This is again a pair of freestanding houses we built side by side. The floor plans and structures of the two houses were almost identical but the use of materials gave them each a distinctive flavor. The dark red brick with white stone quoins gave one house its Georgian style while the white rubble stone front and the Art Deco door grilles gave the other one a French Provence look. The front entrance porticos were paneled with gilded lettering on the entablature. Each of the houses had its own detached garage.
The French house was the precursor to the Art Deco Apartment in the Four Seasons. The client commissioned us to build the house for her because she was a bit tired of her old house without many modern conveniences. At the time she was living in a large nondescript house built in the 1930s in the upscale Forest Hill neighborhood that had never been renovated. The house was eventually sold and torn down to make way for a new and bigger non-descript house.
The client was a lover of French art and design. She collected Art Deco pieces and French Impressionist paintings. We set out to design a house that was compact but was laid out precisely to house her furniture and painting collection.
The exquisitely detailed front entrance lead into a gem of a lobby. The floor was highly polished salmon colored marble with inlaid borders. The ceiling was divided into panels and trimmed in custom made Art Deco plaster moldings. Through the wide openings, to the left was the living room and to the right was the dining room. The hardwood floors there were trimmed with boldly patterned inlaid borders.
The stair in the narrow hallway was a graceful serpentine shape with French Art Deco balustrade. The curved stair fitted the space like a glove. The treads were bleached Canadian white maple.
The white marble fireplace mantel in the living room was also designed in Art Deco style with full height fluted pilasters and a concave backdrop above the fireplace opening.
The 1920s Art Deco ceiling light fixtures with ribbed glass shades were refitted to suit the outlets provided by us in the rooms.
Lattice work on front door grilled
Fire grille by Edgar Brandt a perfect match to the white marble veins
French bronze object above fireplace
Pair of Art Deco club chairs
Scroll work on iron balustrade
Small urn on top of newel posts
Lalique & Daum Art Deco glass
Art Deco dining table and chairs
Ruhlmann sideboard and cabinet
The French Art Deco style of the Roaring ’20s was immortalized by the work of its craftsmen who competed with each other to create the most beautiful and astounding pieces that wowed the world. Jean Puiforcat’s silver articles, Robert Mallet-Stevens’ modern architectural designs, Edgar Brandt’s bronze pieces, Pierre Chareau’s Macassar ebony work, Eileen Gray’s breathtaking designs, Raoul Dufy’s graphic design, Emile-Jacques Ruhlmann’s furniture and interior design and Le Corbusier’s sculptural buildings – all represented the epitome of that epoch.