Photographs by Andrea Malizia

Museum of Arts and Design
2 Columbus Circle
Tel: 212-299-7730

Designer: Schefer Design

With space at a premium, deciding whether to use the top floor of the Museum of Arts and Design as a restaurant or as an additional gallery must have been a difficult choice. Luckily, the museum found a way to have its cake and eat it too: Co-owner Brian Saltzman and project architects Schefer Design created the just-opened Robert restaurant to double as a neon-colored showcase of contemporary design in furniture, lighting, and video art. London-born architect Philip Michael Wolfson contributed Robert’s reception desks, mirrored cocktail tables, and bar stools, as well as a long communal table made from a plank of powder-coated aluminum which he has bent into a spiky, six-foot-tall sound wave. The jazzy theme continues in architect Johanna Grawunder’s LED-lit Lucite chandeliers, which hang suspended from the ceiling to create a scattered field of glowing orange rectangles. The table and chandeliers’ angular lines are balanced by the curves of modernist designer Vladimir Kagan’s neutral-toned sofas. A rotating series of artwork—beginning with Jennifer Steinkamp’s video art piece Orbit 2, displayed on Robert’s 103-inch plasma screen—vies for diners’ attention with the restaurant’s expansive views of Columbus Circle and Central Park.