavy handed massiveness. However, Breuer counterbalanced this tendency in his small-scale houses that are notable for their sensitive handling of traditional materials such as wood and brick. Here are some images of his architectural gems.
Here are some John-Richard pieces that draw from his modernist aesthetic. It is easy to see Breuer’s influence on many furniture designs that are so popular today.
Ishka Designs, a Brooklyn-based interior design firm, has a diverse portfolio of work that includes five level brownstones, vacation properties in the Caribbean, residences in France and beach-front estates. The principals, Anishka Clarke and Niya Bascom, define their design aesthetic as ‘clean, modern, eclectic and simplistically beautiful.’
Niya Bascom’s background in film set design and a sojourn at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden contributed to his extraordinary visual creativity. He is also an accomplished photographer whose work has been featured in galleries, embassies and museums. Anishka Clarke worked a decade in finance, both in Jamaica, and on Wall Street, but in early 2006 she left to pursue her real passion, interior design. A Brooklyn resident, but Jamaican at heart, Anishka received an Impact award from the largest Caribbean news publication, Caribbean Life for her contributions to the Caribbean American community. Anishka is an Interior Design honors graduate (Summa Cum Laude) of the Fashion Institute of Technology and holds an MBA from Stern Business School, New York University. Both talented designers have a nature-inspired and minimalistic aesthetic that puts the spotlight on uniquely crafted furniture, accent pieces and art.
Ishka Designs has been featured in numerous publications including New York Spaces, Anthology and New York Magazine as well as on the NBC television series, ‘Open House’. We recently met up with the designers to ask them about what inspires them and their design philosophy.
Each piece of furniture, art or accessory seems significant within your overall design. Do you choose all forms so they can live on their own as well as within the setting?
An interesting question. Whether intentional or not, there are certain pieces that are chosen for their uniqueness or as you put it, their ability to live on their own. It is, however, important that the remaining pieces complement those unique pieces and the overall environment. Our goal is always for overall harmony.
Do you tend to choose art before or after the design of the room?
We don’t have a particular way of doing things when it comes to art. Sometimes the art is the actual inspiration for the space and other times, we find pieces during the process that fit right into the solution like a puzzle. Oftentimes though, art is sourced after the project is installed and we tend to leave the design solution open ended enough to allow for art to be added.
What is the most important connection between the interior and the landscape?
The size and placement of windows and doors play a literal part in connecting the interior to a landscape. Beyond that, however, the choice of material finishes in the home can also aid in bringing the outdoors in. Natural materials and textures that are minimally manipulated, i.e., bamboo and unfinished woods, can feel more in tune with nature. Interestingly, there are ways to keep the vibe modern vs. rustic by keeping forms clean, simple and unified. Other important ways of connecting spaces to the outdoors is with the use of color.
This spectacular Master Bath Design by Benjamin Johnston is perfect in its chic simplicity. Such a pretty setting for our Crystal Martini Side Table! The room is both minimal and dramatic; every piece stands out and no piece is superfluous.
“Behind this feature mosaic wall is a pass-thru double shower with every amenity!
Form and function at its finest!”
Constantin Brâncuși was a Romanian sculptor, painter and photographer who made his career in France. Widely considered to be one of the foremost pioneers of modernism, and one of the most influential sculptors of the 20th century, Brâncuși is often referred to as the patriarch of modern sculpture.
As a child in Romania he displayed an aptitude for carving wooden farm tools. His formal education first took him to Bucharest, then to Munich and then to the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Paris. His artwork emphasizes clean geometrical lines that balance forms inherent in his materials with the symbolic allusions of representational art. Brâncuși was also known for paying an unusual amount of attention to the bases on which his sculptures were displayed, believing that the pedestal was part of the sculpture itself.
The Brâncuși sculptural aesthetic has influenced many designers. These lighting pieces by Mark McDowell and accessories by Margaret Fisher show how the artist is still a source of inspiration.
Paula Grace is the principal and founder of Paula Grace Designs, a Virginia-based interior design firm. Paula has an exceptional design style drawing inspiration from her clients, nature, fabric, the human form, and music. Her thoughts on people’s relationship to their interiors focuses on the feeling created by design: ”Here’s my belief: your home should be a place where you feel at peace, where you function effortlessly. It should portray who you are today, remind you of happy times from the past, and provide lush ground for you to create new memories.”
