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Art and Architecture: The Versatile World of Brixels™

October 19, 2018

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Bricks + Pixels = colorful contemporary building blocks
Bricks + Pixels = contemporary building blocks for luxury home facades and interior design 

My prediction: Interior design, art, and architecture in 21st-century luxury homes are about to experience a radical yet practical new trend. Use of an exotic paint color, perhaps? Space rocks replacing earthly stone? Nothing so mundane. Consider Brixels: the new construction elements combining bricks and pixels. In a nutshell, these new objects are vaguely brick-like and controlled via software.

Imagine adding these freely rotating, variable-sized “bricks” controlled by proprietary software into any building project. Besides moving, each Brixel is outfitted with LED lights that illuminate the bottom of the brick. According to the company that created them, BREAKFAST, Brixels can act as pixels in large-scale and customizable artworks, building facades, and an infinite range of other applications. 

Since the early days of art and architecture, bricks have been used as major building blocks for homes, interior facades, and art installations. These new sleek brick-like designs come in a variety of shapes, providing designers or architects with the necessary tools needed to create a 3-dimensional, interactive installation. These amazing pieces can be placed almost anywhere because Brixels’ flexible design allows it to be used in many applications. Think dynamic wall installations, railings, facades, outdoor sculpture and more. 

“We saw an opportunity to blur the lines between what is deemed ‘art,’ ‘infrastructure,’ and a ‘digital display,’” explains Andrew Zolty, BREAKFAST's Co-Founder and Head of Design as he described Brixel. “We sought to develop a new medium that would allow us to create a variety of captivating installations that are, at first, perceived as art, and second, deliver relevant information and unique experiences.”

Just about every aspect of the Brixels can be customized: from their orientation and movement to their size, shape, material, and color. That means these rotating, spinning or undulating bricks can be tailored to enhance the vision of the architect, interior designer, or Montecito luxury homeowner for both the interior and the exterior of any building on their property. The central staff that supports every Brixel design allows the entire wall, or each element within it, to move freely without any visible wires or mechanical components.

BREAKFAST has created a series of experimental Brixel installations. So far, the company has piqued the interest of a number of prestigious organizations, including the Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Museum. But the interest won’t stop there. Experts see lots of uses for the Brixel in today’s smart world. And I say they’re the perfect addition to any Montecito home.

the brixel mirror

Take the Brixel Mirror, for example. This 19-foot wide, 540 Brixel installation senses your presence when you stand in front of it, then gives you a one-to-one reflection when it rotates, matching your silhouette and moving with you. When you move away from the installation, the Brixels will rotate, using kinetic energy, to reveal letters via positive and negative colors and space.

Imagine a giant brixel moving sculpture in your Spectacular Ocean View Estate

BREAKFAST is a studio of multidisciplinary designers and engineers who conceive, design, and fabricate high-tech contemporary art installations and sculptures. The company creates one-of-a-kind custom pieces for each client, to be installed anywhere, even Montecito homes or backyards.

Imagine a giant moving sculpture in your Spectacular Ocean View Estate. Since this property combines elements of Modernism, Post-modernism, Neo-classicism and Art Deco, a Brixel installation that plays off its existing architecture and breathtaking views would be amazing.

brixels at this world class toro estate?

Consider adding these contemporary building bricks to the World-Class Toro Canyon Estate I have listed on my comprehensive website. This stunning example of Modernism is the perfect setting for smart art installations. The home already features interesting expanses of retractable and Vitrosca Invisible Wall glass that focus attention on the surrounding natural spectacle. The dramatic walls of glass along with walnut floors and cabinetry and freestanding walls of precisely cut native sandstone deliver instant notice that this is a very special home. Imagine how special after you add Brixels.


the 4.5 acre Palmyra estate

Or ponder what you could do with Brixels in the very private, 4.5 acre Palmyra estate. Featuring grounds as magnificent as its structures, adding a Brixel installation at Palmyra makes sense. Your Brixel installation could be designed to fit amidst the rolling lawns, impeccably-trimmed privets, tropical and native flora, citrus trees, flower gardens, lagoon, pergolas, and fountains of this one-of-a-kind Mediterranean home.

You could even build an entire wall out of Brixels should you decide to purchase this spectacular Montecito ocean view property. This estate is among the very few buildable multi-acre parcels of land available above Montecito. With nearly 3-acres, it offers ocean views, which presents a significant opportunity and a perfect setting for Brixels. Enhance the unsurpassed

SB property for sale

panoramic views of the Montecito Plain, Pacific Ocean, and the Channel Islands. Needless to say, sunrises and sunsets from here are divine.

Inspired by the idea of adding Brixels, the new building materials to the art and architecture of your home? Considering a move? If so, let’s discuss how renovations can increase your overall return on investment in your current home, and how they might increase your enjoyment of your new one. So, if you haven’t already done so, check out the buyers and sellers sections of my website, then give me a call at +1 805.886.9378 or email me at We can discuss how you can become the first on your block to embrace Brixels.


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“It was an emotional experience selling our mother’s home in Montecito that we all loved so much but Cristal made the process easier on our whole family by guiding us through the transaction every step of the way. She knows the market so well and everything she recommended was on point including the asking price, painting, and staging the home, which looked beautiful and helped the buyer envision her new home. We sold it the first day it hit the market with an offer above asking! Cristal did an incredible job communicating with us and the buyer to ensure that the transaction would run smoothly. We highly recommend using Cristal, she was a pleasure to work with! ”

- J & A

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- M.F.

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- P.B.

