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The Blueprint

Artist Gerald Mead has lived in his Parkside area apartment since 1987 and filled it with a vast collection of artwork he has amassed over the past two decades, much of it by artists currently -- or previously -- from Western New York.

A look inside:

The place: Mead's apartment is part of a double in a house built about 1903. Some of the beams in the ceiling were likely made from wood salvaged from buildings torn down after the Pan-American Exposition, Mead says.

The floor plan: Before Mead moved in, a former occupant had renovated the floor plan by combining the parlor, living room and dining rooms into one large open space -- while preserving such architectural elements as the oak floors and window and door trims.

Mead liked this. The large expanses of white walls "were a perfect slate for my interest in art," Mead says.

Art and design: Framed paintings, wall and freestanding sculptures, furniture by area artisans, Wedgewood Jasperware, Murano glass, fiber art . . . it's all here.

Floors and windows. Floors in the main living area are oak with an occasional accent rug. Wooden shutters cover the bottom sections of windows (Mead hangs paintings right on them), while shirred curtains in the dining room leave woodwork exposed. The bedroom windows have mini-blinds, on which Mead also hangs artwork.

Furniture: In addition to pieces by artisans, Mead's selections range from Arts & Crafts (both vintage and new interpretations); mid-century furniture; newer tailored upholstered pieces (the sofa and one of the chairs are covered in a natural-colored fabric with black piping). The round dining room table has a glass tabletop and cast plaster base inspired by a Corinthian column.

-- Susan Martin

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