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Eclectic minimalism

One of the biggest challenges faced by modern designers is achieving the delicate balance between form and function.

In the process of creating “a pure and serene gallery-like space with harmony between all of its elements” BiglarKinyan Design Partnership has shown precisely how this unity is executed in a Toronto condominium.

The home’s neutral colour scheme is broken up by bright, eclectic art created and displayed by the owners. And these pieces, in addition to natural stone textures and the element of fire, add touches of personality to a living space which could have been quite stark.

“The gloss white cabinets alone are cold and impersonal. Add the Calcutta marble and it begins softening,” says Fardid Biglar of BiglarKinyan Design Partnership.

“The effect of the softly moving flame created by the EcoSmart fireplace is what this composition needed to make the space inviting. It also helps that the indoor fireplace is elevated because it becomes like art, a part of the Calcutta marble, which is nature’s work of art. They, together, form the focal point of the living room and exist in harmony.”

Fardid and the team at BiglarKinyan regularly use EcoSmart fires in their projects, citing the minimal requirement for heat resistant material and vent free, clean burning ethanol which gives them more design freedom than a traditional fireplace.

“EcoSmart’s design permitted us to position the fireplace where it made most aesthetic sense.”

Fardid Biglar, BiglarKinyan Design Partnership

“The burner also fits within the firebox with utmost precision, so even when the fire is not lit, it looks great. When the flame is lit, it reflects in the stainless steel, magnifying it. There is no replacement for its effect.”

A cow hide rug, low, chocolate coloured lounges and a deep timber coffee table add softened organic stylistic elements that complement the natural patterns of the Calcutta marble and the soft flicker of the EcoSmart flame.

Although there are multiple natural and man-made elements within the living room, it remains minimalist at its core, with the few objects in the room carefully selected for the way they interact with each other.

“We wanted minimal distraction from the feeling the space created and wanted those within to get maximum enjoyment from the tranquil aura,” explains Fardid. “At the same time, we aimed to create a space that was livable and not sterile. The clients absolutely love their space,” says Fardid. “And it is also one of our favourite projects!”


  • Country: Canada
  • Specifier: BiglarKinyan Design Partnership