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ADVICE & INSPIRATION

The Perfect Pairing: NYC and Pottery Barn

New York is often said to be the “silent character” in the movies and books that use the city as the backdrop to stories.  However, for those who have been to New York, it quickly becomes evident that the City is far from being a quiet wallflower happy to fade into the background.  On the contrary, the city is a fast moving, dynamic and expressive entity that has a thousand stories to share at any given moment.  Those stories and view points are why Pottery Barn has partnered with local artists to celebrate the opening of our Flat Iron store a 12 West 20th Street.  These exclusive partnerships have allowed us to work with a diverse set of dynamic and talented artists who we tasked to create original content that celebrates Pottery Barn against the backdrop of New York City where Pottery Barn opened its first store in Chelsea in 1949.  Three New York City-based photographers captured striking imagery featuring Pottery Barn items artistically situated in various neighborhoods throughout the city, representing each artist’s unique point of view. We are honored and excited to showcase work from dancer photographer Omar Z. Robles (@omarzrobles), food and lifestyle photographer Chloe Crane-Leroux (@chloecleroux) and mixed media specialist Que Duong (@queduong) as we celebrate our Flat Iron opening.

We sat down with each of the three photographers to get their unique spin on New York City and why each have chosen to make it their home.

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1) Do you have a favorite spot in New York that you go to get inspired?

Can’t say that there is one single spot but there’s definitely a few. If I had to choose one I would say Chinatown is one of my favorite places in NYC.

Why do you make New York City your home? What makes it special?

What I love about it NYC is really the people and the opportunities available in NYC. Compared to anywhere else I’ve lived in (and I’ve lived in several countries) New Yorkers are by far the most cosmopolitan and ambitious people I’ve encountered. It makes you feel that you are seeded within a highly competitive environment. That challenge can motivate enormous personal and professional growth, if you allow yourself to enjoy it.

What piece did you love shooting most for Pottery Barn?

I’ve always been a chair person. Way back when I was a performer myself, I choreographed several performances using chairs as my props. Chairs innately tell a tale of expectation; they are waiting for someone… At the same time they represent a resting place.

Why did you choose the settings that you selected for your photo shoot with Pottery Barn?

I chose iconic and recognizable NYC spots, Chinatown for example. As mentioned before, Chinatown really inspires me because of its diversity. It embodies perfectly the spirit of NYC.

When you hear someone say, “I am a New Yorker”, what does that mean to you?

To say “I’m a New Yorker”, in a way means to me “I am a citizen of the world”. The collage and melange of cultures in NYC is unique. New Yorkers live together and fight together in spite of being from all over the world. That is something I feel proud being a part of.

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Do you have a favorite spot in New York that you go to get inspired?

Yes! My favorite spot in New York to get inspired is SoHo. I love the energy and vibe. Being in the neighborhood always gives me a feeling of being part of Downtown art scene of the early 1980s.

Why do you make New York City your home? What makes it special?

New York became my home when I decided to evolve as an artist and become a Creative Director.  It is so special to me because it is its own world. There’s always something to do and new people to meet. The city opens you to different things and different cultures, while fostering your own uniqueness.  

What piece did you love shooting most for Pottery Barn?

I loved shooting the Bar Set and the flatwares. 

Why did you choose the settings that you selected for your photo shoot with Pottery Barn?

I chose different neighborhoods as an inspiration for my still life because each place has its own heartbeat. That’s the beauty of New York – every block is totally different. The varying characteristics of these settings feed into the larger landscape. 

When you hear someone say, “I am a New Yorker”, what does that mean to you?

I am a hustler, a risk-taker, a dreamer!

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1) Do you have a favorite spot in New York that you go to get inspired?

New York in itself is such an inspiration to me. I am passionate about everything I see when I get out of my house, whether it’s the architecture of a building, a woman’s beautifully curated outfit or it could even be the way a meal was plated at a restaurant. Inspiration is constantly flowing in my day-to-day. Nevertheless, I always found myself going to the Lower East Side. I love the neighborhood’s eclectic vibe. There are so many hidden gems, although one of my favorite places is called Sel Rrose. It’s a wonderful little bar that has the most interesting décor. It’s a great place for me to sit down, write down my thoughts and drink a lovely glass of rosé. 

2) Why do you make New York City your home? What makes it special? 

I’ve called New York home for the past 3 years now. I feel like it suits me and my lifestyle perfectly as I get to meet incredible people and photograph beautiful things every single day. It never gets dull. There’s always something going on wherever you are and I love that. 

What piece did you love shooting most for Pottery Barn? 

I’m absolutely in love with the Moroccan Wedding Blanket Pillow, it’s definitely my favorite. I loved shooting and styling it for my bedroom, it emphasizes the bohemian and cozy décor. It really brings the whole room together. 

Why did you choose the settings that you selected for your photo shoot with Pottery Barn?

My style is a mix of bohemian and minimal, and I constantly strive to create beauty around me. For Pottery Barn, I selected three scenes that are very fun and approachable. I loved having a picnic in central park, as it is truly the perfect setting for a sweet afternoon snack in the sun. I love the escape that Central Park offers New Yorkers, it’s the perfect getaway in the city. For my second look, I wanted to style my favorite place in my tiny New York apartment, which is my bedroom. It’s so cozy and charming, and the Pottery Barn items really tied everything together. I always enjoy a nice breakfast in bed. And finally, for my last scene, I wanted to photograph the iconic stoops that are found everywhere in the city. The brownstones are what make New York so incredibly unique. I hope to have my own one day! 

When you hear someone say, “I am a New Yorker”, what does that mean to you?

To me being a New Yorker is being a hustler. Someone who ventures into the unknown and aims for greatness.

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Featured Products:

Omar: Elliot Leather Chair

Que: Marble Glass Domed Cheese Board // White Marble Salt & Pepper // Bleeker Bar Martini Pitcher // Bleeker Bar Tray // Bodega Glassware // Luna Brushed Gold Flatware

Chloe: Portland Pitcher // Portland Mug // Mill Acacia Serving Bowl // Mill Acacia Oval Tray // Shibori Dot Pillow // Michael Lantern // Caleb Lantern

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