Please bear with me while I mention one of the first video games my children played, called "Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego?" No matter how hard I tried, I could never find Carmen. Some might say the same about A. J. Brewington, wondering where in the world she is. Until recently A. J. ran businesses from a couple of different locations on McPherson. She moved there from the DeMun area in the mid-90s, and opened Geronimo's Cadillac which specialized in Mid-Century Modern. Eventually she combined Geronimo's with Brewington's, which specialized in traditional furnishings.
In December Brewington Art & Interiors opened in a spacious light-filled loft space on the second floor of The Pierce Arrow Building, on Washington just east of Euclid. As A. J. is fond of saying of the new space, "It is so big city…and I am just where I want to be." You won't spot A. J. in these photos either, she would have none of posing for the camera. "It's not about me," she said, "it's about the merchandise."
Having been in business for more than 23 years, A. J. knew exactly the look she was after in her new space. Her merchandise is organized and displayed in vignettes, which serve to divide the large space into a series of small rooms. Three photographs of The Pulitzer Foundation for the Arts, shown propped on the east window above, are by Webster Groves native Bill Mund, $500. A photograph by Kirkwood native Ray Meibaum hangs on the wall beneath, $425. A pair of contemporary candlesticks, $80 for the pair, sits on a vintage red lacquer low console, $1200.
Shown in the foreground, a tooled leather-top mahogany game table made in New York is $750. Resting on the table are crystal-handled contemporary salad servers, $45, a dresser tray, $28, and a vintage red hat, $20. Also shown on the table are an example of Brewington's cut-crystal candlesticks, $25 to $95. On the table to the left there are two examples of 19th century Japanese Blue and White pottery, and three bright blue African woven and beaded baskets, $45. A. J. loves to mix elegant to eccentric, antique to modern.
This Friday night there is a dual-purpose opening at Brewington's. A. J. has represented artist Jim Pegg for years, and this Friday's event is her first large-scale exhibition of his work. Pegg's nude, "By the Light of the Silvery Moon," peeks out from behind the column above, $2,000. Friday also marks A. J.'s 23rd year in business, so it's an anniversary celebration as well.
A. J. has traveled as far as Southeast Asia, and all around the U. S. on buying trips. She has also purchased items from St. Louis estates. The fine antique Japanese cloisonne vases shown in the cabinet above came from a local collector. The antique ivory necklace and link bracelet from the 30's and 40's are $245 each; the opal and amethyst necklace, right, from the 20's or 30's is $145.
Two more examples of Jim Pegg's paintings hang to the left of the display case above. A. J. has a wonderful collection of vintage glass, including two colorful Italian pieces and a Rosenthal vase, top shelf left. The middle shelf holds a Steuben bowl, a Waterford powder box, and an antique painting in gold leaf frame.
As A. J. says about herself on the invitation for Friday night's opening , "still crazy after all these years." Come see for yourself on Friday between 6 & 9 p.m. If you can't make the event this weekend, stop by Tuesdays through Saturdays from 10:30 to 6. There is lots to see and you'll have a great time.
Brewington Art & Interiors, 4814 Washington Ave., Suite 230, (314) 361-5373, firstname.lastname@example.org.