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I Heart Julian Schnabel

by habituallychic

02 . 12 . 08

I love everything that Julian Schnabel’s amazing creativity produces! Plates on a canvas…Genius! Basquiat and The Diving Bell and the Butterfly…Brilliant! Gramercy Park Hotel and a pink palazzo…Stupendous! Alright, you may think I have lost my mind for liking a pink palazzo plopped on top of an old factory and most of New York does too but it’s truly a work of art. As much respect as I have for all the famous architects building now, I’m quite franky tired of big glass boxes. They lack a soul but Julian Schnabel’s new building in the West Village has soul and style to spare.

Schnabel says he was influenced by a visit he took to the Scrovegni Chapel in Padua Italy and the Giotto frescoes inside but also by American architects Addison Mizner and Stanford White which is why there are Moorish, Turkish and Venetian motifs throughout.

The building houses five residences including his own which is the perfect backdrop for not only Schnabel’s own art but his amazing collection of art by Luigi Ontani, Francis Picabia, Cy Twombly, and Man Ray.

In the bedroom hangs Picasso’s Femme au Chapeau, and I bet we can be assured that the bed is dressed in linens from his Schabel’s wife Olatz‘s own line. She also designs the pajamas that her husband is famous for wearing around town and the building was named Palazzo Chupi after her nickname.

In the basement of the building is the swimming pool, a very rare occurance in New York.

It’s fun to go back and look at Schnabel’s designs for the Gramercy Park Hotel after looking at his home because they both have share a similar design aesthetic from the wood beamed ceiling to the black and white floor tiles that are the same in the hotel lobby and in his bedroom.

Both the hotel and home also share a strong use of the color red and even the same saw tooth lamp that Schnabel himself designed that here sits in front of Cy Twomby’s Bacchus (Untitled).

Schnabel oversaw the placement of all the art including his own painting Teddy Bears Picnic visible through the dramatic red drapes.

Julian Schnabel’s Blue Japanese Painting No. 3 hangs in the Jade Bar which not only boasts Jade colored walls but blue velvet seats and more dramtic red drapes. Each room is like a little jewel box and this one also includes a Jean-Michel Basquiat diptych above the salmon colored niche.

Schnabel’s Suddenly Last Summer (Picasso Painting No. 2) above the fireplace in the Rose Bar which reminds me a lot of his Palazzo bedroom from the wall color to the “Picasso” painting.

One of the most dramatic pieces of art in the hotel is the light installation in the private roof club sitting room that sets off the many Damian Hirst paintings in the room.

It really seems like it’s Julian Schnabel’s finest hour and I really hope he wins the Oscar for Best Director because he really deserves it the award. I also can’t wait to see what this modern renaissance man has up his sleeve next. But I’m also curious what he thinks about his 21 year old son Vito dating 44 year old former model Elle MacPherson!

Comments Closed

  1. Suzy February 12, 2008 | 5:24 am

    I have to say I was really impressed with the exhibition of his work that came here late last year, I’d never seen any of his paintings before, and it was a real eye opener. The Diving Bell & The Butterfly was just released here last week so I’m looking forward to seeing it. Thanks for the pics of his home too – what a genius he is – I love it!

  2. maison21 February 12, 2008 | 5:54 am

    did he build the palazzo on top from scratch, or is a remodel of the existing structure? either way- awesome!

  3. the House of Beauty and Culture February 12, 2008 | 9:24 am

    This, to my mind at least, is real decorating. A real tour de force of ideas rather than a shopping list of designs. The light instillation in the roof club? Magnificent!

  4. My Castle in Spain February 12, 2008 | 10:17 am

    Fabulous post. Love Schnabel as well and his so beautiful wife.
    Any info about the light installation in the private roof club sitting room (cf a certain photo by Jeff Wall?)
    I love how the paintings harmonize so well with each room.

  5. annechovie February 12, 2008 | 1:07 pm

    Wow, talk about visual stimulation! I absolutely love the colors he uses, esp. his bedroom and that ornate headboard is smashing…..

  6. nunu pepe' February 12, 2008 | 1:51 pm

    oh wow oh wow oh wow! Thank you so much for sharing this, my heart is fluttering my hands are shaking with the impulse to grab my paint brush and get back to work !!! Just what I needed to get going again. Thank you you have ignited the spark 🙂

  7. Brilliant Asylum February 12, 2008 | 1:59 pm

    I love an eccentric. Anyone who wears his wife’s pajamas in public has a fan in me. And thank you for recommending the Diving Bell a while back. It made my year.

  8. Alice Olive February 12, 2008 | 2:53 pm

    Beautiful. I love the use of red. The wooden ceilings and the red work beautifully together. Great post!

    PS – I’m sure he is proud that his son Vito can snag Elle’s attention for five minutes….! No mean feat!

