KGB: Secret agents of design
You’ve all heard of fashion police? The Special Forces of interior design? Out of their Chelsea office in New York City, the trio that comprises KGB is designing furniture and interiors that are up-to-the-minute modern, yet designed with classic principals of beauty, harmony and balance. Their use of hard-to-find industrial materials—things you have never seen used before in this kind of an application—combined with the precision and detail of their work creates pieces that are ultimately timeless.
Who is KGB? David Khouri and Roberto Guzman met at Columbia University’s prestigious Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation. Trained in architecture and historic preservation, they are well versed in the tenets of architecture’s avant-garde and the classics. The two forged separate careers as architects with established firms before they joined forces under the name Comma and created furniture pieces that were wildly received by the design press. But David and Roberto felt there was an element that was missing. In architecture, God is in the details, and there were many problems translating their ideas to the workshops they commissioned. They realized that doing the best work possible was not just about designing, but about controlling the making as well. David met Christaan Bunce and the triumvirate was complete! Bunce considers himself a “maker” with extensive experience as an artist, craftsman and designer. He adds an extra dimension to the work because he has a wide knowledge of how things are made.
Many of KGB’s chosen materials have their own history as industrial materials, and are not readily available or easily found. All of them are extremely durable, and the materials themselves give a certain quality that is rare and unique. To read more about their choice of materials, check out this Interiors & Sources post.
Today, KGB’s stock-in-trade is residential furniture. “With our furniture, customers are getting something that is really unique, different than what other people make. We produce pieces that are really well made, designed to be handed down. We pay attention to every minute detail. Every side is finished,” explains Khouri. The pieces are as beautiful on the underside and in the little nooks and crannies as they are from the front view. “We do not make ‘production pieces’,” David continues, “Almost every piece we have ever made has been custom tailored to each clients specification – changing size, finish, the color, making a material softer or harder; all to fit a specific need or taste. We adapt for each order.”
What’s their next mission? “To work on hospitality projects and furnishings and to develop production pieces. We are interested in working with more than just the high-end carriage-trade residential market,” says Khouri.