Heartwood was created in collaboration with Humberto Leon of Opening Ceremony to celebrate the launch of Chifa, a new Los Angeles restaurant conceived in partnership with his mother Wendy “Popo” Leon, sister Ricardina Leon, and brother in-law John Liu. Chifa continues the legacy of their family restaurant in Lima, Peru. A custom installation from Heartwood compliments the new restaurant’s design-centric dining room, creating a visually striking and immersive experience.
Drawing inspiration from the distinctive patterns of wood grain, Leon collaborated with Calico Wallpaper to craft a custom mural that blends the organic lines of wood’s natural grain with an exaggerated graphic pattern. Together we then further amplified the pattern’s contrasting elements by juxtaposing glistening blacks with matte sumi ink-based hues. The result is a textural interplay of iridescent highlights and warm underlying tones that combines the novelty and frisson of contemporary design with the nostalgic comforts of home.
Heartwood gets its name from a tree’s central core, the strongest part of the wood, and the focal point of the concentric circles that expand outward as the tree grows. It is thematically rooted in the resilience of our connections to home and family, which hold strong even across continents. Heartwood’s continuous pattern offers an expression of infinite love that transcends place and time.
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Photography by Matthew Johnson