Monday, June 1, 2009


("Yunnan" Brunschwig & Fils. Inc.)

I have always had a love affair with all things chinoise. Leaning  towards the blue and white palette of asian motifs, I was attracted to the "Yunnan" fabric on first sight....  Pagoda by Royal Limoges, Asian Toile by American Atelier, antique tiles of blue and white all live in my home and make me happy.

With that said, red is the more traditional hue associated with chinoiserie. For years , as I would enter the city of Paris from Charles de Gaulle airport, I would  pass this marvelous pagoda. A pagoda in Paris ! Even in my jet lagged mind, I made mental notes to find my way back to it.

The (Gallery C.T. Loo & Cie )Pagoda is a marvelous example of the traditional red hue associated with chinoiserie. To Buddhists,  red was associated with dieties  and  celebrations  and was used on pagodas as a religious reference. This structure was built in 1926 by architect Fernand Bloch. 
This post is dedicated to many of my favorite artist's and interior decorator's infatuation with all things any color!

This interior was created by Gerald Vann Underwood for a showcase home in Atlanta, Georgia. I love the delicate bamboo border at the bottom of the wall . The top border has moorish influence and would not be uncommon to mix with the asian theme. 

This incredible entry is from the New York home of Howard Slatkin. These photos  were taken by Pieter Estersohn  and are from the article  by Cynthia Frank - House & Garden  Sept. 1999. 

The entry is a combination of the mural View of Hindoustan and newer work on the opposite wall to mimic the original work.

This is such a wonderful example of what chinoiserie should look like! Done by the fabulous Michael J. Dute'.  To quote him, his work is like "entering a dream world, It's like living inside a painting". 

Influenced by Michael and the work of Graham Rust, I was hired to create a traditional red chinoiserie environment for a powder room this past year.  This was a dream job! I actually got paid for this!

Each wall is a different scene using traditional elements such as cherry trees, pagodas and bamboo.

This mural was done by Marty Joseph for clients in Dallas, Texas.  The scale of the mural is perfect for this powder room.

You can't say chinoiserie without thinking of Tony Duquette. This is just one example from the wonderful book by the same title. Pagodas were prominent in many projects by Duquette.   Tony had a wonderful garden with pagodas of wood, antlers, and other found objects. 
Hopefully, this post will make you consider your environment. Consider mixing styles , things that make you happy, souvenirs from trips. Your home should be your life story!


Beth Connolly said...

Theresa-a really beautiful post on my favorite subject-well done!

ceecee said...

Theresa -
My apologies if you see a million clicks from me - my mouse is nuts and when it clicks on something it has been opening things up repeatedly and even the things that are layered behind it. Finally I am here!
I am really warming to the Chinoiserie style and you have chosen stunning examples. Thank you so very much for your visit and your comment. I look forward to visiting with you again!


stencil helen said...

A subject after my own heart, I think you'll have guessed that by now.
You are my featured decorative artist on Design Inspiration this week. If you can give me a little more info on your fab Chinoiserie powder room I would like to feature it soon.
Go visit and I hope that you like it.

Kitty said...

found you on chinoiserie chic and i am so loving your duquette photos! but your powder room is to die for! awesome!

Theresa Cheek said...

Thanks Kitty! Tony Duquette was so far ahead of the curve. I share the passion for his work.

Kitty said...

i'm also dying over those delightful little brown sugar cubes in a silver pot! what a fun blog!

Sanity Fair said...

I am such a huge fan of chinoiserie - it's becoming a bit of an obsession. This is a beautiful post!

Theresa Cheek said...

SF-I love your blog and am glad you have found some things on mine that you enjoy!

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