Modern Art And Vintage Furnishings Coexist In A Fun Miami Home

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living area with wood screen,...

A GaHee Park artwork is affixed to a screen by Dea Italiana in the living area, brightening the space. 10.Studio sourced Philip Arctander’s Clam chairs from an Aguttes auction. Martin Eisler and Carlo Hauner’s Costela lounge chair and ottoman from Piasa rest next to CB2’s Tri side tables.

living area with wood wall,...

Artwork by Jordi Ribes hangs against a living area wall of French oak from Pianeta Legno Floors. Eny Lee Parker’s Oo floor lamp breaks up de Sede’s Snake sofa from DDC. Cassina’s Rio coffee table tops a Brazilian rug.

dining area with wood screen,...

In the dining area, a Genesis Tramaine painting enhances a screen by Dea Italiana that separates this space from the living area. Beneath the 1950s Italian chandelier sit a table and chairs by Martin Eisler and Carlo Hauner. Studio Atomic oversaw the lighting design for portions of the project.

hallway with wood floors, glass...

French oak flooring from Pianeta Legno Floors lines a hallway adorned with an Emily Mae Smith piece leading to a Nicolas Party work. Dea Italiana fabricated the wine cellar with a wood floor and walls by Oscar Ono.

child's bedroom with pink walls,...

Art by Super Future Kid decorates the daughter’s bedroom, where Ducduc’s Litchfield bed—wearing Serena & Lily sheets—rests on ABC Carpet & Home’s Beni rug. Astro Lighting’s Enna wall sconce is from Lightology.

child's bedroom with pink walls,...

Above a Kim Markel chair, an RH picture lamp illuminates a Dora Dalila Cheffi piece in the custom desk; to the left is a Szabolcs Bozó work. Phillip Jeffries’ Chromatic wallcovering in Mauve Madness envelops the room.

bedroom with white walls, three...

Benjamin Moore’s Decorator’s White backs the primary bedroom’s Otani Workshop and Jordi Ribes artworks. Thomas Hayes Studio tables holding Astep lamps frame Poltrona Frau’s Times bed. A Finn Juhl sofa, custom bench, rug from ABC Carpet & Home and Design Within Reach pendants complete the look.

Most homeowners bring sentimental items and treasured decor with them when relocating to a new residence. Designers Cristina Hoyos and Melanie Weber’s clients, however, arrived with more than a few beloved pieces: a vast art collection, numbering some 400 works by emerging contemporary artists. Although not each one would be displayed, the Venezuelan couple still required a home that would accommodate their acquisitions while remaining suitable for life with three young children. With a few improvements, a structure they discovered on a lush lot had the potential to meet their needs. “They wanted to focus on their art, the walls and the lighting, both inside and out,” Hoyos says.

Architect Alfonso Jurado and builder Eduardo Arenas partnered for the renovation, a major focus of which was to bring as much natural light as possible inside and to create a more open plan. To do so, they eliminated key walls, including between the living and dining rooms, and added full-length windows to the living area. The latter now has enormous views of the Caribbean-inspired grounds by landscape designer Mercedes Porcari, who installed plantings such as ferns, ginger flowers and gardenias around the owners’ outdoor sculptures. “We wanted to create a functional but tropical space,” she says. “It’s romantic and as natural as it could be.” Jurado and Arenas also relocated the primary bedroom from its original ground-floor location to the second floor and improved the transition between the living and dining areas by looking up: “In rejigging the ceiling trusses, we created a vaulted look throughout that entire space,” the architect says.

Most walls were painted white to create a neutral backdrop for the art, yet the owners embraced an element the designers encouraged to warm up the home’s museum-like quality: lightly stained oak woodwork—the more, the better. “We suggest wood all the time to clients, but they’re usually scared to have too much of it,” Weber laughs. “We think there is never too much.” In addition to installing millwork throughout the residence, “we used engineered wood flooring in the living and dining areas and the same paneling on the walls,” Arenas adds. Flush frameless doors in the space remain concealed, creating a seamless look.

Although the updated floor plan produced the bright openness the owners desired, the reduced wall space created a daunting task for the designers: determining where and how to display art. “That became a challenge throughout the house,” Weber acknowledges. “During every call, the husband asked, ‘Where am I going to put this piece? Does it fit on this wall?’” One solution was constructed between the dining and living areas: a slatted oak screen equipped with hooks, letting the homeowners easily hang—and swap out—art from both sides while allowing light to pass through. The husband also proposed the idea of installing a ceiling-mounted hanging system, used often by museums, keeping many walls free of nail holes.

Within the new framework, the designers considered ways to imbue a sophisticated yet cozy vibe without drawing attention away from the art. Coincidentally, just like he had amassed their collection, the husband gravitated toward the value and meaning behind vintage furnishings, which augmented the tone set in each space. “In all of our work, we incorporate some midcentury pieces,” Hoyos notes. “The husband realized he loved this style and could collect pieces like art.” Treating the process in a similar investment manner, he researched the makers and stories behind items such as the dining area’s midcentury modern mahogany table and cane chairs, both complementing the nearby screen, and the living area’s reupholstered Costela chair and ottoman. Maintaining a clean look, the designers focused on a neutral palette and natural materials, including raffia-like rugs throughout and vintage sheepskin chairs in the living area.

Not every piece is decades old, however. The team mixed in contemporary items with a throwback look, like statement light fixtures and the living area’s curvy leather sofa. “These pieces float, like in a museum, so you can walk behind furniture to see the art,” Weber explains. Unsurprisingly, art also shows up in the children’s playrooms and bedrooms, which mirror the rest of the home in refined whimsy. “We wanted items that will last so the kids can grow older with them,” Hoyos says, pointing to the raffia wallcoverings and vintage rugs. Now the family is surrounded by two beloved collections of art and furniture, all under one roof—a little midcentury, a little eclectic and completely them.

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