In under ten years, MA Allen has become one of the brightest stars in interior design. Her firm, based right in our backyard, in Raleigh, North Carolina, has caught the attention of the national press, with features in Architectural Digest
, Elle Decor
, Traditional Home
, and others. Allen's fearless interiors balance the full gamut of design elements from color and scale to traditionalism and modernism. Which makes her the perfect designer to help us overcome our trepidation about putting strong art in our homes. To get us ready to bid in our Contemporary Art Auction
on March 13th, we asked MA all our burning questions about how to reconcile contemporary art and design.
Let’s start at the beginning: the art and the couch. What’s your response to the age-old idea that picking art to match your decor is only for art and design amateurs?
I love to let art lead, but the reality is often times a client doesn't have an art collection, or the collection they have isn’t large enough or the right scale to fill the walls of their new home. I’m not your quick finisher girl that pulls a color story together, I prefer to wait it out until we find the perfect piece. I will leave a room unfinished until then.
We've established relationships with numerous artists from whom we can commission a piece for a particular space. In this process my goal is never to impede artists' creativity but to build on it. I just provide the artist with a sense of the colors being used and what in their existing portfolio appeals to us. I always encourage clients - if they find something they love - to buy it. It’s proven time and time again that it always works out.