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Mario Buatta: Fifty Years of American Interior Decoration Hardcover – October 8, 2013
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“It seems preposterous that no book had ever been published about Mario Buatta…finally there’s a generous volume covering his career, which brought to prominence in the U.S the English country-house style, buoyed by his daring but unerring sense of color. After more than 400 pages, it seems greedy to want more…this is an essential addition to interior design literature. Worth waiting for.” ~Interior Design Magazine
“Buatta’s magnificent monograph celebrates over fifty years of design and decoration by one of American’s preeminent decorators—the history, influences, and of course the brilliant body of work, all sumptuously illustrated and photographed. Needless to say, there are a great many lessons to be learned and endless inspiration to be had here—it’s a true masterclass in interior design.” –Whatisjameswearing.com
“Never short on floral chintz, cheerful colors, and a sophisticated air, the views of Buatta’s extraordinary body of work make this tome a must-have." ~Traditional Home
“Finally, after a half-century of designing and reinventing the English country house for stateside clients...Mario Buatta showcases city and country residences…along with dazzling insidery details of a dapper and witty life.” ~Paper City
“This biography of an important American interior designer is recommended for those interested in late 20th- early 21st century interiors.” ~Library Journal
“When you get your copy of the book, you must read Mario’s introduction. It is laugh-out-loud funny and off the wall, too. All in all, this is a book that you’ll thoroughly enjoy. You’ll also be glad that you added this soon-to-be classic to your design library.” ~Peak of Chic
"...a must for serious design libraries..." -Washington Post
“The one and only. The first-ever compilation of interior design legend Mario Buatta’s work surveys 50 years of his singular exuberance.” ~Architectural Digest
“Buatta tells his story in his singular, hilarious, deeply informed way. Don’t miss it.” ~New York Spaces
"A book-A treasure-make that a treasury of Mr Buatta's Wonderful World of Rooms...It's biblical in proportions and oh so wise in words...should be placed atop your book stack-never another to be placed above it...What a divine book to have...It's big-it's bold-it's beautiful." -Little Augury
"...full of funny anectodes, personal snapshots, and, of course, the lavish rooms he has decorated throughout his career....he holds nothing back..." -Quest
About the Author
Mario Buatta is an internationally acclaimed interior designer known for his English Country House style. He has brought the refinement, comfort, and beauty of his designs to a long list of clients from the worlds of entertainment, business, fashion, and high society. Emily Evans Eerdmans received her master’s degree in fine and decorative arts from Sotheby’s Institute of Art in London and is a leading authority on antique furniture and interior design. She has authored The World of Madeleine Castaing and Regency Redux. Paige Rense is the editor emeritus of Architectural Digest, where she served as editor in chief from 1975 to 2010.
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Along with his humor and quips - this is the first design book I've seen which includes cartoons - Buatta describes his approach to designing a room: "I have a painterly way of decorating. Composing a room is like taking a canvas and putting color on a little bit at a time...It should be like a garden where things are growing at all different heights."
He continues, "As soon as I enter a room, I immediately see how the furniture should be arranged - it's the sort of thing that becomes second nature with experience....Arrange your furniture in groupings - think of it as if the pieces were, in a sense, talking to each other."
Following Buatta's colorful reminiscences, and thoughts on design, are pages of his iconic rooms from his over 50-year design career with brief descriptions of materials used or his design process. The rooms are colorfully vibrant. (In some photos the color seems off a tad.) Buatta has certainly decorated some of the prettiest rooms ever decorated. Some rooms you will have seen before in magazines, but there were a few I didn't recall. One I loved seeing - which was worth buying the the book for alone - is a room with a blue and white Matisse cotton print from Hinson upholstering the walls, a banquette and folding screen with red painted chairs and colorful art. Wow! If you want a collection Buatta's work organized under one cover, it's here for safe-keeping and to peruse for inspiration at your leisure.
Following the photos of Buatta's rooms is author Emily Evans Eerdmans' take on Buatta's design life and anecdotes which Buatta didn't include, as well as more photos of Buatta's rooms. Eerdmans' account is a lively read. There are personal photos throughout the book. This book truly captures the author's irreverent personality - it's clear that no one can be too staid and stuffy around Buatta while he is decorating. This is fascinating design history which will only increase in interest and value to design historians. True design aficionados will want to have this book in their design library. This book is as entertaining, personable and effervescent as Buatta himself.
While reading I was enchanted by the wit of Mario as he describes his career throughout the years. He has a sense of humor that is as delightful as his flower strewn rooms.
I was shocked by the disparaging comments on the photography. I treasure this book and I have a virtual library of interior design books but by far this one will stand out as the best! Most of the photos are clear and as bright as fresh cut daisies. Mario's book reminds me of a field of fresh flowers blooming in the homes of the people privileged and lucky enough to have him transform their spaces.
The huge tome has a gorgeous photo on the front which eliminates the need for a cover that will tear with time. Their is a bright yellow ribbon bookmark that is as pretty as it is helpful. All in all I rate this book five stars and recommend it to all the readers who admire Mario's work and anyone interested in English design. You will not be disappointed. You will feel uplifted with every page as I did. Louise Glass
The first part of the book is great, the only thing not good is some of the fabrics are dated but the decoration is still as wonderful as when it was first published. For me, this book is a Buatta collectors item. A must have. I wish all my favorite designers would do books with their best work for us lovers of interior design and decoration... Dan Carrithers is one that comes to mind...
Thank you Mr Buatta. Well done.