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  • Design
  • Issue 44

My Favorite Thing

This maquette inspired several projects for Giancarlo Valle. Words by Emilie Murphy. Photograph by Clément Pascal.

I love the models I build as part of the design process, and this one in particular. It’s a dining room for a house in Chicago for a family originally from Detroit. The home was in a former orphanage and it had monumental rooms that were sort of institutional. We were going to commission the potter Matt Merkel Hess to take motifs from important milestones and elements from Detroit history and build an iconography around that through hand-painted tiles.¹

This project has actually stalled and is no longer happening, but I’ve kept the model out because I’m so interested in the idea, and it’s going to come back. We’re renovating my house right now and Matt is doing something like this. And we also incorporated it into a house in Connecticut. One room had this old Federal-style wallpaper and we took all the motifs from the wallpaper and turned them into tiles and re-wallpapered the room. It’s one of


This story is from Kinfolk Issue Forty-Four

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