dark and daring

Den of Originality

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the Mississippi-born interior designer, is an expert at creating the best kind of domestic drama. So when a Memphis couple became empty nesters, they turned to Anderson to bring some new life to their house. At the clients’ request, he took an ordinary family room and made it, he says, “sleeker and sexier.”




of dark colors even in a room the family spends lots of time in, Anderson covered the walls in textured, dark gray paper. Then he gave the space a focal point, replacing an ordinary fireplace and its flanking bookshelves with an oversized, black marble surround. Its white veining and leathered finish making the stone especially compelling.

Eye-catching objects are everywhere. Above the mantel, sconces from Apparatus, with glistening horsehair accents, demand a second look. So does the mixed-media artwork by Joelle Somero between the sconces. In the fireplace itself, a pair of brass andirons passed down in the husband’s family are one more thing to marvel at.




chest in a reddish hue animates one end of the long rectangle, bursting out of a mostly neutral backdrop. At the other end, a dazzling kimono-like artwork hangs in front of a curtain. The artwork and the curtain slide away to reveal a hidden television.

Contrasts prevail. For a place to sit, choose from high-backed sofas or low-backed chairs. A white disk ceiling fixture shines light down on a rectangular coffee table by Stillmade. A pair of side tables from Chairish are made of charred wood; their texture a stark contrast to the polished brass lamps by Kelly Wearstler set upon them. 




corners of the world are represented. On one of the charred tables is an artwork resembling a waterlogged newspaper, Il Mito di Marilyn by Enzo Guaricci, purchased from Galleria Gagliardi in San Gimignano, Italy while across the room, a pair of basalt occasional tables resemble pieces Isamu Noguchi might have made in his studio on the Japanese island of Shikoku.




and finishes are luxurious and polished in contrast to the dashes of imperfection that punctuate the room. Overall, this dark, moody den channels the unexpected, which in Anderson’s hands, is equal parts challenging and inviting.



Design: Sean Anderson

Photography: Haris Kenjar



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