Author(s): Francois Baudot (Critic, "Elle")
Aside from clothes, the most immediate extension of the human body is the decor in which it inhabits. From interior architecture to interior life, the distance is often slight. It is this merging together of the mental and the ornamental, as well as the dialogue between form and content, that this work, with its abundant and eloquent iconography, is dedicated. The chapters follow the chronology of the styles using, as examples, the most beautiful houses in the world. Opening with the Medieval era and ending with the twentieth century, the pages of Styles are devoted to the roots of design from the Belle Epoque to contemporary aesthetics. Each style has its own elegance, its function, and its reason for being. Each style comes back, at one time or another, to haunt new decades short of references. Thus, the periods overlap each other: yesterday via nineteenth-century's historicism, and today with the rise of all the retro fashions. But regardless of the choices one makes, what is fascinating in the organization of an architectural volume is that it always speaks of its own time. And it often does so very well.