Carpenters Workshop opens first US gallery in New York

Carpenters Workshop Gallery opens its first US branch in New York

Carpenters Workshop Gallery, which showcases work by leading contemporary designers such as Studio Job and Robert Stadler, has opened a location in New York to strengthen its presence in the American market (+ slideshow).

Founded in 2006 by childhood friends Julien Lombrail and Loïc Le Gaillard, Carpenters Workshop sells functional sculptures – or art furniture – by contemporary artists and designers, both emerging and established.

Carpenters Workshop gallery in New York

The company has two galleries in London and one in Paris, along with a research centre in Roissy, a Parisian suburb.

It regularly exhibits at American fairs such as Design Miami and The Salon Art + Design. The new permanent gallery in Manhattan will aim to further bolster its reach into North and South America.

"Carpenters Workshop Gallery's new space will enable it to reinforce the reputation of its artists and designers in the USA and South America, and strengthen its relations with its American collectors," said the company in a statement.

Carpenters Workshop gallery in New York

"It has long been an ambition of ours to 'break America', as they say in rock and roll, and after London and Paris it was the natural next stop," Le Gaillard told Dezeen. "The US holds a lot of possibilities for us and is definitely the right direction for our evolution and growth. It is a mature market where collectors are real design connoisseurs with good taste."

"One thing that really affirmed our decision was the fact that 40 percent of our business now comes from the US," he added. "It will give us a great opportunity to share our artists' works in new markets and meet new people."

The gallery already represents US designers such as Wendell Castle, a leading figure in the American art furniture movement, and Johanna Grawunder, a designer known for her avant-garde lighting and furniture pieces.

"We will look to discover more about the incredible local talent pool that has come to the surface over the last two years," said Le Gaillard. "The gallery will become a meeting point between the London, Paris and New York."

Carpenters Workshop gallery in New York

The gallery is located inside Manhattan's landmark Takashimaya Building, which recently underwent a renovation by architect David Chipperfield.

The slender tower, completed in 1993, was designed by John Burgee with Philip Johnson for the Japanese retailer Takashimaya, which moved out in 2010.

Located on Fifth Avenue in Midtown, the building is just blocks away from the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) and Christie's auction house.

Carpenters Workshop gallery in New York

Carpenters Workshop, which occupies the building's top two floors, described its new space as "a unique setting of elegance in its entirety, dedicated to the the elite and excellence of collectible design".

The 19th floor offers signature work by artists and designers, while the 20th floor penthouse contains a private salon.

Bathed in natural light, the penthouse features 40-foot-high (12 metres) ceilings and views of the Manhattan skyline.

Carpenters Workshop gallery in New York
The Carpenters Workshop gallery was founded in 2006 by childhood friends Julien Lombrail and Loïc Le Gaillard

The gallery's inaugural exhibition in New York showcases the work of established designers such as Ingrid Donat, Vincent Dubourg, Studio Job, Random International and Robert Stadler. It also includes work by designers who are newly represented by the gallery, such as Nacho Carbonell.

"To begin with, we are showing New York and US our taste, the Carpenters Workshop Gallery flavour, the same as you can see in London and Paris," said Le Gaillard. "After that we'll see where it takes us."

"We are sure to be inspired by New York, as we have already gained so much from our close work with American designer Vladimir Kagan, as well as Wendell Castle, Johanna Grawunder and Rick Owens," he said.

"The gallery is not just about clients in New York," the founders added. "It will also mean that we can meet a lot more people from all over the US and Latin America. We also work closely with interior architects, and in Manhattan, we'll be walking distance from some of our main clients."

Carpenters Workshop gallery in New York

In 2006, Lombrail and Le Gaillard opened the first Carpenters Workshop Gallery inside a former carpenter's workshop in London's Chelsea neighbourhood. Two years later, they opened a second location in the city's Mayfair district.

In 2011, they debuted a gallery in Paris in the heart of Le Marais. This year, the duo opened the Carpenters Workshop in Roissy, which is dedicated to artistic research and development.

The New York location is the "latest step in the gallery's remarkable development".

"This new space confirms the leadership and dominant position of the gallery in today's international territory of art and design," said the company.

Carpenters Workshop gallery in New York

Carpenters Workshop is one of several European design-focused companies that has recently crossed the Atlantic to set up shop in New York. British designer Tom Dixon, Dutch furniture company Moooi, and Spanish tile manufacturer Porcelanosa have all opened Manhattan showrooms this year.

The American market for high-end design is "growing incredibly" according to European brands. The surge of luxury residential developments in New York and Miami – many of them designed by big-name European architects – is helping drive the boom, with brands following architects such as Herzog & de Meuron, Foster + Partners, BIG and OMA across the Atlantic.