DESIG

INTELLIGENCE

WALL ART: Finally, a PatriCk Btane vertical garden in SF HOME AS STYLE LAB: The lJew .. wave collectors RESTO'S GAMBLE: Can a CEO sketm furniture's future?

$4.99 April ~Ol1 www.sanlranmag.c<>m MODERN .LUXURY

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'WHIl'E·H.OT AlCHEMY:

I'nlluen"al archltect'deslgner Andrew Skillman's Nob Hili apartment offers a blank canvas tor the singular furniture, art, and antiques ne collects with hIs wife, F.an~olse. KeV pieces range from a Tom Dlxo"~comm'lssloned sculptural tabl'e base and chal'r to French hel'tloom suvar. SEE PAGE 70.

FEATURES: DESIGN INTELLIGENCE

60 Off the wall Rock star Parisian landscape artiSI Patrick Blanc has arrived. Our visual lour of his Drew School creal ion=-San Francisco's latest instam landmark=-wlll show you wh l' he and h is living wall garden. arc gel I ing standing ovations,

ElY JOAN NIE FU Rl 0

70 The new alchemists. Four restless designers who, in I he spirit of aest heuc inquiry, have I urncd their own hOI11~ into ongoing experiments ill modern collect ing ami interior design. BY DIANE DORRANS SAEKS

82 Pieces of his mind. He made Pouery Barn" powerhouse and now. as co-CEO al Restoration Hardware. Gary Friedman is aiming 10 revohuionnc furniture reI ail b)1 reproducing and mass-marketing singular antiques. l:'ven more (bring, the executive picks nearly every piece himself. BY '''ANNE f'URIO

IIQED GUIDE 105 Members' copies only.

EATS 107 • ResL3Ur<,nl reviews, food news, and grcal biles lrom a'-01! nd [he B,,),.

E:OITEP pY JAN N Ews;e;R lity

• Lining up for bru rod, al 1'01 rem H ill's new Plow. ev I!ACH~, U,VlN

• pws, Fi ve gre'li w a)'s I 0 gel you r goa t,

BlICK $.TOI!'T 128 Right·brain CEO. Resiorat iou [lard ware's iconoclnsur ch ief once chan neled Auguste Rodin. BY l"A.NN~ FURl"

~ ~S«! tlSS'Ni I 091~451 is ptJbf.!ihed nl~tt.1y b)' Mo4em l.wa.d,),. 2A3 "I.1Be:Q si, &iI'I From=istO.. CA 94 1 1 1. Pe,:,'o:;:Iie:)ls, pasb9'l!l12lte$ paid ?II SIan FQrH:~st:o. CA., ond :!Idd"t~?I! 1M'1;"'g cjtees POSTMASTER Send :)I_o1d~ ~ 10 Sar.I F~ Po. 6o:ic 20!15. L.ang.I1orrte, PA. 1 9041-9687. Apri~ 2G' " VQiLJme 58" Nwnbe:r 4. I!.l"IfIi..Ia.! subseripfQM are SZl97_ SBf1 FoIWlC.i$eo ts ~led ~~! In oeri2Iil'1o members of KOEO w~ cool=ribLIte $1 !)O or ~ to KOEP.

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II T ELLIG E II C E

RETAIL

PIECES OF HIS MIND

BY JOANNe FURIO

PORTRAIT BY ALEX FAR NUM

GARY FRIEDMAN PUT A KITCHEN IN THE MIDDLE OF A WILLIAMS-SONOMA STORE AND FOREVER CHANGED THE WAY AMERICANS SHOP FOR TOASTERS. HE INVENTED POTTERY BARN AS WE KNOW IT. NOW. THE UNORTHODOX RETAIL LEADER IS AGAIN AT THE HELM OF A BAY AREA COMPANY, RESTORATION HARDWA'RE, COUNTING ON HIS OWN EYE TO CHANGE THE WAY WE fURNISH OUR HOMES.

PATINATEO

~arli""nS tl'tla\ed these pen da "I lamps In homage to Ihe polyh ad to n, 8 cia sslc rt;hrlecl ",I element and Fried"'"" snapped them up to ",pl'Od~ ce a I Rc SI,,_

Friedman found the o .. lgi na T ver5~Q n of th rs p ieee. inspl red by Ihe benl wing of a World Wa, II ~lIhlef pia n e. in ! he Pa.isla n show roo m 0 r an I'qu es dealer "mot~y Qulton.

