#MaddieinMiami: What Art Basel Is Like for A Newbie

Last month I went to Art Basel Miami Beach on behalf of Mason Lane. As a newbie to that fair /entire scene, there was a lot to take in. I went to 9 number of fairs, 2 private collections, and 1 beach across 4 days, and here’s what I learned:

Mason Lane Goes North

Mason Lane Goes North

Big News:  Our friend Laura Mann is taking Mason Lane beyond Brooklyn.  

Bigger News: She has GREAT. TASTE.

Laura Mann is an art and design groupie  based in Toronto. She’s bringing in a whole NEW roster of artists, galleries, and creative ideas that don’t make their way south of the border. So, with that, we are pleased to introduce Mason Lane Canada.

This Year's ONE Resolution

This Year's ONE Resolution

HAPPY FIRST DAY OF RESOLUTION IMPLEMENTATION. For those who have worked out, eaten kale and meditated already today: CONGRATS. I’m not one of you. BUT I do jump onto the New Year’s resolution band wagon and enjoy a fresh opportunity to goal set. And the best news ever is that my ONE resolution of 2019 doesn’t just benefit me — IT CAN HELP YOU! YAY! LET’S DRINK TO THAT! Ew, never mind, I’m off alcohol for a half day — but here it is, my declared resolution of 2019: BE. MORE. BALANCED.

5 Reasons Why November Has Been Awesome


1: Lots of projects are looking VERY good.


2: We sold a Nir Hod piece from our Most Liked IG Post Ever.
This babe is en route to Tribeca.


3: Our Experience Gift Guide is up on the blog.


4: Smitten Films x Mason Lane is here.
Your silver bullet answer to the BEST. GIFT. EVER.


5: This month’s discovery: Lev Khesin
Love the texture, color, and three dimensionality of this new find.

Our Experience Gift Guide

Clearly everyone and their mother is publishing and swooning over gift guides this time of year. These are fun for the first few minutes and then they’re not when you realize you’re bombarded with 100 things to buy for everyone everywhere. As a general rule, I value experience over materials (which is why we make the experience of making your space more complete so enriching). And bonus point: science agrees; having meaningful experiences with people proves to lead to greater happiness, more memories, and less clutter. On that note, here’s our short and sweet Experience Gift Guide of 2018.

Current Project Run Down For this Pre Holiday Special Moment

Oh HEY, Holiday Rush! It’s been a while. Here’s what we’re working on, art we’re seeing, and how a few projects are really shapin’ up before we sing Jingle Bells into the New Year.


What. A. Month. Here’s info on our new designer program, how we save client cash, and more.

1. We organized and sponsored the 1st Annual Cobble Hill Halloween Window Painting Day.

This was a spirited community affair through which children ages 6-12 were given a full supply bag to use to paint an assigned retail window on Court Street. Here’s why it was a total win.

Budding artist in action

Budding artist in action

2. Interior Designers: we’ve got your backs…

…MORE THAN EVA. Check out our bigger + better trade program with various ways we support you.

Design by one of our faves,  Ali Reeve Design.

Design by one of our faves, Ali Reeve Design.

3. You’re Invite to our biz growth forum with LuAnn Nigara.

Nov. 14th, 7pm. Limited spots, RSVP required.

Design Podcast Host of “A Well-Designed Business”

Design Podcast Host of “A Well-Designed Business”

4. Efficiency is still our favorite word.

And we hired Melissa Byczek to keep it that way. (And ultimately, save client $$$).

We love our organizational fairy Godmother.

We love our organizational fairy Godmother.

5. This month’s discovery: Montreal artist Nicolas LaChance.

Because emerging Canadian art is too gorg to miss.

LOVE. THESE. TOGETHER. Pic from Galerie Rene Blouin.

LOVE. THESE. TOGETHER. Pic from Galerie Rene Blouin.

The Story Of The 1st Annual Cobble Hill Halloween Window Painting Day

In my hometown outside New York City, there was an Annual Halloween Window Painting Contest that drove a lot of anticipation in my house. My mom marked the registration date in her planner, I sketched out designs in advance, and my grandparents spectated on event day. It was always cold, so we brought gallons of hot chocolate to share with fellow budding artists. To be honest, we weren’t event that into Halloween — just the concept of painting with The People in a relatively public forum. I’m SO proud that as a Brooklynite, mom, art-business owner and community volunteer, we recreated that experience yesterday at the 1st Annual Cobble Hill Halloween Window Painting Day.

Getting Gorgeous, Unique Home Pieces Just Got Easier

Last Friday I went to Field + Supply. It’s a GORGEOUS crafts fair in Kingston, New York at the Hutton Brickyards. There’s a lot to discuss. The location on the Hudson, the bonfires, the smell of bonfires, and the artisanal everything were all simply wonderful. But my favorite news to share is that this fair, and the buzz it has generated, has completely changed the market for beautiful, hand crafted pieces. And finding, owning, and loving them just got easier.

