Style Court

Nine Years of Textiles, Art History, Gardens, and a Little Mental Traveling with Courtney Barnes

9.21.2009

Living with Art

Here's a chic solution for a large unwieldy piece that's too big to be placed on a shelf, atop most coffee tables, or even in some closets. In the mid-1960s, Annette Reed (today we know her as Mrs. Oscar de la Renta) cleverly juxtaposed a utilitarian-yet-handsome art portfolio with a curvaceous leather-covered 18th-century armchair. Basically the portfolio is rigged on a simple stand for all to see.

Horst photographed the room in 1966, and the captions in Horst Interiors simply describe the case as a "crisply engineered foil for a comfortable armchair." Whether it held a collection of oversized prints, like a double-elephant folio (up to 50"), or art created by a member of the family, I don't know. Reed did paint the trompe l'oeil of bookshelves in the background, which reminds me a little of Jennifer's great mural painted by Laura Boles Faw. Either way, I imagine the display allowed for relatively easy viewing and made a good conversation piece.

On the topic of living with art, Jen Bekman, the gallerist who believes in art for everyone, gives a sneak peek at her own collection over at design*sponge. Photographer Dorthe Alstrup is one of many artists represented. Shown directly above is Alstrup's sold out Untitled (Max).

First two images from the top © Horst Interiors

FYI: Laura Boles Faw is known for her sculpture and typically only does decorative work for her sister.

6 comments:

Mimi said...

Very chic..I really like those brackets. It looks like the portfolio opens up like a table instead of a book. Genius idea!

The Blushing Hostess said...

The portfolio is not my favorite though it is a sharp thought. Now, that last shot, why don't all my rooms spill over with courageous whimsy like that?

the NEO-traditionalist said...

What a photograph. All the balloons make for pure insanity. Love it!
XX Kate

Lindsey Conrad - Nabors said...

I Love the portfolio!!!

The Peak of Chic said...

I know that my sister will be thrilled that you mentioned her...she's a big fan of yours! I really do love the idea of displaying the portfolio on the stand. It's the inclusion of something ordinary or practical that gives a room flair...much like CZ Guest displaying her orchids in those cheap plastic green pots! Although, Reed/de la Renta's portfolio was chicer than the green pots :)

Grant K. Gibson said...

I love the idea of the portfolio! WOW!
Laura is divine! I am so happy that she lives in SF!