During Q buying trip in A" lWerp. Frl ~dm~ n skelcl1 e s an ,d eo fo' e s~mmetri""l cat.aI09 spread+now a company hallma.k.

Th ,5 $19 natu re tufted Kens I ng Ion sofa, be sed

On the classic C hMlerfield style, rs eJUlclly the sort hipsters SCOUI antlques S hn ps to ~ nd -<)niy ttl Is

One 15 eve .sIze "~d there. no used Ick·fBdof.

DISTRESSED

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SITTING ON THE BELGIAN CLASSIC Roll Arm Slipcovercd Sofa in the grand enlry mOI11 of

h is new l lenry Adams Strcci store, Cary Fried 111,111 , (0- CEO and rbairrnan of Restoration j Lard ware, occasionally interrupts hi, train of thought 10 greel customers, Fried rna" 'peaks with the II nbridlcd, rapirl-f re en thusiasn: ofa leader determined to inspire, so keeping up with him is like trying 10 auach a pedometer to a galloping racehorse. Stylish r-harit y flXIU"C SUI11 mer Tompkins Walke'; in dcsign-diSII'ict black. corers the store with a friend. The interview SlOpS.

';We were _illSI in Pebble Beach playing golf today," says Tompkins Walke'; who de igns cusrom-cmbroirlcred home ware and who you'd think would be hopping for furnishings across the street, with a decorator, at the exclusive, trade-only Design Center. Instead, Tompkins Walker describes how she dragged her friend into the store, urging her 10 do her house in Restoration Hardware. "I i looks greaL~" Tompkins Walker gushes. As the women depart, Friedman sizes up the encounter al his previous breakneck pace: "She I ike, the store, thai's good. Her husband's Brooks W;oJker, one ol'tlie be" architects around. Her lather cofounded Esprit, and her 1110111. the other cofounder, is Su sie Tompkins Buell=-a big philanthropist in San francisco."

Tompkins Walker's endorsement in front of a reporter clearly means something 10 Friedman, all obsessive marketer on ihe lookout for signs that what many design rognoscenti have called his insane gamble at Resrorauon J lardware might just turn out to be a huge win. Two and a hallyears ago, imrnediately Iollowing ilie biggest economic disaster since the Great Depression. Friedman decided that what the world needed-cor at least what he needed to ave his ailing company-swas a new type or luxury furniture. I-Ie had already transformed Restoration Hardware once. from a mall merchandiser of tools, lpdgets, and toys into a more upscale purveyor of uerus lor the home. But this lime, he would challenge the very notion of how horne furnishings are made and sold.

In the spirit or high -end fa rhion labels. like Hermes. fried ruan decided to forgo large-scale TOilOS producuou in 1:"'01' of small batches anel handcrallsmanship, He also commiued to following his own eye as he scoured Rea markets from Paris LO Pacifica to find the anuques

Friedman on the 1100. or ht5 labo.atoryIhe new Restor.lion Hardware in San Franc.isco·'S deSign d isltict.

Friedman has scoured flea markets from Paras to

Pacifica to fin theanfques

hat inspire h 5 reproductions.

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RESTO'S REDO

Two and a ~I years after

the company went eve n

more upwardly mobile, stylist", hall marks of the

new Restoration Hardware have emerged, reflect i n9 the ee nsibiti ty of its chairman and c.o·CEO~ Gary Friedman.

'M uch 01 Ihelab ,Ie Is II nen. 'ttove !he lexture of i l, the organic leeli"g of ;~ Ihe suMe colors- 9 0 percen I of my house ls in hnen" Friedman says.

The palette Is n e utra 1- beige, brown, and gray-blJl not, Friedman claims, In order to bl end wi th customers' e.[sting decors. "This is whall like. My home is mostly neutra}$..'"

Mo.t of the wood Is

u nlln IshOO: "We love the casualness of it, that it's cornfOl"table. You can pul yOUT feel up on il·

The leel Is neocl assteatcum-salvage chic. 'YOu see it in the use of columns or column parts that have been turned i nto IOOl ps or tables. 'When yw look b"'.lond whill they are, you see all kinds of possibil i hes; Friedrnan .ay. of sud1 reporpcsec turni shlngs.

