Art & Architecture
Architectural Digest

Architectural Digest August 2017

Architectural Digest is the world's foremost design authority, showcasing the work of top architects and interior decorators. It continues to set new benchmarks for how to live well—what to buy, what to see and do, where to travel, and who to watch on the fast-paced, multifaceted global design scene.

United States
Conde Nast US
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11 Issues

In this issue

2 min.
polar vortex

THE STORY BEHIND AN ICONIC DESIGN I n 1947 the French designer Jean Royère redecorated his mother’s Paris apartment. The star of his grand redo? A rotund sofa called Boule, covered in a deliciously fuzzy velvet that would later inspire the design’s charming nickname, Ours PolaireÑÒpolar bear.” The unusual shape—created with a wooden interior skeleton similar to those used in Louis XVI sofas—sent shock waves through Paris when Royère displayed it in Art et Industrie’s exhibition “La Résidence Française.” But soon enough, the orders flew in. Two chair versions were commissioned for the office of the French Minister of Foreign Affairs in Helsinki; the Shah of Iran snapped up several for the dining room and bar of his daughter Shahnaz’s home in Tehran. Royère, who began his career in furniture-making at age 29,…

1 min.
nicolaus boston

WHERE ART MEETS COMMERCE SPECIALTY: Majolica, relief-molded earthenware decorated with vivid lead glazes, mostly dating from 1850 to 1900. GENESIS: Herbert Minton and his art director, Leon Arnoux, debuted the ceramics at London’s 1851 Great Exhibition. LOOK FOR: Pieces that are sharply molded. “If it’s a bird or a squirrel, you want to see the feathers or the fur,” says eminent dealer Nicolaus Boston. NAMES TO KNOW: Minton, Copeland, Wedgwood, Royal Worcester, and George Jones, who embellished the underside of his designs with a green-and-brown mottled pattern. FABULOUS FIND: “On my way to a Bruce Springsteen show I found a Jones plate in a junk shop for £1,” Boston says. “Never seen another one—a nineinch plate with a big chestnut leaf in the middle. I held it under my arm the whole concert.” NEW OBSESSION: German…

3 min.
kyoto crush

I n the span of 16 days this spring, Kyoto unwittingly hijacked Instagram. First, at the city’s National Museum of Modern Art, Van Cleef & Arpels debuted the exhibition “Mastery of an Art: Van Cleef & Arpels—High Jewelry and Japanese Crafts” (through August 6). Then Louis Vuitton touched down in the region, along with a flurry of celebrities, for its cruise show, an hour’s drive away at the I. M. Pei–designed Miho Museum. Around the same time, tastemakers such as Garance Doré and Sofía Sanchez de Betak toured nearby sites, leaving a trail of “like”-able posts in their wake. Kyoto, which in recent history has been something of a sleeping beauty—the quiet counterpoint to younger, cooler Tokyo—is at the epicenter once again. “In Kyoto there is nature, serenity, history,” says Nicolas…

1 min.
curated kyoto

SIGHTS Celebrated landscape architect Miranda Brooks calls the Shisen?d? garden, located at the Edo-period temple, one of her favorites in the world. Don’t miss the H?shun?in temple and elegantly landscaped garden, and Shunk??in, a 1590 temple where Confucian themes are painted on sliding doors. Head to the famed Nishiki Market to sample sushi-quality fish and stock up on miniature “sushi” candy. SHOPS Creative director and event designer Alexandre de Betak and his fashion-consultant wife, Sofia, are so fond of Japanese ceramics that he designed a tatami room with built-in sake bar in their New York City loft and outfitted it with wares from Konishi Pottery Exporting Company near Kyoto. Les Ateliers Courbet?fs Melanie Courbet works with several Kyoto artisans: Asahiyaki for pottery; Nakagawa Mokkougei for woodcrafts;Kanaami.Tsuji, which creates teaceremony accessories; Kaikado for tea…

1 min.
water works

ON THE COAST OF CYPRUS is a freshwater pool called Fontana Amorosa. “They say it’s where Aphrodite went to find eternal love and youth,” explains Cypriot lighting designer Michael Anastassiades, whose latest collection—which debuted at Milan’s Nilufar gallery—is named for the mythical site. “I see them as a series of fountains and fireworks,” the dashing talent says of fixtures with names like Manneken-Pis, Wishing Well, and Bellagio. (Some of that work will soon appear at the Future Perfect in New York.) In Palm, shown here, spindly metal arms cascade into hand-blown orbs of light. Noteworthy is Anastassiades’ use of color—a first for the master of restraint. However, the crimson hue applied to the collection is no standard paint or powder coat, but a brass patina. Says Anastassiades: “I did not…

2 min.
miles redd

Visitors to AD100 decorator Miles Redd’s new Manhattan office should prepare themselves for a serious jolt of extrastrength Redd-iness. The exhilarating 1,800-square-foot Chelsea work space— designed in collaboration with the architecture firm Bories & Shearron—functions as a three-dimensional calling card meant to demonstrate Redd’s adventurous decorative sensibility and to persuade his clients about the joys of living in glorious Technicolor. It is, in a word, a knockout. The fun begins, naturally, at the entrance, which opens to a tented vestibule of linen fabric printed with scenic branches and leaves, all outlined in black grosgrain ribbon. Two doors upholstered in black horsehair with lapis lazuli levers lead, respectively, to a coat closet and a dazzling powder room. The reverse of the bathroom door—sheathed in a Cubist-inspired collage of jewel-toned Prelle silk…