MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Jonathan Adler is a potter, designer, and author who launched his first ceramic collection in 1993 at Barneys New York. Five years later, he expanded into home furnishings, opening his first namesake boutique in Manhattan. He now has 17 stores including one in Miami and runs a virtual design empire.
CBS4’s Lisa Petrillo moderated a career retrospective by the Fashion Group International at the Moore Building in the Miami Design District recently and spoke exclusively to the renowned interior designer.
Adler, who uses fashion, modern art, and design history to make his popular home goods, talked about how his passion for design began at summer camp.
“I was 12 when I first tried pottery and my poor parents thought they were sending me to a sporty camp, and thought I would come back and they would find a tanned and vital athlete and instead I came back a pasty potter and that’s what I’ve been ever since,” he laughingly told Petrillo.
Actually, bold color is everywhere on almost everything he creates including his pottery, furniture, accessories and more.
“It’s kind of everything,” he explained. “Sometimes I come home and think I might be having a psychotic episode, like am I a megalomaniac because everything has my name on it?. I do everything, lighting, furniture, rugs; I have an endless desire and drive to make more stuff.”
That desire has resulted in pieces inspired by things Adler sees in everyday life, like the cloud sofa they sat on at the Fashion Group International event.
“I was out paddle boarding and I was looking at this cloud and I thought, ‘in what planet are we living where there is not a cloud shaped sofa, like what is going on here?’ It’s usually something where I have the idea and I just think that needs to exist in the world.”
It is a body of work he describes as glamour.
“I say modern America glamour because I strive to make things that are modern and I hope I capture the optimism that I think is at the core of the American sensibility, and glamour.”
Through his work, this glamour-loving artist says he does not judge others design tastes and does not take life or trends too seriously.
“The nice thing about today is we live in a world that every trend exists in the world at the same time. It’s a chaotic, mad, world and I wouldn’t have it any other way.”
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