We are so pleased to introduce to you all our latest guest curator Sarah Griffin! Chicago native and LA local, Sarah, is an artist, a design junkie, a deep thinker, and a lover of all things beautiful. After realizing that many people want original art for their homes, but are daunted by the process of finding and/or affording it, Sarah founded the Art House Market, an art advisory service that focuses on interiors. Sarah who completed her undergraduate work at Stanford and graduate studies at the University of Pennsylvania created Art House Market in order to make it simple to design a home that is true “you.” She helps to provide interior design inspiration, art consulting, and one-of-a-kind artwork from a wide range of artists located in the Los Angeles area. After connecting with Sarah via Instagram we were so inspired by her mission of bringing original art to the home and to make the process approachable, a mission we can surely relate to as it is one of the primary reasons I founded Well + Wonder, we knew we had to invite her to be our latest Guest Curator. Get to know, art obsessed, Sarah a little better and see her current Well + Wonder favorites by reading the full interview below.
I chose these paintings because they speak to me through color and feel—they set a mood that I’m in the mood to explore. I love how they are abstracted tastefully, how they carefully balance masculine and feminine, and how they leave no doubt that Southern artists know their ways around a floral! I’d hang any one of them in my house or a client’s house in a heartbeat.
Tell us about yourself.
I was born and raised outside of Chicago, so I like hot dogs and being friendly and spending time with family. I’m a creative person in the broadest sense of the phrase: I’ve been a sculptor since I was a kid, I have a doctorate in literature, I like making messes and keeping my house clean (this doesn’t always work out well for me), and I’ve never met a dance party I don’t like. I have an intense independent streak and a deep appreciation for all things beautiful. I own Art House Market, an art advisory service that focuses on interiors. I’m lucky to share my life with two cute kids and a husband who’s pretty cute, too!
Why did you start your blog/brand/business?
I started Art House Market because art lights me up like nothing else. After staying at home with my kids for six years, I realized that if I’m going to spend time away from them, it has to be doing work that really feeds my spirit. I had often helped friends with art and design projects, just because they could see how passionate I am about it, so this type of advisory business was a no-brainer. I feel like a lot of people are intimidated by art—they think they can’t afford it or don’t know what to choose—so I get a lot of satisfaction out of demystifying the process and helping my clients find art that makes their spaces feel true to who they are.
What is your favorite room in your house? Describe it.
My living room is by far my favorite room. It gets bathed in amazing southern light all day long, which immediately makes me happy. I’ve kept it very neutral, new traditional-meets-beachy, with a linen sofa, rattan chairs, and an amazing raw wood console table. The art is oversized—one acrylic, one photo—plus a few small pieces on a built-in bookshelf. The room feels calm and soothing and like the perfect place to sit down with a cup of coffee or a good book.
It is said to look for art that “makes your heart skip a beat.” What aspects of art make your heart skip?
My heart skips a beat when I can feel the artist in the work. It can be as simple as a brushstroke, as arresting as a bold line, or as quiet as the softness of a hue. Whenever I can look and say—there—there’s the artist—that’s when my heart runs fast.
When and where do you get the biggest surge of inspiration?
For me, inspiration comes in the quietest moments. Life comes so fast, but I find that I get clarity in little in-between times: when I first wake up in the morning, when I’m sitting in the carpool line, while I work out, or on walks with my kids.
The key to making a house a home? What does a home need more of and less of?
A house becomes a home when you put your soul into it. I think original art is a huge part of that. When you have a piece that is exclusively yours, it’s impossible for your room to feel like anyone else’s. That sense of “you” in your house makes it a home.
What’s your favorite housewarming gift?
Wine. Turkish tea towels are nice, but my house isn’t warm until my friends join me on my sofa with big glasses of wine.
So, tell us a bit about your corner of the world – where do you live and what do you love about it?
I live in Los Angeles, which is a city full of creative people—within Hollywood and outside of it. The art scene here is vibrant and growing quickly, with tons of homegrown talent doing really interesting things. I live close to UCLA, which I love because the vibe is young and intellectual, and I can walk to the Hammer Museum for “Lunchtime Art Talks.” Beyond my neighborhood, I love LA for the restaurants, the schools, and, of course, the weather!