8 American-Made Furnishings Stun In The Desert Sun


Joshua Tree National Park’s sublime desert landscape serves as a dramatic backdrop for handcrafted, American-made furnishings.

Photos by The Ingalls

Life Form

To achieve the Maurice Floor Lamp’s melting, scale-like texture, Santa Fe furniture designer Natan Moss rolls, shapes and fires each ceramic tendril before meticulously adhering them to the lamp’s base. Compared to Moss’ smaller vessels, these larger forms can take up to three days to compose. Tactile and life-like, Moss named the head-turning series after Maurice Sendak’s book, Where The Wild Things Are, after seeing a resemblance between its otherworldly characters and his work. lawson-fenning.com

Origin Story

Ceramicist Jonathan Cross is drawn to the natural world, namely forms found in American southwest geology and archaeology. These sources of inspiration are evident in Cross’ Side Tables, which come to life in his Joshua Tree studio using the rammed earth technique. Cross begins by layering and compressing different clays, eventually excavating the desired form from a solid clay block. The figure is left to dry for a month before being loaded into a wood-fired kiln where it is transformed into stone. thefutureperfect.com

Going Green

With its ripple-like texture and deep, energizing hue it’s hard to imagine that Ryan Belli’s Arches Dining Chair is conceived from solid wood. The furniture designer strived to drastically transform the raw material from its natural state in order to achieve an entirely new form. While the color is inspired by Belli’s verdant Pasadena, California, homebase— where he imagined it perched alongside lush flora—this chair is anything but incognito surrounded by desert landscape. bellibellibelli.com

Collaborative Efforts

After years of working together on various projects, A-list designer Kelly Wearstler tapped Los Angeles-based ceramicist Morgan Peck for a nine-part ceramic collection of tableware and accent pieces. Each handmade item, including the Wall Mirror (shown), is imbued with fingerprints and impressions of its maker, giving each design unique characteristics. Peck counts everything from Midcentury car fins to Legos and stone formations as sources of inspiration for the line, which is exclusively available through Wearstler’s online gallery. kellywearstler.com

Perch Perfect

Behold Bari Ziperstein’s series of outdoor-friendly clay side tables. Resembling gears in motion, Tall Hex (left) and Double Tier Hex (center) take cues from industrial, Brutalist design elements, while Tall Castle (right) pays homage to Chicago’s iconic Marina City towers. Each of Ziperstein’s pieces are handmade in Los Angeles using slab building techniques, which involves forming and joining individual clay slabs together to realize a finished shape. The form is then glazed in one of the studio’s unique color combinations, like Sunset Pink or Analine Green (shown). bzippyandcompany.com

Guiding Light

LGS Studio’s Lithic Lamp is part lighting source, part sculpture. Totem-esque in size and arrangement, layers of stain and glaze are applied to each hand-carved ceramic sphere to achieve its volcanic rock appearance. Founders Thomas Renaud and Noel Hennessy begin by mapping out the design, sketching the shape before determining how it will be assembled in their Los Angeles studio. The duo have christened their designs “new relics” in an ongoing quest to create work that is not tied to a particular time or place. lgsstudio.com