Design Miami, the international design fair held every December in Miami, Florida, held a modified show this year. For those of us who have gone since its beginning in 2005, it was a flashback memory. The show was held in the same place where it started, and it felt like those in the first few years. Except with some new requirements — a high tech temperature checker as you walked in, one-way traffic, timed and limited entrances and social distancing everywhere. You could also remotely walk the show from home in 3D, an experience Terry really enjoyed!
As always, there were incredible new design objects — some fit for your house and others needing a larger space. But we were excited about the historical design pieces for sale in a special exhibit on the main floor. It showed how antiques more than 100 years old can command high prices and look good in any house, including those with ultra-modern architecture and decor. A lot of the new is old again and old is repurposed.
Here are some of our favorites from the show.
“Awake NY Tee,” an exclusive limited-edition design by Tschabalala Self. The display is backed by bottles of Fabuloso, a well-known all-purpose cleaner. The company is selling the T-shirts as a fundraiser, $50.
Hessian Hills child’s chair, by Wharton Esherick, a pioneer of American craft and studio furniture. He created a set of children’s chairs in 1925 as tuition payment for his daughter at the progressive Hessian Hills School in Croton, N.Y. While those chairs were lost in a fire, this example was made by Esherick in 1931 as part of a replacement set of which only three chairs are known to exist. Red oak and leather, Moderne Gallery, 26 1/2 by 15 1/2 by 15 in., $36,000.
“In God We Trust” chair, by Wendell Castle, 1964. A preeminent figure of the American craft movement, Castle designed this cantilevered chair during the political and social turmoil of the 1960s and its counterculture movement. The inscription is carved across the front stretcher, a unique feature in his work. Oak and leather, 46 by 42 1/2 by 28 in., $140,000.
Ethereal Series lounge chair, designed by Marc Fish, 2019. Sycamore and acrylic, ribbon-like form that mimics the system of leaf structures with midribs and veins, Todd Merill Studio, 28 in. h. by 26 in. w. by 34 in. d., $27,000.
Esperance vase, by Gaetano Pesce, 2020. Pesce’s largest form to date, made from a single sheet of resin, colored, patterned and then folded, Salon 94 Design, 65 by 42 1/2 by 55 in., $120,000.
Casserole dish, by architects Ronald Rael (1971-) and Virginia San Fratello (1971-), 2020. 3D printed micaceous clay, wood fired, $2,500 each.
Banana lamp, Model F, Studio Job, The Netherlands, 2015. A modern pop art lamp, polished bronze, etched blown glass, hand painted, with LED fittings, Carpenters Workshop Gallery, 11 3/4 by 9 3/4 by 7 3/4 in., $25,000.
Island, a lamp designed by Stuart Haygarth, England, 2016. Island is the confined home of a menagerie of exotic and native birds; their habitat is restricted, but they live side by side in harmony, illuminated by warm, soft light. Corian with a spun metal shade and ceramic bird figurines, Carpenters Workshop Gallery, 21 1/2 in. h. by 15 3/4 in. dia., $22,000.
Peanut planter, by John Follis and Rex Goode, c.1962. Architectural ceramic with an extreme horizontal design, blue glaze, solid walnut base, 12 in. by 14 3/4 in. by 63 in., $8,600.
Rudder table, designed by Isamu Noguchi, 1949. One of several iconic designs created by Noguchi for Herman Miller starting in 1947. Birch and zinc-plated steel with an asymmetrical form balanced on two hairpin legs and a third, rudder-like fin, Ponce Berga “Gallery”, 26 1/4 in. h. by 50 in. w. by 35 1/2 in. d., $69,000.