C A V O R T I N G W I T H S T U FF
CLARE GRAHAM is passionate about STUFF - buttons, Scrabble pieces, dominoes, crushed soda cans, vintage yard sticks, teddy-bear eye balls...
You could call him a hoarder, but that would belie the fact that Graham, a former art director with Disney, turns all of these oddities into extravagant and beautiful furniture and sculptural art - enough to fill a 7,000 square foot gallery/collection space with 28-foot ceilings.
Graham and partner Bob Breen, a former set designer and designated organizer of the stuff, bought the behemoth Highland Park building in 1968 to house the flea market finds that began to overflow their charming, but diminutive Arts and Crafts bungalow.
Brace yourself, this is what forty-six years of collecting and making art looks like...
Amazing what you can do with a gaggle of buttons and a few thousand Scrabble pieces - skyscrapers and evocative hanging sculpture.
And Graham has finessed about 15 1/2 million aluminum soda can pop tops into his art work. Crazybeautiful!
His tall, elegant cabinets are a study in intricacy and playfulness. This just-finished beauty is encrusted with dominoes and lined with marbleized paper on the interior.
My Favorite - scores and scores of teddy-bear eye balls stud the stunning cabinet exterior.
Yes, those are eye balls on the mirror...
And visitors are invited to pull open drawers to discover the treasures they hold. The phrase a kid in a candy shop comes to mind. I could have spent hours doing just that.
But, I restrained myself (almost) for after all, Graham is very much a working artist. While I was ecstatically taking photographs, he was at his work table listening to classical music and creating magic.
Thank you Clare & Bob for sharing your time and wondrous art with Chasing Santa Fe! And thanks to Jonathan Pessin (center) who not only is an amazing actor, but a charming tour guide.
M O R Y O R K G A L L E R Y
4959 York Blvd. Los Angeles, CA
CLICK LINK BELOW TO SEE A RECENT NY TIMES ARTICLE
ON THEIR HOME.
360 degrees from their warehouse.