YHBHS shop talk.

a conversation with Matt Locke, of SOURCE LA
38 L.A. designers, one showroom, downtown los angeles.

What's the idea behind SOURCE LA?

The LA Mart Design Center in partnership with Los Angeles Magazine approached me about curating a collection of design objects designed and built here in California. Through my contacts and tons of research online, I found this group of exceptional designers who are creating these fantastic design objects, most right here in Los Angeles. A lot of them are Art Center graduates, some are self-taught, all are creating works that will become icons to future generations the way the Barcelona and Eames chairs are to us.

I've sat in these stools many times at Wurstk├╝che Restaurant in the downtown art district , and love their geometrical bases. A new take on the basic stool. Who designed them?

Joseph Pitruzelli, who also designed the space at Wurstk├╝che Restaurant, which he co-owns. He licensed his design to an emerging company called Woodsmithe that produces them exclusively. The stools had their debut at SOURCE LA!

Current design obsession? Favorite designer you look to from the past?

I am a Bauhaus man, through and through; I love order and minimalism and went to graduate school at Chicago's Institute of Design because it was founded as the New Bauhaus when Mies and Gropius fled Nazi Germany. That said, I'm currently obsessed with Maximo Riera's Octopus Chair for reasons I don't even understand. It's the opposite of form-following-function, but I want it in my house!

L.A. showrooms to recommend? Why open your showroom downtown as opposed to the Pacific Design Center?

My favorite by far is ddc (domus design collection) on Beverly Boulevard. Their website doesn't do them justice, but their stuff is fantastic. We opened SOURCE LA downtown to show LA's design world that downtown is where emerging talent lives and breathes.

Any designed spaces (i.e. restaurants, hotels, homes) in Los Angeles that inspire you?

It's been open for a few years but I still love Rivera downtown because the design is so intentional and beautifully executed; the restaurant's logo is repeated outside in custom metal grates over the windows and inside as cut wood blocks, plus the food is really good!

(Thanks Matt!


1933 S Broadway Space 1245
Los Angeles CA 90007
M-F 9am to 5pm

"Matt Locke sold the house he designed and built in Colorado to move in 2005 to Los Angeles to pursue a life of media and design. After a TV debut on Jeopardy in 2007, Matt received national attention on HGTV's Design Star and Showdown and has become a complete one-stop shop in downtown LA, reaching every area of design"