“We have used Cristal now several times and cannot express how grateful we are for her expertise, dedication, and unwavering support throughout the entire home-buying process. Cristal is knowledgeable, patient and attentive. Her attention to detail is remarkable, and she consistently went above and beyond to provide us with all the information and resources we needed to make informed decisions. Cristal is a skillful negotiator and advocate. She can navigate complex negotiations with professionalism and grace and felt like a true partner to us in the home-buying process. Cristal has a genuine passion for real estate and a deep commitment to her clients' satisfaction. I cannot speak highly enough of Cristal and her exceptional service. She is a true expert in her field and her dedication to excellence, combined with unwavering support is the reason we choose to work with her for all our real estate buying needs.”

- T.C.

“Cristal is a top-notch realtor who sold my home before it ever went on the market. I had two competing offers that enabled me to get top dollar for my home. Not only is Cristal superb but her team is extraordinary. I cannot say enough about Cristal and her team. They are simply phenomenal, the consummate professionals, who took care of every possible detail, making the sale and transition period, smooth from our end. They are also lovely, caring people, who knew all the right professionals, to get the job done. Thank you, everyone!”

- D.R.

“I could list lots of cool adjectives to describe Cristal. All good by the way. But, that is not why I or anyone should hire Cristal. My reason for hiring her, which proved to be correct, is very simple. She got the job done. And, she does it time and time again and with zero issues. And, that is why she is one of the top agents in the country. End of subject. ”

- M.A.

“Working with Cristal was a complete pleasure. Cristal was extremely patient with us as we evaluated nearly 2 dozen homes over a span of 2 years. Her knowledge of the market is unmatched. Cristal provided us with exceptional counsel as we evaluated opportunities and negotiated pricing. The closing process was handled thoroughly and efficiently. We could not be happier with our purchase and even more happy to now call Cristal our friend.”

- D.K.

“Cristal Clarke has conducted numerous real estate transactions for me beginning 13 years ago with the purchase of a Lemon Ranch. She has handled both large and small purchases and sales with equal dedication. As a negotiator, you can’t find anyone better. Her transactions are always conducted in the most appropriate and professional manner. Cristal has considerable knowledge of the Santa Barbara market.”

- S.N. Decker Ph.D.

“Living in Europe, we were to say the least, unaccustomed to the nuances of Real Estate acquisition in California and Cristal steered us through the process with absolute professionalism and personal attention to detail at every turn. Her in-depth knowledge of the market place combined with enthusiasm and drive was the only reason we secured the property of our dreams and will be forever grateful. If you are looking for personal discrete and private representation of the highest quality we suggest you look no further than Cristal Clarke.”

- Johan and Paula van den Berg

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- John and Lacey Williams

“After considering our many choices, we are grateful it was Cristal Clarke of Sotheby’s International who represented the sale of our Montecito cottage. We are familiar with Cristal’s reputation of hard work and dedication to clients, but it was her attention to detail that made our experience so positive. She offered suggestions for staging the property, worked in harmony with potential buyers and was even able to secure back up offers. The sale of our cottage was completed much sooner than we expected, due in great part to Cristal’s professional skills and support. We highly recommend Cristal as a first choice for anyone needing representation with real estate.”

- Michael & Nancy Lee

“Our experience in working with Cristal Clarke resulted in the successful and discrete acquisition of a property which was not yet on the open market. Her knowledge of the Montecito/Santa Barbara area and vast expertise blended with her passion for real estate and architecture, provided us with the very highest level of professionalism and personalized services. Cristal exhibited a rare combination of excellent communications, attention to detail, creativity and patience.”

- Richard and Catherine Frinier

“Cristal really breaks the mold. She knows every nook and cranny of this real estate market, understands value, and follows up on everything, all the time. She was incredibly patient with our two year quest to find the perfect house. Every house hunting trip from across the country was well planned, and our time was never wasted. On top of her professionalism and expertise, she is delightful to spend time with. We are thrilled with the home we purchased, and grateful to Cristal for so wisely advising us through this process, right through to the close and beyond.”

- Laurie Siegel

“We met Cristal first in the course of renting a winter home (for three years), then buying a house using her as our agent. She was amazingly good at listening to our wants and showing us homes that fit our needs. Her mastery of the paperwork was perfect. Most importantly, there was never a situation where we doubted her straightforwardness or integrity. If we do another real estate transaction in Montecito (which I doubt, we’re happy with what we purchased), without question we’d use Cristal again.”

- Ken Saffir

“Susan and I just want to thank you for your efforts in the sale of our home. You are really quite amazing. Your competence, persistence, optimism and humor made the entire process effortless. Every problem that arose, you somehow fixed; any obstacle, you overcame. We have bought and sold many homes. It has never been such a painless and enjoyable process!”

- Michael & Susan Marquart

“A little something about “our” realtor, Cristal Clarke. My wife and I came to Santa Barbara about fifteen years ago looking for a seasonal home from which to enjoy the weather and amenities of the central coast. Being in the real estate business myself I was familiar with agents and brokers so entered the market with open eyes. We “flipped” a few houses in the early years, dealing with various agents and finally ended up in Montecito. That’s when good fortune put us together with Cristal. To say we were impressed is to put it mildly. Cristal really knows the market. She is familiar with the area, its history and trends. When we have questions about a particular property she either has the answers immediately or gets back to us by phone or email. There is no waiting or wondering with Cristal. She is an agent who is “on top of it.” Her recommendations as to price points, contractors, inspectors and title agents have proven to be exceptional, showing great insight and the highest professional standards. We consider ourselves exceedingly fortunate to say that Cristal Clarke is our realtor and would recommend her services to any serious buyer or seller.”

- Rob & Judi Kelch