There is no doubt that exuberant and creative fashion designer Lisa Perry channelled the vibrant pop-art movement when designing this 1960s-inspired penthouse in Manhattan, New York.
With a new boutique and design store recently opened inside what once was a stately branch of Citibank on Madison Avenue (a few steps away from the Gagosian Gallery), and a growing reputation as a savvy art buyer and collector, Perry has also turned her palatial penthouse - where she lives with her hedge fund husband Richard Perry, one of the 1,000 richest men in the world, according to Forbes - into a "museum" dedicated to pop art. It is a venue that she also uses as an experimental space for examining and reinterpreting art from the 1960s.
Her love for the 1960s extends beyond the period's art movement. Perry also has an avid interest in vintage fashion from that era and began designing Courrèges-inspired dresses five years ago. Her closet is full of vintage pieces created by the French fashion designer along with creations by Pucci and Cardin - mixing Audrey Hepburn's Holly Golightly style with the imagery of pop art.
Among her favourite creations is an Andy Warhol-inspired Campbell Soup dress, while the original work is hanging on her kitchen wall. Her love for fashion and interior design is evident in this 2,000 sq ft apartment, which showcases her passion for the 1960s in a unique, vibrant and dynamic way.
When Perry first saw the space, she found the prospect of creating a suitable home in it overwhelming. "My first impression was that the apartment needed windows - and a lot of work," she remembers, adding that on the upside, the flat came with high ceilings and good views. "The challenge was in trying to make something very traditional into something very modern."
It was a very clean, contemporary look that she envisioned, and with the help of architect David Piscukas and designer Tony Ingrao, they set about renovating her home in the heart of the Upper East Side. "The idea was to turn a Victorian-style home into a modern space, with minimal lines and white interiors. A futuristic space," she explains.
As the doorman whisks you up from the lobby of the historical Sutton Place apartment building, the antique wood-panelled doors of the lift open to reveal a home that seems several decades ahead of its time. One almost has the feeling of stepping onto the set of Kubrick's classic movie 2001: A Space Odyssey, a space filled with stylised references to a space age era.
The different zones of the penthouse are bright and airy thanks to oversized windows and skylights. Meanwhile, colour is undoubtedly the leitmotif of this home: in the living room - the heart of the house - the maxi white leather couch is juxtaposed with the bright and vivid colours of Rauschenberg and Lichtenstein paintings hanging on the wall. In contrast to the gleaming white, the dining room is painted a shiny black, but as in the living room, the monotone walls are broken up by splashes of colour: Tom Wesselmann's lacquer red lips ( Mouth 16) and the bright orange of the Cappellini chairs encircle a custom-made steel table. At night, it is a surreal vision looking out the window: the reflection of Wesselmann's iconic representation of feminine beauty appears to float above the Queensboro Bridge, surrounded by the East River.
The bedroom, like the living room, is awash in white, from the custom-designed carpet of circles and squares to the matching 10x10ft white vinyl and acrylic headboard created by Tony Ingrao. The impressive dimensions of Perry's dressing room come as no surprise. A study of black and white, black carpeting and a black-and-white striped settee surround the white wall that houses her wardrobe. Inside, there are fashion creations inspired by her apartment's décor.
Perry says that her favourite place in the home is the kitchen. "It's the centre and heart of the home," she explains. For most visitors, the most memorable space would likely be the outdoor terrace, which showcases Jeff Koons' Ring - a giant sculpture of a gold ring set with a green diamond. This is undoubtedly the pièce de resistance of the arty home, and this stunning blend of colour and culture is enhanced by the homeowner herself, for as she walks through the art-filled penthouse in one of her hot pink signature dresses, Perry appears to have walked right off a Lichtenstein painting.
Richard and Lisa Perry
Manhattan, New York
2,000 sq ft
Kitchen table and chairs: Saarinen
Living room sofa: Tony Ingrao
Fuchsia and blue coffee tables: Yves Klein
Media room Rive Droite chairs: Patrick Norguet for
Cappellini; covers by Pucci
“Lipstick room” orange chairs: Cappellini
Ring: Jeff Koons
Interior with Built-in Bar: Roy Lichtenstein
Love metal sculpture: Robert Indiana
Tettye Serigraph: Victor Vasarely
Baby Ruth: Mel Ramos
Woman with a Dish Rag: Roy Lichtenstein
Mouth 16: Tom Wesselmann
Lipstick room sculptures: Takashi Murakami
Still Life #26: Tom Wesselmann
Rosa: Martial Raysse
Self Portrait: Andy Warhol
Campbell’s Soup: Andy Warhol
Hamburger: Andy Warhol
The Tableau simplex et doux: Martial Raysse
STORY MONICA MASCIA LONDON / LIVING INSIDE PHOTOGRAPHY RINZE VAN BRUG / LIVING INSIDE