The history of interior design is punctuated by a few particularly noteworthy American legends: Sister Parish, of course, is one; so is Billy Baldwin; and Mark Hampton, another.
But as far as many design insiders are concerned, no one has ever been so influential as a man named George Stacey, the trailblazing designer who in the 1930s first articulated a uniquely American brand of chic, and in doing so paved the way for Baldwin, Parish, Hampton, and any number of other design luminaries. While deftly producing a string of stylish rooms to please a stylish clientele, society decorator Stacey invented a new vocabulary for American design.
An appealing nonchalance and irreverence, combined with erudition, flair for colour, and an innate grasp of balance, scale and proportion produced rooms that were surprising as well as sophisticated.
Balancing modern aesthetics and modern living with a lifelong passion for French classicism ensured that Stacey designs were both of the moment and enduring. When Stacey shot to prominence in the 1930s with projects for socialite Frances Cheney and style priestess Diana Vreeland, the audacity of his work caught the eye of Vogue, Harper's Bazaar, Town and Country, and House & Garden.
For the next forty years, while the ground rules of Stacey's approach remained constant, he captured the nuances of mood and culture of an exceptionally dynamic era - guaranteeing that Stacey's work continually evolved while remaining consistently fashionable.