MASCULINE

Tha CEO admils IMt rna ny "J his pieces hnvn a male-tecused teel. li~" this AVlnlo, Chair, because 1ft ey refl ect 11 s personal eestnetlc,

At a '" rniture facto,">, In Beljin91 Friedman rethin'ks ttle leg on a prowtype re~l'Oduction of a burlap Chair e found In a Napa ntr~ ues store; t e che if eventually shows up In a com Pa ny cete fog (a bOve).

FARM-TO-TABLE

A no Ih er Frtcdm an ~ ketch ,,11 ow. h ow he I,a n"tormed an early 20th-cenlu,">, bam door pulley mechan srn tnto an oversea le pe nd.<J n t

li9MI Ih I can se .. e a. a chande~ier.

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Illal inspire his rep rod ,"" ions. The I'esull is a line or ucrns with design DNA rangi ng fmm L", iis X I V lO World War I I America that sell for a signifwJllllylowcr price poi nt than something frorn H 011)' I-J" nl or 13" ker- Knapp & Tubbs.

The decision was "very risky," says Helen Bul wik, president of New Markc] Solut ions, a management consul ling fmn in Oakland. The economy was bad, and 'he move pn' Resto in direel competition wi, h ,h« design tratle, somei !ling I hal had n't been done before. To borrow an analogy from

I he art world, ira luxury sofa is like an original paim ing, and a cheap one is Ii kc Ihe poster )'0" ge' at I he museum b~n shop, a Friedman SOf.1 would be like a .signed print-not one of a kind, b\1I <I ill one of anywhere between 20 and 2,000 copies. Friedman believed I h is new model would be perfect for the customer who had O'''growll I kea and West Eion but wasn't willing or able to shell out D1O_'ig" Cent er moncy to

fu r nish he]' home, He would also be happy '10 (how ,the

Tompkins Walkers of the world, who am pay rOJ" one-or-a -k i nd pi eces bill who would also buy some- 111 ~ng less rare trLt was extraordinary and they did n!1 have ro wait many moruhs to receive it.

Friedman launch cd his

If a luxury sofa is like an original painting, and a cheap one is like a g-ft-

shop poster, a Friedma sofa is like a ned rint

cxpcrimcru Dr selling Illxury brands on a graTldish scale two and a half years ago, bill because Restoration I lard ware is privately held, it's dilflrulr 10 gauge tile re'pollse of lhe market. E\len 50! Friedmnn has already transformed 85 of Resto's remaining 9 1 stores, and he claims the C'oll1pnn~r is. doing beuer than i1 has In its entire history.

SI

I n person. Friedman exudes. £I: vi s to nary mel lc u 1011 sncss=-n 0 wondc r 0 ne or h is idols is Steve Job" "",I Apple', "Think Different" is a favorite expression of hi, .. And he '5 Irying to infuse his whole compan), Willi the sarue spirit 01' iconoclasm, He got kicked OUI or junior college, claim' to have read only 111'0 books in hi, Ill;', did n't travel to Europe until he IV"" 35, and d id ,,'1 live in his own house until he W<lS '14, ., r don't know what can't be done, because ,I wasn't brought up Or trained in a certain way," Friedman says, referring to the benefits or his unconvern ional design backgrou "d. "'I might see lbiugs other peo-

pic don't see because they've seen il a thousand time s. I n a ,ell,e,l can have the perspective or" child,"

Yet. 10,,', also a maniacal perfectionist When planning his own house, he rejected I hree architects because they rold him. lim I p" ui IIg a perfecil y ee, 01 e red, symmetrical bu i kl i ng on a Belvedere hill overlooking iJ.1C Golden Gate Bridge was a problem I hey did 1101 want 10 solve, (Fried man's fussiness paid off: 1-1 is home appeared in /lr~hirfClural Digest in 2008.) •

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900 North Pcinl Slr"",1 01 B",och & Larkin 51",,% I Phone 415.775.5500 Onsue Volldaled parking I 2 blocks We,1 of Powell I Hyde Ccble em

AI Restn, Friedrnau oversees the slightest derails or every piece or rlln riurre he sells, down (0 the widt h and finish or j] meta] hanrl on rne w!"loLien In, n k where his leather briefcase nnw rests (h e says he spends only J1\'c mi runes a monLh al his desk).

