April 4, 2016

Ali Tayar Tribute Gathers 250 Designers at Interior Design’s HQ

Over 250 members of the design community joined Interior Design at its headquarters in midtown Manhattan last Thursday for a tribute to the late architect Ali Tayar, who was a friend and ally of the magazine and ran a New York-based architecture firm until his unexpected death in late February.

Designers stood and sat, packed shoulder to shoulder, as editor in chief Cindy Allen provided heartfelt remarks on her close friendship with the architect, remembering not only his passion and skill for design, but his joy for the little things in life, his unending sweet tooth, and his intense desire to connect with the community. “We’ve published no fewer than 30 projects by Ali over the years,” said Allen, “He was an undisputed master of his craft.” The architect’s most recent collaboration with Allen was Interior Design’s table for DIFFA’s 19th Annual Dining by Design benefit at New York’s Pier 92, a black, white, and red graphic creation with the word “hope” rendered in oversize letters on its back wall. Allen closed with a positive memory of the project: “The message Ali left with all of us was one of hope.”

Following statements from Tayar’s partner, Michael Zega, and his friend Mark Robbins, president of the American Academy of Rome, Allen welcomed the crowd to approach the mic. Industry leaders such as Ertan Yalçin, Turkish Consul General, artist Ellen Levy, and Katherine Chia, principal of Desai Chia Architecture, paid tribute by describing their own experiences with Tayar from work, life, and art. An evening of shared memories, community, and emotions ended with platters of mini pancakes—the architect’s absolute favorite—along with many treasured memories.

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