INTERIORS IN COLOR8

The Colorful Vintage Design Book We Return to Again and Again for Inspiration

We know objectively that the start of the year is generally a time of renewal and a time to birth new projects. But to be honest, this is often the time of year when we feel most low and uninspired, which may be why we often turn to books in our own libraries for energy. I often come back to Interiors in Color, a 1983 book translated from Italian that features interiors by many of that era’s best-known players: a round dwelling by Mario Botta near Lugano, Switzerland; a portico furnished in all white by Aldo Rossi in Milan; the Paris home of Richard Rogers. The fun thing for me is to see how my taste has changed from year to year; when I first acquired the book, I would have been so into the sky-blue joists and candy-pink doorframes of Jean Satosme’s Paris print shop–turned–loft; now I’m drawn more to the subdued all-wood furniture that lines a greenhouse near Venice. (Architect Tom Grondona’s home, which features a cobalt blue kitchen and a spaghetti-like sculpture called “Your Basic Italian Landscape,” is forever.) This time, though, I was most struck by the thesis of the book, which seems as apt now as it was 40 years ago when the book was published: “To furnish and decorate one’s own home with furniture and other objects, and to paint these as well as the walls, doors and windows, is both a private act and an act of communication. The way one lives at home is a language one uses to express one’s feelings, convey memories and nostalgia, and visibly state one’s longings.”

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