Though this post comes a tad late for having a stunning new dinner party collection on this year’s Thanksgiving table, we thought we’d offer you a table-scape to consider for all of the fêtes that come after this lauded holiday. DM/BX, a shoppable platform developed by Design Miami/ that was launched in September, is introducing the artisanal design products in time for the holidays. It is the first collaboration commissioned especially for the new platform.
The Feast: A Dinner Party Collection
“The Feast: A Dinner Party Collection” contains one-of-a-kind, limited-edition tableware pieces that have been curated by New York-based interior designer Kristen McGinnis. It was inspired by her own love of cooking and entertaining at home. But it was also born of the unique times we have experienced over the past 18 months during which McGinnis has had many conversations with friends and clients who had been relishing the small moments of sharing meals with families while confined to their homes.
The ritual of creating a beautiful table to enjoy these moments provided a sense of occasion, and the collection offers an opportunity to celebrate the art of table-scaping the perfect setting for dining with friends and family. This is easy for someone like McGinnis, who has been an avid collector of tableware for years. She notes that she is increasingly helping her clients source and collect special pieces for their own tables, as well. When the opportunity to create a collection with Design Miami/ for DM/BX arose, she felt it was the natural collection to develop. It also offered a chance to collaborate with artists and designers that McGinnis had wanted to work with for some time, as well as to explore new mediums for collaboration.
“I wanted to create something that was incredibly personal to me, but at the same time, be something that could have wide appeal to the DM/BX audience,” McGinnis says. “I have been collecting tableware since my early twenties; more recently with a focus on pieces created by artists. There is something so incredibly gratifying about using items that are handmade, especially when you know the artist who has made each one.”
The collection features work by five designers, artists, and studios with a range of 11 pieces that include glassware, textiles, and ceramics. New York-based ceramic artist Jeremy Anderson has designed several pieces of dinnerware, the bowls and plates inspired by his Piccolo vessels. Yolande Milan Batteau has used her mastery of materials and textiles to create hand-painted tablecloths depicting natural landscapes. Batteau has also created a series of handcrafted napkin bracelets, inlaid with mother of pearl, that were inspired by the celestial and diverse artistic anthropologies that capture her imagination.
A series of unique patinated bronze candlesticks has been created by Los Angeles-based manufacturer Farrell Hundley, a company founded to support the collaboration between artist Elliott Hundley and furniture designer William Farrell. The pieces are created individually using a combination of the lost wax technique and a burnout mold, which destroys the mold in the process, leaving each work a unique one of a kind object. Farrell Hundley has also developed a very special collection of cast bronze flatware, the five pieces also cast in bronze, then polished to a mirror finish.
Glassware has been designed by Michiko Sakano Studio led by the Japanese-born designer interested in the exploration of glass. She who studied with Venetian glassmakers to perfect her craft, and this shows in her designs. The glassware collection features three pieces, a carafe (Fluo), water glass (Aqua), and wine glass (Vinum), all hand-blown by the artist using a technique which traps air bubbles in the glass to create a unique color and texture. Hand-woven napkins complete the collection. These were designed by Brooklyn-based Hiroko Takeda. The linen textiles, called “Metal Stain” are unique works of art in themselves, as they were inspired by the dual notions of metal becoming liquid—in doing so leaving a mark on cloth—and by the liquid boundary between art and design.
“I loved the idea of bringing a group of artists together, many of whom had not made tableware before, to see how they could join me in the vision,” McGinnis explains. “I have been in the design industry for twenty years, so it was very natural for me to turn to people I knew.” With these other creatives, she felt she could co-create something very special. “When creating my initial concept, it was helpful that I had personal relationships with a few of the artists I wanted to work with,” she explains, “but I was also excited to forge new bonds with other makers.”
Jennifer Roberts, CEO of Design Miami/ says of the collection: “The premise and objective of DM/BX is to illustrate, through our curations of pieces, that every object in your home can be artful. This collection with Kristen certainly expands our offering and clearly demonstrates our philosophy. For pieces that we are accustomed to utilizing in our day-to-day lives—a plate, a glass, a fork—to be such beautiful works of design, elevates the dining experience and expands the collecting possibilities to open up a new world.”
A Layered Approach to Collectible Design
Our editor-in-chief Saxon Henry has been a Design Miami/ devotee since the first fair opened on Miami Beach in 2005. She attended the MB show each year, eager to see the avant-garde ideas that new and acclaimed talent would bring to the world of design. The show never disappointed. The new shopping platform, which is billed as an online destination to inspire design lovers the world over—both connoisseurs and those new to design—with one-of-a-kind, limited-edition, and small-batch design objects, is a brilliant idea.
This is because DM/BX opens collectable design to us mere mortals who can’t financially breathe the rarified air of the existing Design Miami/ Shop portal, which offers historic and contemporary collectible design from world class galleries and studios. The DM/BX platform can make design affordable because it taps emerging designers and artisans, whose names will likely join the pantheon of greats DM/ has already elevated to star status. We agree that they’ve created a portal that will present a glimpse into tomorrow through the eyes of the design world’s most forward-thinking makers, and we’ll be watching with glee!