The hottest selling point for New York City real estate? Specially curated art. Gotham got the stats from three trailblazers merging the two worlds.
Art in hotels and residential and commercial buildings has become a large factor for buyers. How does that relate to what you’re doing?
Michael Namer: We’re basically a downtown company, and we wanted to make sure people moving there understood the importance of art in those neighborhoods. We found this Holy Grail of artists like Futura 2000 and Euro and Fab Freddy who are so iconic, and they were spraying our walls. All of a sudden I was in the middle of the art world and we opened Gallery 151, where we would show exhibits alongside our own projects. It worked, because we got a lot of publicity, but we’ve also helped many up-and-coming artists.
Emily Santangelo: I’m doing projects with Toll Brothers City Living, which finds fantastic properties to develop. They’ve recognized that art is very powerful, and they believe that their public and amenities spaces should match the level of quality and luxury found in private residences.
Alexander DiPersia: I just did a project for Related Real Estate at Hudson Yards, where we placed a massive Michel François bronze piece at the front. It’s their most expensive building in Hudson Yards, so we went with a recognizable, gilded, luxurious piece. We’re using art to create an emotional experience.
If you could pick a few artists that you’d love to see gain wider recognition , whom would you choose?
AD: Henry Taylor is probably one of the most amazing, under-recognized American artists out there. And he shares a studio with a spectacular painter named Danny Fox, who paints out of LA. There’s also a Belgian artist named Harold Ancart who I love. He has large gallery support, but it’s so hard for things to become part of the public consciousness.
ES: Emilio Perez, while having recognition, still qualifies as emerging. I’m incredibly passionate about his work. Ann Agee, who has works in the Brooklyn Museum, does amazing, labor-intensive work. My third pick is a sculptor named John Clement. His work is fantastic; it’s just so vibrant.
MN: I love Oscar Dotter—he did a show with us called Polar Ice. He does very cool things, very deconstructive stuff. And Melinda Hackett with her colorful amoebas.
In the world of amenities, is art front of mind for you?
AD: Art is the number-one status symbol in the world. Oftentimes it’s worth more than the real estate.
ES: You can have all the amenities in the world from countertops to green spaces, but art is what really resonates with people.
MN: If you’re on Park Avenue and you don’t have art, you’re doing it wrong.
Is art in real estate just a trend?
ES: It’s not a trend, it’s here to stay!
Our discussion took place at the Peninsula Hotel, 700 Fifth Ave., 212-956-2888
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