François Catroux, the famed interior designer, has been documented in a new book by David Netto at the Decoration & Design Building in NYC. We stopped by!
François Catroux is a name you might not to know, but he often works behind the scenes as the stage designer for the world’s wealthiest- he subjects himself to the choreographer as beautiful spaces. Without question, he has been the decorator of choice for aristocrats, moguls, fashion queens, royals, and oligarchs alike since 1968, when he opened his Paris office. The Pierre Frey is a showroom in the Decoration & Design Building’s (DDB) Suite 1611 hosted a book signing on Thursday, December 15, 2016 with David Netto, who’s the author and a designer in his own right.
But Catroux has always been endlessly opposed to a book on him. His eight-person staff is tiny in relation to many other interior design firms. His understanding is that “the people who needed to know knew,” so the need for a book was limited. David Netto cracked the man. The Los Angeles-based decorator is a design journalist who spent two years in an effort to convince Catroux to do the book.
A brief examination of Catroux works features a comprehensive and responsible use of wood and panelling, an indication of his European and grecian inspiration- but not training, as Catroux has no formal training in interior design. Catroux has a sensitivity to collage, which is currently a particular interest of many interior designers- arrangements of space- curation of pieces, that transcend time and place. The idea of a space “stuck” in time, outdated and subject to ridicule or the upper-class favorite of bi-annual complete redecoration is largely avoided with the collage approach, allowing spaces to “last longer”. François Catroux has a root in curated clutter too, but not to the extent that space feels “dirty” unkept. Catroux is sensitive to books. Many of his living rooms and sitting rooms prioritize a moment of certain scale. The books and small sculptures help manage proportion. Of course, Netto and Catroux are both aware of the luxury of high ceilings and Catroux uses them to perfect execution with painted walls and of course, framing of art in classic engraving and molding. Catroux does not ignore character of older spaces, rather he will accent them as best as possible.
Catroux has seen the best spaces… “The best houses in Paris . . . the Rothschilds, the Dreyfuses . . . I saw room after room.” This was critical in developing his design sensibility. And so his clients get what they want, the feeling of importance, the feeling of history, the look of luxury. The essence of rarity. François Catroux has most recently been featured Architecture Digest’s significant AD100 listing for 2017, signaling the best in design trade.
The DDB is open exclusively to the trade and welcomes design industry professionals from all over the world, who can find inspiration in anything from the bespoke furnishings, ornamental wallc overings and luxurious fabrics, tounique decorative accessories and dramatic lighting, featuring styles ranging from the richly ornate to the sleek and modern.