PaperCity Magazine

October 2013 - Houston

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Page 69 of 95

JENNY ANTILL In the living room, Restoration Hardware sofa and white walls provide a neutral ground for a grouping of photographs, several acquired at Houston's FotoFest. The figure on the coffee table was found at the Guild Shop. Textured cable-knit dress and distressed suede ankle boots, both by Rachel Comey, from Leap. Adding an ultra-modern edge to the kitchen are Eames molded plastic Eiffel chairs from Design Within Reach and Thomas O'Brien's Eugene pendant from Circa Lighting. Organic Mandarin oranges. Free-form children's play area. Wicker from Restoration Hardware on the brickpaved covered patio. Heirloom tomatoes. Organic Easter-egg radishes. Continued from page 68 Off the job, this particular designer voraciously collects art and objects. She purchases some of the works at galleries, some directly from artists and many from flea markets and street vendors. Hers is an unpretentious and thoroughly personal collection. She values the unidentifiable and inexpensive as respectfully as the costlier works from known artists. There's so much, from so many places, that she sometimes can't pinpoint where she found a particular piece. But she can remember where she has gone looking. Those venues include the Chelsea Flea Market, when she lived in New York before marrying; Paris flea markets; shops in London and on Harbour Island in the Bahamas; outdoor markets in Playa de Carmen; and Italian galleries and shops in Positano, Portofino, Porto Ercole and Lake Como. Here at home, she is especially a devotee of the Guild Shop, which "always seems to deliver wonderful things. I never leave empty-handed. I love the hunt for great old things." Putman has recently joined the board of the Blaffer Art Museum at the University of Houston — her first board affiliation. She decided to do so after seeing the museum's retrospective exhibition of Tony Feher's sculpture earlier this year. Feher uses unremarkable, familiar and often disposable objects, in combination and repetition, to explore pattern and form. That's a language graphic designers can readily understand. "I was deeply moved," she says. "It was something I wanted everyone to see. I discovered the power of art at a young age and am passionate about what it can do when it comes to opening minds and seeing the world in different ways." Perhaps more modestly, but no less valuably, Putman has discovered how art can create an environment that's both comforting and intriguing: The secret is in the arrangements. She values the unidentifiable and inexpensive as respectfully as the costlier works from known artists.

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