Text: Alec Coiro
Portrait: Evan Robinson
Photo: Joseph Shubin
There are plenty of architecture offices in TriBeCa, and there are many design showrooms and among those showrooms, many are new. But the new Allied Maker showroom in Tribeca feels like the assertion of a new wave or a new generation or a maybe even a whole new nomenclature if you note the term “Maker” in the designer’s name.
There is something about the show of nature’s force that awoke something in the design world after hurricane Sandy hit. I’ve talked to several designers for whom Sandy was an impetus in some way. Off the top of my head Workstead comes to mind as does INC Architecture. According to Allied Maker’s showroom manager, as soon as the power came on after Sandy, the business took off for Allied Maker’s husband and wife team of Ryden and Lanette Rizzo. And there is something essentially natural, a sense of respect for the force of nature that is clear from looking at the Allied Maker pieces. The pieces never obscure the natural material from which they are made. The arc shape that is so essential to many of my favorite and the most recognizable Allied Maker designs is evidence of a purity of form that suggests the purity of the natural.
Allied Maker is currently exclusively making light fixtures. Although, the showroom also includes hints at expanded ambitions, including a staircase with the Allied Maker-designed banister, and a series of collaborations. It’s easy enough to see for yourself. The showroom, located at 81 Franklin Street, is very inviting; it changes organically — as opposed to be overhauled from collection to collection — but when I visited I was greeted by a spectacular two-story fixture as soon as I walked in.