Monday, May 3, 2010

Designer Profile: George Clarkson

George would have admired this room I designed for a Chicago couple

One of the biggest influences on my early career was working for the late designer George Clarkson. George loved glamour. He loved living life in a stylish way. He was a gentleman, and he was a man of the world. He lived in Paris, Palm Beach, and New York, had a farm in the horse country of Virginia, and summered in Southampton. His wife and children were all back home in St. Louis. His chauffeur driven Rolls Royce sat on east 57th Street, waiting for our descent from the 29th floor, each day we went out in it to lunch at Mortimers and shop for antiques in the village. I still remember waving goodbye to Mario Buatta as we pulled away from Mortimers in the Rolls... We were always working on someone's Park Avenue apartment, but also did a lot of work out of town. A favorite project I was involved with was "Bella Vista" a large red brick georgian overlooking the Long Island Sound, in Southport, CT. I had to drive the editor of House & Garden (Jacqueline Gonnet) up there to see it, and we had lunch in Southport. Albert Hadley also likes Southport, and has had a place there for years. George was a classicist; he truly loved beautiful english furniture, silk fabrics, good silver, and good food. He was very kind to me, and I'll always remember him fondly. You can see some good examples of his work in the book "New York Interior Design 1935-1985 Inventors of Tradition" by Judith Gura. Enjoy ! DF *****