The Best of the Rest

Left to Right: Globe Stand: Edward Wormley for Rand McNally, Circa 1955. Gary Stier on a 1960s sofa. Sofa: Paul Evans Chrome and Burl.
 

Assemblage, a new 20th-century design dealer in the West Loop, is not just another place to get an Eames plywood chair. In fact, you won’t find much in this 5,500-square-foot showroom that you’d find (in reissued form) at Design Within Reach. Rather than focus on the iconic designers of the mid-20th century and their largely mass-produced designs, as many other local shops have done, partners Gary Stier and Fred Shaw are mining the rest of the century for bold pieces by big names such as Tommi Parzinger, Karl Springer, Edward Wormley, and Harvey Probber, as well as lesser-knowns like Michael de Santis, Mildred Warder, and Bert England. Shaw, the buyer, is a bank president and lifelong collector whose interior-designer aunt (a devotee of David Hicks and Auntie Mame) helped hone his keen eye; Stier, a former manager at Architectural Artifacts, runs the showroom. The unusual pieces, like a gorgeous one-of-a-kind Brazilian rosewood dining table by de Santis ($24,000), come at a price, but deals can still be found: At press time, Stier said he had a Paul Evans dining set on his floor for $16,500; a similar one on marketplace site 1stdibs.com, sans chairs, was $15,000. The good news for everyone, per Stier: “Prices are negotiable.” 121 N. Jefferson St., 312-234-9200.

 

Photography: Matthew Gilson

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