This is Maximilian Sinsteden's dorm room at Drew University in Madison, NJ.
Young Max is a 21-year-old senior with enough connections to get a spread in New York magazine and I can't fault him for his pluck. His aesthetic sensibilities on the other hand leave me cold. I call it affected clutter.
I can't tell if the affectation is coming from young Max or from the breathless commentary provided by New York magazine. You tell me.
The standing lamp is Ikea. The wall is covered with artwork by him and his friends; paintings and documents from Jaipur and Bombay; a model from Charlotte Moss; and pieces collected from “tag sales, thrift and consignment stores.”
It's the "paintings and documents from Jaipur and Bombay" that about push me to the edge. Certainly, there's nothing wrong with Indian cities, even if the people of Bombay call it Mumbai now. A little colonialism never hurt anybody, right?
The tie-backs are repurposed ascots.
That's all the photo caption says. Really. Repurposed ascots. No one other than Sebastian Flyte from Brideshead Revisited has ascots lying around and waiting to be repurposed. Argh.
He keeps the bathroom caddy affixed to the mirror with suction cups.
So clever that Max.
The tie rack is by Sinsteden’s father, with finials from P.E. Guerin. The chest of drawers is an $80 thrift-store find.
Good Lord, it looks like a Polo store display. There was a time when stores and hotels tried to recreate a homey atmosphere. Now, so thoroughly has the idea of merchandising penetrated our culture that people try to recreate stores and hotels in their homes. I guess the goal is to make their private space more what? Commercial? I don't get it.
So am I just a bitter, soon-to-be 44-year-old man? Is there something admirable about this kid's dorm room I'm missing?