by Emmi Micallef September 17, 2016
It does not go unnoticed the contrast between Claude Monet's world and the design world trends of late. Perhaps both are at the extreme - the over saturated rich yellows, blues and greens may be too much for us as a society being over-stimulated on a minute-to-minute basis. However, the white-on-white or beige-on-beige or even the grey-on-grey color schemes of today can read cold, bland and repetitive. One certainly could never define Monet's house as this.
As an artist, Monet's vision of the the world is nearly like wearing rose colored glasses. I cannot imagine feeling any moods but happy and joyful.
Bringing nature into one's home, Monet's gift of recreating his gardens into his living interior perhaps was one of his goal? Living as one with nature is probably the only true way of living....?
I love the simplicity of Alice's bedroom with the touches of sea foam green trim paired with the melon colored walls.
It seems Monet's play on color with shared tonal values sing - perhaps a bit off key - but sing none the less. An artist's prerogative, to say the least.
Of course, the inspiration for this blog is the final picture...Monet's famous kitchen...
Monet chose these tiles from a renowned tile manufacturer in the 19th century located in Rouen, France. These blue and white geometric, decorative tiles were an off-shoot of the 17th century when Chinese blue and white porcelain was imported to Amsterdam via the Dutch East India Trading Company. The fact the color blue is the most universally liked color, radiating a sense of peace and calm, and the various geometric designs read neither too feminine too masculine, but succeed in absorbing the eye with continual interest...Monet's vision for his kitchen became a phenomenon. Crossing borders and time - these tiles are still relevant in today's design world.
The play of white and cream read calm - enough so that adding Historic Decorative Material's Cuisine de Monet tile back splash only adds interest, history and strength to the design. Authentically keeping true to a Monet style kitchen, French Reclaimed terra cotta tile hexagons are the perfect accompaniment.
I am careful what tile lines from history I like to reproduce - and Monet's kitchen tile was one at the top of my list. I look for historic decorative tiles that do transcend time - albeit a repast from here to there when design trends are so strong...but I believe the resurgence of the past coming forward particularly with French reclaimed building materials is very present.
Thank you for your time,
Emmi Micallef, co-owner Historic Decorative Materials, a division of Pavé Tile, Wood & Stone, Inc.
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