Last month, Napster founder and former Facebook president Shawn Parker made the biggest buy of the year so far, picking up the Bacchus House on West 10th Street. The former studio of sculptor Charles Keck, it had been converted into a party palace over two decades by its previous own, Enrico Cinzano, a wine and spirits heir.
Michael Gross, chronicler of Manhattan luxury housing, has an item for New York that uncovers the building’s unusual history, from its origins as a stable for Indiana banker and railroad man James F.D. Lanier to its ownership after Keck to the Sean-Parker-of-his-day, Samuel Chernoble, “an innovator, devising new printing processes and pioneering photo offset printing.”
But outdoing Gross for once is The Times, where this week’s Big Deal column lands an interview with Parker about his new home.
“I love features like the spiral staircase, the diagonal wood floor panels of five different panel thicknesses (technique that has been lost in many modern homes), the privacy and seclusion of the office area, the internal bamboo atrium (need I say more?), and the master bathroom which features massive stones of marble quarried from the same larger block and mirrored against each other to produce a Rorschach-like effect.”
“I always saw a kind of method to the madness,” he said. “At the core of it there is juxtaposition of the sacred and profane; of antiquity and modernity. You see this in the tribal and spiritual art contrasted with industrial-looking iron and steel sculptures. You see it in the contrast between late-Renaissance oil paintings and Gilbert & George modern works.”
Asked what he might change about the aesthetic, Mr. Parker said simply, “Stucco has to go.”
Perhaps if this whole tech thing does not work out for him, Parker could always try his hand as a real estate agent or an interior designer.