BOOK REVIEW: The Interiors and Architecture of Renzo Mongiardino––A Painterly Vision

By Lauren Brackett

If there is one person to thank for the return of maximalism, it has to be Renzo Mongiardino. If you don’t know his work, it’s okay, he was never a household name. He was however, referred to as one of the twentieth century's greatest designers. Luckily, Martina Mondadori Sartogo and the editors of Cabana have given us a closer look at his untouched work in the book “Renzo Mongiardino: A Painterly Vision.” There is no one better to bring us this book than Martina. Her mother was close friends with Mongiardino and she grew up in a house designed by him. She calls him a “master of illusion.” He could manipulate perspective through pattern, mixed colors, layering, and light. He achieved perfect harmony in everything he touched and his influence on design has made an impression that will continue to span the decades. 

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Roberto Peregalli and Laura Sartori Ramini both worked under Mongiardino until his death in 1998. The two of them now operate as Studio Peregalli, where they continue to push the boundaries of color and pattern. Check out the 1950's apartment originally designed by Mongiardino that they brought back to life at Elle Decor. You can also find their work in a restaurant in Milan over at Vogue Living.

Introspective Magazine takes a closer look at the designer who Martina Mondadori Sartogo claims as an important inspiration.

Photography by Guido Taroni

The love of architecture was probably born in that room in Genoa; without realizing it, I realized that all the things in our lives occur in the environment around us, so in architecture. Even when we are in the midst of a forest, the forest is our architecture, the light passing through the trees is the same that lit thee chandelier of my childhood, and we do not do more than imitate, repeat, re-create what nature and history offer us.
— Renzo Mongiardino