The first time I ran across Samuel's own Grand Salon—I knew I was looking at the Master.
This room with its Pompeian red silk walls (as per EEE), contrasting the French boiseries, the mix of modern & antique, and the pièce de résistance, Balthus's Le Fruit d'Or —is one of my all-time favorites.
I count Samuel's Salon up there with Louise Vilmorin's Salon—Samuel was there to assist, though Louise claimed it as her own creation. For Samuel, this was the highest praise.
In fact, there are many Samuel rooms that rank in my LIST of LISTS: the Gutfreund's Grand Salon in Paris, all the d'Ornano rooms in Paris, and again one of Samuel's personal rooms, and his office. All of these rooms have been tucked away in my design files for years.
the Gutfreund's Paris Salon
(my tear sheets)
the incredible D'Ornano Salon
Mark C O’Flaherty)
Henri Samuel's Office in Paris
(my tear sheets)
The Bel Air estate of Margie and A Jerrold Perenchio contains another room that is on my LIST, their Garden Room (not pictured here). Samuel installed Japanese lacquer panels around butterscotch boiseries and French furniture in the same color. This classic palette, (at chez Chanel too) never ages, and is one of my personal preferences, though in my current house it's absent. I had two rooms in my former house done in these shades—and I miss it.
In my next, I think.
The Perenchio Dining Room, Grand Salon & Library
(photographs from the book Henri Samuel)
Collector, Jayne Wrightsman was another Samuel devotee. In fact, she claimed, " I hardly brush my teeth without asking Henri first." In fact, the women Henri Samuel worked with is a who's who of style and substance.
The cover of Emily's book is exquisite. The work of another Master—Alexandre Serebriakoff, the room is a watercolor of Alain Rothschild's Salon Vert. This is the first book about Samuel, and with all of Emily's books, this one is not to be missed. Her research in second to none and her prose is glamorous, just like the rooms of Henri Samuel.