As coni roll illg as he is, he 11,,< earned I he rigll L 10 have his way. Resto will live 0'- die <)11 Friedman's drive and "),00, and he know" u. "Wlrar's so greaL "bolll this, am] wit)' j 'I"C had 111m'" run than ever. is because, 1m' the Hrsl lime in m)' career, I was able I.() make a business 100 percent personal," he c"'!,i "ins. "Wh,,,, yon see ~t RCSIO ra ' ion f Iardwaro is an expression Qr whar l bel icve, whal I like, and what j I hink is a great way I u live, '"

FR!EDMAN'S LAUNCH OF HIS RECONFI.GURE,O SrORE LAST September was a potent s),ml)<)1 of I he brand's reinvent irma nd 111~ event or I he season ror a design com munil)' still il~ the pnsl·2008 doldrums, lnsread of choosing COrle Madera,

where Res I I> ~1 rCody hatl " store and us headquarters, Friedman decided [Q open in I h e 5,000-<<\"",,"'-[0'" Palladian-style building in Sa n Fra nc isco lh a' housed am ique k inp; Ed Hardy's busin ess r or I [j yea rs, "I-h e spare, discrccuy ~CI bark rl'OU1 I lie street behind a (rushed 1("lI1i te court yard guarded byI4-rool-high woode 11 gates, h au served as JJl anchor 10 I he design district, and Hanly had been larnous lor rhelavish

"Pec Je aid I was crazy,' Friedman his

to

says 0 decisio c sate ew luxury b an righ after t

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recession

be an.

I he rned pa I" ies he 10 osted I here. But during the downturn, he'd decided 10 dose.

Friedman was COncerned tlml some or I he design locals would gtcel

rhe new Resto with a

"I here goes the neighborhood" altitude. But instead, his Septe niber 22 open i ng 1>." h drew 800 p eople--.1 nd a :I i" C I h at wrapped around 'he block fOT two hours. The party 11"". cohos: erl by iln/,il,dural Digrsfs new editor in chid, M argaret Russell, and il II'lIS auendcd by a hcatilloc-wonhy mix or socialues. lucl ud i "g lonuer Cap chair Bob Fisher and II Is wile, Randi Fisher; the ageless Denise Hale: and 11"'1/p,,:, Bazaar con trib u tor and hal i t c co u \ u re [011 ec Lor 1 'alia ria Sorokko, plus boldlacc [melior designers like Paul W",cman, Ken Fu lk., and J ell. r )' Weisman-al] former flXIIJI-e" of I-In r - dy's exl ravaganzas.

·'1 wa me" the "aroy 1.0 create a kind of aspirational platlorrn." Frierlman s.ap~ .. LLIO signal to [he designers and arch irerts ilnu I his is a very d ilfereru Resturat ion 1 Jardware." 11 seems "to have worked, 'The new store has been Impeccably done," s.ays Gabriella Sarlo. whose OlVTI showroom kS down

I be street, "TIle 'pate is phenomenal, and they've really cal"

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rured a look I har appeals to I he general r'" blic." I mcrior dc~ib"'el' Suzanne Tucker says rhat the whole area is feeling

I he love. "There's renewed [DOl rraffic, 11 new consumer, and a new bun within rhc trade."

I n a sense, Fried man', ern ire life and career propelled him toward III is morneru of convergence bel ween high design

a 11e1 mass market ing. AI I he age or I I, I .e had his Grsl encounter wil h d"Y""-''' nd ",11 ilc his peers were "'~king ashI.rays ami bowls, he carne "P wuh an impressive Rodin-like 'Thinker" (sec Back 510ry, page 12R). He would ~,Iw~ys be beuer ru seeing and sketching Lha n at [isl enillg II nd rCtKling, .<0 wil h college out or I he picture. Friedman decided It) focus his energies on a job at a Cap in Santa ROS;l, ThaI'S where he was J nentored by Mickey Drexler; I he San Francisco rei ailer who 1 urned iI,c Gi'p from a small cliaiu i 010 a massive worldwi d c succe .. s, (D rc xl er eve n III nI'l y n roved hac k 1.0 New Yo rk and engineered J Crew's meleoric risc.)

Drexler shares Friedman's famously hands-on approach I{) hi, business-c-at J Crew, he ~el "I''' company-wide PA

sys! em ~ over wh ich he blasts ra ndorn questions ~1"Id 11101Igl11S. lrom his office. Frierlrna II cia i .ns Drexler calls hin L his "best knockoff in the world"; Fried man, ill ;1 uru credits [)re~kr with givil1g him the con ndcncc '0 shake orT his SP"""' resu me. "I siancct 10 Ihink maybe 1 did know wh~1 I was lalking about, even Ihotlgh I didn't go 10 college and S"el ;'l11 l\1f BA.""

I n deed, Fri cd Ina n sa ys h e cvcntua II)' IX,'<"a me I he )'0 ungcst manager, II .e you ngcst rlis~ rrrl n lanager, and II!c yQLI tlgc~t region~'1 [na.'wger ill Gal] hisLOIT_

Afler I hal rarne his rll'si for"y i 1110 horne design-~nd 11 ls second .peclar' ilarsuccc s. j nl 988, JI l he ,'ge of:10, Friedman WfIS lured to lViHiams-Sonon1a b)' GE:O I Inward Lester; ai '01 her Bay Area retail legend. III limed ou I llm~ Friedman had IJI€ merrhandising magic that Lester was looking fur. and during hi, l d-year I enure there, he opened the fLnl \'Vmla.ms.~SOlloma Grande Cuisine SLOP.::', wit h 11.1;, famous cenI ral ki rc he". rood ualls. ami rastl ug 1>.11., 1-1J 'U wh en Lest e I' wid him 10 "idler "fix, close, or sell" Pouery Barn, Friedman chose the lormer-eand transformed the chain into the ,"mesl.growl ng, 1Um;1 success rul I, on, e COm I'a,,)r i" III e worl d. I ak i "g ;1 i'tom a S:;O million io a S 1.2 bill ion business in 11 nder S~VCIl yeal·s.

Hut thou. in 200 I, aficr having been groomed lor the posilion. he was passed over lor the role orCCD. "II broke my heart," Flied man says, Lester urged him 10 sta y-if he

did n't, he would lose "1' 10 $:;0 ruillion i 11 stock options. Bul il wasn't about the ruoney. Friedman inSI5l.S. "I wanted 10 do what I loved. I I' I. sl aved. the people who worked for me would know I'd sold niy soul."

That's when he landed al Restoration l-Iard ware. I-Ie had passed the COrle Madera store many limes while overseeing the construrtion of hi. own house, ami he decided 10 call "I' III e 1"0"" der; 5, ephen Gordon, who I·,,, d 0 pcned th e firs I. R esrcration I lard Ware in E "reb i" 1980. 1O scm, l out potent ial job 01' porum i Ii es, II UI rned out III a 1 Gordon was read rio hand over the reins, and soon I'rlt:{hrmn was assembl ing iI]VC.l!ilDV:S and kickjTlg in hls own resources to resusciuue the brat I d a nd resc ue it ,from near ba n k ru ptC}1:;

For the next five years. I'riedrrmTl went "boo II upgrading the store (when he bought ir, R",to's catalog Ieaurred Oxydol

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dcrcrgeru on its rover), but' he big 11101'<: ran.c i rl 200R--oddl), enough, righ' aficr Plc~idenl C~(Jrge W, B1I.,h glwc his speech Worning or economic c~lami'ly. "I 'he next day. Resto sales dropped 30 percent, ami tile furure or (he romp""y was in jcopardj, bill I he one Ihi.lI1;1 Frierhua: did "01 warn 10 do was imitate his competitors by dropping II is price' and rornpromising on qual il y. He figured there were "iii enough people at 'he higher end of I he market who weron': in serious trouble, so he dccided that the smart I h i ng 10 do wag to create a brand-new market niche .. 'People Ihollglit 1 ~'Ir71S rrazy." Fried rna n says. "bu I [here was -really no premium I uxury brand that had bmughl" home design togclilcr with ~ lifestyle view,"

