Holiday House is a cause easy to embrace. Founder Iris Dankner’s showhouse, now in its sixth year, celebrates the best of interior design while benefitting the fight against breast cancer, with this year’s proceeds going to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation.
Each year, designers choose a holiday or special occasion to celebrate with great creativity and ingenuity. What stood out this year to me was the notable level of impressive and interesting art at Holiday House. From emerging artists to established masters, it was eminently clear how much art contributes to the aesthetics and personal meaning of living spaces.
photo above by Bill Jacobson
In the elegantly eclectic entry and foyer, inspired by the film Blue Angel, Studio Tim Campbell chose works from Julie Heffernan and Bill Jacobson for their romantic and fantastical visions. “Julie Heffernan’s paintings regularly depict a human figure embroiled in historical references and draped in flowing gowns of floral and fauna, set against backgrounds layered with romantic symbolism. For me this is what the holidays are all about- this idea of fantasy characters occupying a realm between heaven and earth and rendered in dream like colors and settings.”
“Similarly Bill Jacobson’s photographs show us an altered view of modern reality but presented through a slightly fuzzy lens wherein the subject matter is literally subject to the interpretation of the viewer. For me, the work ultimately is thus romantic as the resolution of what the image actually is, remains the sole prevue of the viewer.”
“I decided to add a little bit of sardonic wit by pulling Ruben Lorch-Millers “The Rules” piece from my collection and hanging it on either side if the fireplace. By appropriating phrases and words found in his day to day life, creating compositions with those phrases and rendering them in a stern Germanic font, the artist challenges us to consider both the role of art and the definition of art.”
“For me this piece is a natural counterpoint to the romantic nature of the Julie and Bill pieces and adds a level of creative tension to the room. I typically like combining mediums when curating the art for a home and the juxtaposition of both artist work, in this case, for me, paints a beautifully romantic picture of how I see the holidays.”
Tony Ingrao and Randy Kempner of Ingrao Inc. celebrated Christmas in Casablanca in their large luxurious salon designed using sponsor Fendi Casa furniture. Anchoring the space are two gigantic oil paintings attributed to the mid-17th century Flemish artist Frans Snyders. From Tony and Randy’s private collection, they set the tone for the room, echoing the grandness of the Woolworth mansion and lending a certain gravitas to a room furnished primarily with 20th century pieces.
In contrast are two black stone Shona sculptures from Zimbabwe, on loan from the Hemingway African Gallery. As the designers explained, “The clean, smooth forms of these pieces were able to take up the lead of the high-gloss case pieces and metallic accents but bring that language to a more organic and sensuous place.”
Across the room, Vase no. 21, 2006 by Ettore Sottsass, on loan from the Friedman Benda Gallery added a crisp and cool modern touch. “The purple glass relates to the regal bearing of the room as a whole. This sculpture takes the clean deco lines throughout and brings them to the 21st century.”
It is the art in the room that helps to define and “decode the legacies of design encoded in the broadly French 30s/40s feeling of the furniture and layout… But the French art deco was also very concerned with the inclusion of the tribal, the “authentic” and the rough/naive accessory.” The designers have created a rich, layered room that successfully unites all these elements. Stop back as we explore more of the impressive art at Holiday House.