Stories

 

Brooklyn, New York, USA

Design heights of Brooklyn

 

A curious mix of Scandinavian and Japanese aesthetics embraces you when entering the Brooklyn Heights home of Spencer Bailey. His home — its own sort of “slow space” - speaks to Spencer’s passion for functional, clean-lined design. Ten years ago, Spencer moved into this 1,950 ft² / 181 m² space covering two floors in a four-story building in a historic New York district.

A curious mix of Scandinavian and Japanese aesthetics embraces you when entering the Brooklyn Heights home of Spencer Bailey. His home — its own sort of “slow space” - speaks to Spencer’s passion for functional, clean-lined design. Ten years ago, Spencer moved into this 1,950 ft² / 181 m² space covering two floors in a four-story building in a historic New York district.

Meet the Spencer Bailey

A creative tour de force within journalism, writing, editing, and interviewing, Spencer has written and reported on various cultural spheres -architecture, art, design, and technology among them - for publications such as The New York Times Magazine, Town & Country, and Surface. (He served as the latter’s editor-in-chief from 2013 to 2018.) He is also the editor-at-large of the publisher Phaidon, for which his latest book is Alchemy: The Material World of David Adjaye (July 2023). As co-founder of the New York–based media company The Slowdown which he launched in 2019, he oversees its slate of newsletters and hosts its Time Sensitive podcasts. Spencer’s aim with The Slowdown and its distinctive intersectional approach?

“To create a slow and sustainable counterbalance to the hyper-streamlined, quick-hit, dopamine- driven culture that’s so pervasive on the internet and social media”, he says.

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A thoughtfulness underpins the choice of furniture and art objects. Blue tones are repeated in felt chairs from Ligne Roset and a painting by the Danish artist Kasper Sonne. The Ladies Home Journal magazine cover of a bunny, from the early 20thcentury, was painted by Spencer’s great-great grandfather and namesake, Frank Spencer Guild. Two alabaster pieces and a wood ball by the Oregon-based artist Julian Watts contrast with a large ceramic piece by the Japanese artist Kazunori Hamana.

 

A thoughtfulness underpins the choice of furniture and art objects. Blue tones are repeated in felt chairs from Ligne Roset and a painting by the Danish artist Kasper Sonne. The Ladies Home Journal magazine cover of a bunny, from the early 20thcentury, was painted by Spencer’s great-great grandfather and namesake, Frank Spencer Guild. Two alabaster pieces and a wood ball by the Oregon-based artist Julian Watts contrast with a large ceramic piece by the Japanese artist Kazunori Hamana.

His home — its own sort of “slow space” - speaks to Spencer’s passion for functional, clean-lined design. Ten years ago, Spencer moved into this 1,950 ftÇ / 181 mÇ space covering two floors in a four-story building in a historic New York district. But, he says, it didn’t truly feel like home until he recently decided to up-cycle his previous contractor-grade kitchen and replace it with one from Vipp. “You now step right into the apartment and are greeted by this beautiful kitchen with a Danish sensibility of modern and minimal warmth”, says Spencer.

His home — its own sort of “slow space” - speaks to Spencer’s passion for functional, clean-lined design. Ten years ago, Spencer moved into this 1,950 ftÇ / 181 mÇ space covering two floors in a four-story building in a historic New York district. But, he says, it didn’t truly feel like home until he recently decided to up-cycle his previous contractor-grade kitchen and replace it with one from Vipp. “You now step right into the apartment and are greeted by this beautiful kitchen with a Danish sensibility of modern and minimal warmth”, says Spencer.

The V1 Kitchen

“You now step right into the apartment and are greeted by this beautiful kitchen with a Danish sensibility of modern and minimal warmth”, says Spencer.

The kitchen serves as a scene for frequent home-cooked meals (a one-pot miso ginger salmon dish is his go-to) and weekend entertaining. His ideal dinner party? Six people or less, he says - small enough for everyone at the table to listen to each other. “I’m now dreaming of a dinner party with David Adjaye, Paola Navone, Isamu Noguchi, Rebecca Solnit, and Jhumpa Lahiri”, says Spencer.

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