Cha­han Mi­nas­sian

With a sharp eye and a cu­ra­tor’s ap­proach, Cha­han Mi­nas­sian cre­ates un­pre­ten­tious, taste­ful in­te­ri­ors. It’s lit­tle won­der then that he was cho­sen to help ren­o­vate one of Paris' most pres­ti­gious projects – the Hô­tel de Cril­lon.

Bespoke - - THE CONTENTS -

Pic­ture the plump curves of two soft grey arm­chairs, mir­rored in the wavy metal sides of a table that some­how echoes their un­du­lat­ing forms. They sit on a min­i­mal­ist cream car­pet, off­set by tex­tured cur­tains in a darker shade of cream, whose or­ganic weave con­trasts with the per­fectly straight lines of a geo­met­ric art­work wo­ven from black thread. Ar­chi­tect Cha­han Mi­nas­sian – who goes sim­ply by the name Cha­han – is an in­te­rior de­signer whose work is best char­ac­terised by com­ple­men­tar­ity and mix­tures. At­tracted to nat­u­ral, richly tex­tured ma­te­ri­als, the Paris-based Ar­me­nian spe­cialises in op­u­lent yet un­der­stated in­te­ri­ors. In­ter­est­ingly, he puts his eclec­tic ap­proach down to his up­bring­ing in Lebanon, where he lived un­til the age of 15. “I don’t hes­i­tate to mix things to­gether, as long as I like ev­ery­thing, and that’s what I’d say I’ve in­her­ited from my ‘ori­en­tal’ up­bring­ing,” he ex­plains. One of the ways that Cha­han achieves bal­ance in his in­te­ri­ors is his nu­anced ap­proach to colour. “I usu­ally work in a monochro­matic pal­ette, but it’s very rich,” he ex­plains, in ex­cel­lent English that’s tinged with a charm­ing French lilt. “I’ll use 30 shades of cream – but the cream is ap­plied by stone, suede, glass, wood and patina.” Cha­han tends to ac­cen­tu­ate his nu­anced colour scheme with play­ful ac­cents, of­ten in ma­roon, mauve or blue, and has an ob­vi­ous pen­chant for turquoise and teal – the hues of the Mediter­ranean. Time­less and serene, his har­mo­nious style made him the pre­ferred choice to form part of the Saudi Ara­bian royal fam­ily’s de­sign team when they em­barked on a four-year ren­o­va­tion of their Rose­wood-man­aged Hô­tel de Cril­lon prop­erty in Paris (which ended last sum­mer). Cha­han ex­plains that the scope of his work also some­times in­volves the cre­ation of one-off be­spoke so­fas, lamps and ta­bles, which he has in­di­vid­u­ally made when he can’t source the pieces he has in mind. And more­over, since 2008, the Cha­han Gallery in Paris has been cre­at­ing hand­made, in­di­vid­u­ally num­bered pieces avail­able to a wider cus­tomer base, 70 per cent of whom are them­selves in­te­rior de­sign­ers. His abil­ity to mix old and new is some­thing you’ll come across on the Cha­han_m In­sta­gram ac­count, which he uses as a plat­form to com­mu­ni­cate his brand aes­thetic. The feed fea­tures plenty of pho­tos of his own de­signs, as well as many cu­rated collectibles, mostly from the 1930s and the 1960s, pe­ri­ods that he ad­mits to hav­ing a par­tic­u­lar pas­sion for. Also ev­i­dent is that fas­ci­na­tion of his for tex­tures and pat­terns, which usu­ally come in the form of a closeup com­bined with a funny hash­tag like: #cant­ge­tany­bet­terthanthis. His en­thu­si­asm is thor­oughly con­ta­gious, and if hir­ing him for your next project isn’t on the cards, then a daily dose of his so­cial me­dia chan­nels might be the next best thing.

Above: 56-year-old Cha­han Mi­nas­sian. Right: This high-rise New York home's sig­na­ture fea­ture is a stun­ning sculp­tural wall by Pe­ter Lane. It is com­ple­mented by stone ta­bles, cash­mere so­fas, fur cush­ions and some ju­di­cious flu­o­r­ishes of suede.

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