Renzo in his Study
When we talk about the designer who had all “THE” projects, it’s not easy to think of Renzo Mongiardino, because he was not very well known outside of his limited world of highest-end clients and colleagues. Some knew him as the greatest designer of the twentieth century. That’s debatable, but he truly did some marvelous work, however seldom seen by most, simply because of the rarified atmosphere in which he performed his magic. He was referred to as a designer’s designer, master of illusion and creator of special effects without compare. I think he was the best decorative painter ever. (although much of the work was done by his craftsmen)
Bedroom Interior Rendering
By creating atmosphere instead of authenticity, he conjured theatrical backdrops for the most discriminating clientele. When talking about “THE” projects, we mean those for which he had the opportunity to use murals, faux finishes and a multitude of decorative painting tricks to bring to reality the most complex and exquisite rooms imaginable. A commission of the sort he landed would make any contemporary decorative painter more than green with envy. These kinds of projects just don’t exist any more. I’d like to hear about them if they do.
Renaissance Master of Style
Whether for aristocrats such as Baron Guy de Rothschild or fashion icon Gianni Versace, a house by Renzo Mongiardino was a realization of imagination without comparison. To have his craft performed in one’s interior was not only a testament to the client’s taste but also a gift to us who would eventually be exposed to his work through such books as Renzo Mongiardino: Renaissance Master of Style, or Roomscapes, The Decorative Architecture of Renzo Mongiardino. Talk about favorite coffee table books! These will draw you into a rare world of the best decoration ever created. I highly recommend that you see these books for yourself and judge his quality. Isn’t it wonderful?
Lovely painted walls
Paneling, murals, marble, ceilings, mosaics, intarsia and any number of special effects were carefully thought out and first sketched as interior elevations that when completed, were still only a matter of paints and brushes. How this man could envision and employ the artist’s hands to bring to fruition these masterpieces of painted décor will long be a topic of amazement. With just talent, paint and brushes this man changed surfaces better than anyone known into true masterpieces of the craft. He should be recognized as the standard to which any “faux artist” should aspire. There won’t even be a runner up in this contest. He was truly the best.
A lovely atmospheric mural
Wonderful painted decoration by Renzo
Highly recommended reading.
Fabulous Chinoiserie Dining Room
A favorite room of mine by Renzo.