This is not your mid-century of aqua, boomerang tables and kitsch plastique. Instead, Forma Revivo — the newly opened-to-the-public ‘50s and 60s furnishings destination — offers a sleek, serious and clubby take on the golden decades of the 20th century when master cabinetmakers in Scandinavia and America ruled. The resulting beautifully restrained creations made sitting, lounging, dining and cocktailing art forms in themselves. Forma Revivo’s man at the top, Dutch Small, has a coast-to-coast following, thanks to his connections with a Manhattan gallery that represents his finds, as well as a celebrity clientele ranging from Naeem Khan to Wes Anderson. What makes Small’s curated stock stellar is his astute eye combined with ongoing research, and the careful restoration of each piece to museum perfection before it’s offered for sale. Armed with a wealth of information about the finest designers of the era, he specializes in rare masters such as Hans Wegner, Harvey Probber, T.H. Robsjohn-Gibbings, Edward Wormley and Milo Baughman (the latter, showcased in an August exhibition) in lieu of the brilliant but ubiquitous Eames. Thus, his ambitious 3,500-square-foot space, designed by Barbara Hill at David Adickes’ SculpturWorx complex (entrance on Crockett Street), promises to be a hot showplace for the authentically modern and significant (price points $150 to $32,000). And did we mention Small’s family ties? His career was meant to be: Maternal grandfather Allen Newby did custom work for the King — Elvis, that is — restoring Graceland’s over-the-top furnishings and interiors. 2500 Crockett St., 713.936.0762; formarevivo.com. Inaugural show: “Form, Fiber, Finish — An Exhibition of Important Mid-Century Design” (through July).
Forma Revivo. Photo by Jenny Antill.
Dutch Small. Photo by Jenny Antill.