Photograph by Joshua Vensel
The Roman God Janus has two faces, one looking back toward the past, the other facing forward to the future. He is an appropriate namesake for the Atlanta Decorative Arts Center’s newest showroom, outdoor furniture maker Janus et Cie (et cie means “and company” in both Latin and French). The California-based company first earned recognition in the 1980s for often classically inspired pieces such as its Amalfi Collection, which displayed a revolutionary minimalism in the days when “patio furniture” was sold mostly at hardware stores.
More recent collections include architectural metals and curvaceous wovens and, like true modernists, sometimes display subtle humor, such as the Agatha cafe chairs with smiley-face backs. Perhaps the whimsy started with the company’s signature faux topiaries.
In addition to furniture, Janus et Cie offers more than 200 fabrics, almost all appropriate for outdoor use—including velvet and chenille. Its accessories are available for sale off the floor and range from outdoor pieces like a rolling shower stand to tabletop items like the museum-worthy Sakura Teapot, a white porcelain teapot covered in delicate bisque flowers ($2,500).
The firm’s high-style furnishings, which add drama to public spaces from Rockefeller Center to Grand Park in Los Angeles, are not cheap. A sculptural Lolah rattan lounge costs $2,187, though Cremona side chairs are a more reasonable $343. “We’re known for the high end. But [founder and CEO] Janice Feldman likes to compare us to BMW,” says Teresa Alvis, Atlanta sales manager. “We have the 7 series, the 5 series, and we have the Mini Cooper. Anybody can own a piece of Janus et Cie.” The showroom is located in ADAC West and is open to the public. 349 Peachtree Hills Avenue, Suite A-1, 404-855-3444, janusetcie.com
This article originally appeared in our March 2013 issue.