Ralph Pucci is the legendary man behind the eponymously named luxury furniture, lighting, and mannequin company with a trio of showrooms in New York City, Los Angeles, and Miami. It all began in the 1950s when his parents began fabricating mannequins in their basement. Two decades later, Ralph joined and grew the business to what it is today, one of the most highly respected gallery/showrooms in the world. His mannequin designs were and are notorious for being life-size works of art, along with additional collaborations with various fashion designers, illustrators, and supermodels, and can be spotted in high-end stores like Neiman Marcus, Saks Fifth Avenue, and Nordstrom. Pucci added furniture in 1989 after working with French interior designer Andrée Putman on a mannequin. Putman requested that he represent her work in the United States, which has led to a roster of international designers, including Patrick Naggar, Jens Risom, Vladimir Kagan, Chris Lehrecke, India Mahdavi, Michael Anastassiades, and Jim Zivic. Along with several awards and accolades, New York’s Museum of Art and Design presented an exhibition in 2015, entitled “Ralph Pucci: The Art of the Mannequin” showcasing over 30 years of his work. For this Friday Five, the iconic Ralph Pucci shares a mix of influences, including music, places, and designers.
1. The music of Chet Baker – timeless, restrained and beautiful.
2. The Village Vanguard, the legendary Jazz Club in NYC. A classic that has not changed a day since it opened. Walking into the room where Miles Davis, Charlie Mingus, Theleonous Monk and countless others performed is a religious experience.
3. Cy Twombly – His paintings and sculptures are pure magic.
4. The interiors of Andrée Putman are TIMELESS. Her work from the 80’s and 90’s still looks fresh, modern and relevant. She is the “coolest” designer of all time.
5. The Tawaraya in Kyoto. Stepping into this ryokan is stepping back into time. Decorated in the wabi-sabi aesthetic of simplicity with each room overlooking its own private garden is transcendent.