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Saturday, November 10, 2012

Selling Modernism: Reform Gallery

Reform Gallery's owner, Gerard O'Brien, moved his family from New York to Los Angeles to pursue his acting career in 2001, just five days before the World Trade Center attack on September 11. Not long afterward, he concluded that he couldn't "afford to indulge in acting anymore" and began making plans to open a shop.

He realized that no one was really focusing on California Modernism and decided that might be the direction to go. He opened Reform Gallery in 2002, showcasing California production furniture masters such as Greta Grossman, Maurice Martine and Paul Tuttle. His exhibit, CA Design, celebrated California designers from 1956-1976 and was a turning point for his business. Masters such as Otto Natzler, Sam Maloof and Harrison McIntosh came to the shop, and O'Brien commissioned Julius Shulman to document the event.

Reform Gallery sells some of the finest pieces available in the country and is known for striking displays at modernism shows nationwide.


CA Design exhibit

Besides it's beautiful merchandise, Reform Gallery is known for its outstanding design library, shown below.

Reform Gallery is also known for its remarkable displays at design shows. This Paul McCobb display and the close-up from the October 2012 Los Angeles Antiques show are perfect examples. - Diedre Woollard Photostream

Several months ago, O'Brien bought a Northcraft Model 2014 lamp by Paul McCobb from us, like the one pictured below in the Fall 2012 edition of Atomic Ranch. The lamp in the article was apparently one sold earlier.

Gerard O'Brien, owner of Reform Gallery
(from Casa Brutus magazine)

I couldn't begin to include all the stunning photographs of Reform Gallery's shows and store displays, so I used some of my favorites. I urge you to go to the website and check out Press, as well as News & Events.


  1. Oh wow! That guy has some serious good taste. I love the wall hangings. That's gorgeous Mid-Century design isn't it? I'm gobsmacked. Just goes to show if you do something you love ...

    Wowsers. Those photos!! How can I cook dinner now? I have to re-arrange the house.

    1. If the wall hangings caught your eye, you'd probably enjoy my post on Evelyn and Jerome Ackerman:

  2. Hands up! I too love the wall hangings and need to restyle! We need this in Australia!

    1. Makes you want to hop a plane for California, huh? :)

    2. That's exactly right. I'm back this morning to have another look at this post and am trying to think of an excuse to fly to America (of course I'd have to go to Dallas and arrange a shipping container home!)