unexpected guests: lisa solomon.
oh indeed, this is one great unexpected guest, if i do say so myself! i’ve been in love with bay area artist lisa solomon’s work since i discovered her back in 2007, so it’s an honor to share lisa’s beautiful home, and refreshing and inspiring outlook on life with you today. Lisa is wonderfully tactile artist, and you can find many of her pieces available at the beholder, and view more of her lovely work on her website.
so, today we’re heading just across the bay bridge to visit lisa’s eclectic and vintage-inspired home in North Oakland, just on the boarder of Berkeley and Emeryville, which is just 20 minutes from San Francisco. Lisa likes to think of Oakland as the Brooklyn to SF’s Manhattan, and I would have to agree. let’s go!
What is your idea of a perfect day in oakland?
There are a couple of possibilities. There’s always going to museums [both here in the East Bay or in SF], there’s parks — Tilden Park and Lake Temescal are a couple of favs. There’s good eating — so many cute cafes and up and coming restaurants. Plus farmer’s markets. And there’s good shopping too! These last few weeks it’s been lovely just walking around and seeing all the spring blooms.
What’s your favorite feature in your home?
I love the mantle over our fake coal burning stove. That was a GREAT find from porch light antiques before she moved to portland. I also love the archways between our living room/dining room/office. The rooms aren’t very big, but the archways make them feel bigger than they are.
What don’t you leave home without?
These days diapers and crackers :). But in general — My iphone — especially since it doubles as a camera.
What’s your favorite bargain find or product?
I don’t have one particular favorite. I’m all about the hunt – finding the perfect thing at the perfect price; trolling flea markets, thrift stores, etc. is fun for me. If I can find something for a great deal? That only makes it better!!
What is your biggest interior design nightmare?
Clutter. How to hide it, prevent it, organize it.
Who are some of your favorite artists?
This is SUCH a hard question for me. I have so many favorites and art crushes. People I’ve admired FOREVER [eva hesse, agnes martin] and people who I discover and get added to the favorites list [lauren dicioccio, victoria may]. I try to document them on my blog under the label artists. You can take a gander to see who I’m looking at and inspired by.
Where do you find inspiration?
where do I NOT find inspiration. Seriously. I will often trip over my own feet because I’m looking up at some piece of string hanging from a tree thinking it’s beautiful. I think our lives are filled with so many small inspiration moments. You just have to allow yourself to see/smell/taste/feel them.
Do you collect anything?
Too many things. Glass beakers, vintage fans, bento boxes, sewing machines, vintage office accouterments. If it’s old and colorful and or useful or well designed I probably want it.
Who would you like to sit down to drinks with?
Do you have a guilty pleasure?
Lately I’ve been allowing myself apple croissants and morning buns from La Farine about once a week.
What is your most treasured belonging?
This is a hard one too. I have a lot of things I treasure. Art from friends and people I admire. Things that are from my grandmother’s home. I have an antique locket that holds the photos of all the pets and loved ones I’ve lost — that’s a pretty special item.
What souvenir did you bring back from your last trip?
My last big trip was to Japan, so I brought back a LOT of good stuff. But one of my favorite things is this little buddha with a red cap from nihon-jibuddha daibutsu, the biggest buddha in japan. People buy them and leave them as offerings there. There are thousands of them piled around. Mine sits in my office.
What are some of your favorites websites and blogs?
Besides yours? :) soooo many. How bout I list five places that always inspire me: poppytalk, habit [full disclosure : I’m a guest on habit this month — but I’ve loved this blog since it’s inception], of paper and things, dear ada, and the clutter.