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Era Conditioned

In a high-rise condo, it’s out with the mauve-and-teal ’80s vibe, in with creamy modern elegance

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Richman stands alongside his silk-upholstered Mies daybed in the living room.
Richman stands alongside his silk-upholstered Mies daybed in the living room. Photo Gallery »

There are other unexpected combinations on view here, as well as a finely calibrated sense of restraint (“It’s all about editing,” Richman says). Take the living room’s low-slung Deco armchairs. They’re paired with a lively, almost unruly, Plexiglas coffee table by post-war French artist Yves Klein that might have overwhelmed a lesser room.

“People are always drawn to that table; it’s a work of art,” says Parker of the limited-edition beauty, which is lined with cobalt-blue powdered pigment and sits at the center of the living room like some killer adult sandbox. Richman says he likes how it picks up the blue in the Oriental carpet and holds its own against the Mies daybed and the views of the skyline outside the windows.

Both Richman and Parker like to spin the color wheel, and they came up with some shrewd juxtapositions for this apartment. The cream-to-sand tones Richman favored for everything from wall treatments to sofas to draperies keep the bursts of kaleidoscope color in check. “People are always surprised by our love of color,” says Parker. “I guess they think of us as more conservative.”

Is he kidding? There’s enough chromatic energy here to make you feel a little giddy—that intense blue in the Klein coffee table; orange, blue, and lime-green seats in the dining room; a chartreuse lacquered end table and burnt-orange throw pillows in the den. The pops of hot colors add a sense of fun to the place—especially when they bump up against all the tailor-made modern pieces.

“I love creating things in Lucite,” says Richman, who designed the oval dining table with a Lucite pedestal base and a steel top. “The thing I love most about the table,” chimes in Parker, “is the way the steel was sanded in a triangular starburst pattern. It feels to me like a wonderful inlaid antique.” 

Serial entertainers, the two gave the dining room lots of attention. Stripe-upholstered slipper chairs were paired with armless wood-frame chairs that Richman drew up after seeing some 1940s French Art Deco pieces by design icon André Sornay. Richman says he especially admires Sornay’s craftsmanlike approach.

“I love the way the skeleton, the mechanics, of those chairs are exposed. I think it adds a casualness,” he says. An eye-popping chandelier that Parker designed in collaboration with a protégé of glass-blowing guru Dale Chihuly finished the scheme.

After all this vivacious color, the monochromatic bedroom is a soothing surprise. “It’s the color of parchment and I find that restful,” says Parker, whose life has been anything but restful lately.

“We sold this place literally overnight,” he says, contemplating life in a rental while he and Richman look for a new pad. “But I know we’ll do it again. We’ll create something great somewhere else.”


Photography: Alan Shortall, Styling: Barri Leiner


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