Another one that’s more recent is a commissioned piece by Hebru Brantley. Nyssa mentioned our kids, and Hebru Brantley paints these Fly Boy and Fly Girl characters, and the piece has both of them flying on a rocket ship over the world. It kind of symbolizes that they can dream and do anything they want. They’re flying through the clouds, they’re happy, they’re together, and it’s a great piece that will be outside of their rooms, on that side of our home. There’s a real significance in how those characters relate to our children and what we hope they can and aspire to do one day.
Artsy: How did you go about commissioning that piece?
C.L.: We had been talking to one of Hebru Brantley’s gallery representatives for probably over 18 months, and then there was an opportunity this year—I think partially because of the pandemic—to do a commissioned piece. And this goes back to creating those relationships that would have been impossible years ago without technology, because this gallery is actually based in Switzerland. So he’s created this work that had some of the themes that we had discussed, but it’s really still his creative oversight in the image.
Artsy: Do you have art in the kids’ rooms?
N.F.L.: No, not yet [laughs].
C.L.: Unless we want it poked with a lightsaber [laughs]. Even with the Hebru Brantley, before it was shipped, we had it encased in Plexiglas, because it’s going to be on that side of the apartment.
N.L.: Yeah, things might get thrown at it. But I will say, they do respect the art. Especially when they were a little bit younger people would say, “How do you have all this art when you have young children?” and it’s almost like, if they grow up with it, they understand. You don’t touch, you can look, you can observe, we keep our hands or ourselves, and they’ve been very respectful. We’ve never had any accidents or anything like that, and they love it. And they learn to respect it in other places, too, which is important.
Artsy: When you’re buying a piece, do your tastes typically align? Do you always agree?
N.L.: Yes and no.
C.L.: We’re best friends and we collaborate on everything, so I’d say that in terms of themes we’re very much aligned, but we’re different people.
N.L.: Sometimes, if we’re looking at an artist and we see the available works, we don’t agree on which piece. There might be six works available, and I might like two, he might like a different two, and then we’ll discuss and ask each other, “Why do you like this one? What’s important to you about this one?” And we’ll sleep on it. And then, it can be either one of us to say, “Okay, I see what you mean, I understand why that’s important.” That happened with the last piece we got.