04 March 2009
When I started paying close attention to interior design, I was drawn to the work of Michael Taylor. With the forthcoming book MICHAEL TAYLOR- INTERIOR DESIGN (more images at 1st dibs-in "required reading",) by Stephen M. Salny -here are the rooms I pulled from pages of his many House and Garden features. Taylor was featured on the cover fifteen times.
According to Dorothea Walker writer of one of these many features, her's called "Taylor Made", Cecil Beaton once asked her "How is the best decorator in the United States doing?" After she guessed several premiere designers, Beaton said "No, no. Michael Taylor. He's the innovative one. An original."
I know this book will cover all of Taylor's revolutionary design work and I can not wait to get my copy. I will still hang on to these pages- for me they distill the brilliance of Taylor and inspired me.
Taylor believed-" If the furniture is all too ornate or all too primitive, the room is wrong. It is contrast that brings things excitingly alive." And as to color, "there is a tremendous amount of color in my rooms, but there are not many colors." Taylor is known for creating the California Look," using natural materials, bringing the outdoor sculptural stone inside. Taylor seemed at his genius best when he combined these elements with haute couture-like fabrics and period antiques, as seen in the following photographs.
Taylor's famed ALL WHITE in a Garden Room. The room contains pieces from Elsie de Wolfe's ballroom.
A Syrie Maugham sofa design in yellow Thai silk, along with eight panel Coromandel screen. This San Francisco home was one of Taylor's last projects. The yellow is a brilliant choice for the Coromandel screen. They were made for each other.
An iconic Michael Taylor living room in San Francisco. Here Taylor combines it all- the 18th century Aubusson rug came from Peru, the Louis XVI chairs from Michael Taylor. The curved sofa- another Syrie Maugham design covered in a Brunschwig velvet. The stripe silk taffeta curtains are a Scalamandre stripe.
More of the same room with a pair of lacquered altar tables. More Yellow, More Green, More Taylor.