Years of carefree scouting together slowly built the one for Joel Benjamin and Dan Norman: an enchanting collection of vintage Stangl pottery featured in their Fort Point loft. It’s an impressive yet obtainable display 18 years in the making, ever since the two have been together. “It’s fun keeping an eye out for something we love, and that’s affordable,” Benjamin said.
And while Stangl has crafted dinnerware and artware in many motifs and finishes, Benjamin and Norman only have eyes for pieces with the Granada 14-carat gold finish, paired either with a dreamy aqua or moody black. Vases, jugs, bowls, plates, ashtrays, figurines—they have it all. And they remember it all, so you won’t find any duplicates here. A few even still feature the original “14 carat-gold” sticker on the bottom.
The Stangl boasts just the right touch of midcentury glamor for Benjamin and Norman, and the common finish naturally ties their 300+ piece collection together into a visually stunning display. Many are layered along the shelves of a bookcase, quietly creating a dynamic vignette. Others are grouped together on coffee and side tables. A few now cleverly adorn the wall over the stairs, showcasing their craftsmanship and detail. For the most part, they are used—Benjamin and Norman don’t shy away from their original intended use, one of the benefits of their reasonable pricetag.
It’s an expansive collection, but a leisurely one for Benjamin and Norman. No scouring the internet, bidding, or stressing—just happenstances on outings to local New England antique stores and flea markets with one another. The joy is in the hunt together, antiquing together, they both agree. The Stangl feels right at home in their place, which features an enviable assortment of midcentury pieces Norman found and rehabbed, plus new elements that speak to those same sensibilities. “My design inspiration has always been Lucy and Ricky’s apartment,” Benjamin said.
Joel Benjamin is the owner and creative powerhouse (behind the lens) of Joel Benjamin Photography. See his captivating work first-hand at his upcoming show Marriage Equality: 10th Anniversary Portraits, which opens May 16, 2014, at the Boston Center for Adult Education.
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