Ultimate Home Tour: The Entrance

<< Back to Robb Report, April 2005
  • Samantha Brooks

Designer James Magni claims that in his 25 years as a designer, he has never seen an art collection as stunning as the one that belongs to his clients who own this Beverly Hills house. The owners, a retired industrialist and his wife, who is a trustee of Los Angeles’ Museum of Contemporary Art, wanted Magni to maintain a simple palette that would not compete with their art collection, which includes large-scale works by Ed Ruscha, David Hockney, Joel Shapiro, Cindy Sherman, and Barbara Kruger.
 
“However, in a house of this size—13,000 square feet—too much contemporary art can make the space feel so singular,” says Magni, who suggested combining historic and contemporary furnishings to avoid a sense of homogeneity. “When they first heard the word ‘antiques,’ I think they flinched a little, but the pluralism of the historic pieces made it more cosmopolitan.” Among Magni’s suggestions were pieces from the Han Dynasty, Etienne Meunier (Louis XV’s personal furniture designer), and the American Art Deco period.
 
The entrance, a 3,500-square-foot space with white walls, a limestone floor, and skylights, functions like a gallery. At the wife’s request, Magni installed a pair of glass and stainless steel doors that open to a limestone bridge hovering over a koi pond. “She selected each door so that it would match the house,” recounts Magni. “It’s an organic and dramatic experience to walk through the space with water flowing over the sidewalls.” At the far end of the bridge is a second set of doors, behind which is a long hallway that leads to another fountain.

Modern, but not minimal, the viewable spaces off the entrance radiate with luxe furnishings, such as a pink sharkskin cabinet, an 18-foot-long mahogany bronze table, and a 40-foot-long handmade beige silk rug that took more than a year to make.

 

Magni Design, 323.866.0600, www.magnidesign.com

From Around the Web...
It takes about 72 hours and four glassmakers to produce each Lady of the Stars Whiskey decanter...
Cape Cod’s vanity rethinks the usual shapes in favor of a new concept that can include hidden or...
Steelia finishes are available on all door styles for Arclinea’s Italia and Convivium cabinetry...
Heritage is about reimagining classic styles, and clearly art deco was the inspiration for the...
Photo by Sean Sweeney
Duparquet handcrafts its cookware—including the made-to-order, silver-lined series—in the United...
The jagged trajectories of the 2015 His-series work shown here, Flight, demand our attention...
B&B Italia’s new shop expands the brand’s presence in Asia…
Photo by Nick Springett
An inside look at three extraordinary homes transformed by the multitalented movie star...
Agape’s Marsiglia tub is made from Cristalplant, which is soft to the touch and easy to clean…
Our ultimate home is a modern-classic beauty in Toronto…