Finn I certainly respect your opinion, but to me that place looks like they bought the entire thing out of a catalog in an afternoon with their decorator. IMO a good mix of contemporary and modern should involve some antiques and pieces from a multitude of sub categories of modern.
ETF, I love 18c stuff, but it's an impossible target to hit in America unless you are fully capable of spending a fortune at Christies and Sotheby's. Quite literally you have a better chance at furnishing your house in Ruhlmann and spending less than you would furnishing it in 18c. In fact you probably could arrive at auction with money to spend and still spend a great deal of time curating furnishings for an 18c house. Not to mention finding the rare and obscure person who can actually restore 18c furniture and do so correctly.
18c Interiors, In America, were sparse to begin with because everything was made by cabinet shops and chair makers, so at the time the equivalent would be like attempting to furnish your place in Nakashima in his mid career. Yes, it was doable for some, but most would end up with just the major pieces. Considering how much is left on the market after 250~ years and you are left with a very small pool to draw from.
Then we have 19c, which while there are some fantastic makers of the period making 18c period works, the great majority was schlock and being pumped out by factories to fill victorian houses in which the owners were looking to display wealth by way of excess. Victorians, while I do enjoy them, were the McMansions of their day. Craftsman is the stand out from that period, certainly out of favor at the moment in design magazines, and probably much to the satisfaction of those who collect it.
There is a ton of great contemporary work; Jasper Morrison, Thomas Bo Kastholm, Tadao Ando, Luciano Bertoncini, Craig Bassam, Alfred Homann, ect.
Edited by SkinnyGoomba - 10/31/14 at 7:29am