Location: Twin Peaks—San Francisco, California
Favorite: The original 1940’s kitchen faucet that comes straight out of the wall
“I cannot live in a white or off-white room,” says Moses when we talk about the blue wall in his bedroom. In fact, he painted the wall blue the day he moved in so as to not have to spend one night in a white walled room. Dark blue, he says, helps him sleep.
Moses is an historic preservationist and it shows. In addition to preserving architecture as a profession, Moses preserves history via his wardrobe, his collections, and his car. From his hand embossed business cards, to his antique filing boxes, Moses embodies a more elegant and civilized era.
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There is so much to take in and so many stories to be told when touring Moses’s home. The artifacts are rife with a past and are beautiful. Moses treats family heirlooms and the adopted history of “instant relatives” with the same attention and respect.
Some of the pieces come from his family’s 300 year old New Hampshire farmhouse, like the brick he uses to prop open his bedroom door or the chest lined with early 1800’s New England news that his father wanted to throw away.
The farmhouse has been in the family since it’s inception but the family has been around these parts even longer. Other pieces are found by diligently scouring Ebay or antique stores for the most marginalized of objects.
Moses lists his fetishes for me with pride: chrome—usually in the form of hubcaps, valises (old suitcases), vintage ties and bowties, Olivetti typewriters, and other people’s family photos. Moses pointed to a portrait of a very austere 19th century woman’s portrait on the wall of his library and said, “She came out of the same barn as this sewing table”—referring to an estate sale in Vermont where both were purchased.
Clearly impressive is the faux wood paneling of the library, introduced by Moses. Once a house-painter by trade Moses first painted the wall brown, then used an oil pencil to draw lines that would represent the panel grooves, and finished by ‘drawing’ the wood grain with gel stain and a foam brush. He used an image from “The Art of Faux” to inspire his technique.
His roommate Brian—a computer wizard—owns this vertically sprawling Twin Peaks house and contributes to the unique quality of the home via his tech inspired interventions and an art appreciation.
The entire home is run on solar power, including the hot-tub. Brian has commissioned the same artist that created the venus fly trap BBQ’s in the backyard to sculpt metal mountain goats that will appear on the roof, in the garden and walking up the front of the façade.
Brian figures that, at 600 feet above sea level, mountain goats are more appropriate than flamingos but as good a landmark when giving directions.
Originally Posted July 6th, 2005--Jill