DEFltillNGONESELI' AS A "CURATOR' RATHER THAN A retailer, one's stores ~IS ·'.g-;dferies.,'" ancl one's catalogs as "publ ical ions'; may seem like puuing on airs. yet there's SUhsl.<IIKe behind RCSlO'~ metamorphosis. Friedman has tapped a team or professionalsthat includes old-worldartisans and anuquarians and even 'Ed liard)' himself, who now ronsulrs 011 a pan-lime basi." Resto still sells lamiliar ol1;'r.illg~ •• uch as h" h fixtures and ltalian bcdrl i[I!:, hm I he

en rphasis is on I he reproduced ani ique ["JrD uure, For example,

al ""I"(i)so,,ry, th~ :"J~Pil shop owned b)' one of his best friends. :Vlieh"d I'olcnske, Friedman found 11 11",-1;'11 chair I",. $7,000. copied ir, and now sells il for $1,295. ('"You can'l toll the difference, exrcpt maybe II re burlap isn't 'l"-II.C ~5 worn ," he sa ys). In San M~ICO, he 1'"," ,eI an deganl pail' or I SIIi-cenl ur)' I"ble", for 53.000 Lhal became Resto's Linn's Head Side Tables. -I "he smaller nne sells for 5795, I he larger MC, for 59\)5.

The idea of rcprorlncuons mny sound declasse. hut the techniques have con re a 101 ~g war since the days or t he ind L!SL rial rcvnlutron , when histork,,1 models WCI'C ofien reproduced with excessive ornarnemauon. Revival-style hOl'SCS, so I'optli<:!r in this ("Or,,1I1'1' d"ring I he early 201 h cent "1')" were of [en filled wiil h "lCh over-

des ig ned p icces, Th e bac k lash bega 11 when mod em iSI S deci ded (hm I11J'sS prod LlC~ iun rould he a noble means of spreading good de:;ign. ""'hy would someone wan [ a copy of a slylc rrOI LI a bygone ern

IV hen ,n ore rc I evan I, hi gh-conce pt ~I esign was a V(,j la III e "I <In aflo rrlable price?

fried ma n's approacl: is somewhal hybrid, el"bracin~ [he an isanal and the dcrnocraur. Some pieces an; I'riedman'g (or another designers) lake on an original des[gnj bur I uosi are H10rc or less exact rcplicas of the I"CJI "nl ique, The challenge, he says. is 10 capt lire I he eSSC!K~ or a n original without making it look r",ke .:' Even though "'<111)' or Ihl;~ pieces were passed down rhrough muhlple g~ncra· uons arul I.cfl in I he barn. and rhc rain gOI through lhe roof and washed off I he finish, I he design. I he proport ions, and I he bca I "if,,1 pauoa arc ~II there," Fried" .au explains. "They I i,'cd " lile and have a soul, w hie II we "l' to ronvey,"

I-1c's helped by an :>!Tay of F.llfopean an isans working arou rl< I the glolJe--in [lening, ViC"l~m, Pobnd, Iialy, ancl "nn·ke)'. Resto's Mayfair S'e"mer "I runks, lor exa rnple, arc crafted in the ell inesc work.<1'Op5 ofTimolhy Ouhon. a London antiques dealer and r"rnil,ure reprod IJClioniSI. Each 0[' I he I riu ,ks lakes 'I hree days 1.0 comple'e "11<1 learures such hand-finished derails as '3,000 hammered-brass nail head 5, The pr icc; [rom S I .4·95 H) S2 .99, •.•

Koret Designs.

San Francisco Planning and Urban Research (SPUR) is a public-policy think tank that engages thought leaders and citizens in planning for the future of San Francisco. Funded with Koret support, SPUR's new street-level gallery space offers a range of dynamic public programs. Its trendsetting Young Urbanists initiative is designed to develop the next generation of civic leadership.

f,-ied man uses I he Sa" Francisco spare as a l>,lJ.onll.rll'Y for these rcconsrructed piece' as well' as for his·rc;.,1 anuqucs, He'll install new find" like rhe m irror Lhal was cure 111'0 separaic arch i,cell]ral brackets holding "I' a ceil ing in a Parisian theater; and wail to sec clISrOU1{!T'S' reactions. Onre such an item has heen displayed, it has il:one into "development," whirh I11Cdns Ihal artisans are ready 1.0 rreaic one especially lor rem: all ),0" have to do is 1"11. )'0"" name on a lisl and wail. b'cr! if no nne biLCS, Fricdm~TI will ofien make one reprod tiel ion .,n)'way" .i"Sl because he has rallcn in love wil h the piece himself. And his Bclvcde,." ho: ne is flJled wil h I he originals, so al least I here's a place lor them '0 go if Fricdman d ec id es .[ ,) keep ill em ,

