House of Interests: Ron Arad House | Interiors

I am I had an idea of ​​London in my head from English films. Every film made in London was art, but from Hollywood it was rubbish. I was an arrogant teenager!” Ron Arad says with a laugh about his decision to leave Tel Aviv for London in 1973 at the age of 22.

Arad, who studied architecture at his mother’s insistence at the Architectural Association School in London, sports his trademark round field hat. He sits on a Victoria & Albert Crimson sofa, one of his own pieces created for the Italian furniture brand. Moroso, in the conservatory of his north London home. With his wife Alma, who works as a psychologist, they have lived here for more than 30 years, raising their daughters, Lyle and Tara, who live nearby.

In the world of art, design and architecture, Ron Arad is a household name and his 1993 Polished Stainless Steel is a bestseller. T-sofa It broke auction records Sold for £1.23m In 2021. His house is a testament to his lifelong dedication to the creative field, and every design and piece of furniture in it is a prototype, model or sculpture that he dreamed up.

In front of the arch: Ron Arad with his grandson, in front of his prototype bookworm shelving system. Photo: Monica Spezia/Living Inside

On the first floor of a Victorian townhouse, the sitting room expands into an open-plan kitchen and dining room overlooking the garden. Original pine floorboards, with ornate decorative moldings, anchor the space. A curved bookcase full of books is original Bookworm Prototype designed by Arad for the 1993 Milan Furniture Fair. It became one of Kartell’s best-selling pieces worldwide, and is still produced and one is even on display in the furniture collection at the V&A.

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“This is the first bookworm I’ve ever made; It’s made from mild steel,” says Arad. „When we first moved in, I looked at this wall and drew a pattern on the wall with my finger. I thought it would be great to have a shelf like that. Little did I know that the industrial version would become my most famous work.

Arad, whose nearby Chalk Farm studio is a 10-minute walk away, explains that she likes to look at houses and discover them on her way to work. „It’s really nice. I know windows where you can see the bookworm. In his own sitting room, the shelves are lit by a large floor lamp designed by a former student (Arad was professor of design at the Royal College of Art from 1997 to 2009).

Earth Tones: He used saffron and water-based powder-based dyes in terracotta to paint the walls. Photo: Monica Spezia/Living Inside

To the left of the shelves hang three posters, each in orange, red and pink proclaiming “It’s Only Rock 'n’ Roll”. Arad ripped them off a billboard decades ago. „I love this piece, the cover, the pictures and the words.” The frayed edges further convey their beauty and the message he is eager to share: “This house is not for that. Elle decoration, where we live and how we live. I’m a hoarder, but I tolerate it. This is where we spend most of our time.”

Beneath the Posters Arad’s defining work, The Rover chair, designed in 1981 using scrap from a salvage yard. It launched his career and was sold to the likes of Jean Paul Gaultier and Richard Rogers. After a while, Vitra invited Aarad to design for them. He created Good characterLater, the Tom Walk And Ripple The chairs, both found around the dining table, are from the 40 series he designed in 1994 as an installation for the Cartier Foundation. The steel kitchen counter was designed and built by Arad in his studio.

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’I’m a hoarder, but I tolerate’: the designer at his desk. Photo: Monica Spezia/Living Inside

„When people come into my house, they always say: 'I love everything you do’ and then point to the chandelier,” laughs Arad. One of the few pieces he didn’t do was the light fixture above the desk. It is Holy! The prototype was designed by his friend Ingo Maurer, „the great lighting artist”. Behind are wooden containers, once school storage for microscopes, now kitchen store shelves.

When they moved in, Arad painted the walls with a powder-based dye mixed with water in saffron and terracotta. Although they didn’t „interfere too much” with the building, he designed a ground-floor conservatory, a home studio and a balcony off the kitchen, a staircase down to the garden using garden steel and a glass block roof.

Inside, a checked rug designed by Arad Nani Marquina Turns off the floor. The black umbrellas, true to his 60s British style preference, are fully functional: Arad attached magnets to the ends to move them between the steel and glass above, shielding his screen from sunlight.

The garden is a literal retrospective of his work, filled with overstuffed chairs, tables and designs. Moroso, Kyubu, and a sign from an exhibit on the serpent. This is a man who never stops creating; A happy nonconformist who delights in the unexpected. He calls his studio a playground, and when asked for advice on creativity, Arad laughs: “Boredom is the mother of creativity and perhaps envy. Look at life with curiosity, what if I do this… But I don’t think creative people need advice on how to be creative.

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