Interior design choices for lovers of the fine arts

By Jo Phillips

If you enjoy the arts, you already know that they can inspire everything, from clothing to food. It can and does inspire interior designs, and these two worlds have long been intertwined. Historically, the two have coexisted, and artists work alongside furniture makers, architects and textile artists to make homes more beautiful. There are many examples in the art world of pieces that can be used inside the household as well. The Bauhaus style, Picasso’s ceramics and the famous, minimalist and geometrically-designed Noguchi coffee tables are just a few of them. 

However, there are many ways to include the arts in your home’s appearance and elevate your interior design choices. Here are some of them.

Treasure quality 

Opting for high-quality materials and designs will make your home a work of art by default. For instance, solid wood kitchens are a timeless addition to your home that will also stay elegant forever. The material is highly resistant, and you don’t have to worry that it’ll lose its lustre and start looking shabby. It is resistant to wear and tear and will look good regardless of how often you have to clean it. In fact, many homeowners believe that the wood only gets better and more aesthetically pleasing with age. Interaction with the environment makes the surfaces acquire patina which endows the material with personality and a more complex appeal. 

Stone has been used in interior design for centuries and is also popular among those who want to achieve a simple, clean and natural look inside their home. There are also practical advantages to getting stone floors. They are easy to maintain and regulate the temperature, besides being hygienic. Their aesthetic appeal can add value to your property, and you don’t have to worry about staining, scratches or fading. 

Marble can also be used as the centrepiece due to its elegant and luxurious look. Tables or a staircase are the best uses for this material, but there’s also no denying its appeal for walls or flooring. Choosing it as an addition to your largest room guarantees that you’ll make it stand out. It also creates the optical illusion of a space that’s even wider and airier than it really is. When you choose natural, premium-quality materials, you bring artistic vision inside the household by default since you create an ensemble that is simply beautiful. 

Arts and Crafts 

The Arts and Crafts movement developed in Britain and then spread to the rest of Europe and America. It appeared as a reaction against the lack of decorative arts at the time and was at its peak between the 1880s and the 1920s. Textile designer William Morris, art critic and polymath John Ruskin and historian Thomas Carlyle are generally associated with the movement. It also inspired the development of similar styles in other countries, such as the Mingei movement in Japan, inspired by folk crafts and created by Soetsu Yanagi in the late 20s. 

The core traits of the Arts and Crafts interior are the use of natural materials that focus on their genuine, raw qualities. The objects are simple, the designs are clean and the patterns and motifs are all inspired by nature. The vernacular aspect is critical, and ideally, the objects should have been created using traditional techniques. The colours should also remain neutral, and the focus should be on elegance but of a rustic kind, the type that wouldn’t feel out of place in a countryside cottage. 

Look for embroidered items, particularly those that feature plant motifs. Antiques will feel at home in this ensemble, so if you find anything like that, include it in your home design. Wool carpets, linen covers, and wallpaper that feature a patchwork mix of garden flora and fauna, such as the “Apothecary’s Garden” created in 1926 by Charles Francis Annesley Voysey are solid starting points. 

Art Deco 

Short for the French Arts Décoratifs, this style was popular during the 20s and 30s in the United States and Europe. It originally appeared in France just before the beginning of World War I and influenced not just the visual arts but product design and architecture as well. Furniture and everyday objects were remade in the Art Deco style, and much of New York City’s architecture is constructed in this style, most notably the Chrysler Building. 

Art Deco is characterised by symmetry, relative simplicity, smoothness, a linear appearance with sharp edges and a decorative appearance that looks luxurious but is nowhere over the top. Cubism, Fauvism and the Vienna Secession have all inspired Art Deco. It also draws heavily from ancient Egyptian, Japanese, Chinese, Persian and Mayan arts. Focus on craftsmanship if you’re looking to make your house seem like it is straight from Fitzgerald’s “The Great Gatsby”. 

Work with a decluttered space that will make all the shapes and structures of the furniture the main event. Apart from the furniture, you can also focus on the artwork of layered wood and shapes. Traditional designs originating in Kashmir also offer the opportunity for endless design opportunities. 


Often considered synonymous with Modernism, the Bauhaus style emphasised not just design but also placed emphasis on function and addressed the principles of mass-produced items. Originating in Germany and operating between 1919 and 1933, the Bauhaus combines craftsmanship and fine arts. The focus later became the fundamental theoretical foundation of IKEA. 

Simple colour schemes are also the rule here, as is a holistic approach to design. While Art Deco focused on symmetry, Bauhaus brings asymmetry, but one that is balanced. Industrial materials are common instead of natural, such as concrete, steel and glass, and not just for the walls but for household objects like chairs or lamps as well. 

To replicate Bauhaus in your home, ensure that all the items you bring inside have a clear purpose. Since the style became so popular over the years, many original articles, such as Breuer’s Wassily and Cesca chairs, can be worth thousands of dollars. If you’re on a budget, you can either make a long-term investment or get something more affordable. Just be sure that it is sturdy. 

Although it might not seem so to many nowadays, the arts and interior design are fully interlinked. If you have a love for decoration, there’s no better way to create a beautiful home than by drawing inspiration from the artistic vision of well-known artists and their creations. 

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