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Collector Profile - Joe+ Sapna Dangaran

Collector Profile - Joe+ Sapna Dangaran

Collector Profile - Joe+ Sapna Dangaran

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Collector Profile

Joe + Sapna Dangaran

Joe and Sapna Dangaran have created a beautiful modern home to house their small family and heartfelt art collection. Joe is a partner at Woods + Dangaran, an architecture firm we’ve previously featured when Cheryl Humphreys created nature-inspired custom works for their West Coast office. Both Joe and Sapna previously sat on the Director’s Council at MOCA, and their love for supporting local artists and galleries has expanded since falling in love with the first piece they bought together at the LA Art Fair. Explore their collection, featuring work by Marleigh Culver, Brian Merriam, Isaac Zoller, Nevia Pavletic and more.

 

Q.

Tell us a bit about your architectural firm Woods + Dangaran?

A.

Joe: Our specialty is in high-end, residential with an expertise in the difficult hillsides of Southern California. We have a great team in the studio working on some exciting new projects. We are actively pursuing more public facing work, such as galleries and museums. Prior to founding Woods + Dangaran, along with partner Brett Woods, I worked as a project manager at Marmol-Radziner.

Q.

Where do you draw inspiration from?

A.

Sapna: These days there is only one answer - our son, Arjun, who is eighteen months old. Seeing the world through the eyes of a toddler is a refreshing reminder of how beauty, joy and fun can be found anywhere. He reminds us each day to keep our hearts and minds open. We are avid readers and love looking through arts and architecture books when time allows.
Joe: Sapna has a growing collection of artist and museum catalogues, while I pick up any architecture book I can find.

Joe + Sapna Dangaran say

“We have been told many times that to be a true collector you need to consider more than just the feeling a piece gives you, which is true, but without that feeling, what is the point? We truly love all the works we have collected - most tell a story about a moment in time, either about why the piece was created or why we bought it.”

Joe + Sapna Dangaran and their family

Q.

How would you describe your personal art collecting style?

A.

Sapna: Emotional. We have been told many times that to be a true collector you need to consider more than just the feeling a piece gives you, which is true, but without that feeling, what is the point? We truly love all the works we have collected - most tell a story about a moment in time, either about why the piece was created or why we bought it.

Q.

What was the first piece you fell in love with?

A.

Joe: Early in our relationship, we attended the LA Art Fair together. We were casually browsing when we were both struck by a print by a Japanese artist that was titled "Four Seasons". It depicted four kimonos hanging on a clothesline representing the seasons. We had absolutely no intention of buying anything, and honestly were in no position to make a financial investment like that, so we talked ourselves out of it and walked away; but a few hours later, we ended up back at the booth buying our first piece...together! It was a pivotal moment for us on so many levels and makes the piece mean even more to our family. And now, each morning Arjun passes the painting in the hallway and points to different aspects as his vocabulary grows.

Q.

What are some of the most sentimental or meaningful pieces in your collection?

A.

Sapna: As a wedding present, I bought Joe a painting from a gallery in Santa Fe while on my bachelorette party. I passed by a gallery with this piece in the window - it was a piece by a Native American artist whose signature style included collaging old documents and then painting over them. This piece in particular had a painting of a couple getting married, and it was painted on a Marriage Certificate from the 1800's. It was a sign, and the painting now hangs in our dining room.

Nevia Pavletic
Oblivion, limited edition print by Nevia Pavletic

Q.

For new collectors, do you have any advice you wish to impart?

A.

Joe: Don't be afraid to ask questions! It sounds simple, but the idea of investing or acquiring original works was very intimidating at first (and still is!). We were lucky enough to be invited to join the Director's Council for MOCA a few years ago. Through that we were able to visit artists studios and talk to seasoned collectors, and from that experience we have since shamelessly asked to meet artists whose work we are interested in or better yet, visit their studios! Los Angeles is saturated with incredible artists who are so generous with their time, work and vision. It’s something we wish we had known to ask for sooner!

Q.

Who are some of your all-time favorite artists and designers?

A.

Sapna: My favorites include Basquiat, Frida Khalo and Degas, while Joe loves anything by Rothko and the impressionists. In terms of architects and designers, Joe is heavily influenced by minimalist John Pawson and historical work such as traditional Japanese gardens in Kyoto such as the Katsura Imperial Villa.

Q.

Favorite museum or creative space for inspiration?

A.

Sapna: The Huntington Gardens and LACMA are our favorite places to go in Los Angeles. Prior to COVID-19, we took a trip to Paris to show our son the museums and culture. We loved walking through the Rodin Museum, Musee d’Orsay, l’Orangerie and strolling down the boulevards. We take inspiration from the built world as much as the art world.


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