PaperCity Magazine

November 2018- Houston

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82 nautical rope spool, salvaged in Galveston, which he uses as a table. "The wood has the most beautiful old patina from years of turning rope," Fontenot says. A French 1950s rack designed by Mathieu Mategot holds magazines, and a 1970s Italian floor lamp illuminates the reading nook. The old pine fireplace mantel holds his collection of ancient vessels (pre- Columbian and from China), Bactrian alabaster bowls, and early Roman glass fragments. The dining room is an exquisite space, with walls bathed in a deep green-black hue, and an antique English window with arched panes, originally installed by Carol Gibbins, that provides a tantalizing view into a bright entry hall. Fontenot often uses the massive 100-year-old ash dining table as a work and study surface, and the old French dough bowls atop it were bought years ago from Gibbins. He's removed the doors to an antique Belgian server to hold his books. "If the house burned down, I'd grab the Deana Lawson photograph," Fontenot says of the artwork, Hellshire Beach Towel, which dominates a wall in the dining room. "The whole reason I painted the room dark was to go with the painting. It makes the whole room." Fontenot is inspired by art, and often builds entire rooms around it, much like French designer Jacques Grange does. "The work he did for Yves Saint Laurent and Pierre Bergé inspired me at an early age and he's a big reason why I wanted to go into design," he says. In his home, Fontenot has works by Houston artist Paul Carola, including a freeform piece he selected from the artist's personal collection to go over the sofa. Fontenot collects photography, and has several works by Man Ray, the American Surrealist and Dada artist who worked in Paris during the early 20th century. The modern-day art, antiques, mid-century furnishings, and his ancient vessels all come together in a house that could be anywhere in Europe — anyplace but Houston. "When the fireplace is going, and you look through the windows to all the greenery outside," Fontenot says, "you could be in England." In the entry, Campana Brothers floor lamp, 1990s. Bench from W. Gardner, Ltd. Dutch 19th- century mirror. Carol Piper rug.. Brandon Fontenot

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