15 Interiors That Stylishly Display Collections

Whether it's a collection of modern art or ancient pottery, the tricky part is properly showing it off, and the designers of these spaces nailed it.
15 Interiors That Stylishly Display Collections

For Hubert Zandberg’s London home, a historic canal-keeper’s house, the interior designer created an otherworldly “cabinet of curiosities” to display his personal collection of contemporary art, curiosities and objets trouvé in combination with design furniture and industrial salvage pieces. “We wanted to form a dialogue between all of these different items without presenting them in a way that was overly academic or intimidating,” Zandberg says. He had the walls painted black to “correct” the strange proportion of the room (it is as tall as it is wide) and to make his collections pop. The dark canvas is a dramatic backdrop for pieces like vintage oval mirrors by Tommi Parzinger, 1960s Brazilian Jacaranda chairs and other items Zandberg collected throughout his life and travels. Photo by Simon Upton

In the entry hall of this Manhattan duplex, Doug Meyer hung works by Mark Sheinkman, William Wegman, Laurie Simmons, Nick Lamia, Marco Breuer and Valerie Jaudon on the plywood walls. Skylights illuminate the space. Photo by Mark Roskams

In the corner of this Park Avenue living room by Kristen McGinnis, a collection of 11th-century Shang bronze vessels are displayed on pedestals. Jasper Johns‘s Map hangs above the sofa. Photo by Roe Etheridge

Tucker & Marks designed this intimate dining room for the 2010 San Francisco Showcase in a 1929 Normandy-style mansion designed by Albert L. Farr. The 18th-century French oak, ash and walnut archival cabinet, from C. Mariani Antiques, inspired the space, and the firm filled it with aquatic treasures. Photo by Matthew Millman

“When you spend most of the year in the midwest, you know the winters are tough, but the over-the-top tropical look just wasn’t right because the client really loves a more refined and elegant look,” Summer Thornton says of this Naples, Florida, home. “The client’s favorite color is blue, so we found a few favorites – Chinese ginger jars, Audubon bird prints, and a riot of blue and white coral to serve as accents that would pop from a traditional elegant foundation in her Florida retreat.” Photo by Brantley Photography

“I love the tactile quality of works on paper; this wall in my Gramercy Park bedroom combines vintage photography, Indian miniatures from the 1700s, and watercolors and prints by many of my favorite artists such as Ellsworth Kelly, Hurvin Anderson, Gabriel Orozco and Kiki Smith,” says Timothy Whealon. “For me, what makes the wall dynamic is the juxtaposition between period and contemporary elements. The 1970’s sunburst mirror above the 18th-century northern Italian inlaid chest was made by Zajac and Callahan.” Photo by Max Kim-Bee

In this traditional, wood-paneled living room by Suzanne Kasler, built-in shelving illuminated by brass lamps is used to display a collection of porcelain plates and bowls. Photo by Simon Upton

“‘Where a visual artist would use paint or bronze, I use furniture or decorative items. They are the eclectic palette at my disposal. They give me my drive. I have to have them around me,” Gert Voorjans says of the maximalist, mix-and-match look and feel of his Antwerp home.

Riviere Interiors designed this British Colonial-style study in Amsterdam for clients who wanted their home to feel like it had grown and developed over two or three generations. The bookcase includes a collection of vintage silver trophies. Photo by Elizabeth Zeschin

“Collecting is tricky business: to build a focused and cohesive collection requires some trial and error, and some perspective,” says Alexandra Loew, who updated her collector client’s Manhattan apartment in an 1890 building. “It often involves some ‘mistakes’ and is informed over time. So more than anything, the home and its contents benefited from some curatorial polish.” Photo by Simon Upton

The game room of this Brockschmidt & Coleman-designed home in Pennsylvania is also a display space for the clients’ silver collection, which is displayed in front of a window and along the walls. Photo by Tria Giovan for Traditional Home

In this Park Avenue apartment, also by Brockschmidt & Coleman, bird prints are hung in various grid patterns throughout the master bedroom. Photo by Roger Davies for Architectural Digest

The study in this 2Michaels-designed West Village study includes an étagère featuring a collection of vintage Swedish and Danish pottery by Berndt Friberg, Carl-Harry Stahane, Palshus and Gunnar Nylund for Rörstrand. Photo by Eric Laignel

Fawn Galli designed this Upper East Side apartment to highlight the homeowners’ art collection. Here, the unusual arrangement of the gallery wall adds to the visual interest of the works. Photo by Costas Picadas

In this Santa Barbara, California, home by Barbara Bestor, the interior walls are built with exposed fir studs and wide plank board. The dining room’s built-in shelves are used to display a collection of pottery and objets. Photo by William Abranowicz

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