The moment I saw his blazer in a soft shade of watermelon, I knew I was really going to like him. Miles Redd’s unique and defining colorful style is complemented by his gracious, funny and charming personality. He doesn’t seem to take himself too seriously, but he takes his work very seriously, and he looks to fashion and fashion photography for his inspiration. He called on designers of all industries to push things forward and does this by saying there are no rules. Feeling as though he was “glamour starved” as a child, he has incorporated plenty of glamour into his delightful approach to design.
His appealing range of styles, uses of various forms, shapes and art make for continuously interesting work. A traditional rug, sofa and loop chairs paired with more modern art, lamps and a streamlined coffee table keep the room rooted in a more classic feel and simultaneously current.
His use of varied accessories also make for strong compositions.
He spoke about ruffles on a dress inspiring the leading edges on the drapes in his sister’s apartment.
The bedroom below is always a crowd pleaser…notice the repetitive ruffle on the curtain from above.
He cited Cy Twombly’s apartment featured in Vogue in 1966 as a source of inspiration for the combination of modern art and neoclassical elements.
And an example of this combination in his own work. It’s interesting to see that he staged the coffee table with fashion magazines…
Miles worked for John Rosselli and then Bunny Williams, both of whom had great influences on him and his use of color. While many think of Bunny Williams as a traditional designer, I have discussed her range of work several times and I can certainly see how Miles gathered such inspiration. I discussed Bunny’s use of this Christopher Norman fabric here
and I was happy to see Miles Redd use it as well. He also loves to use red sofas in his projects.
He discussed wanting to mix elements in a room, especially accessories. He called our attention to the horn on the fireplace mantle and as you look through more of his work, you will notice that this will repeat. The juxtaposition of the linear books, curved horn and mix of textures allows for an interesting combination of elements.
Irving Penn’s wife and model Lisa Fonssagrives was photographed by Richard Avedon and those graphic images have served as inspiration for Miles’ use of black and white.
Miles mentioned Klein Blue as another source of inspiration for this room.
Yves Klein Blue Venus
Matisse should also be given credit for his color in Blue Nudes, as Yves Klein referred to Matisse as his source of inspiration.
While there has been some discussion about the ‘flying’ photograph of Miles on the biography page of his website, he was quite funny about it. Citing a photograph of Linda Evangelista leaping through the air as his inspiration, Miles decided to put his own spin on the idea. It was done for a shoot for Home & Garden and while he said it looks quite glamorous he had to jump off the chair many, many times.
He was asked if he has a book out yet and he humbly said that in due time he will publish a book, but that he wants to get more work under his belt first. I will continue to be inspired by his approach to design, overall positive attitude and desire to look to the past and encourage all aspects of design to move forward.
What a treat to hear him speak.