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Interiors inspiration: Suzanne Lovell on designing the penthouse of an esteemed art collector

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The Gallery

All images courtesy Suzanne Lovell Inc./Eric Piasecki

There are many things to consider when displaying fine art on board but, perhaps more important than anything else, is to brief your interior designer with your artistic tastes, the pieces already in your collection and the pieces you are considering buying so your favourites will always be in pride of place.

American interior designer Suzanne Lovell has years of experience in this area and recently undertook the renovation of a penthouse in a pre-war residence overlooking Lake Michigan. The property was initially designed by architect Howard Van Doren Shaw and now belongs to a prominent art collector who briefed Lovell to retain and restore the original features of the penthouse while reviving the residence's interior beauty with period furniture and, of course, their own art collection. Here Lovell takes us through the inspiration and process behind this stunning transformation.

The Gallery

The gallery features a gracefully arched and coffered ceiling which the team raised to achieve a grander scale and, being the entrance to the property, set the stage for elegance throughout the residence. The high gloss Venetian plaster walls, arched plaster ceiling and Nero Portoro marble floor not only balance one another but emphasise the refined setting.

The wrapped leather chandeliers are inspired by Jacques Adnet and were created by the team in collaboration with Mathieu Lustrerie while Art Deco lamps in alabaster and nickelled bronze grace a De Coene Frères sideboard from the 1930s. Idolo by Wifredo Lam and a 1953 brass kinetic sculpture, Construction by Sidney Gordin, further complement the space. An important pair of Jansen Modernist consoles circa-1950s are placed opposite the Frères sideboard, adding to the visual balance of the gallery. The south wall holds Campo Amor Vist Oeste, Havana, Cuba by Andrew Moore, illustrating the remains of a bygone era.

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