In our series 6sqft Studio Visits, we take you behind the scenes of the city’s up-and-coming and top designers, artists, and entrepreneurs to give you a peek into the minds, and spaces, of NYC’s creative force. In this installment we take a tour of the Bed-Stuy urban farm Square Roots. Want to see your studio featured here, or want to nominate a friend? Get in touch!
In a Bed-Stuy parking lot, across from the Marcy Houses (you’ll know this as Jay-Z’s childhood home) and behind the hulking Pfizer Building, is an urban farming accelerator that’s collectively producing the equivalent of a 20-acre farm. An assuming eye may see merely a collection of 10 shipping containers, but inside each of these is a hydroponic, climate-controlled farm growing GMO-free, spray-free, greens–“real food,” as Square Roots calls it. The incubator opened just this past November, a response by co-founders Kimbal Musk (Yes, Elon‘s brother) and Tobias Peggs against the industrial food system as a way to bring local food to urban settings. Each vertical farm is run by its own entrepreneur who runs his or her own sustainable business, selling directly to consumers. 6sqft recently visited Square Roots, went inside entrepreneur Paul Philpott‘s farm, and chatted with Tobias about the evolution of the company, its larger goals, and how food culture is changing.
Take a tour of Square Roots and get the full story from Tobias
In our series 6sqft Studio Visits, we take you behind the scenes of the city’s up-and-coming and top designers and artists to give you a peek into the minds, and spaces, of NYC’s creative force. In this installment we take a tour of the Gowanus studio of Lite Brite Neon. Want to see your studio featured here, or want to nominate a friend? Get in touch!
Among the manufacturing and arts tenants in the Old American Can Factory, a converted six-building industrial complex at the Gowanus Canal, is Lite Brite Neon, which has been described as “the darling of artists and designers.” And after touring their funky workspace/showroom, the description definitely fits. They were founded in 1999 in Brooklyn and have been creating neon art, signage, lighting, and displays ever since, in addition to preserving and restoring historic neon. 6sqft recently got an insider’s look at their colorfully gritty home and spoke to lead designer Wayne Heller about how the company functions and what makes neon unique.
Take the tour here
Our ongoing series “My sqft” checks out the homes of 6sqft’s friends, family and fellow New Yorkers across all the boroughs. Our latest interior adventure brings us to Westbeth Artists Housing in the West Village. Want your home to be featured here? Get in touch!
When the old Bell Telephone Laboratories building was transformed to the Westbeth affordable artists’ housing in 1970, one of the original creatives to move in was Ralph Lee, a theater jack-of-all trades who is best known for his larger-than-life puppets and masks. His whimsical creations served as the props for the very first Village Halloween Parade, an event that has since grown into an annual, nationally-known event. Today, his characters from the early days of the parade adorn his eclectic live/work studio in Westbeth, where he still lives and continues to make puppets and masks for his company the Mettawee River Theatre. Ralph recently invited 6sqft into his space, where we got up close and personal with the puppets and were able to see how the magic happens.
Learn about Ralph’s storied career and get a special look at his home and studio
The Brooklyn Navy Yard has since its inception acted as a pole for the cutting edge and creative, from its time as the “The Can-Do Shipyard” where U.S. warships assembled, to present day as urban farmers, photographers and filmmakers carve out spaces for themselves on the campus’ more than 300 acres. But the latest most notable addition to the Navy Yard is most certainly New Lab. New Lab is the creation of Macro Sea (who many will remember brought dumpster pools to NYC a few years ago) and is a revolutionary hub that turns an 84,000-square-foot former shipping building into a thinkspace for nearly 300 engineers and entrepreneurs working in advanced hardware and robotics. Here, members whose work include everything from designing nano microscopes to using synthetic biology to engineer cities can take their ideas from concept to prototype to production under one roof. It’s what the founders are calling “a breakthrough ecosystem of shared resources.”
In this 6sqft feature, we speak to New Lab’s co-founder and Macro Sea Executive Director and founder David Belt. David is also the founder and Managing Partner of DBI, which is currently managing the realization of the Performing Arts Center at the World Trade Center, amongst other high-profile projects around the city. Ahead, he takes us through the new facility and gives us some intel on what inspired the design, the cutting edge companies that have taken up space, and what he ultimately hopes to achieve with New Lab.
Learn more about New Lab with David here
In our series 6sqft Studio Visits, we take you behind the scenes of the city’s up-and-coming and top designers and artists to give you a peek into the minds, and spaces, of NYC’s creative force. In this installment we take a tour Thompson Square Studios, a private members club-style co-working space in Soho. Want to see your studio featured here, or want to nominate a friend? Get in touch!
After starting his career as an architect in London, Robert Herrick went on to found Visualhouse, a “creative ideas” agency focusing on the architecture and design fields, in 2006. With offices now in London, New York, Los Angeles, Miami and Hong Kong, Visualhouse has produced work from branding campaigns to digital renderings for the likes of Zaha Hadid, Norman Foster, and Rafael Vinoly. In 2013, Robert took his expertise and created the Thompson House Group with the goal of delivering private member experiences in workspaces, hotels, and restaurants.
