Zaha Hadid Architects Wins Contract for Port of Tallinn in Estonia

For their dazzling, sprawling, and characteristically curvaceous reimagining of the city’s maritime gateway, our friends at Zaha Hadid Architects (ZHA) have been officially awarded the contract to masterplan the revitalization of the Old City Harbour in Tallinn, Estonia. According to Valdo Kalm, chairman of the management board of the Port, ZHA “has very skillfully created a balanced connection between the urban space and the port area with…considered access roads and traffic solutions.” Details of note here include the partial raising up of pedestrian walkways, and plans for an urban square with extensive greenery. This project has been undertaken in an attempt to reconnect the city to the port while welcoming new development and creating a diverse and memorable city space.

ABC Stone closed for Labor Day

Both the Westbury and Greenpoint offices of ABC Worldwide Stone will be closed for Labor Day weekend: Saturday, September 2nd through Monday, September 4th. We wish you all a safe and happy holiday!

2017 Carrara Residency Update

Now in its 6th year, the ABC Stone-sponsored Carrara Residency Merit Award is cultivating a future for the artistic practice of traditional stone carving. Based at Corsanini Studios, located at the foothills of Apuan Alps, the Carrara Residency exposes students to the global art world, helps them cultivate lifelong relationships, and hone their craft in an immersive environment.

The 2017 Carrara Residents are Jorge Vascano and Christina Giuffrida. They spent 4 weeks at Corsanini Studios learning this craft from master mentor and professional sculptor, Stephen Shaheen. The works they started realizing in Italy will be shipped back to the States for completion and will be unveiled and on view at ABC’s Residency celebration coming in March 2018.

Past Merit Award recipients have gone on to work for esteemed sculptors Barry X Ball, Jeff Koons, & Barbara Segal among others.

“Le Poids de mes Ambitions” and “Y Train”, sculptures created by 2016 Merit Award recipients, Brice Esso and Jiannan Wu will be on view and up for auction at Sotheby’s during the New York Academy of Art fundraiser, Take Home a Nude, on October 11th. For further information and tickets:


What’s your StoneArt Design Style?

Cote d’Azur. This subtle yet unexpected limestone draws the eye in and always makes an impression. Gaze deeply and then try to turn away… we dare you.

Opus White. Cool, confident, and chic, this quartzite has nothing to prove. She stands her ground and speaks her mind. (Metaphorically, of course…)

Jasper Shellflint. The name says it all… rife with a sense of spirited spontaneity, semi-precious Jasper Shellflint demands a second (and third and fourth) look.

Burlesque. As its name implies, Burlesque quartzite is a beautifully bawdy twist on its simpler, more neutral siblings. Not for those hoping to blend into the background.

Azul Imperial. This delightfully prismatic quartzite is for lovers and dreamers… soft in appearance yet mightily durable, Azul Imperial is no shrinking violet.

Photo Archivist by day, Artist and Design Maven always: ABC’s Sueey Gutierrez

An artist in our midst. Here at ABC Stone we work every day with a wide variety of design professionals whom we assist in the specification and meaningful application of our materials. We collaborate with them on a substantial array of projects of diverse types and sizes, so it is a great boon to us in this pursuit that we harbor in our ranks personnel who are, in their own right, practitioners of the fine arts. We had a chance to sit down with our Materials Photographer + Archivist Sueey Gutierrez, a visual artist with an upcoming Art Show whose closing will be celebrated at Treme in Islip, NY, to discuss her artistic proclivities and origins.

ABC Stone: When did you first become interested in art?

Sueey Gutierrez: At age three, which is also when I began to create art! I received a scholarship to study at the Brooklyn Museum at the age of six. I would also regularly visit the Brooklyn Botanical Gardens at that time.

ABC: What do you think gravitated you towards art, and sustained your interest in it?

SG: I didn’t really grow up in the greatest neighborhood in the world, and my parents wanted me to stay away from that environment, so they would take every opportunity to enroll me in arts classes. I found a highly valuable outlet in the freedom of expression afforded me by art. I was an only child, and surrounded by adult all the time, so as I had to entertain myself, creative expression became a means for me to do so.

ABC: What is your favorite genre or medium of art in which to work?

SG: The media I prefer are usually dry media, so I like to use colored pencils, markers, oil pastels, acrylic markers, charcoal, graphite dust, and graphite pencil. I’ll occasionally do paintings. The genre that I like the most—it runs the gamut. I’m into pinup art. Alberto Vargas is one of my favorite artists. Dali is as well. Frida Kahlo is one of my greatest inspirations. I’m also into neo-classicism, some Dadaist art. I’m also very much into Pre-Columbian art because my family comes from El Salvador and I’m of Mayan descent. And of course, that genre of art is very stone-based.

ABC: What is your favorite time-period?

SG: Oh wow, that’s a really hard question to answer. I would have to say between the nineteen-twenties and the fifties. I feel that fashion was amazing then, and women were so elegant, and I think all over the world fashion was at its prime.

ABC: What’s your favorite design aesthetic?

SG: I would have to say an eclectic one. I don’t have a particular style, I create my own. I’m definitely into a bohemian look, as far as interior design goes. I like art deco and art nouveau architecture, gothic architecture,—the idea of mixing elements of these aesthetics together. I also like bright colors. My own apartment is designed in this way. It’s very retro-inspired. Much of my furniture is antique, from the 1800s or early twentieth century, but I also bring back textiles and fabrics when I go to visit family in El Salvador.

ABC: What are some of your favorite stones and stone applications?

SG: I love all of the semi-precious stones that ABC has to offer: especially the Amethyst, Pyrite, Tiger Eye, and Malachite. The Blue Agate is beautiful. Then we have a granite that’s really stunning, Lemurian, which has elements of labradorite. And we also have Amazonite which has a turquoise appearance to it which I love. I’m very much into earthy, rich jewel-tones. My favorite applications include functional art, for example, we had a tub done in Lilac marble which I thought was stunning. I like book-matched marble, especially on walls, but not so much in commercial spaces, more residences; I think it’s beautiful, an art piece in itself, it needs no additional adornment, it becomes the focus of attention in whatever room it’s in.

Sueey Gutierrez’s Art Show Closing on Sunday, August 27th from 2PM—5PM, will be hosted by Treme Islip | 533 Main St | Islip, NY | 11751.

Perkins Eastman’s and Thomas Balsley Associates’ Flushing Commons Phase I nears completion

Three years into ground-breaking of Flushing, Queens’ $1BM megaproject Flushing Commons, the development now welcomes its first residents, with closings underway for a few months now at the project’s 17-storey condo at 138-35 39th Avenue. The overall 1.8M SqFt development is a collaboration between the F&T Group, AECOM Capital, and the Rockefeller Group; the building’s architects, and landscape architects, our good friends and longtime collaborators Perkins Eastman, and Thomas Balsley Associates, respectively. Amenities for residents will include a landscaped garden, fitness center, residents lounge (with fireplace), a playground, and a dog park. In keeping with the project’s aim of community-building, Phase II of the project will comprise three additional mixed-use structures comprising commercial, retail, residential, and community space, surrounded by 1.5 acres of public space.

Studio Gang’s 21,K SqFt Brooklyn FDNY training facility

The precast concrete firehouse and training center for FDNY’s Brooklyn Rescue Company 2 sits at 1815 Sterling Place, on the border of Crown Heights and Brownsville. The 21,K SqFt structure, designed by our friends at Studio Gang, will allow firefighters to simulate rescue scenarios for training purposes, – such as those in which they have to deal with the obstacles of balconies, stairs, and ladders. The facility itself is energy efficient, with a green roof, and geothermal system 500 feet belowground. Though the building is largely in place, having topped out, one year into construction, it is awaiting the red glazed tiling that will frame its windows and other openings, and is about a year away from the completion. This $32M project is being constructed through NYC’s Department of Design and Construction.

Wolf-Gordon Showroom by Lewis.Tsurumaki.Lewis

Wolf-Gordon is a textiles and coatings concern who in celebration of their 50th anniversary have relocated to a smaller office; for this assignment their CCO Marybeth Shaw enlisted our good friends at Lewis.Tsurumaki.Lewis Architects to transform the 8,K SqFt space into a contemporary interactive workplace and vehicle for showcasing Wolf-Gordon’s products. The design is based around an 80-foot-long armature of blackened steel that dividing open workstations from the rest of the office; over 40 movable steel-frame panels are suspended from it, each displaying a Wolf-Gordon material. The panels can also be rearranged into various combinations to allow for varying degrees of enclosure and communication between working and gathering areas, for informal collaborations, public events, training sessions, talks, &c.

Arquitectonica’s Design Orlando Hotel as New Social Hub

Plans have been rolled out for the 16-storey Town Center Hotel in the planned Lake Nona community of Orlando, FL, to be designed by our friends at Arquitectonica. The hotel, – sufficiently close to the airport to make it a point of entrance to the community and city, – will feature a motor court entrance, a ballroom able to accommodate 200 guests, as well as a rooftop pool with a lounge and accommodations for private events. The tower will be characterized by an undulating, uniquely structured, terraced facade, which the firm, in its own words, hopes will “[represent] the aspirations of this new town: fresh, vibrant, memorable and of its place.” The hotel’s 215 rooms will feature ergonomically designed furniture and spaces. Town Center Hotel is intended to act a social hub, abutting as it will large open air green space in the center of the town called “The Lawn” and extensive retail volumes at grade level.

Another monumental Frankenmansion in the works on the UES (to be helmed by Steven Harris Architects)

Pending approval by the Landmarks Preservation Commission, a townhouse conversion will combine two existing UES homes, at 53 and 55 East 92nd Street, into a megamansion. Our friends at Steven Harris Architects, heading up the project, were responsible for the conversion of the buildings covering 85-89 Jane Street into a large mansion, which bodes well for LPC approval. The plan is to convert 53 and 55 E 92nd into a six-storey, 11,K SqFt home with a basketball court, gym, sauna, rec room, screening room, front terrace (with a hot tub), “yoga pavilion” and a full-floor master suite with his-and-hers dressing rooms. The LPC comes into play because the homes lie within the Carnegie Hill Historic District. But the firm intends to retain and restore the facades of buildings with period-appropriate details, which should be interesting because there are two of them and this is to be one house; already Scrooge McDuck and Rich Uncle Pennybags have each put in offers.