October 27, 2017

Damon Liss Creates an Artful, Stylish Penthouse in Chelsea

Designer Damon Liss curated a collection of media art and modern Brazilian furnishings to create a fashion-forward penthouse in Chelsea.

by Jill Sieracki interior designer Damon Liss Design photographer Joshua McHugh

Donzella Chandelier's Nuage plaster hanging lights by Alexandre Logé tops a BDDW Slab dining table and custom KGBL Gavilan dining chairs. Adding motorized shades to the curved windows was one of Liss's design challenges.
Donzella Chandelier’s Nuage plaster hanging lights by Alexandre Logé tops a BDDW Slab dining table and custom KGBL Gavilan dining chairs. Adding motorized shades to the curved windows was one of Liss’s design challenges.


The far end of the living room blends the neutral colors used on Chifruda
armchairs by Sergio Rodrigues from Espasso, a natural hide and brass
ottoman from Blend Interiors, and a custom Aura cream rug from Fort Street
, with pops of color, such as the red and white Ralph Pucci Mahdavi.

It was the ultimate canvas—a pristine 4,000-square-foot, three-bedroom penthouse in a new development in Chelsea. Designer Damon Liss worked with the homeowners to bring in their vast collection of media art, while still keeping the space warm and welcoming for guests.

The centerpiece of the open floor plan is the wood-burning fireplace Liss flanked with 500-pound oak millwork doors that artfully surround two 90-inch screens. "He says it's the wave of the future; it's amazing to have basically unlimited content," says the designer of his client, who uses computers hidden behind the doors to access his collection of ultra-high-resolution imagery, which ranges from serene landscapes to a boxer and a ballerina he often juxtaposes on the left and the right. "You can change the entire feel of the room almost instantaneously [by changing the images]."

Damon Liss Design
The open living room combines interactive art, such as the eight illuminated glass tubes with floating ping pong balls and the Daniel Rozin Wooden Mirror, with the fun—an acrylic Ralph Lauren foosball table—and the functional, namely Martin Eisler and Giuseppe Scapinelli chairs and a custom Karl Moss rug from Fort Street Studio.

The doors' rich wood complements the carefully curated selection of furnishings selected for the space, including midcentury chairs by Martin Eisler and Giuseppe Scapinelli, and a BDDW Slab dining table. "We introduced him to Brazilian modern furniture and he really fell in love with it," says Liss. "Most people don't want a dining room table that has a crazy v shape at the end of it, but someone that appreciates those Chifruda armchairs is likely the same person that appreciates the sculptural element of the table."

Damon Liss Design
Damon Liss designed the millwork doors, which conceal firewood and the computers that operate the two 90-inch screens used to display the couple’s collection of ultra-high-resolution photography.

Indeed, the far end of the room, dedicated to the enjoyment of music, features a pair of limited-edition Chifruda armchairs by Sergio Rodrigues from Espasso, who is considered by many to be the grandfather of modern Brazilian furniture design. "Those chairs are really special; they're almost sculptures," says Liss, of the seats, which face a pair of giant orange speakers and flank a red-and-white Ralph Pucci Mahdavi Joker table. "I would argue they are equally modern art pieces in the space."

damon liss design
The kitchen also features another screen displaying Jeffrey Blondes’ Le Grand Etang, an HD video that plays in a 24 hour loop, courtesy of Bitforms Gallery.
Damon Liss Design
A Lindsey Adelman Astral Agnes ceiling light floats above a limited-edition
Steinway Baby Grand Piano she uses with her work on Broadway.

Other unique works dominate the home—from the eight illuminated glass tubes with floating ping pong balls suspended just outside the entryway to the Wooden Mirror by Israeli-American interactive artist Daniel Rozin. (Cameras and computers cause the wall of non-reflective square wooden pixels to literally "mirror" you through as you move.) "He meets every artist personally before he purchases a piece," says Liss of his client. "He's on the cutting edge of finding new people—that's important to him."

Liss's team was also instrumental in lighting the residence, balancing the functional with the fabulous, such as Lindsey Adelman chandeliers in the living room and above a limited-edition red lacquer Steinway piano, as well as a Nuáge hanging fixture by Alexandre Logé in the dining room. Muted fabrics allow the art to shine. Says Liss, "There's so much color in the artwork, the hard objects, and the rugs, that we toned down the fabric choices so it wasn't distracting."

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