Natural Curiosities' Endlessly Inventive Offices

Workspace Tour

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Name: Natural Curiosities, an art house/art studio
Location: Echo Park, Los Angeles, California
Size: 5,200 square feet
Years lived in: 2 1/2 years at Jensen Recreation Center's Bowling Alley Space.

How do you imagine your dream office? Lots of light? A historic old building? Lots of hidden nooks and crannies filled with things to discover? Working with a bunch of talented and creative people? Check, check, check and check! Welcome to the wonderful workspace of Natural Curiosities. Founded by Christopher Wilcox, a former antiquarian book dealer from London who's parlayed a love of old manuscripts and natural forms into this inspiring collective of artisans, Natural Curiosities boasts a workspace as magical as the items produced there.

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What began in 2005 with “Curiosity Boxes” — a boxed selection of images of marine life, drawn from Christopher's vast collection and treated with tea to look old — has become a thriving business. Oversized books and maps, palm fronds, feathers, mounted butterflies, and lichen are just some of the materials that are transformed here into breathtaking, fanciful works of art. Previously only available through their retail partners, Natural Curiosities has recently launched a website, Wilcox Store, to make the pieces available directly to the public.

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Apartment Therapy Survey:

Our Style: Modern antiquarian.

Inspiration: Antique books, folios and objects d'art. And nature!

Favorite Element: The space and the light! It's magical to be in this old building with its incredible history.

Biggest Challenge: Maintaining spacial malleability: having room for all of the things that we collect, for the artisans to do their work and for invention to happen.

What Friends Say: "You must love working here." (They're right, we do.)

Biggest Embarrassment: None! We're proud of our space! Maybe an embarrassment of riches?

Biggest Indulgence: Expanding our offices from their previous location in a house in Silverlake into this luminous and inspiring multi-level space.

Best Advice: Be open to reinvention.

Dream Sources: Flea markets and antique shops around the world.

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Resources of Note:

All of the pieces in our space were either found at flea markets and antique shops around the world or were created by our studio. Some of them are available via WilcoxStore.

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Thanks, Christopher, Faith and everyone at Natural Curiosities!

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(Image credits: Abby Stone)