Get Artsy

The ultimate art lounge: Furniture design power and CultureMap team up for Houston Fine Art Fair retreat

The ultimate art lounge: Houston Fine Art Fair features great retreat

Houston Fine Art Fair Cantoni furniture September 2014 Hugo Swivel Chair
Take a seat in the Hugo Swivel Chair, just part of the decor planned for the Houston Fine Art Fair Collectors Lounge, a collaboration between Cantoni and CultureMap. Photo courtesy of Cantoni
CultureMap Cantoni Houston Fine Art Fair lounge September 2014
Floor plan for the Collectors Lounge. Rendering courtesy of Michael Farmer of Cantoni
Houston Fine Art Fair Cantoni furniture September 2014 Treviso Sectional
Treviso Sectional. Photo courtesy of Cantoni
Houston Fine Art Fair Cantoni furniture September 2014 Natuzzi Re Vive
Natuzzi Re-Vive. Photo courtesy of Cantoni
Houston Fine Art Fair Cantoni furniture September 2014 Mayon Armchair
Mayon Armchair. Photo courtesy of Cantoni
Houston Fine Art Fair Cantoni furniture September 2014 Hugo Swivel Chair
CultureMap Cantoni Houston Fine Art Fair lounge September 2014
Houston Fine Art Fair Cantoni furniture September 2014 Treviso Sectional
Houston Fine Art Fair Cantoni furniture September 2014 Natuzzi Re Vive
Houston Fine Art Fair Cantoni furniture September 2014 Mayon Armchair

Modern furniture design house Cantoni and partner CultureMap are unveiling an impressive installation of their own at the Houston Fine Art Fair, one exhibiting expert craftsmanship, sophisticated color palette and, most importantly for this work, amazing comfort.

Welcome to the HFAF 2014 Collectors Lounge, where art enthusiasts are invited to relax in contemporary style in the 300 aisle at NRG Center. Fair-goers can choose to unwind in almost $70,000 worth of Cantoni-exclusive sectionals, chairs, benches, sofas and more during this fourth annual art extravaganza showcasing 60-plus exhibits presented by 55 contemporary galleries.

The HFAF 2014 Collectors Lounge is open 7:30-9:30 p.m. Thursday for the opening night preview and also welcomes visitors during the run of the fair, 11:30 a.m.-6:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 11:30 a.m.-3 p.m. Sunday.

 "People won't want to get up out of our Mayon chairs," Farmer said with a laugh. 

"It's a very large, open space without walls, about 26 by 54 feet, so we decided to create three different environments," Michael Farmer, general manager at Cantoni Houston, said in a phone interview. "Each area has its own personality. The larger pieces are in neutral colors, like black and taupe, with splashes of color about, thinking of the artwork we will be surrounded by."

Two linear sitting sections are located at either end of the booth, while furniture arranged around a circular rug anchors the center and keeps traffic flow in mind.

Orange-hued, Mayon tubular metal-framed arm chairs sit opposite a soft nubok Treviso sectional in taupe with hidden head rests that slowly pop up. A Polky area rug of hand-tufted 100-percent New Zealand wool is underfoot, making a statement with bold orange and purple polka-dots scattered about against a rich brown background.

"People won't want to get up out of our Mayon chairs," Farmer said with a laugh.

In the middle, hues easily transition to black-leather, chrome-framed arm chairs and armless chairs with accents of chartreuse stripes, along with shades of gray, in the round Pallone Flower area rug. Bench seating is at hand here, with the pieces arranged for people watching.

At the other end, Hugo swivel chairs continue the citron color scheme and allow booth visitors to take in the art from more comfortable vantage points. One casual Re-vive recliner by Natuzzi, Cantoni's latest offering, was initially planned for the lounge, but most likely will be increased in numbers for visitors' "test drives."

"The Italian company that created the Re-vive worked on the design for a couple of years," Farmer said. "It's built around the shape of the human spine. There are no mechanics involved. Rather, the Re-vive moves the way your body wants it to move. And it's extremely comfortable."

For a final color punch, Cantoni is bringing out its popular Giant Desk Lamp, which is just that in floor-lamp fashion — and in an attention-getting red.

"Our goals with the lounge are to entice groups of people to sit together and, of course, showcase some of our great pieces," Farmer added.