Hoboken and would apply all of its shelving and its army of brackets to my new apartment. Knowing that I had more objects than the floor space would accommodate. I put the shelves up before I moved in and, as I moved in, books and large object were placed immediately up on them. Aside from the space savings, the shelving created a valance around 3/4's of the room's perimeter thus dividing the rooms verticallity with continuous horizontal planes. It's actually a Frank Loyd Wright Usonian home trick. Most of those homes were modestly sized yet somehow seem heroically proportioned. They all employ tall ceiling and low valances horizontally breaking the ceiling's height. I then broke the room into a third horizontal by placing table height shelves around the room's entire perimeter. That allowed me to reclaim much of the space taken by the room's dozen amplifiers while providing my guests with many more places to set their drinks. The shelves on the most eastern wall are deliberately set a couple of inches lower in order to force perspective and fool the eye into believing that the whole wall is a bit further away than it actually is. Of the 3 shelves on the western wall, the lowest, directly above the sofa, received lower hinged doors and now serves as a 12 cubic foot cabinet that runs the wall's full length. Half of it contains Sonia's clothing, the other half, guitar cords, mic stands and other musical regalia and paraphernalia. The coffee table is a small Odyssey in and of its self but, it's basic construction was pretty simple and it holds an additional 10 cubic feet of storage. With absolutely no floor space left to accommodate the keyboard on its stand, I created a simple "T" out of iron pipe and cast fittings from the hardware store and attached it to the wall with conduit straps. I used those same straps to attach a shelf to the T's horizontal length. The keyboard now lives effectively cantilevered on a 36" hinge hovering above the astro-turf on the window seat and simply swings out to be played. Even the painted floors along with the carpets work together to visually increase the rooms size beyond its actual parameters.
Before I moved into the apartment it was painted white form top to bottom, one end to the other. The carpets were pulled up and the patched, planked floor was painted battle ship gray. The windows were replaced as well. I was amazed by how little work would be required in changing the space's basic vibrations. With its new pristine coats of gray and white neutrality I was able to see past the boogered corner bead and bad finish work. I saw the room as if a Chinese box puzzle comprised of components that were equally cartoonish and classical in natures had exploded and distributed itself across the walls like a Piet Mondrian, camouflaged incognito but ever present in its balance and underlying elemental geometric order. To shed more light on this arrangement, I stripped the transom above the french doors. That small change allowed the sun to come in, in a way that the space had not known in what seemed like a hundred layers of paint.
If living rooms are for living, this living room has seen a lot of life. It has heard hundreds of jams and hosted thousands of guests. It has absorbed as much positive energy as it has spirits spilled and given a stage so often to the soaring talents whom I so humbly count among my friends. Through it's french doors, from out on the balcony I've seen myriad processions, parades, protests and demonstrations as the seasons have rolled past and the years have gone bye. My balcony is like a tiny, first class box seat from which I'm able to leisurely observe the theater of the street's ever changing carnival and clanking cacophony of ebb and flow. No room other than the delivery room has changed me more.
Would you like to see more? The following links all pertain to my home, furniture design, interior design and architecturally related projects.