India Mahdavi‘s name is much like her interior design style: exotic, feminine, and dramatic. Having already signed several interior design projects, India Mahdavi evokes a chic, global sensibility that only her designs are able to capture. Today CovetED tells you a little bit more about this designer so stick with us as we direct lots of design inspiration your way!
India Mahdavi was born in 1962 in Tehran, Iran. Raised by a Persian father and Egyptian-English mother, Mahdavi lived in Iran for the first year and a half of her life, then spent the rest of her childhood traveling with her parents, living in the U.S., Germany, and France. This culturally diverse lifestyle is reflected in her inspired, eclectic designs, which range from homes, hotels, and commercial spaces to airplane interiors and furniture.
Mahdavi studied architecture at the École des Beaux Arts in Paris between 1980 and 1986. She earned her Architect Diploma DPLG in 1987. In 1989, she spent a year in New York, studying graphic design at the School of Visual Arts, furniture design at Parsons, and industrial design at the Cooper Union. She then returned to Paris and joined Christian Liaigre’s design studio as Art Director, where she remained for seven years. Mahdavi’s company, imh interiors, was founded in 1999, with the designer subsequently opening her own showroom in Paris in 2003. The following year, Salon Maison & Objet elected her Designer of the Year.
Each of her projects, be it a bar, restaurant, hotel, private residence or a piece of furniture, carries in it elements that are modern yet familiar. Her style is by turns playful, sexy and chic, and she’s not afraid to let her femininity come through in her work.
When asked about her origins she replied: “I didn’t grow up in Egypt. And my family left Iran when I was one-and-a-half. I’ve lived in Cambridge, Massachusetts, Germany, New York, Paris, and the south of France. When I had my son, I suddenly felt uncomfortable because I had all of this cultural heritage within me that I didn’t know much about. For example, I don’t speak Arabic.”
Her thoughts on design and style are equally interesting – “Style is just being clever with space, clever with color, clever with ambiance. Style can create a very good feel. In Miami the budget was kind of tight, so everything we did was very, very basic. If you look at the furniture in Townhouse, the pieces are almost not designed they’re volumes that have proportions. For me, that has nothing to do with design that’s all about style” says the designer.
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