Good neighbors are good friends… and good collaborators. That logic fueled Past Presence, a new collection of furniture, lighting, and jewelry from New York–based designers and , former neighbors in Brooklyn’s burgeoning Red Hook neighborhood. The designers are showcasing Past Presence through an exhibition called All That Glitters in Pelle's Manhattan showroom until June 30.
The two companies first became acquainted after proximity exposed them to each other’s crafts. Husband-wife duo Oliver and Jean Pelle opened their showroom in 2012, meeting Erie Basin founder Russell Whitmore shortly thereafter and often visiting his studio. “Russell has a wonderful eye for curation ranging from furniture pieces to antique jewelry,” says co-founder Oliver Pelle. “When we asked if he’d like to collaborate, he was immediately up for it.”
Past Presence, initially consisting of the Silver Veil Table Lamp, Dark Moon Sconce, and Fin Chair, was first unveiled at Collective Design 2017. Each piece uses rare materials—Honduran mahogany and Serpentine marble among them—that layer decorative elements on modern forms. When Whitmore thought to expand the collection after the fair, jewelry seemed a natural progression.
Translating lighting and furniture into jewelry challenged each designer’s knowledge of materials and scale. “Every piece involved multiple trades—metal fabricators, platers, woodworkers, lapidaries, and jewelers,” Oliver recalls of the process. “It was important that each piece strikes the right balance of formal simplicity and structural detailing." The collection’s Gold Moon Earrings, Fin Ring, and Silver Veil Bracelet mirror their larger-scale counterparts with fine craftsmanship, clean lines, and, as the collection’s name suggests, playful nostalgia.
All That Glitters will display in Pelle’s Manhattan showroom, 56 West 22nd Street, 8th Floor, until June 30.