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Chester County Press

Art, design and furnishings spotlighted in 'Pairings'

11/23/2015 11:13AM ● By J. Chambless

A room designed by Kate Poole, with art by Peter Willard and Katee Boyle.

By John Chambless
Staff Writer

The idea behind “Pairings,” a collaborative show that continues through Nov. 30 at Holly Peters Oriental Rugs in Kennett Square, is so brilliant that you wonder why it hasn't been done before. But the showcase of local art, designers and home furnishings is a win for everyone involved, including the visitor.

Peters had the idea to highlight the arts scene around her large home design store on South Broad Street by letting local artists contribute paintings to be in room vignettes by local designers that show how art, furniture and lighting can work together in the home. Downstairs, Peters has put together a room with art by several painters, including Vojkan Morar, who is represented by Mala Galleria. The way the rug works with Morar's paintings is wonderful. The downstairs also has a room designed by Zoe Hewitt that has an impressive table, and a painting, “Sur La Table” by Thomas Del Porte, that plays off the theme.

Upstairs, artist Carol Lesher (who has a studio at the store) has a terrific triptych, “Hush,” that has a spectacular sense of open space. It's anchored by a bench with Victorian flourishes, and a rustic wooden chest that serves as a coffee table.

Another upstairs space designed by Francesca Rudin has a brilliant interplay of Stan Smokler's “Hemisphere” steel sculpture that is echoed in the lines of the chandelier. On the floor is a rusty vintage tricycle that is echoed in the collage “Dragstrip Tricycle,” by Jeff Schaller, that hangs above it.

There's a sleek-looking room with white furnishings designed by Kate Poole that makes full use of Peter Willard's graffiti-like paintings of dogs, as well as strong abstracts by Katee Boyle. The room could be in some ultra-hip New York City loft.

Also upstairs, formal chairs somehow work well with a free-form table made with a tree trunk base. The room was put together by designer Andre Petrillo. The dominant artwork, “Sky Above... Earth Below … Fire Within” by Ellen Catanzara, has lines that lines are echoed in the dazzling tree-branch chandelier.

Walking through “Pairings” is inspirational, and you want to go home and coordinate your own artwork and couch somehow. With such a great exhibition space, Holly Peters said she would like to do another similar show in the spring, perhaps focusing on outdoor spaces. The idea, she said, “is to promote awareness of this end of town and what we have to offer.”

Holly Peters Oriental Rugs and Home is at 109 S. Broad St., Kennett Square. It is open Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Call 610-444-6032 or visit

To contact Staff Writer John Chambless, email

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