Saturday, October 10, 2009

Your World... And Welcome to It: A Rogue's Gallery of Interior Design by Patrick Mauries

Fashion designer Christian Lacroix has done the illustrations for this cheeky satire of home decor from the 60s through the 80s. Mauries' witty essays on styles like Disco Deco, Lofty Aspirations, Minimalism to the Max and Shabby Chic don't appear to have lost much in their translation from French to English.

Regarding the Shaker esthetic: "Everything the average home of today needs - spinning wheels, wooden brooms, farm tools - were suddenly transformed into works of art by the Good Fairy of Utility, who works only in cherrywood or pear." I googled unfamiliar names as I came across them. For example, in Sure-Fire Chic, ("They limit their palette to a range that can't miss: gray, beige, gray-beige, white, and the mother of all colors - black") Eileen Gray rugs and Reitveld chairs were mentioned. I image googled and discovered that I recognized their work, only not by name. So, between the entertaining words and whimsical drawings and the impromptu bit of design education via the internet that it spawned, I had a great time with this book.

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