Fashion, design and film maven Ara Katz masterminded the interiors for the Michael Sant-designed house she and her boyfriend, tech entrepreneur Chris Ovitz share in Venice, CA. melding contemporary lines and architecture with the more natural elements of local beaches lifestyle. Ara, who was on the founding team of the social commerce company HomeMint, created a cool, light and art-filled oasis for a couple constantly on the go.
A view from the entryway into the living room illustrates how beautifully the outdoor and indoor spaces co-exist. While the couple loved the stark, modern architecture, they had to create a design scheme that made the the space livable and inviting. “I love modern design,” says Ara, “but in certain spaces it can feel too harsh. So, like with all my work, it was about finding a balance - between design and intimate objects that are meaningful to us.”
. Ara conceded to Chris’ wish for a sectional sofa for lounging in the living room - with the condition that she design it herself. The metal and glass coffee table (it was inspired by a B&B case study table from the 1970’s) is also her design. Both pieces were fabricated locally in LA. Beautifully curated artwork by Frank Stella (right) and Tim Eitel (left) round out the room.
The dining room is the “home central” to Ara and Chris. The table is made from wild reclaimed Russian oak and weighs more than 300 pounds. Ara likes to use a mix of different chairs around the dining table to keep things from “looking too rigid.” The artwork is by Joel Shapiro.
Ara and Chris’ collection of artwork fills the house (often adding a bit of color to an otherwise fairly monochromatic scheme); here, a Roy Lichtenstein pops in the kitchen.The hanging lighting fixtures are from one of Katz’s favorite neighborhood art and design sources, Obsolete (www.obsoleteinc.com).
Very much in keeping with the rest of the house, the master bedroom is a serene, light-filled space where the art work by Julie Mehrutu draws the eye.
Although she designed (and helped build) the sofa and table on the patio from salvaged re-claimed wood, Ara’s goal was to make it look as if the pieces had always been there. The patio, three floors above street level, is a place of calm where friends can gather and lounge at tree-top level.
A super-comfy rust-hued leather Lignet Roset Togo Sofa sits in the studio