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By Robin Hodes | Photo: by Kim Sargent | August 3, 2018
The enviable collection of contemporary art and sculpture that grace this Palm Beach residence speaks volumes about the owners.
“The Kiss Was Beautiful.” It’s a simple statement on a work by neon artist and cultural phenomenon Tracey Emin that hangs in the hallway of this showstopping Palm Beach home. It is switched on to glow at all times, not just when company arrives. That fact in itself demonstrates that the owners’ curated assortment of art, obtained through globe-trotting, gallery-hopping and yearly visits to Art Basel in Miami, is meant to bring joy to themselves alone. When visitors admire it, that’s just an added bonus.
The residence, at just over 9,000 square feet with six bedrooms, was designed by Kenneth Alpert of KA Design Group, a firm based in New York City, from where the residents also hail. However, the wife is not one to sit back and just let it happen. She was fully immersed in the process and handselected every item down to the cocktail napkins. “I love shopping. It hits my fancy, and I can make a decision very definitively, so it came together rather quickly,” she recounts.
There is truly something to capture the eye and spark conversation in every room. The decor shows an appreciation for nature via shades of sand and sky, with a touch of elegance that’s inspiring without being overpowering—and, best of all, has an edge—most often as a result of the courageous art selections. “I’m not afraid of color,” says the wife, and, clearly, she is also fearless when it comes to what hangs on her walls—or in the case of groundbreaking sculptor Nick Cave’s “Soundsuit,” a faceless, life-size mannequin covered in thousands of metallic buttons that graces the dining room, standing near the home’s stairwell, masterly overseeing all who come and go on a daily basis.
Rich espresso finishes throughout, a sunny lemon-colored breakfast area, a sea of blues flowing through the living room to the study and even delicious soft pinks in the master-bedroom sitting area create a rainbow as breathtaking as any you’d see in a summery Palm Beach sky. At certain times, the room was designed around the art, while at others, the perfect piece was chosen to complement it. No matter which came first, the end result is a rousing design success.
The house was first built as a spec home, until the wife cleared the clutter of architectural wall details to make way for the couple’s abundant, ever-growing art collection. Nowhere will you find a chair rail or applied molding… just piece after piece of glorious modern artwork that speak eloquently in words, colors and textures—making this Palm Beach home one of the island’s standout gems.