“We want to build an alternative to traditional galleries, which are often perceived as too elitist and intimidating,” said Abessera and Azria.
The duo worked closely with interior designer Gabriella Kuti to turn what was a private house in a protected historical building into a space to showcase a rotating series of exhibitions.
The gallery is organised like a collector’s home, with artworks and design pieces spread across multiple rooms that total 4,000 square feet (371 square metres).
Their intention was to allow visitors to journey through the different rooms and floors, which are designed to exude a warm atmosphere.
The team didn’t need to alter too much of the existing interiors but added storage and lighting to help better display the works.
“The space was already an amazing canvas for this purpose: high ceilings, lots of lights and skylight, white limestone floors,” the co-founders told Dezeen. “We created more shelving with LA artisans and added more lights.”
Architectural features like circular windows, spiral staircases and marble bathrooms all bring character to the gallery.
The house also has a terrace with a small swimming pool and balconies for displaying pieces outdoors.
Everything displayed through the various styled vignettes, from artworks to collectible design pieces, is for sale.
The aim is to spotlight a wide range of both established and emerging artists and designers, who work across mediums and techniques including painting, sculpture, photography, furnishings, ceramics, lighting, textiles and objects.
“The pieces showcased represent the varied and changing cultural landscape of identities, values and beliefs,” the pair said.
Inaugurating the gallery is a group exhibition titled Transcendence, curated by Gaia Jacquet Matisse and including work by her mother, Sophie Matisse, along with artists Bobbie Olivier, Jeannie Weissglass, Edson Fernandes, James Fischetti, Angela Damman and Santiago Martinez Peral.
Together, the show aims to “examine the concept of duality within our existence as humans inhabiting the earth, alongside nature” according to the team.
This debut exhibition will continue until the Frieze Los Angeles 2023 art fair, which takes place 16-19 February, then the gallery is scheduled to host four showcases per year.
Presenting art and collectible design in a residential setting has become a popular way for gallerists and fairs to contextualise the objects, and make them more appealing to potential buyers.
Galleries like The Future Perfect, which operates showrooms in LA and New York under the moniker Casa Perfect, and the Nomad Circle series of travelling design fairs are among those that have found success through this format.