The Aesthete: Dominique Lévy talks personal taste

The art adviser, collector and dealer co-founded the international Lévy Gorvy gallery, which represents the likes of Yves Klein and Frank Stella

Dominique Lévy at home in New York
Dominique Lévy at home in New York | Image: Weston Wells

My personal style signifier is a piece of jewellery – a wearable sculpture, really – from my grandmother, by the artist César, to whom she was very close. It’s made of family heirlooms – gold and pearls – that were melted down and compressed into an amulet I wear as a necklace. It is the essence of my hero – my grandmother – and a whole life story in one accessory. I wear it to every art fair and opening.

Löffelobjekt by Beate Kuhn
Löffelobjekt by Beate Kuhn | Image: Weston Wells

The last thing I bought and loved was a ceramic piece, Löffelobjekt, by the artist Beate Kuhn. It has beautiful flux and movement and I was lucky to find it as her works are quite rare. Jason Jacques Gallery, 29 East 73rd Street #1, New York, NY 10021 (jasonjacques.com). 

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And the thing I’m eyeing next is a thick cashmere sweater bearing the slogan “Meditate” by California-based label The Elder Statesman. I like the story behind this maker and also that it’s in the bold colours of the flag of my birthplace, Switzerland. $1,555; elder-statesman.com.

Elder Statesman cashmere Meditate sweater, $1,555
Elder Statesman cashmere Meditate sweater, $1,555

The last meal that truly impressed me was at Sushi Noz in New York. It’s an eight-seat place with an authentic 19th- century Japanese Hinoki counter, and the entire omakase presentation was just perfection. The cedarwood finishes and subtle lighting set the stage for chef Noz’s memorable yellowtail sashimi and other small, flavoursome plates. 181 East 78th Street, New York, NY 10075 (sushinoz.com). 

Sushi Oz, an eight-seat Japanese restaurant in New York
Sushi Oz, an eight-seat Japanese restaurant in New York

And the best souvenirs I’ve brought home are stones from the beach on Antiparos in Greece. I collect stones wherever I go, but these are in shades of pink and white and subtle green. I keep them in vases in my office as well as in my Hamptons home, and I am constantly adding to and editing my collection.

Stones picked by Lévy from the beach on Antiparos in Greece
Stones picked by Lévy from the beach on Antiparos in Greece | Image: Weston Wells

The last thing I added to my wardrobe was an Etro trouser suit in petrol-coloured velvet. My 16-year-old son picked it out, and the bluish colour and wide-leg pants give it a very cool 1970s vibe that’s perfect for a night out. etro.com

New York’s La Mercerie, an “eating and shopping” space
New York’s La Mercerie, an “eating and shopping” space

A recent “find” is La Mercerie in SoHo in New York – a very special “eating and shopping” environment overseen by a wonderful French chef. The food is delicious and the atmosphere feels like being in someone’s home. After a recent meal I bought a fabulous set of placemats. It all feels like Paris meets Amsterdam, but in New York. 53 Howard Street, New York, NY 10013 (lamerceriecafe.com). 

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The best gift I’ve given recently was a 24ct- gold bangle by jeweller Aurora Lopez Mejia to someone special. Her bracelets are very personal, made up of significant numbers and letters, which make her pieces one of a kind and very meaningful. From $18,000; auroralopezmejia.com.

The indulgences I would never forgo are very dark chocolate and Japanese whisky – but not necessarily together! Villars from Switzerland is my chocolate of choice; it’s made without added sugar and I like to snack on it throughout the day. In terms of whisky, I love Hibiki, which combines subtle woody and sweet flavours. Hibiki, £64.95 for 70cl; thewhiskyexchange.com. Villars, about £2.50 for 100g; villars.com.

My favourite room in my house is my dining room. I can be en famille or entertaining 20 and it always feels cosy. The sculptural centrepiece is a table with bronze feet by artist Alma Allen that I commissioned for this room. And a handblown chandelier by glass artist Jeff Zimmerman just makes the whole space work.

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