KHOURI GUZMAN BUNCE LIMITED
Rarely does furniture design strike me as so beautiful and the details so thoughtful that I’m jealous I didn’t think of it myself. As a contant seeker of the best new design I am always looking for innovative ways of thinking but what usually grabs my attention is design that takes the best cues from past masters and pushes it into the future. That’s exactly how I feel about KGB Limited, the stunning showroom in Chelsea combining the talents of architects David Khouri and Roberto Guzman with Christiaan Bunce’s furniture and art expertise.
I met David Khouri and Roberto Guzman over 15 years ago and always admired their architecture knowledge and expertise with materials. David and Roberto both hold Bachelor and Master degrees from Columbia in architecture and founded Comma in 1998. Their architecture work has been widely published in the US, Europe and Japan. Christiaan Bunce studied Fine Arts at the University of Washington and founded Girth Design in 1999 focusing on furniture design. He expanded the business in 2004 to include interior design as well. Christiaan has also taught sculpture and furniture design at Pratt since 2001. In 2010 they joined forces and created the stellar furniture design company Khouri Guzman Bunce Limited in a beautiful sparklingly white gallery space in Chelsea on West 25th Street. The floor gleams with I don’t know how many coats of an epoxy white resin, but I’ll say with a couple more you’ll probably be able to see your reflection and the details on the bases of the exquisite furniture designs on display.
In addition to the details of some of the pieces like the Gavilan barstool and Duran and Frazier tables -with their flush mount screws connecting elegant, slender warm silicon bronze legs together in such a beautiful way- there is in integrity and timelessness to the materials used in every piece they design. Sure, I see Italian masters Gio Ponti, Ico and Luisa Parisi as well as American sculptor Scott Burton as influence in some of these designs but they’ve inspired them in ways that are so new and details that make you want to touch every material and investigate the thoughtful assemblage of these pieces further. The upholstered pieces that have already become new classics in my mind, like the Mayweather and Famechon sofas, Mancini chair bring jolts of color and texture to the tables and cabinets on display. They’ve even collaborated with a textile designer who created a fabric out of moult peacock feathers and rayon giving the seat to the gravity- defying Mancini bench an other worldly iridescence and elegance.
As a professor of an advanced materials and finishes course at Parsons for many years I strive to think about the uses of materials and the properties that make them perfect for certain applications in interior design and custom furniture design. Khouri Guzman Bunce combines marble, wood and metal in delicate but sensual ways that take detail to another level. The Demarco dining table and side tables accomplish what I’ve always wanted to design myself, a pedestal table that is both sculptural and is an alternative to the eponymous Saarinen dining table combining form + function. And the blackened steel base of the Overlin sofa table supporting the curvy block of statuary marble also elicits the same visual harmony to my eye. Combining Japanese Sen wood and silicon bronze the Saxton cabinets and side table float above the ground with a center leg and two back legs and the Johansson cabinet juxtaposes exotic walnut burl with lacquered aluminum in a piercing green with milled copper pulls of linear precision.
There is a mastery of materials that these pieces have captured and will continue to be at the top of my list for future projects when clients are looking for timeless design and auction worthy furniture of tomorrow and beyond. Thanks so much to David Khouri and Roberto Guzman for sharing your exquisite designs with The Gilded Owl and to Ford Lininger for making it happen.
Khouri Guzman Bunce is located at 555 West 25th Street, 2nd Floor New York, NY 10001
Downloadable PDF catalog
All photos by Andy Goldsborough
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