Mario Buatta: American Vision of English Country House Style
Mario Buatta, hailed as the “Prince of Chintz” due to his fondness for the cheerful flowered fabrics, was one of America’s most famous interior designers renowned for his version of the English country house look. Architectural Digest—who named him one of their AD100—noted that Buatta’s rooms were American in “their sense of gusto and color, but utterly English in their comfort, layering, and love of history.”
Design historian and author Emily Eerdmans will speak about Buatta’s life and explore how he adapted the English style for his American clients. Eerdmans will share illustrations from Buatta’s never-before-seen archives which also formed the basis of her new book Mario Buatta: Anatomy of a Decorator (Rizzoli 2023). While Buatta’s interiors reflected his admiration for the style ‘across-the-pond’, Eerdmans will also explain how Buatta’s personality, his generosity and humor, combined with the whimsy and exuberance of his work, reflected an American optimism entirely his own. A Royal Oak member, Buatta was the 2005 recipient of the Timeless Design Award from The Royal Oak Foundation.
Emily Eerdmans, Design Historian and Author
Emily Eerdmans is a design historian, author and principal of Eerdmans Fine Art gallery and advisory in NYC. Eerdmans received her master’s degree in fine and decorative arts from Sotheby’s Institute of Art in London and has taught connoisseurship and design history at the Fashion Institute of Technology and the New York School of Interior Design. She first pursued her passion for antique furniture while working for various antiques galleries in New York.
She is the author of a long list books on the history of design as well as many articles in scholarly and national publications including the Furniture History Journal and Connoisseur’s Quarterly. Her previous books include Classic English Design; Antiques and Regency Redux (2008); The World of Madeleine Castaing (2010); Henri Samuel: Master of the French Interior (2018). She was a friend and worked with Mario Buatta for many years. They co-authored his biography Mario Buatta: 50 Years of American Interior Decoration in 2013. After the designer’s death, Eerdmans was hired to catalogue his antiques and belongings, resulting in a $7.6 million two-day sale at Sotheby’s, New York in 2020. Her just published new book is, Mario Buatta: Anatomy of a Decorator (Rizzoli 2023).