Go Local: 12 to Watch in 2012

view the write-up GoLocal.com

Anyone who has dined in downtown Providence lately may have noted an assured, sophisticated look in several local restaurants. It’s in these places that diners might find themselves saying, “this looks more like an LA restaurant, or one in Chelsea.” And they’d be right, but the designer is right here in Rhode Island. It’s Libby Slader.

Slader has made a visible splash since returning to her native Rhode Island in 2000 after working and living in Boston, Los Angeles, and New York. The recent redesign of the popular Tazza Cafe bears her signature smooth lines and sense of hipness, as does Sura, the Korean eatery on Westminster that glows with modern warmth.

But restaurants are not all Slader can do: she snagged the prestigious nod to design the new interiors for 38 Studios, the high-profile video game company that opened in Providence in the spring of this year. Slader is no stranger to visual clients: she was the Manager of Design at Sony Pictures Entertainment in Culver City, CA.

This eclectic talent has also had a hand in some of Rhode Island’s adaptive reuse projects. While at Morris Nathanson studios in Pawtucket before striking out on her own, Slader worked on the award-winning adaptive refuse of Royal Mills in West Warwick, as well as Rising Sun Mills and Bourne Mills, both in Providence.

A member of the RISD community as an instructor in the Continuing Education department and a member of the board of Rhode Island Citizens for the Arts, this designer is poised for an even higher profile in 2012.