Great Walls....A Give Away

This photo is in the front of the book and captured me immediately. Designer Tim Wheaton took a simplified version of flowering vines borrowed  from Chinoiserie wallpaper in Drottningholm Palace, Stockholm and made it modern by  repeating pattern in this Park Avenue apartment.
Photo by Tim Street-Porter

I was recently asked by the gracious souls at Rizzoli if a new book by Florence de Dampierre would be something I might like to review. Would I !?! You may all know Florence de Dampierre from her books, Chairs: A History or French Chic: The Art of Decorating Houses. Not only would I absolutely want to include her newest gorgeous book in my resource library to reference for future design projects, I would just like to flip through page after page for general inspiration. The title you may be asking?

Book Cover Photo by Pieter Estersohn
Florence de Dampierre treats us to a journey around the world from the past to the present to show us how we human beings have decorated the walls in our homes. The book is broken down into sections each describing the various types of wall ornamentation used throughout the centuries. She begins with a section on Tapestries, and then continues with the four main parts titled: Mural, Wood Panel, Stencil, and Wallpaper.   
This room by designer Peter Dunham is in his own sitting room....and in my "favorite rooms" file. The use of a tapestry on the wall has been made fresh when put together with the red painted desk and blue glass lamp. The colors draw out the faded colors in the tapestry.
Photo by Tim Street-Porter 
In the section on Murals, we are brought through the Middle Ages and Renaissance... the Fresco Technique is described, as well as Tempura. Oil painting on walls is introduced in the 15th century, and we are treated to wall murals of the Baroque period. Rococo, Neoclassic, Romantic periods are all discussed and illustrated with gorgeous full page photos.

Seventeenth century frescoes adorn the loggia of the Villa Torrigiani outside Lucca. One could wile away the hours here sipping wine and gazing up at the glory.
Photo by Pieter Estersohn 
While we are on the topic of photos, Tim Street-Porter and Pieter Estersohn were instrumental in providing the principal photography. Need I say more? Just in case .... these photographers are regular contributors to numerous shelter magazines such as Elle Decor and AD. Tim Street-Porter has authored and provided the photos for multiple design and architecture books including the Rooms to Inspire series from Rizzoli. 

Le Corbusier painted this modern mural in a friend's Long Island farmhouse.The value of this house must have shot through the roof.
Photo by Pieter Estersohn
Back to the murals....not only are we shown the gorgeous classics from antiquity, but there is modern artistry as well. Twentieth century murals became popular not only in homes but in public spaces as well. Many are represented in Walls.

The next section is titled "Wood Panels". And again we travel though history seeing how paneled walls have evolved through time. In this section you find elaborate paneled libraries, simple American Colonial wood paneling, brilliantly painted fireplace mantels, and subtle wall moldings.

Painted landscapes on wood paneling at Sandemar Manor in Sweden. c. 1680. The colors! Pearl grey and that blue with a touch of green...wonderful.
Photo by Ingalill Snitt
Florence covers faux marble painting, Boiseries and the specific Blanc de Roi: white painted Boiseries. She takes us through rooms of lacquer panels from Chinoiserie to Art Deco. There are gilt leather panels first introduced in the 17th century Islamic world. There is Fretwork, Cutwork and Lattice. There is Wainscoting, Tongue-and-Groove, and Beadboard. But perhaps one of my favorite examples of paneling is this mirrored room with bamboo molding by Howard Brodsky:
Photo by Pieter Estersohn
I had to show you a bit of whimsical faux paneling as well:

This "room" is actually a backdrop for Suzanne Rheinstein's  store Hollyhock and was painted by French painter Paulin Paris.
Photo byTim Street-Porter

The next section of the book is all about stencils. We are not talking about the stencils from the eighties, all flowers and bunnies. We are talking about Egyptian stencils, stencils in La Villa Kerylos in France, stencils by Robert Adams at Osterley Park, from Neoclassic to American Colonial, stencils by Tiffany and Frederic Edwin Church in the Persian style....the list goes on. Her are but a few examples:
The design shop, Mitu, has taken advantage of the existing 1800's mural in this residence in San Miguel, Mexico. I am always captivated when I see such a successful contrast of old and new.
Photo by Tim Street-Porter
Mary McFadden's NYC apartment....gorgeous stenciling by Joseph Shoskovitch.
Photo by Pieter Estersohn
Perhaps my favorite photo in the book....although how can I really pin it down? Martyn Lawrence-Bullard decorated this room with a Moroccan stencil pattern inspired by a fabric.
Photo by Tim Street-Porter
The last section is all about wallpaper. Apparently, wallpaper dates back to the times of the Egyptians, papyrus lining the tombs as far back as 2500 B.C.  But the Chinese are to be credited with what we typically know as wallpaper (200 B.C.). Florence takes us through the ages and through the geography of different papers, from floral to flocked, from Chinese to European, botanicals and is  here in all it's glory.

Botanical Illustrations make an early form of wallpaper at the Carolus Linnacus's Swedish estate. We have seen this imitated often over the years for good reason.
Photo by Ingalill Snitt 

Lat but not least, I want to mention that at the end of each section in the book, there is a page (pages) of helpful hints and tips for the application of all of these wall treatments. A big thank you to Florence for that. I think many of us like to experiment ourselves or at least know a thing or two when discussing a desired application with craftspeople

I am in the process of having a dining room mural painted for a client, and I can tall you this book is an immeasurably helpful source of ideas. If you are interested in the decorative arts, history, or just need a little inspiration, I can say this book will keep you intrigued for ages.

And the best part?

I am so happy to be partnering once again with Rizzoli to let one of you lucky readers in on the adventure of 

Walls: The Best of Decorative Treatments
Florence de Dampierre 

Rizzoli will be giving away this beautiful book to one lucky winner. Here are the rules:

1) If you are not already, become a follower of katiedid 
2) Hop on over to the Rizzoli website and let me know what other design books are catching your eye...I always like to hear about a new design book!!
3) Provide your email. That means an email where we can correspond so I can get your mailing address. Without this, we don't know where to send the book...and that would be a complete shame.

The give away will run until Monday, March 21st at 5:00 PM California time. I will pick a winner at random
and announce on the next day.