Roy Steinberg’s “Happy Place” celebrates art, culture

{child_byline}FLYNN ALTOMARE

For the Press


”My Happy Place” is a weekly Press series in which local notables take us on a tour of a favorite spot in their home.

CAPE MAY — Roy Steinberg, the producing artistic director of the Cape May Stage, is no stranger to the arts.

Steinberg’s “happy places” are his living room and a library, and they are filled with paintings, books, scripts, sculptures and other various kinds of artwork and literature. Each piece, according to Steinberg, holds sentimental value.

“Every piece reminds us of a trip we took, or the person who sold it to us, or the artist who created it,” Steinberg said.

One example is a book signed and inscribed by David Remnick, the editor of The New Yorker. Another is a set of paintings by W. Lester Stevens that originally belonged to Steinberg’s parents.

A framed poster from the Museum of Modern Art in New York depicting patrons walking up and down the stairs hangs next to the front door and represents a visual joke from Steinberg’s previous home in Los Angeles. The piece hangs at the foot of a large staircase and makes “it look like you were walking directly into the poster,” Steinberg said.

He and his wife, Marlena Lustik, love being surrounded by art and culture in their home, as both of their long and successful careers have been tied to the arts. Steinberg feels his happy place perfectly represents his and Lustik’s interests and passions.

Steinberg and Lustik have lived in Cape May for 10 years but only moved into their current home this past December.

Their first home came already furnished, which was difficult for the couple because they felt they couldn’t personalize it the way they would have liked to.

“It’s hard to live in a place without your stuff,” Steinberg said, explaining that most of their collection had to stay in a storage unit in Los Angeles.

When Steinberg and Lustik first moved in to their current Cape May home, the rooms were completely empty, which gave them the artistic freedom to decorate how they saw fit.

“It was a blank canvas,” Steinberg said.

Originally, Steinberg and Lustik were not sure how long they were going to stay in Cape May, but they fell in love with the city.

When they aren’t in their living room and library, Steinberg and Lustik enjoy spending time in their dining room, which features a fantastic view of the Delaware Bay.

They said the dining room, “sometimes feels like an air traffic control tower for all the birds that fly by.”

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