Tatler Homes Singapore
The Gilded Age
Drawing from art nouveau influences, a clever mix of design elements by Evocateurs brings this stylish show apartment to life
Elegant, expressive and elaborate— the sophistication and romantic flair of the art nouveau movement inspired the design of Klimt Cairnhill, a freehold luxury condominium near the Orchard Road shopping belt. Launched by local property developer Low Keng Huat, the 36-storey tower features a curvilinear design and a facade with gleaming gold elements inspired by Austrian artist Gustav Klimt, a 19th-century symbolist painter who continues to be influential in the realms of art and design.
In a similar vein, homegrown design firm Evocateurs took a stylistic cue from Klimt’s work and the art movement to craft a beautiful show unit to attract prospective buyers. “We drew on the property’s architectural ethos to express an abode imbued with design elements from this iconic era,” says Catherine Mendoza, the lead designer of this project. “This generous unit served as a canvas for Evocateurs to create a mix between the organic style of the art nouveau era and today’s modern lifestyle comforts.”
Mendoza also sought inspiration from a plethora of other artistic legends of the early 20th century. These include references to Spanish artist Salvador Dali’s surrealist works and the colourful abstract forms found in the paintings of Joan Miró, thereby creating a glamorous aesthetic for the 877 sq ft show apartment.
Organic shapes and jewel tones have been incorporated extensively throughout the interior in the form of the custom joinery and architectural elements. The living area opens up to dramatic arched
elements on the ceiling that add a sense of grandeur and give movement to the space.
For a sartorial touch to the plush seats in the open-plan living and dining room, the design firm took a cue from the beautiful pleated gowns by Spanish artist-designer Mariano Fortuny. “We used Spanish fashion designer Mariano Fortuny’s fabric style in dictating our soft furnishing selection,” shares the designer.
To maximise the use of space in the apartment, the design team ingeniously created a pod-like home office by utilising one of the shelves as a desk. The bookshelf’s curved design is beautiful to behold, while functioning as a spatial divider.
The bedrooms continue the abode’s dreamy narrative with a neutral palette jazzed up with pops of colour. Unlike most bedrooms where the furnishings are fixed in place, the master bedroom is designed as an expressive space. A large round bed with opulent details is the focal point of the room. The inclusion of a generously sized dressing table with an accompanying art nouveau-styled display cabinet imbues the space with a chic yet practical attribute.
The boutique-inspired wardrobe area in the master suite makes dressing up a delightful experience. “We designed the walk-in wardrobe as one’s very own boutique, moving the shopping experience into the home’s private fitting room,” explains Mendoza. The reflective surfaces create a sense of expansiveness, while brass finishes inject a touch of glamour.
In the guest bedroom is a hidden surprise: the bed can be converted into a personal gym by lowering a concealed door—an experience similar to a castle’s drawbridge—to form a workout platform for light exercise. It’s a playful nod to the myriad talents of Italian artist, engineer and architect Leonardo da Vinci. “The inventive ingenuity of Leonardo da Vinci inspired the steel alchemist library pod and the drawbridge-inspired bed design,” shares Mendoza.
Completed in the span of three months, the show apartment’s thoughtful design and refined ambience showcases the firm’s successful balancing act between an elegant era and a modern lifestyle. “Our research into the great design masters and the process of fusing their styles into an eclectic concept was one of the most stimulating parts of the journey,” says Mendoza.