The Group’s first project was Thompson Square Studios, a “private member club for work and play.” Unlike traditional co-working spaces, the Studio has a membership board that selects tenants from the creative industries based on what they can bring to the collective whole. 6sqft recently caught up with CEO and founder Robert, who took us on a tour of the impeccably designed space filled with copper accents, industrial decor, and sleek yet moody furniture. We also got a look at how Visualhouse operates within the club.
Tour the space and hear from Robert
In our series 6sqft Studio Visits, we take you behind the scenes of the city’s up-and-coming and top designers and artists to give you a peek into the minds, and spaces, of NYC’s creative force. In this installment we take a tour of the Cobble Hill studio of colorful wallpaper company Flavor Paper. Want to see your studio featured here, or want to nominate a friend? Get in touch!
Nestled among the charming streets and quaint rowhouses of Cobble Hill is the headquarters of a wallpaper company that’s taken the art to a completely new level. Flavor Paper was founded in 2003 in New Orleans before moving to Brooklyn nine years ago. What started out as an attempt to salvage old equipment from a hand-screened wallpaper company on the Oregon coast has morphed into an internationally recognized brand–known for its bright colors, bold patterns, and plain-old fun aesthetic–with over 156 designs and collaborations with the likes of Lenny Kravitz and the Andy Warhol Foundation.
6sqft recently toured what the company calls their “Flavor Lair” (it houses their production facilities, offices and showroom) and chatted with founder Jon Sherman about what sets Flavor Paper apart from other wallpaper manufacturers, why he calls Brooklyn home, and the backstory on some of the most popular designs. We also got a sneak peak into Jon’s personal home, a sexy abode located above the Skylab Architecture-designed Lair.
Take the tour this way
Industry City is a six million-square-foot, 30-acre industrial complex on the Sunset Park waterfront. Its 16 buildings made up the former Bush Terminal, a manufacturing, warehousing and distribution center that opened in 1895. After falling into disrepair over the past few decades, in 2013, a new ownership team led by Belvedere Capital and Jamestown began their $1 billion undertaking to update the complex while cultivating a diverse tenant mix that fuses today’s burgeoning innovation economy with traditional manufacturing and artisanal craft.
Today, there are more than 4,500 people and 400 companies working in Industry City, and 6sqft recently paid a visit to four of them (a handbag designer, lighting designer, candle company, and chocolatier) to learn why the complex makes sense for their business and what unique opportunities it’s afforded them. We also spoke with Industry City CEO Andrew Kimball about the unprecedented success of the complex and his visions for the future, as well as took a tour of the buildings and their wildly popular public amenity spaces such as the food hall, outdoor courtyards, and tenant lounge.
All this and more ahead
For some New Yorkers, bargain hunting is a fun weekend hobby, but stylist, designer and creator of Found By a Prop Stylist Courtney Dawley has taken the casual pastime and transformed it into her career. Courtney’s keen eye for a deal and her ability to curate the unlikely into cohesive collections of modern nostalgia were the seeds for her thriving online shop and style website. Courtney also transforms many of her vintage finds into stylish and functional pieces for the home, ranging from antique painted planters to vintage mugs up-cycled into stylish candles.
6sqft recently visited Courtney at her Greenpoint studio and home, and, in addition to photographing the fun and eclectic space, we learned about how she got into collecting vintage objects, her personal design aesthetic and new collection, and the best spots nearby for vintage finds.
Get it all right here
In our series 6sqft Studio Visits, we take you behind the scenes of the city’s up-and-coming and top designers and artists to give you a peek into the minds, and spaces, of NYC’s creative force. In this installment we take a tour of designer Ghislaine Viñas’ colorful and Tribeca loft. Want to see your studio featured here, or want to nominate a friend? Get in touch!
The work of interior designer Ghislaine Viñas is unmistakable; the bright colors, bold prints, and fun and funky decor have made her the go-to firm for both local Tribeca residents and international clients looking to jazz up their homes. After 25 years and winning countless awards (many of which celebrate her use of color), appearing on television stations like HGTV, and gracing the pages of publications from The New York Times to Vogue, Ghislaine is showing no signs of slowing down. Long fans of her work, 6sqft recently toured Ghislaine’s live/work space, which, not surprisingly is the perfect example of her playful, yet modern, aesthetic. We learned about what influences her designs, how her team works together, and new product collaborations. We also got some tips on how to incorporate color into our homes like a pro.
All this and more ahead
In our series 6sqft Studio Visits, we take you behind the scenes of the city’s up-and-coming and top designers and artists to give you a peek into the minds, and spaces, of NYC’s creative force. In this installment we take a tour of painter and sculptor Nancy Pantirer’s imaginative Tribeca studio. Want to see your studio featured here, or want to nominate a friend? Get in touch!
When artist Nancy B. Pantirer opened up her studio for this year’s Inside Tribeca Loft Tour, guests were swooning over everything from the high ceilings to the eclectic furniture, and of course, her incredible paintings, many of which are done in a large-scale format. But what really left an impression was Nancy’s welcoming nature, evident as she chatted with almost everyone who passed through her space, telling them a bit about herself, her work, and the neighborhood. Eager to share this with our readers, 6sqft was lucky enough to get a private tour of Nancy’s space, where she filled us in on her process, design choices, and how she feels Tribeca has changed since she arrived in 1995.
Take our tour right this way