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April 2007


FEATURES

A Seaside Salon
By Sharon King Hoge

COLLECTOR JACK WOLGIN'S HOME GATHERS THE WORK OF OLDENBERG AND ERNST AMONG MANY OTHER MASTERS

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"Meet me at the clothespin" is a catch phrase of Philadelphians arranging to rendezvous at Claes Oldenberg's iconic 45-foot-tall steel sculpture standing proudly across from City Hall. It also applies to the entrance hallway of a spacious apartment in West Palm Beach's Watermark condominium complex. On display in a Plexiglas box in the foyer, a three-foot-tall Clothespin maquette welcomes visitors to the vacation home of the man who commissioned the original work, Philadelphia developer Jack Wolgin, an art patron who has been actively collecting for many of his 90 years.

After a stroke made it harder for him to move around, the lively businessman decided to set up what he calls his own personal "restricted living" facility in Florida's favorable climate. Reconnecting with architects Madlen (Mady) and Marc Neal Simon, who had worked on his Rittenhouse Square apartment, Wolgin and the husband-and-wife design team set out to create a second home that showcases part of his art collection in a space appropriate to its tropical locale.

The architectural design focused on the ceilings, where changes in height modulate the space and support a sophisticated lighting system, combining florescent washes and halogen spotlights, that was created in collaboration with New York City lighting designer George Balle. Unifying the open, airy spaces with Venetian plaster walls painted a uniform sandstone, the Simons added one vivid color per room, each taken from a painting hanging within.




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