KGBL is the product of a vision it's three founding members had back in 2008 to design and produce a line of uncompromising, unapologetically modern furniture: a line of furniture dedicated to the design professional, furniture aficionado and anyone else who simply searches for what is best. They would only produce pieces that incorporated unique materials and gave voice to ideas they did not see in other furniture. The credo was and remains: unless it brings something new to the bigger design conversation, it is not worthy of the collection.
David Khouri and Roberto Guzman met at Columbia University as graduate students. They formed Comma, a furniture and design firm, in 1998. Later, they shared a Soho office with fellow designer, Christiaan Bunce, who also built much of the custom furniture designed for projects. It was then that the partners decided to form Khouri Guzman Bunce Limited (later KGBL) and acquired gallery space in West Chelsea’s art district, on what would later become a High Line block, as well as a workshop in Brooklyn. In 2017 KGBL moved to the top floor of The New York Design Center, the industry’s premier resource for fine furnishings, located at 200 Lexington Avenue.
KGBL opened its doors in 2009, at possibly the worst moment in the last 75 years to undertake such an ambitious project. Such was the faith in their vision that they looked past the pervasive uncertainty that characterized the time and produced their first collection of fourteen pieces. Since then, the line has steadily grown, with the regular introduction of new designs, each of which is rigorously vetted to ensure that it adheres to the founding concept. At the same time, KGBL has grown to include representation in five cities across North America: soon to be more.
David Khouri is a native Californian who was born and raised on the San Joaquin Valley family farm first worked by his great grandfather. He earned a Bachelor's degree in English from The University of California, Santa Barbara. Khouri also holds a Master of Architecture degree as well as a Master of Science degree in Historic Preservation, both from Columbia University.
Roberto Guzman is also a native Californian who grew up in the unique culture of East L.A. He holds a Bachelor's degree from Columbia College, Columbia University. Guzman continued his studies at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation where he earned a Master's degree. He has worked for several of the leading architectural firms in New York.
Christiaan Bunce spent his childhood moving around the Midwest. He gained a Master of Fine Arts degree from the University of Washington and attended the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture. He then opened his own firm, Christiaan Bunce Design, while teaching sculpture and furniture design at the Pratt Institute.