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Cabinet of Curiosities

With an inventory that thrives on the aesthetically intriguing, Aybar Gallery is a showcase for design less ordinary.

OUT OF THE BOX
The Aybar Gallery space with its current collection of limited-edition vessels ($1,000-$2,500) by Formafantasma

Much like its inconspicuous exterior, the recently opened Aybar Gallery near the Little River district showcases design that demands serious cerebral engagement.
“Often, when people come in here, after they’re finally able to locate us, they’re a bit perplexed by the purpose of our pieces,” explains Francisco Polo, Aybar’s design curator and CEO, who, with his partner, Markus Herchet, moved the gallery from Bangkok to Miami late last year. “Our project is definitely not for everyone, but those who have come to truly appreciate design understand what we are about.”

For those less savvy in said matters, Aybar Gallery is a conceptual space that offers a highly curated collection of limited-edition furniture, carpets, prototypes and rare objects from both up-and-coming and established designers. The atelier, available by appointment only, also offers design advisory and interior architecture solutions for those seeking to elevate the wow factor of their dwellings.

“The client who tends to appreciate our objects is a collector of sorts; someone who’s looking to make a statement,” adds Polo. This becomes attainable with the editions available at Aybar, many of which have been previously exhibited in such prestigious institutions as London’s Victoria & Albert Museum or New York City’s MOMA, and may have even been sold through auction houses like Sotheby’s. “Our catalog features items that are less about their practical uses and more about the artistic vision and process of their creators.”

To that end, treasures like the Catalano bench ($25,000), originally conceived by Lluís Clotet and Oscar Tusquets Blanca in 1974 as an homage to the benches created by Gaudi for Barcelona’s Park Güell, the Aquario cabinet ($13,250) by the Campana Brothers and the travertine or marble Brick shelf by Grégoire de Lafforest have made serious aesthetes all over the country take notice of Aybar’s presence in Miami. Consider, for instance, Botanica by Formafantasma, a collection of decorative vessels ($1,000 to $2,500) commissioned by Plart, an Italian foundation dedicated to scientific research and technological innovation of works produced in plastic: “We recently had a potential client ask how he was going to put flowers inside of it,” Polo reminisces with a factious grin. “Needless to say, he didn’t buy it.” 290 NE 71 St., Miami, 305.331.2502