A Letter from our Founder
As our open-air bus climbed a steep pass in the Mantiqueira mountains, my four-year-old son pointed at the mist rising from the lush valley below. This being our first visit to the mountains, we'd fallen instantly in love with the city of Campos do Jordao, Brazil's "Little Switzerland"- it's Swiss and German architecture, it's cosmopolitan feel, the international crowds drifting through the busy streets reminded us of another city the one we call home- New York.
Campos do Jordao, our journey begins.
The next day we decided to do another tour of the mountains but this time we decided to drive, instead of taking the tour bus. As my poor sense of direction would have it, we got lost. We came across a town square filled with a constellation of rocks in the center and shops all around. Across the street there was a collection of odd, large, forms. What could it be? "Cool!" my son said.
As we got closer, we realized the objects were spectacular forms of wood- sculptures, unlike any we'd seen before. The natural shape and beauty of sections of trees had been used to inform and enhance each piece.
When we stepped into the showroom, the sight of the magnificent collection left us speechless. We felt like explorers who'd discovered a treasure ship intact; And from that moment I knew;
After acquiring a Brazilian company four years prior; I'd come to learn and respect Brazil's sense of community and love for the environment. It taught me not only about the importance of strong communities, but also about the importance of a strong family. I learned to speak Portuguese, and, by the time we took that vacation to Campos do Jordao I believed my decision to move to Brazil four years ago would be the catalyst for a new beginning for myself and my family.
While designing my family's two living spaces in New York; I started thinking about how spaces not only speak to us, but also create our experiences. I wanted our homes to enhance our lives. I wanted them to pay homage to how my home on the North Fork of Long Island; and my brownstone in jazzy historic Harlem influenced how we lived, and even more importantly to bring my family closer together.
On my travels around the world, I looked for and brought back furniture and artwork for both homes. I loved the challenge of finding unique pieces that would accomplish my goals. Yet it struck me that it shouldn't be so hard to be Unique. And I began to realize that people could create better lives- and consequently, a better world- if they had the tools to create a beautiful space.
Now, standing captivated in that showroom in the mountains of Brazil- each piece of sculptured furniture different and more spectacular than the next; each one seeming to contain the soul of the SUCUPIRA tree it had been made from- it struck me that these sculptures had also resulted from reinventions.
Then, a beautiful woman with a warm smile and warm dark eyes came out to greet us. With classic Brazilian hospitality, she asked if we wanted coffee. She lead us into a beautiful backyard, where a stream burbled through a garden.
As she poured our coffee, she told us how the Sucupiras provided shade to her family's cattle and of her family's goal to transform their land into an African mahogany plantation. They decided no part of the Sucupiras would be wasted. Her and her son both artist, decided to transform the trees into sculptures that maximized the trees original beauty and created something new and useful. Her family dreamed of bringing these functional sculptures to the world. I shared my dreams of creating a better world through better living, and we decided then and there that we would work together. We would bring these spectacular , one-of-a-kind pieces from the mountains of Brazil to the world.
Over the ensuing months, I got to know the family very well. I went to see the timber plantation and the sculpture studio. We discussed my design aesthetic and settled on our collaboration realizing that our partnership was a rebirth for me, for them, and for the Sucupiras. Tables made from the roots of these extraordinary trees would be created by the family and their artisans, and offered exclusively through the VOSAY Collection.
Founder and Creative Director