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About Alexander Calzadilla

Alexander Calzadilla is a Cuban male originally from Philadelphia, who has happily called Miami his home since moving here at the age of 15. He attended Southwest Sr. High School and Florida International University, ultimately receiving his Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration. While in college, he began working as a paralegal for the Law Offices of Jeffrey E. Reichenbacher, a position he kept for seven years after graduation. He subsequently worked at Morgan, Lewis & Bockius Associates before landing at Costa Nursery. After distinguishing himself with many accomplishments, he was promoted to the position of Director of Specialty Products, which included the orchid, bonsai and lucky bamboo departments. When Alex was first put in charge of the three departments, they ranked near the bottom. By the time he left Costa after seven years, Alex had transformed the floundering departments into unqualified successes, posting record earnings, sales and profitability. In 2008 Alex was named the Costa Employee of the Year. Alex now puts his formidable prowess as a businessman into his newest venture, Avant-Garde Home Furnishings, LLC, serving as Managing Partner.

About Avant-Garde

We offer home furnishings and decor for every area of your home,both inside and out, always striving to bring you the most current design elements being used by today's top designers, at a fraction of their retail cost. Whether you are completely redecorating an area of your home, looking for the perfect accent piece to finish off an existing room, shopping for a unique gift, or simply "window shopping" to get design ideas, Avant-Garde is the place to go for everything modern & contemporary for your home.

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Saturday, March 17, 2012

Modern contemporary odds and ends..

Modern contemporary odds and ends.. 

Today I am sharing with all of you secrets and tips of modern contemporary odds and ends, or pieces that not to many people have but are definitely the talk of those who do.. They are rarely seen but when they are hardly ever forgotten.. 

Enjoy the pics and post... 

A Taste of the Orient...

The plainly named Shop of the Orient (SOTO for short) carries an intriguing line of decor with an unmistakable eastern influence. Above: The Aladdin and Panarch beds both feature complementary use of materials. The Panarch is a solid teak frame with padded water hyacinth panels on the headboard, while the Aladdin has a tightly packed water hyacinth frame with teak edging. Both beds have sleek bodies with restrained curves. Though an Asian design philosophy is evident, there is nothing “traditional” about these beds: they are contemporary through and through.
Also available are boxed candle and tea-light sets. The first bamboo vessel can also hold potpourri infused water or flowers, while the second set features an inverted bamboo plank that serves as an elegant candle holder.

Lastly, SOTO sells privacy screens with a wholly natural look. The first screen is a mat of bamboo sticks strung vertically inside a square teak frame. Slightly more contemporary is the Sarmart screen which is composed of alternating bamboo bundles and packed water hyacinth blocks. These are by far the most traditional of their products, but like all of SOTO’s products, they maintain a contemporary/minimalist appeal.

A Unique Lamp..

Tired of the same old lighting? While not new, Martinelli Luce’s serpentine lamps from the 1960s are sure to add a little zest to your decor. There’s a heavy dose of modern retro design in each of these pieces; the Cobra Table Lamp ($890) is classic Martinelli, with bubblicious curves and matte white resin. I love the swiveling arm – it allows you to switch from a spherical to a sinuisodal shape at a whim. The S-form in particular resembles an inquisitive, probing snake – it’s almost as if the lamp itself is alive.

If the Cobra seems animalistic, the Serpente Table Lamp ($980) and Serpente Floor Lamp ($1,499) are positively alien. The semi-translucent opal methacrylate diffusers that form the shade glow like something out of a 50′s B-movie, while the sinous neck briefly coils along the periphery of the circular base. These lamps don’t just light up your work surface–they seem to be intimately involved in your work.

For the more light-hearted, the Pipistrello Lamp ($1500) takes on a playful, plant-like shape with a four-lobed diffuser and cute, cone-like bases. The stainless steel segmented necks are functional, allowing the lamps to be telescoped from 26″ to 34″. Three of these lamps are actually housed in the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York – so owning them would be like having part of the Permanent Collection in your own home. Way cool!

More then just Lamps... 

In the world of contemporary design, you could say that lighting designers have a bit of an advantage over their counterparts. Self illuminating decor, by virtue of its intrinsic energy output, tends to grab attention; in other words, pretty lights elicit “oohs” like nothing else. Above: Mathmos Design’s Aduki lamps are definitely in the “ooh” category, with an organic bean-like form factor and a soft-touch plastic shell that produces a gentle, diffuse glow. Both Aduki and its big brother Aduki Ni will smoothly transition through a gamut of colors. Packaged in a chrome-plated die-cast zinc base, these rechargeable lamps are designed for both outdoor and indoor use and are portable.

Mark McKenna’s Designer Emulation Kits (DEKs) are humorous homages to some of the most famous modern lighting designers. Similar to a plastic model kit, each DEK comes with a circuit board and snap-off pieces with which you can (attempt to) build replicas of renowned lamps by the likes of Ingo Maurer, Achille Castiglioni and Richard Sapper. A single 9V battery is used to power a bright LED light; at only $29, these are much affordable than their real-life equivalents.

Similar to the Aduki lamps above, Candeloo are portable, rechargeable lamps. Targeted towards children, the lamps feature two bunny ears and covered electrical contacts to make them appealing and safe for little hands–though, frankly I wouldn’t mind getting pair of these into my own very adult hands.

Buro fur form’s Molecular Lights (12, 3) and Alexandre Berthiaume’sKozom (bottom) simulate the arrangement of atoms into molecules; it’s been a long time since I took Organic Chemistry but I do believe some of these lamps faintly resemble sigma and pi bonds. A polyethylene shade is supported by an aluminum base, and are sold in table or pendant variants. Kozom takes the molecule theme to another level with a chaotic mass of inflated vinyl balls surrounding a light source, and is fairly spectacular in a reddish-orange glow.

Tord Boontje is taking over the world, and the Garland Light is just another example of his amazing work (we recently featured his Oval Table here). His patterns literally come to life in a 3-dimensional structure made from laser-cut metal. Available in brass, silver, chrome or rust finishes, this is a beautiful and exotic piece and not one to be missed at only $59.

There you have it.. Rare items that make a place cool 

AG Home Goods

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