Since the inception of Merrill’s gallery in 2000, the offerings have evolved from the best of mid-to-late 20th century design and studio furniture. Merrill wrote Modern Americana published in 2008 by Rizzoli, the seminal book on American Studio furniture of the late 20th Century. In 2008, he introduced Todd Merrill Custom Originals catering to client’s needs with bench-crafted custom designs inspired by Merrill’s vintage collection. In 2009 Merrill launched Studio Contemporary, a global exhibition-based program focusing on the work of contemporary studio artists. Studio Contemporary now exhibits at 8-10 of the best art and design fairs around the world each year.
Todd Merrill Antiques has been known for a glamourous and eclectic mix of 20th century furniture and lighting since 2000. Originally located in a 500 square foot space at the corner of Stanton and Ludlow on New York City’s Lower Eastside, the pioneering shop introduced and became renowned for massive scale Italian glass lighting by Venini, Vistosi, Barovier and Murano alongside unique decorative and custom mid-century American furniture by makers like Karl Springer, James Mont, Tommi Parzinger, Paul Lazslo, Paul Evans, LaVerne, Samuel Marx, Arthur Elrod, Harvey Probber, T.H. Robsjohn-Gibbings, Vladimir Kagan and many more.
Merrill is dedicated to promoting American Studio Artisans and Craftsmen such as Paul Evans, Phillip Lloyd Powell, Jack Rogers Hopkins, and Michael Coffey. The shop’s unique aesthetic also includes a beautiful mix of European pieces along side a selection of mid-century designer modern furniture by makers like Dunbar, Monteverdi Young, Widdecomb and Grossfeld House.
Currently, Merrill is featuring a large selection of European furniture from the 1940s through the 1960s including pieces by Osvaldo Borsani, Ico Parisi, Gio Ponti, Aldo Tura, Fontana Arte, Maison Jansen, Jacques Adnet, Ado Chale, Gabriella Crespi, Willy Daro and many more. The cross influence of European and American design is self-evident in the objects and the mix is harmonious and beautiful showing Gio Ponti alongside Kagan and Karl Springer with French Deco.
Todd Merrill grew-up steeped in the Antiques trade, and is third generation in the business. His family’s collecting passion was American furniture. Merrill believes the next great period in American Furniture is the postwar period where a flourishing of money, creativity and style in America’s great cities after WWII allowed mid-century designers to create outstanding decorative furnishings unlike anything seen before.
“American and especially New York City saw a huge wave of European design talent and homegrown designers returning home to a postwar boom. Never before has there been such a diverse flourishing of design focusing on exotic influences brought back from around the world combined with the relatively new concepts of modern design and the space age,” states Merrill. “What was produced in America from the late 1940s through the early 1980s by designers like James Mont, Paul Evans and Karl Springer is astounding and could only have happened here. I am fascinated by and love to explore this last great undocumented period in Americana.”
Todd Merrill’s shop is based on the ability to mix connoisseurship with style and creativity. “We are striving to explore and establish new areas of collecting and appreciation of 20th century design, and will continue to present the best and most unusual in 20th Century American decorative arts as well as correlating design influences from contemporary designers, says Merrill.
By opening Todd Merrill Antiques, Merrill carries on the tradition of his grandparents Nathan and Margaret Merrill who founded Ethan Allen Antiques in the 1930s, and his father Duane Merrill, who started Merrill & Company Auctions. Todd Merrill was the director of Public Relations at Christie’s New York and a founding executive of auctions.com.