How to Incorporate Statement Pieces at Home?
Simple charcoal sofas. Subtle creamy walls. A no-frills wooden dining table. All of these things are pretty easy to place in just about any home, whatever your taste, no matter the style.
But what about those super-special pieces? Those wild chandeliers we couldn’t resist? Or those Henning Kjærnulf razorblade dining chairs we’ve been moving from apartment to apartment over the years? It’s not only that we want them to fit in at home. In fact, we want these statement pieces to stand out, to have pride of place for all who visit to see and enjoy.
We chatted with a few of our favourite Flâneurs to get the dish on the pieces they can’t live without, what makes them so unique, and how they brought them into their designs at home.
Tell us about your most precious statement pieces.
Dionas: My most precious statement piece is a lithography by Niki de Saint Phalle.
Marie: Unfortunately, I’m not old/rich/mature enough to have invested in a real statement piece (yet), so I’ll tell you about my dream statement piece, the one that has been on my wish list since I was old enough to pronounce the word hippopotamus. The Hippopotame Bar by artist and sculptor François-Xavier Lalanne is, without doubt, the most extraordinary, the most magical and the rarest of Lalanne’s animals. Created in 1986, the rare bronze bar was given as a gift by a wife to her husband for their fortieth wedding anniversary. Now that is a present. Take notes.
Josephine: My most precious statement piece at home is the Hitved painting we have in our living room. The painting almost fills up the whole wall. It was truly a case of love at first sight.
Roya: An abstract painting by German artist Thomas Hartmann called “Der Erste Frost” (The First Frost), 1999-2012. I’m a very colourful person in my decor/style, but this work is the only large black and white piece I have at home. In that sense, it stands out from the rest of my house, and people are always very drawn to it. When I look at it, it reminds me of a frosty, fresh winter morning, which somehow makes the space surrounding it feel even more cosy and warm.
How did you find that statement piece? What was your thought process going into purchasing it?
Roya: I bought it at Art Basel in Miami back in 2015.
Marie: I first discovered it in a gallery I had been dragged into by my parents.
I saw it from far away. Attracted by its sheer size and how shiny it was, I fell in love with its magical pre-transformer-transformer characteristics, its secret compartment and its inherent cheerful bonhomie. It’s surrealist, cartoon-esque, iconic to Lalanne and an immense work of craftsmanship. The sculpture was sold at a Sotheby’s auction for €6,139,800, so I guess it will be a long wait before I win EuroMillions and my husband lets us purchase it.
Josephine: I found the painting on Instagram actually. I had followed the artist for a while, and when I saw the painting, I just knew I had to see it. So, I visited the studio, and I tried to convince myself that one of the smaller ones would be just as good. Hitved was kind enough to let me “try it on at home”, and the rest is history.
Dionas: I actually came across it by complete chance online, and, to be honest, I didn’t need a lot of thinking time to know I wanted to bring it home. Let’s just say it was love at first sight.
How did you make space for your statement pieces at home? Was it difficult to incorporate into your décor?
Josephine: I only had one wall in the apartment where the piece would fit, so there weren’t a lot of options for where it should hang. The colors in the painting give context for the rest of my furniture, and even though it takes up a lot of space, it lets my lamp be the contrast.
Dionas: At the time, I had a lot of empty walls (I still do, in fact), so it wasn’t really that big of an issue to find a place for it at home.
Roya: Since it’s a 2-metre painting, there were only so many places where I could actually fit it! Once I installed it, I worked around it to incorporate my books and more intimate and mobile living space elements.
Marie: A piece like this doesn’t need a specific space. It makes the space. As I’m looking around, in my home office/living room/guest bedroom, I realise that there is nowhere it wouldn’t work.
Best tips for letting a statement piece shine at home? We’re all ears.
Marie: Like in life, one should dare to make choices. Whether a giant metallic table in a minimal interior or a colourfull armchair in a bold English interior, statement pieces can be different things for different people. My advice would be to dare to invest in a piece, one that could follow you everywhere throughout your life like that crazy friend you’ve had since high school. There might be times you doubt your choice, but ultimately it will always be part of you, and your home will never be whole without them.
Roya: Never try to make it match – contrast is key! Eclecticism is what makes it stand out and play with a given setting.
Dionas: In this case, a lot of research was needed to find the perfect frame. It took me ages to find the right one to ensure that it would really do justice to the piece.
Josephine: Give it space :).
And read here to learn about how to build around big-ticket furniture.