Prior to studying Interior Design, Paula Grace earned Masters Degrees in Clinical Social Work and Business Administration. She held a Directorship of a large behavioral health program and was a Senior Instructor, graduate level, in a prestigious university medical center. With this level of experience, Paula Grace runs a seamless ship when implementing designs. The process flows until each furnishing is placed and the design realized.
Paula Grace’s interior designs have been featured in many publications. Additionally, she has been hand-selected to participate in designer show houses and is regularly asked to speak at interior design industry events.
We recently caught up with Paula Grace at High Point Market this April to talk to her about her design style and what currently inspires her.
1. You have said that you draw inspiration from your clients, nature, fabric, the human form and music. Can you elaborate on that?
The last two are unique so I’ll focus on them – the human form and music. So many things are designed to adorn or comfort our bodies. Clothes, seats in a car, furniture. The body is very important; each one different and beautiful. I see the human form as a living sculpture that I simply pay homage too.
Music is feelings and moods that you hear. How my clients want their rooms to feel, the mood it creates is very important in my designs. When they tell me the feel and mood they’d like, a song inevitably pops in my head that evokes the same feeling and mood. Music and design share key principles – rhythm, balance, harmony, proportion, and emphasis. These principles inform the elements chosen for the space. I interpret the song into the design. Music is especially significant when I design furniture. The lines, form, and shape I draw are directly from the principles of a song communicated with instruments and voices.
2. You use both lighting and wall decor in very bold and beautiful ways. What role do they play for you in the overall design?
The art and lighting are the soul of a design. They need to be layered in. Art on the wall and dimensional pieces placed around the room, on tables for example. A great lighting plan includes ceiling, table top, and accent for overall illumination, task, and sparkle. I select classic styled furniture so it stands the test of time. Much interest comes from the jewelry – art and lighting. Think little black dress with statement jewelry. It’s the statement jewelry that communicates the feeling – aka art – and the lighting is integral to the mood. Chandeliers and sconces are both – sculptural art and lighting. They can create a statement all by themselves, which is often how I use them. John Richard chandeliers and sconces are fantastic for this.
3. How would you describe your design style?
Classic elegance with a hip vibe. Given the inspirations I just discussed – imagine furniture with clean, traditional lines creating comfort paired with evocative art, lighting, and accessories.
“And you spend your evening in your color. The idea is to take things which open your mind, that speak to you – the colors speak to you.”
– Philippe Starck
About the Designer:
Philippe Starck, born January 18, 1949 in Paris, France, is a visionary in all realms of design including interiors, architectural and furniture as well as utilitarian objects such as staplers and juice squeezers. He was constantly referencing where and how people live and questioning the materiality of our environments. Starck is renowned for his hotel design with projects such as the Royalton in New York, the Delano in Miami and the Mondrian in Los Angeles which are all considered contemporary landmarks. The Faena suite in Buenos Aires featured above is considered one of the most expensive in the world and was redesigned by Starck.
To learn more about this exceptional designer, click on the link below: www.starck.com
The artist is a receptacle for emotions that come from all over the place: from the sky, from the earth, from a scrap of paper, from a passing shape, from a spider’s web.
– Pablo Picasso
Carol Benson-Cobb has a singular ability to trigger memories of place and time that stir emotions in all who view her paintings. Now, her work is being featured on several contemporary furniture designs. The artist’s abstract perspectives of sea, sand and sky are beautifully displayed under glass.
The contemporary style of the credenzas, cocktail and nesting tables are perfect statement pieces for the modern home. The soothing, neutral tones of the collection will compliment many design styles seen on the coast, in the mountains or within a city apartment. The work of Carol Benson-Cobb can be seen in the homes of many film, sports and entertainment stars and is a favorite of many celebrated interior designers.
Here are some snapshots of the series highlights. Please note that the last screenshot has a video snippet below that can be viewed. To enjoy the full version and to see the other ”Designers Shorts’ segments, please click here.