Our Biz Philosophies

I recently learned through a new favorite podcast that people are increasingly working with and working for companies that represent their values. And vice versa- they’re NOT working with and for those that don’t. This got me thinking (while running in the POURING 2 days ago) what are our values and business philosophies? What does MaLa represent? WELL, here’s what I’ve got in the 3 areas that came to mind first:

A Lot of Current Projects are Looking Very Good

A Lot of Current Projects are Looking Very Good

Our current projects go through many phases from initial site visits to final installs, and it's rare that we're doing a lot of installs all at once. BUT, that moment has come lots of installs for 3 projects are happening simultaneously. Funnily enough, art installers are ALSO having a moment and my go-tos are all booked/having babies/not available, so this is a new juggle. Not all current installs are necessarily the FINAL situation, but seeing this kind of progress is objectively exciting. Here are the updates: 

How One Mama/Daughter Duo Take On the Art Scene (And Bond Over It)

My mom friend Diana and I recently chatted over drinks about kid-related city outings. I had just brought my girls (ages 4 and 2) to the Met’s Heavenly Bodies exhibit (ie the “Fancy Dress Show”). She had similarly brought her 5 year old there, though apparently Fiamma subsequently requested to see the decorative arts rooms, the Temple of Dendur, the Modern Art exhibit, and more. As it turns out, this is standard for Fiamma, and it’s because Diana has crafted artsy adventures for her and her mini since forever. Together they explore, obsess, and bond over artsy things throughout the 5 boroughs. It puts us all to shame/is totally inspiring. So here lies the first Q+A blog we’ve done to share how Diana leverages the city’s art scene to bond with, and instill a cultural appreciation in, her daughter.

Three Art Related Charities That Are Awesome

The art world can be QUITE diverse; there’s art of VASTLY different quality (think Etsy buys vs. Koons sculptures), insane price ranges ($0 to nearly $500,000,000), and events for everyone vs. exclusive buttoned up affairs. All in all, the art world has a prevailing reputation of being exclusive and expensive. That said, it’s clearly not just that, and today I’d like to point to three arts-related organizations that are supporting awesome charitable causes.

Tips for Artists Who Enjoy Selling Art

I've recently learned that quite a few artists follow me on Instagram, which is SUCH a fun fact since I thought my following them was one sided.  But considering I have this audience AND an informed point of view on the art buying process , I thought I’d share some unsolicited advice for artists who enjoy selling art.

Five Reasons Why August Has Been Awesome

August was all about discoveries. From new artists to biz development we are SO excited to show you and our clients what we've learned recently. 


Our fall kick-off event is at Flavor Paper. 

Email us for deets on the 45 min tour of this crazy wallpaper factory in Brooklyn. 


Four NEW IGTVs are live. 

Topics include art investment and frame trends. 


We tried on options for Project Nice View. Here's what worked, what didn't, and why.


Our fall workshop on Art Sourcing for Designers is coming. It's at Bungalow 5's NY Showroom and there may even be a swag bag.

Twilight, 48x60.jpg

NEW FIND: Karine Leger's abstracts. 

Favorite part: the color palates. They're the fan favorite rec for our Jess Cooney-designed Berkshire House Project. 


In June we committed to donating 10% of proceeds from new client business through the summer to Raices Texas. We just did it, and thanks to everyone who supported these efforts. Let's keep working to #reuniteeverychild. 

Trying On Art, for Project Nice View

Last week we got 15 impressive artworks into our client's East Village apartment on approval. This means that we sent pieces the client was seriously interested in buying into her space to see them on the walls.  NO ONE dislikes this service; seeing options that make your space better and picking favorites is objectively fun. BUT the results are always surprising. Here are the winners and rejects from last week's session: 

Project Hey Hey NJ

Project Hey Hey NJ is a major house project of our summer and progress is happening. Here's the story: Nice couple with cute baby moved to this quaint yet expansive NJ home one year ago…

Instagram's Choice: Art Sources Under $2k

Last week I asked our IG followers -- presumably like-minded art + design groupies --  to help us create a list of sources for art under $2k. The responses was AWESOME and it does feel warm and fuzzy to create and engage with an IG community. AND now we have over 25 new sources to check out.  I haven't verified pricing on these, but it's exciting to even peak at the variety of artists across these pages, creating photography, painting, works on paper and more, and from the US and abroad.  Hopefully this is the first of many mutually beneficial crowdsourcing attempts so high five to all. 

HERE'S THE LIST (in no particular order): 

What Makes Art Good?

Art ranges in price from $0 to hundreds of millions of dollars, and a common misconception is that it's totally subjective.  YES, it is, but so is food, fashion, music, and many other things in life and there's still a general consensus on what's good quality and what's not. Art is no different, except that in general, people are less confident assessing it because they're not nearly as exposed to art as they are to food, fashion and music.