  9. Habitually Chic February 12, 2008 | 3:02 pm

    Suzy, How wonderful that there was an exhibition in Hong Kong for you to see. I really love his work and his home is beyond gorgeous!

  10. Habitually Chic February 12, 2008 | 3:04 pm

    Maison21, The palazzo was built from scratch on top of the former factory building where Schabel had made his home. It’s been quite controversial and in some photos looked hot pink but the color seems to have softened a bit. There is a full article in the March issue of Vanity Fair.

  11. Habitually Chic February 12, 2008 | 3:37 pm

    HOBAC, It seems more like a mix of very personal objects than something designed, although I’m sure Schnabel spent a lot of time deciding how to decorate and with what!

  12. Habitually Chic February 12, 2008 | 3:38 pm

    My Castle in Spain, I tried looking for more information on the light installation and if it was designed by someone other than Schnabel but I haven’t found anything yet. It’s so spectacular!

  13. Habitually Chic February 12, 2008 | 3:49 pm

    Annechovie, It’s just the perfect amount of visual stimulation! I would also love to find a headboard like theirs! It’s so beautiful!

  14. Habitually Chic February 12, 2008 | 3:50 pm

    Nunu Pepe, I’m so glad you liked it and that it has inspired you to get painting!

  15. Habitually Chic February 12, 2008 | 3:52 pm

    Thanks Alice! ‘m sure so much work went into his home and the designs he did for the hotel, yet it all looks so effortless!

  16. Habitually Chic February 12, 2008 | 3:52 pm

    BA, Wouldn’t we all love to just wear our pajamas all day and never change?! So glad you liked the movie too!

  17. The Peak of Chic February 12, 2008 | 4:02 pm

    I’m with you- I love the look of the pink palazzo. It’s certainly different, but to me it seems to work.

  18. An Aesthete's Lament February 12, 2008 | 6:59 pm

    Atmosphere, atmosphere, atmosphere: The man understands this crucial aspect of design completely. Whether you like them or not, his rooms really are alternate universes. Truly jaw-dropping.

  19. so_chic_darling February 13, 2008 | 1:40 am

    I live and work in the West Village and I just love that all the modernist snobs are up in arms about this truly fabulous building.First and foremost it DOES fit into the Village because there are already so many buildings from the 20s and 30s with just this kind of Venetian style decoration all over them.Bravo we need more design that’s like this,designs that say”This is ME!”.

  20. katiedid February 13, 2008 | 3:45 am

    He is quite a force! Obviously brilliant. Thanks for the images. Many I was unfamiliar with!

  21. Suzy February 13, 2008 | 5:21 am

    Oh, and I have to admit, I love the fact he wears pjamas all the time – he was wearing them in the documentary I saw on Frank Gehrey when they interviewed him. I would wear them all day too if I was a wealthy artiste!

  22. dianamuse February 13, 2008 | 4:42 pm

    Such a fine post. I’m wild for that last photo. I did a post earlier in the week (2/10, I think) featuring Jeff Wall’s photo “After ‘Invisible Man’ by Ralph Ellison” among others. You must check it out if you’re not familiar with Wall’s work. You’ll be amazed. I guarantee.

  23. Richie Designs February 13, 2008 | 5:17 pm

    I love his movies more than his “plate art”. Mostly, I love that he doesn’t let himself get put in a box because he’s a “fine artist”.

    Artists are creative in every part of their lives, I love that he lives that dream out day to day.

  24. Linda February 14, 2008 | 2:50 am

    I had no idea tha Schnabel was also a designer and architect. I want the book. thanks

  25. Paloma February 17, 2008 | 4:50 pm

    So eccentric and wonderful! How can you not love someone with such a well-defined sense of self and personal style. He and I graduated from the same university.

  26. Suzy February 18, 2008 | 5:27 am

    Thought I’d let you know, I saw The Diving Bell and the Butterfly over the weekend and loved it – the man is a genius!

  27. coco+kelley February 21, 2008 | 7:49 pm

    i’m so behind on my blog reading that i didn’t even see this post until now, but i had to comment! i absolutely love the hotel design – raw and organic but glam and elegant at the same time. my favorite combo! thanks for the inspiration 🙂

  28. Mélanie February 22, 2008 | 9:43 am

    great post . I love it as I love SCHNABEL !!!

  29. Dan Hillier March 20, 2008 | 10:23 am

    Hey Habitually Chic – I stumbled across your blog via a Google search fro Schnabel’s Japanese Blue Painting as I’m sloshing a lot of blue ink around on paper myself at the moment. I’m amazed at what this man is seemingly effortlessly chucking out into the world and want to investigate further after having seen the Diving Bell recently… Thanks for an interesting introduction. Dan Hillier

  30. Jeffrey Collins: Painter November 24, 2008 | 11:24 pm

    Just came across your blog, doing a search for Schnabel photos and boy you have some really great ones here. Thanks a ton.

    Keep in touch. I’m digging your blog.