Tour an Ellen Hamilton-Designed Florida House Full of Artwork

As first impressions go the searing panorama and ethereal warning issued by artist Whitney Bedford is a stirring welcome. Within the Vero Seashore entry the place her work hangs, the message is obvious: The artwork and artists inside are fellow inhabitants, or near it. “Whitney has been quietly doing robust work for a very long time and is somebody I’ve collected for in all probability 20 years, however this was the primary time she’s gone to this scale so I obtained very excited,” says the house owner, who purchased the trio of ink and oil panels particularly for the floating entry wall in her household’s second dwelling. “This piece is about development and decay. It speaks to local weather change—it’s obtained unbelievable punch and curiosity. I form of love that it’s the very first thing you see while you are available.”

Previous the entry into the lounge, Bedford’s potent introductory remarks shift into heady dialog, due to a shimmering bindis mirror in the lounge by India-based artist Bharti Kher. An imposing Rashid Johnson collage speaks assuredly from a chartreuse eating room wall, and actually, at each flip, the house’s fluid residing areas pulse with radiant, unabashed expression. For this New York–primarily based collector and her husband—she, an artwork college–skilled former graphic designer and longtime trustee of the Brooklyn Museum, who additionally serves on the boards of arts nonprofits Inventive Time and Pioneer Works; he, a businessman and artwork lover; and collectively, severe collectors for the final 20 years—it’s all about “the artistic side…that dialog between artwork, design, and house,” says the house owner. “These items converse to me,” she says of their assortment centered largely on modern and summary works by girls and artists of coloration. “We’re huge believers in social justice and social change, and residing with this artwork reinforces these concepts.”

ellen hamilton florida house tour pool

Thomas Loof

First, although, they needed to reinforce, or quite, reimagine, the house’s structure to raised meet their want for open areas for entertaining, ample partitions for artwork, and a straightforward, livable retreat the place their 4 grownup youngsters, quickly to be beginning households of their very own, would have loads of privateness. “We have been drawn to this home for its huge double lot,” she says of the house within the Windsor group, however an oddly angled pool and catawampus wings off the rear of the home swallowed a lot of the property, obfuscating the movement. Architect Hope Dana of Platt Dana Architects reconfigured the pool space into an inviting courtyard—and a stage for a monumental tile fee by Wisconsin-based artist Michelle Grabner—and added new visitor quarters above the storage. Dana opened the ground plan and constructed loggias to increase outside residing house on each flooring. The overhaul provides “a way of the skin even while you’re inside….The movement could be very porous,” says the architect. “The home doesn’t really feel grand, although it’s. It feels intimate.”


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Inside designer Ellen Hamilton of New York–primarily based Hamilton Design Associates constructed on that sense of intimacy to additional prep a fluid canvas for modern artwork. “We’ve labored collectively on earlier tasks and developed a shorthand,” says the house owner. Hamilton drew her Florida-meets-Milan inspiration from her shoppers’ Italian heritage “however with a Twenty first-century aptitude.” To wit: Italian walnut cabinetry and terrazzo flooring, with customized stuccoed partitions that counsel a gently aged patina. Fornace Brioni tile within the kitchen and the house owners’ lavatory provides clever graphic dimension, as does Gucci laminated wallpaper on a visitor room wardrobe. “That was Ellen pushing the envelope. As a substitute of conventional closets she stated let’s do one thing cool, and he or she is aware of I’ve the urge for food for that,” the house owner says.

What Hamilton didn’t know, nevertheless, all through the two-year strategy of designing the house, was which artwork items her shopper was deciding on and the place these works would possibly find yourself. The proprietor didn’t precisely know both—the big Johnson (the one piece Hamilton noticed prior) and the Bedford piece have been the one ones she’d prepegged, due to their measurement. Others she pulled from storage or different locations as a result of they’d come alive in Florida’s mild. “It’s so completely different from New York or wherever else; it begs to have high-impact artwork and coloration,” says the proprietor. “I like the artistic side of curating the artwork we dwell with, however I don’t consider artwork as decor or needing to go along with the decor. We purchase items that transfer us, after which it’s enjoyable to determine the way it all works collectively.”

ellen hamilton florida house tour kitchen

Thomas Loof

Which made set up day enjoyable, particularly when the house owners’ artwork supply truck arrived concurrently with Hamilton’s furnishings picks. “We have been completely blown away as we watched these items come off the truck,” says Hamilton. A Hassan Hajjaj portrait was hung within the breakfast nook, the place it appears to have impressed the kitchen’s yellow and black tile, however no. The eating space salon wall—a collage of portraiture and different “smalls”—got here collectively seamlessly and harmoniously with Hamilton’s glossy banquette and Ulivi Salotti chairs. A Svenja Deininger summary was hung in a visitor bed room, the place it sings towards Hamilton’s hushed rose palette. “The surfaces of her work are so superb, and I like her use of coloration,” says the house owner. “It felt made to go in that room.”

Effectively, maybe, however not by overt design or easy luck. Name it destiny by dialog, by being intuitively in sync with one’s co-collaborator. “The artwork is such a self-expression of my shopper, our muse,” says Hamilton. “It’s solely becoming that the design mirrors that simultaneous expression.”

VERANDA Magazine

Featured in our September/October 2022 subject. Inside Design by Hamilton Design Associates; Structure by Hope Dana; Consulting Architect: Hoos Structure; Panorama Design by Hoos Structure and Aiello Panorama; Pictures by Thomas Loof; Styling by Mieke Ten Have; Written by Stephanie Hunt.

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