Monday, December 8, 2008
Nugget on a Nugget
This photo titled "nugget on a nugget". Explanation? In the vintage furniture trade, some of us refer to great (valuable) things as "nuggets". When my son was very small, he also struck us as pretty great and valuable, and hence we sometimes referred to him as "the nugget". In this photo, we find our li'l nugget reclining on an extremely rare "PK-41" stool designed by the famed Danish architect Poul Kjaerholm. The story: nearly two years ago, I had the privilege of brokering a fairly large deal (for me, anyway) consisting of Poul Kjaerholm pieces, between a Seattle man and a prominent LA gallery. Although I didn't really ever have contact with most of the pieces involved in the deal, there were 5 PK-41 stools that ended up at my house for a short period of time before they were shipped to the gallery. My son was 8 days old when this picture was taken, and given the perhaps once in a lifetime oppotunity to have a newborn pose on a rare and valuable piece of furniture...well, obviously, I couldn't resist. If you're anything like me, you're probably wondering really how much these things are worth (the stools, not the baby)! Well...first, let's just say that these stools are literally comprised of 2 pieces of steel and a piece of thick leather. Considering this, and their light, airy look and feel, they are also incredibly heavy. Despite all this, you'd probably never guess that on a good day, one of these stools can sell for upwards of $10,000. Needless to say, with the economy the way it is at the moment, today is probably not "a good day". However, in March 2007 (oddly, less than a month before the photo above was taken) the stool pictured to your right sold for $8400 plus comission at Christie's auction in New York. In person, it really is a stunning piece of design. But still, nearly $10,000 for 2 pieces of steel and some leather? Even as long as I've been in the "industry", there are some things I'll probably never understand. This is one of them. Oh, and if you're wondering, our li'l nugget has now turned into this creature, who is now more often referred to as "scamp", or "li'l devil". Just this morning, over breakfast, I noted that living with a 20-month old is not unlike having a very small tornado in your house...all the time. Or perhaps the Tasmanian Devil. It's a damn good thing he's cute.