Jonah Lehrer, author of Imagine, has a profile in the New Yorker of Roger Thomas who designs Steve Wynn’s casinos. The profile covers a range of ideas about design, its uses and influences. Art critic David Hickey makes an appearance or two remarking on the depth of Thomas’s knowledge of art history and design.
We rarely discuss the uses that art and art collections are put to. Thomas offers an interesting context for that question. As an aid to discussion, here are some of the relevant quotes from Lehrer’s New Yorker story which is not available online:
Despite the immaculate facade, Thomas is a man of contradictions. Although he is known for the the excess of his professional style, his house is a strict modernist structure, of straight steel, poured concrete, and glass. He has an art collection that includes a Donald Judd sculpture, a pair of Warhol portraits of a young Thomas, a Joseph Cornell box, and a Giorgio Morandi still-life, but he seems most excited by a rustic Western stool in his bedroom made entirely out of elk parts. […]
Late last year, he was working frenetically on the final touches to Elaine Wynn’s new mansion in Beverly Hills. There was the installation of art to supervise, including a Joan Mitchell in the entryway and a Lucian Freud in the dining area . . .
It’s also interesting to see who owns what and where they hang it.