We look at some of the new residential developments where art takes centre stage, and discover how designers are incorporating art into their residential designs.
Mentioned in the Luxury Investment Index of Knight Frank’s 2020 Wealth Report, art is one of the most ‘coveted objects of desire’, and has long been a prized possession. Throughout the years, hotels around the world have noticed this and made use of their public spaces to share amazing artworks, displaying curated exhibits within suites, restaurants, hotel rooms and lobbies – but a new trend has recently appeared on the horizon.
Within the residential property sphere, developers, architects and homeowners alive have started to recognise the potential for showcasing artwork in their homes. Artists and galleries have started working with developers and designers to create ‘live in’ galleries, both for private homes and newly launched show homes. Intrigued by this new artistic trend, we found some examples of developments using ‘galleries’ in their show properties, and spoke to some designers about how they have started to incorporate artwork when designing homes.
When designing Regent’s Crescent, international architecture and interiors studio Millier chose to incorporate prints from the 1800s, giving an insight to the rich history of the Crescent; they also chose art pieces with botanical themes to reflect the Regency Era inspiration through nature.
“When specifying art for show apartments in developments, it is important to consider the audience and wider appeal; the pieces cannot be too taste dividing and have to translate across all cultures,” Millier’s creative director, Helen Westlake, explains. “In all of our selections the context of the building plays a key part in the pieces we curate for the interior.”
The interior scheme within Regent’s Crescent is a careful balance of contemporary and classical detailing, which is something Millier have carried through into the artwork chosen for the development. “Some pieces are more sculptural and abstract, whilst others reflect a more classical technique, such as oil paintings,” says Westlake.
“Where contemporary pieces are selected, they draw inspiration through tones and brush strokes from art of the 1800s,” she continues. “The eclectic mix of styles and references is very much reflective of the Regency Period. Artwork can also be incorporated thought specialist features such as oversized headboard panels with a more classical eglomise glass technique.”
As the first residential scheme for developers Clivedale London, The Mansion features the best in international design, offering contemporary living in a classically styled building. Featuring only 23 properties, The Mansion offers its residents some of the finest amenities of any residential development in London, and is situated just behind Bond Street tube station, on the border of two of the city’s most well-known boroughs – Marylebone and Mayfair.
To dress one of The Mansion’s penthouses, Clivedale London chose to partner with international furniture brand Poliform, and the avant-garde Italian art specialists, Tornabuoni Art. With Poliform creating a beautiful furnished interior for the penthouse, Tornabuoni Art has chosen to compliment the furniture brand’s work by transforming the three bedroom duplex penthouse into a ‘live in’ gallery.
Floor to ceiling windows flood the apartment with natural light, creating the perfect back drop for the stunning art collection; the natural light also enhances the beauty and grandeur of the blue-chip art collection. The new ‘live in’ art gallery includes works by Lucio Fontana and Alighiero Boetti, and has been exclusively curated from Tornabuoni Art’s acclaimed collection to create the perfect ‘live in’ gallery within The Mansion’s penthouse.
Image: Michael Sinclair
Striking the balance between architectural heritage and 21st Century living, Chelsea Barracks is a new development of residences, townhouses and public garden squares in Belgravia. Behind the interior design for the development’s lobbies, resident lounges and show apartment was multi award-winning luxury interior design studio, Elicyon – a studio that has always seen art as a powerful, important aspect of its projects.
“Personally, it gives me a lot of joy to source, layer or build an interior design scheme around an important piece or collection. What is particularly enjoyable is that art and craft have a fluid synergy in my mind,” says Elicyon’s founder, Charu Gandhi. “The focus on – and value of – art in new projects and development launches has a natural synergy with our inherent interest in art.”
Image: Michael Sinclair
In Chelsea Barracks, Elicyon’s scope of art work covers everything from acquiring objet from antique markets to commissioning craft pieces. In the Botanist-inspired meeting rooms, curated art pieces range from acrylic on canvas, to ink pigment and gold leaf. In the show apartment, the team used artwork to draw the eye across the rooms, which Gandhi says is “particularly potent to add a layer of personality and depth to a show project.”
In the lobby, Elicyon commissioned Geraldine Larkin to create a piece for the development. “[It’s] inspired by the shifting sands, abstracted into a hand embroidered panel,” says Gandhi. “The beauty of our commissioning this piece is that it ties in with our bespoke rug, inspired by the materiality of chalk – they both are abstracted interpretations of the shifting and settling of earth, and create a very evocative design.”
Go to the next page for more examples, and tips on showcasing art: