Friday, February 20, 2009

Like a Blirgin

I wish the thank the many personal friends and friends of Modlife for their complimentary emails and for checking out my blog. I realize I am a blog-virgin (Blirgin) and have a way to go before I am well versed in the many features so I really appreciate the positive feedback so early in the game. I am especially appreciated to Joe Kunkel, who paid a personal visit to the store after checking out the blog, especially since Joe is perhaps the original blogger of mid century modern furnishings well before the birth of the blog.
Several years ago Joe maintained a website providing information and an online store as a supplement to inventory he sold at Broadway Antique Market (BAM) in Chicago. He later became a realtor for Baird & Warner, specializing in Modernist properties in Chicago and the suburbs.

I first met Joe shortly after I opened my first location then again later when he represented the sale of a mid century modern home in the north shore. He then took me to a new listing of a Keck & Keck home which had barely been altered from it's original 1950's state. The two of us walked around this home like a couple of archaeologists uncovering primitive artifacts that could lead to the mysteries of Atlantis or Noah's Ark. For purists as ourselves, these modernists homes deserve the preservation or restoration in respect to the vision of the architects and designers who implemented them. As I am not against updating a moldy bathroom or removing the asbestos in the basement or even adding an addition which blends with the integrity of the architecture, when I hear of the amateur renovations people make on their historic, albeit modernist homes, I feel they have committed a mortal sin.

Not long ago, before ebay taught people the value of their attic treasures, weekend renovators would replace a murano chandelier for something new at "Hardware" lighting store - or throw away an Eames lounge chair and replacing it with a brand new recliner. And if that fit the design aesthetic of your home, I say, "Go to it!" But if your working with the bones of good modern architecture, don't deface it with commercial grade graffiti. Consult with a modern enthusiasts.. you'll find one in your closest metropolitan area... we are everywhere!
Joe is also President and Co-Founder of Bauhaus and Beyond and you can sometimes catch Joe as a keynote speaker at Modernist shows, but I would highly encourage you to check out his website at And if you are in the market of buying or selling a Mod home.. he is your man.


  1. Thanks for the kind words! Your shop looks GREAT and I really enjoyed my visit. Everyone should shop there and spend wads o' cash! Hey, somebody's gotta keep the economy going. :-)


  2. Thanks for your kindness hope you got more from you business.
    Office Furniture UK