Designer Pamela Shamshiri shares her 2023 design inspirations

From monasteries in Bhutan to the work of Clare Crespo, Pamela Shamshiri shares her cultural agenda with ABASK

Born in Tehran, Shamshiri moved to Los Angeles with her family in the wake of Iran’s revolution at the age of 9. With her brother Ramin whom she founded Studio Shamiri in 2016, she spent much of their childhood playing on the various floors of their father’s furniture showroom, where they enjoyed watching how each room was transformed by new arrangements of furniture and décor. They learned the importance of story-telling through thoughtful design and look to create cohesive spaces which are a considered harmony of architecture and interior design. Shamshiri’s ability to champion and elevate the talent of contemporary makers is also a defining element of her style.

Pamela Shamshiri’s cultural agenda for 2023

Alice Neel

Alice Neel: Hot Off The Griddle at the Barbican Centre, London

There’s an Alice Neel show at the Barbican which I’m really excited about as I’ve been diving deeper into colour every year and I feel there’s so much to learn about colour combinations and the emotions that are expressed in those paintings.

I feel there’s so much to learn about colour combinations

Pamela Shamshiri

Karma Gallery in New York

188 East, 2nd Street, New York

I love how they champion so many obscure, older, multinational, different ages and it’s truly about the work and the body of work they represent and they are functioning outside of trends in the art world. I’m excited to see every show they do. It’s a very personal take on what they choose to support. That point of view is rare. They’ve also just opened one in LA.

Clare Crespo

I’ve been watching her work for a while. She built a 14ft high giraffe for Irene Neuwirth's Madison Ave store, and it has been fulfilling to watch her journey and see her stick to her mission of bringing joy to people. Her work has been getting elegant and more refined - she’s definitely one to watch

Iceland, Bhutan, Uzebekistan

I’m finally going to Iceland, where there is so much going on culturally. I'd like to do a road trip and drive all over Iceland; to see the hot springs and also the Blue church on Rainbow street, a street with coloured stripes that is a sign of support for the local LGBTQ community. Later in the year I’m going to Bhutan, where dear friends are working with the Bhutan foundation and will be opening up the newly restored Wangduechholing Palace — the former home of the first Monarch and soon to be a cultural institution. I want to take in all the paintings and decorative colours there and hike to Tigers Nest - an epic cliff hanging monastery. Uzbekistan is also on my wish list : there is gorgeous linen, embroidery, lace, hand-painted ceramics, I feel drawn to that.

I’ve found a balance of being inspired in cities (...) but also immersing myself in nature

Forest bathing

I’m increasingly drawn to ancient and spiritual pilgrimages; I’ve found a balance of being inspired in cities and museums but also immersing myself in nature, such as forest bathing and how much all these different things add to your life. There is a town in Japan called Nikko that is full of streams and the quintessential Japanese bridge was started there. I’d liked to get to the Antonin Raymond designed bed and breakfast - it’s the perfect forest bathing base camp.