WA~t STREET IS UNMOVED BY PERSONAL STORIES OF perseverance and Jg~i nst-all-odds success, II WMH~ 10 be shown the money. Bill silw" Resto's financials ,,'"Cn'l pnblicly available, I11ml analyst we asked would commcni onl)" gcne,,,Uy on the rompany's fuinrc prospects,

.I Cl'ry [pperson Jr., " Inrnuure i nd US' '1' a "alysl wi, h

Mann. ArmiSICJd & Epperson, in Richmond, Virginia, thinks II'e economy is ~CI u,lIly start ing 10 Javor Friedman', decision. ''At the rime, II was a daring f110VC," he says.. "But if }'Oll look a' what's happened with I he stock rnarket since I hcn--wc

jus, hi, I 2. OOO--i I looks like it WaS rhe tOITCCI une, The

weal: hier customers ~1"C less likely to have their homes foreclosed and more likely '0 have their money in the stock market. Alii I hose things are making him look preu y 'man." He predicts I hal the company will likely W' pl1 hi lc once housing stocks i:mpl~ovc,a L rend I hat, in his C~I imat ion, i:Stfl 100 far olf "When there's good news ill tile housing sector; the home builder stocks move, ~nd then '0 do I he home [u rnishi ngs stocks. Tile own ers of Res lor" I iou I I" rd ware will me that as an opporumuy to hit the market with a good srory."

B'UI Gonion Segal, the cofounder ofCraie & I3RneJ and its CEO lor '15 year,. who bas known Fried In all since h is Wiliiams·Sonoma days, worries 't hat even if all thai 1",1'pen" rhe market lor Friedman's aesrherk jus, Inighl. 1101. be large enough. "lr's H very iiuerest illg ,,{'II' Took. bUI YOI1 have to have a very b~g home or 3 very b~g aparuneru." he says, "Gary's greal skill is rcconcepl ualizing his stores, but we don't know how il will turn 0"['"

Congenitally uni mercsred in Lite pack. Fried man is 'Hoving r,,11 steam ahead .. -':1'''1 111011111, he's opeuiug a swanky 1£ as 1.

l lampton store, and he's begun construction on a

20.000-S<l" are-loot store 1n the heart 01' Los Angeles's desigl1 district, J1e is also heavily involved ill the c1""('31101l or H coffee table book, I-li£mrc/'F 1'1" Nall<ral O,dJ',I- Dr Desig», that will codify the Resto brand'> upscale look and reflect his personal design interests, wh ich include I he .. heorles of I 'LIe Roman

a rc h i I "C; L Vi I ru v i us, a master 01' "),11.' me lry. Ami he won I d love 10 one clay sell French reproducrlous in France. (l1glm1d.

a nd Spai n-wi lh Asia bee k 0" i ng 011 I he h or izon.

'""\Vc're just warming up." he says .•

J O.llN N E F1:IR [0 IS A CON1~16U" "'" WRITER RJR Iff,s I5.SU~ SHE ALSO WROTE 'OFF ll-IE W~L~ (PAGE &I)

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RIght-brain CEO

Gary F'iedrnan, the mind steering Restorauon Hardware's bold nell' makeover (,Pieces 01 his Mind," page 82). is" whiz at selling, but his true gifb, ';'111 tell were apparent at a very }'oung age, have al ways been visual. When he made this Rodin-like sculpture for an art

class, he was only in seventh grade. "If 1 can see things, I have an almost photograph ic memory," says Fr iedman, WI10 never pursued an forrnnily bUI has always been good at sketch ing. "1 'm JUS! orierued (hat way." Now he's ban king on his eye to propel (he new Resto: I Ie personally decide> OLI all of II re pieces the 91 -store cha in rna kes and sells. And to this day, Friedman's "TI, inker" sits in hi, home office in his Belvedere residence overlook ing the Golden Gale Bridge. _

BY JOANNE FlJRIO

PHOTOGRAPH BY ALEX FARNUM

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