Matt here again.
Earlier this week, I had the good fortune of attending yet another great seminar at the Boston Design Center. The speaker was the celebrated designer and architect David Easton. He presented an illustrated discussion of his works that was somewhat of a retrospective of his accomplishments. It is a stunning body of work. I was humbled by both the scale of the projects and his mastery of style and taste. For some time I have admired his work from afar, but an opportunity to be walked through his collections in person will be a life long memory.
As an architect, David has a comprehensive understanding of architectural style from the Classical through the contemporary. This coupled with his talented sense of design, enable him to first create a physical space in which he can then successfully translate the tastes of his client. David has championed the elegance of the Neoclassical, creating a number of fine homes and collections from the ground up. He showed several slides of these familiar forms that were opulently decorated with rich fabrics and fine antiques.
While I was pleased to see these honored styles still in fashion, I was impressed by the modern designs that David also presented. These spaces he created embody the contemporary mode of open living spaces and efficient layout, but at the same time retained a human scale and a sense of intimacy. David explained how these designs are in keeping with the configuration on our daily lives. Large open spaces that flow from kitchen to dining area to common spaces are more in step with how we live and entertain. Yet at the same time each space retains a partition of sorts, whether it be physical or a visual cue, that enable a more traditional treatment of these spaces. I know that the dinner parties at my home are spent primarily in the kitchen, cramped as it may be. How nice it would be have a more accommodating space.
What was most profound to me in these modern spaces, was David’s ability to retain the Classical ideal in these new settings. I have always felt that antique forms have a place in contemporary design, but until now had not seen it realized.
Imagine the clean lines of say a Clismos chair or a banjo clock set in counterpoint to a present day designs. When the items are chosen carefully, they lend a contrast that strengthens the impact of each style. The sculptural form of tall clock lends a familiar, welcome presence in these sleek spaces. Does this mean I am selling my Federal period home? No! But it does breathe a life into my world, bringing together what had seemed to be two disparate modes of style. I now envision for myself open, efficient spaces decorated with prized antiques; the uncluttered contemporary highlighting the skill and grace of early craftsmen.
Thank you David…