Step inside the alluring Williamsburg residence of Anthony Goicolea

This Talented Artist Uses 3 Elements to Brighten Up His New York Home
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When Cuban-American artist Anthony Goicolea embarked on building his house in Williamsburg, New York, he faced obstacles that would have shaken and stirred many other grand designs.

“It wasn’t a simple remodelling job,” says Anthony. To begin with, he demolished the original two-storey row house to basement level. “I took off the roof, the front and the back, and I started three months before the recession hit,” he says. “Just to get anybody out to work was difficult. I think people had downsized their staff so they were stretched thin. It was really difficult to get anything done.” The project faced weather challenges, too, as New York was battered by one of the harshest winters on record. This meant construction had to stop completely. Scroll through the gallery below (Photography: Emily Andrews | Chilli Media) to experience the artist's alluring home:

This Talented Artist Uses 3 Elements to Brighten Up His New York Home

It took three years to realise his dream, but despite the turmoil of the building process, Anthony is thrilled with the outcome.

This Talented Artist Uses 3 Elements to Brighten Up His New York Home

The exterior makes a statement: it’s built of concrete and mahogany timber joinery, and it stands in striking contrast to the neighbouring low-scale, 1950s red-brick row houses.

This Talented Artist Uses 3 Elements to Brighten Up His New York Home

The home’s bold exterior reflects the approach Anthony takes in his internationally acclaimed art. The multidisciplinary artist has received consistently rave reviews since his 1999 solo debut at New York’s Rare Gallery. Anthony has work housed in the permanent collections of the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Guggenheim Museum and Brooklyn Museum – a level of success that provided the financial ballast to undertake his home-building project. 

This Talented Artist Uses 3 Elements to Brighten Up His New York Home

When Anthony purchased the house in 2007, he had just finished a much less stressful renovation of his house upstate on the shores of Lake Oscawana. He wanted the Williamsburg house to evoke the same sense of openness, privacy and escape he loved upstate, but within the urban context. “I’ve always had this dream of having a country home in the city,” he says.

This Talented Artist Uses 3 Elements to Brighten Up His New York Home

Large windows in the kitchen let in plenty of natural light.

This Talented Artist Uses 3 Elements to Brighten Up His New York Home

The open kitchen and dining area brings to mind the sense of country living that Anthony sought

This Talented Artist Uses 3 Elements to Brighten Up His New York Home

Inside, despite the house’s limited width, there is a sense of light, openness and connectedness that optimises the space throughout the four split-levels of living. This is achieved in part by the generous bank of north-facing windows that admit softly diffused light into the interior, double height ceilings and oak flooring. The entry-level one-wall Ikea kitchen – with open glass shelves, a marble and wood benchtop, and a lovingly restored wooden dining table – successfully evokes the sense of country living that Anthony was after. The Mies van der Rohe Barcelona daybed and array of plants contribute to the warm and relaxed feeling this area has, along with the uncluttered layout and light colour scheme. 

This Talented Artist Uses 3 Elements to Brighten Up His New York Home

Floating oak stairs lead from the living area to two bedrooms and a main bathroom of extravagant proportions, where doors slide back to reveal the leafy view beyond. This stylish bathroom is a trio of partitioned spaces, with a freestanding bath, twin rain showerheads, twin basins and a toilet. “I love the bathroom,” says Anthony. “It’s the only room in the house where you can shut the door and people respect your privacy. I feel I can unwind and relax in the tub or shower – it’s very calming. In New York a large bathroom is a luxury.”

This Talented Artist Uses 3 Elements to Brighten Up His New York Home

In contrast to the rest of the house, his 120-sq-ft bedroom is an intimate, cosy space, thanks to the dark green walls. Above the bed is a work by Wayne White, and on the wall is a find from Anthony’s travels – a secondhand, wooden Maori carving picked up on one of his many visits to New Zealand. 

This Talented Artist Uses 3 Elements to Brighten Up His New York Home

Anthony’s eclectic mix of furniture, artworks and personal memorabilia has resulted in a welcoming interior. “You don’t feel you’re in the city,” says Anthony of his home. “Even when you look out the window, it feels as though you’re out in the country relaxing.”

Tags: homeinteriorsdesignartcultureNewYork
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