Robert Mahar is living the dream. After leaving leaving the world of art appraisal he launched a successful career designing crafts – winning praise from around the web and earning the title, 2016 Academy of Handmade Master Maker.
Robert makes, teaches, and maintains the incredible YouTube channel, Crafted with Robert. The epicenter of all of this creativity is the studio space he shares with a fellow maker at Meng and Mahar.
Meng and Mahar is housed in the Spring Arts Tower, a renovated bank that now boasts 12 stories of creative businesses. He and mixed-media artist, Molly Meng split the 325 square foot space located in the heart of downtown Los Angeles’ Historic Core.
While we were there he gave us the grand tour. He let us in on where he finds inspiration and showed off some of his beloved antique treasures.
You can’t miss the overflowing bulletin board above Robert’s desk. It is abundant with objects that capture the eye and the imagination.
Robert sees it like this, “When I’m stuck on a project and I’m not quite sure what to do with myself I end up staring at that board and a lot of times it gives me some visual clues about the direction I should go next.”
When you visit Meng and Mahar you are surrounded by little objets d’art salvaged from another era. Both Robert and Molly incorporate antique elements into their work and their love for antique treasures is on full display in their shared work space.
One of Robert’s collections comes from a bakery that operated in the 1930’s. The shop had long since shuttered when Robert acquired antique children’s cake toppers he draws inspiration from today.
“I have a particular affinity for vintage schoolhouse ephemera from the 30s, 40s, and 50s. I love the color palette and aesthetic from that era.”
“We’ve been in this studio space for about a year now and I have to tell you, it’s an unbelievable luxury.”
Before Robert and Molly signed a lease on their Spring Arts Tower space, Robert worked from home. The switch to the studio has been a welcome change, “it’s so nice to separate my home life from my work life!”
For a guided tour from Robert himself, check out the video below: