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Why the living room is Hal Eisen’s favourite space

As a drama student at Ryerson University in the 1980s, Hal Eisen learned more than how to perform for the stage and screen. His program included courses on set and costume design, knowledge he put to good use during a three-year renovation of the two-storey penthouse loft he shares with his partner, production designer Andrew Bottecchia, on Queen Street West in Toronto. Eisen and Bottecchia, who jointly run Bottecchia Artistic Group, relocated the staircase and added walls to showcase their impressive collection of contemporary North American art. The improvements also made way for a main-floor living room. "This room is sort of the life centre," says Eisen. "We live in it, we entertain in it, we put our feet up in it and enjoy."

Jennifer Roberts for The Globe and Mail

The chairs
“These are matching LC3 Grand Confort chairs with matte black enamel-steel frames manufactured by Cassina in the 1970s from their original 1928 Le Corbusier design. A client sold them to us and we reupholstered them in orange ultra suede to make them easily scrubable. Orange is my favourite colour. It was a case of taking a classic and making it our own.”

The light
“This is an all-glass lamp, made in Italy in the 1930s, that was in the cosmetics department of the old Eaton’s College Street store. We found it at the Brick Works antique market.”

The poster
“This is Golden Love by Robert Indiana, a poster produced in 1973 for the Love Encounter show at the Warren Benedek Gallery in Manhattan. It is a remake of the original red, blue and green Love poster. We found this orange and gold version at Queen West Antique Centre in Toronto. I’ve always loved the image, but to find it in my favourite colour? Incredible.”

The etching
“This is one of a pair of 1998 copper-plate etchings called Arbor Vitae by Attila Richard Lukacs. They are renderings of giant redwoods from the perspective of looking up at them. When we first got them, we hung them in the dining room at eye level and guests thought they were abstract images. Now that they are hung high, everyone says, ‘Oh, look at the trees.’ ”

The open shelves
“We purchased these red and clear Lucite Le Serpent bookshelves by Roche Bobois to showcase our Venini Murano glass and Holmegaard Danish glass collections.”

The cushions
“These large linen leaf-print B&B Italia pillows from Kiosk in Toronto were meant for the terrace, but when we put them on the leather couch they looked so great they stayed indoors.”

The coffee table
“It’s a Noguchi coffee table from Herman Miller. The design dates to 1948. Noguchi has always been one of my favourite designers because he once said, “Everything is sculpture.” I believe that. This table is a perfect example of sculptural form married to everyday function. It’s a large piece but it doesn’t feel heavy.”

The carpet
“We use this Moooi carpet in the spring and summer to match our black-and-white decor on the adjacent outdoor terrace. We purchased it at Klaus in Toronto. In the winter months, we switch it up with something warmer in texture and tone.”

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