The Needle
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What Moves You?

Second-Generation Furniture Store Owner Monroe Sherman’s Art Collection Tells a Story

Monroe Sherman


How does your career within furniture design influence the way you decorate your home?

I’ve always felt like it’s important to have personal things and places where all my friends feel comfortable to come and enjoy. There’s something to be said for livable furniture – form and function – all of those things are really nice, but then it’s about good design and people don’t realize how excited they are when they actually see good design. Sometimes it’s subliminal. For me it’s about building textures and layers, but not going too far, because then it becomes sensory overload.

How would you describe your style?

Overused, but eclectic. I mix modern with vintage and blend it with personal art objects. With contemporary furniture, quality shows because there’s not a lot of fluff around it. I like things to be livable and comfortable.

What’s your favorite piece here?

I have lots of favorite pieces. Some of it’s art, but then also some of the furniture is art. I have pieces of furniture where artists took time to detail little inlays of wood and parchment on a bar cabinet. That took so much time and the technique is lost, especially from the 1930s. The art to me is important because that stands out, but it’s good to have simple backdrops for the art.

Is there anything about this home that you’ll miss?

I don’t think so because I make every place I live a home. I’ve had lots of different places and environments - from beach houses to apartments to homes. I laid out everything for the movers, everything went into place, I knew where everything was going. The idea was to work with the space, which I do all the time in my work and at my store. It’s always a challenge but I have a passion for it. It’s not really work. I enjoy having people enjoy my home. I entertain a lot.

What prompted you to move on from this home?

I’m ready for a house again. I’ve enjoyed this great space - I know I’ll miss it, but I’ve had other spaces I miss too and each one has its own unique experience. It’s nice to pass this on to someone else. It sounds like the buyer (for this apartment) is thrilled and excited about moving in.

You’re taking the furniture with you, right?

Yes, I enjoy the challenge of the change; each space has different needs. So the next home is different in terms of space and scale. It’s nice to be challenged with that, as I was with this space. Here I had to work with a 90-inch-high elevator, so nothing is over 90 inches.

What’s your favorite part of this home?

It’s like having a home in the sky. There are windows everywhere; you don’t feel like there’s one perspective and the outside space is all open, which is unusual. The views during the fireworks on the 4th are amazing - I see all the way north to Ft. Lauderdale and south to the beach, Miami, and the airport.

What is it about art that moves you?

That’s a really good question because art is so subjective. I have pieces that are 400 years old and things that are new. It’s something I can’t explain. There’s pieces that I’ve had in my life and there’s pieces I’ve had a year or two. Somehow they all work no matter where I go. I’m fascinated by the stories. That’s a portrait of Sarah Bernhardt, she was a famous actress in the late 1800s, then I have a 13th century temple carving from India. I always feel like you should buy art that makes you feel good. Art gives me pleasure when I look at it, and when there’s a story to it, like where I found it, that makes it even more interesting. Same thing with vintage furniture too because it’s something exciting to see. It’s not something you say “oh I want big or small or...” It’s those special pieces that bring it all together and make it a home.

Jared Klein