These homes are so often an escape to another world, and there is something romantic (not to mention community minded) about sourcing art that feels local and storied to create a space that feels at once yours and reflective of its setting. That said, there tends to be a locale-pervasive look that, if not reigned in, can get a little out of hand.
RxArt is a non-profit dedicated to helping children heal through the power of visual art. They commission site-specific, museum quality artwork in healthcare facilities with the goal of turning sterile spaces into engaging environments for kids.
When we meet new clients, a top question we get is: do you specialize in painting, photography, or something else? The answer is: we specialize in Modern and Contemporary art across all media -- painting, photography, prints, drawing, sculpture, etc. The main reason for this is that we are constantly evaluating how art can make a space feel more balanced and complete.
I take myself on gallery tours every other Friday. It’s a great way to make sure I (and Mason Lane) am up to date on all of the art and happenings going on in NYC. The thing is, it can be INCREDIBLY daunting at first so I figured I’d share my own approach. Below is my step-by-step process for planning your very own gallery tour.
Everyone loves a good brunch AND it's a staple for Mother’s Day, but if you’re seeking an alternative, we’ve got 4. You can do them anywhere and anytime, but clearly Mother’s Day Weekend is a great time to start:
Buying art it tough. DUH that’s why we have a business. And the main reason WHY it’s tough? THERE ARE TOO MANY OPTIONS. It’s like trying to order on Seamless Web — option overload. One simple way to break it down, and focus on art that’s best suited to your interests (whether you’re buying, looking, sourcing for someone else) is to break it down by market: PRIMARY MARKET and SECONDARY MARKET. Here’s a tutorial:
Some of you may have seen me on Instagram in fancy headphones talking about our designer consults. First, the headphones are these and they offer better sound/make me feel important, and second, here's what a designer recently said about our consults:
Guys: running a biz takes a village, and I’m happy to share my latest secret to life long happiness: VET YOUR VILLAGE. Make damn sure that they check all the boxes. And before I praise my favorite vendors ever, let’s spell out those boxes:
The big Spring Auctions are coming up in NY and at our recent team meeting, said team had some questions. And I had answers that we were all surprised to learn, and I hadn’t previously shared. I spent a few years at Christie’s, went to Sotheby’s institute (which provides a useful window into auction house life) and dealt with the major houses through other jobs, so the way these auctions work is ingrained in me. Here’s how they relate to you, budding and curious art fan:
It’s exciting to get in early on a project like this WIP Toronto house. With a blank slate, we want to explore different mediums, proportions, a neutral vs colorful palette… We are getting SO excited that we starting brainstorming ideas.
The best part of getting in early is that we can preserve an “art wall” in this room. Meaning: we have the opportunity to collaborate with the team (architect, contractor and designer) to ensure we have no plugs in the way, no awkward switches or fixtures to work around! Yay for teamwork!
Remember when we went out to Quogue to see this new build? Well guess what!? Things have happened since that fine fall day. The house has windows, electricity, and even some walls... [running water is TBD]...and a completion date of April may have been in an email but let's just say May to be safe. We've bought over 15 pieces for this gorgeous Hampton getaway and wallpaper, art lighting, paint colors are more are all part of the conversation with the clients, designers, and build-team OH MY. Here's the latest.
Wallpaper is quite on trend and I’m proud to say Katharine and I got in on that early. Years ago we shared ideas, sources, and [strong] opinions on wallpapering our own homes and I may have gone to some extreme lengths to get the right papers for very specific needs. And it was worth it because good spaces = endless enjoyment. Here’s the rundown:
Since beginning to work with Mason Lane in October, I've started to get why art matters. It's not that I didn't get it beforehand, but I hadn't really thought about it. I have a finance background, love design, and swoon over pretty homes... but I've always gone for a quick fix on the wall thinking that paying any extra money or attention made no marginal difference. After 4 months with this team, I'm a convert! Here's what I've learned about why art matters:
Gallery walls are tough for even the Above Average Joe. And when the DIY efforts don't look IG-worthy, the whole process is deflating. We know. We've come to the rescue many times while promoting our view that gallery walls are a DDIY (Don't DIY) project. But let's take this one step further and address the STAIRCASE GALLERY WALL. It’s a lil bit daunting. But here’s what you need to know, how to estimate costs, and what you should outsource (and to whom)…
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:
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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: