I am delighted to share this lovely article that appeared in Architectural Digest this past week about my passion for working with artists and connecting them with clients. Using original art and educating clients is a cornerstone of my design aesthetic. I am so grateful I found a profession that allows me to combine all of my desired careers (artist, art history professor, curator, and designer) into one! Thank you to Katy Olson for sharing our story and to all the artists and galleries I have had the privilege to work with over the years!
Austin works with artist Charlie Havanich, pictured here, who is represented by Hidell Brooks Gallery. “I adore Charlie and I just acquired one of his works,” Austin tells AD PRO. “The image in the picture is a commission for one of my clients that bears an uncanny resemblance to a young Jackie.” / Photography: Charle Hanavich
Cathy Austin began her career not in design, but in art, working at Sotheby’s across departments including European Porcelain, American Paintings, and American Furniture. “I assisted the experts cataloguing the works for the auctions, handling archives, client contracts, condition reports, and arranging presale exhibitions. I began as an intern and archivist and also worked as an administrator,” recalls Austin. When she transitioned into interiors, Austin kept connected to the art scene, attending shows like Maison et Objet and TEFAF—but also in a more tangible way, sourcing local Southern talent for her interior-design projects.
I was delighted to be interviewed for this feature for QC Exclusive focusing on my love of art and how it is the starting point for all of my interiors. Thanks to the writers and editors for this lovely opportunity to share my philosophy on merging art and design…
Participating in the Traditional Home / Junior League of High Point Showhouse in April was one of the most gratifying experiences I have had in my career. I The creativity and camaraderie of the design community blew me away and seeing it in print brings back a flood of fond memories! We have all been anxiously awaiting the October issue to share all of our hard work for a wonderful cause…benefiting the Junior League’s community programming for High Point. Thank you to all of the gracious editors at Traditional Home, the countless volunteers from the Junior League and the amazing sponsors that brought our visions to life! Click here to read the full story and see the complete portfolio of images.
The final stop on the second floor is Cathy Austin’s beautiful daughter’s bedroom. Blessed with great bones—note the 10 1/2-foot ceilings and swoonworthy windows—the space is impeccably tailored from head to toe. Shaped valances mimic the Moroccan scalloping on the patterned headboard.
Circa Lighting’s brass orb chandelier and the pillows’ chopstick monogram reiterate the room’s Eastern influence. Overhead, Pratt & Lambert’s pale-pink paint in high-gloss finish complements the vintage Murano glass lamp on the bedside table. A tufted-velvet bench with Lucite legs and an antique English settee updated in sumptuous animal print round out the dazzling sanctuary.
There’s a lot to love in these beautiful showhouse bedrooms…click on the image below for a video tour of the spaces.
I envisioned my “imaginary” client as the sophisticated daughter of the family. She is well-travelled, artistic, and likes a modern, yet glamourous room that still reflects her Southern roots. A portrait by favorite artist, Kate Long Stevenson, (from Hidell Brooks Gallery) became my muse for the project. I had her in mind whenever I was making decisions for the space. The portrait and the large vintage abstract provided the color palette that inspired the design scheme. The room is a blend of unique pieces from High Point based craftsmen along with a collection from her travels around the world. A Moroccan inspired headboard, Murano glass lamps, original modern art, bespoke linens, dressmaker detailed drapery, and glamorous materials such as shagreen, agate, brass, and velvet add to the feminine mystique of the space. I indulged myself with an “imaginary” trip around the world for inspiration for the space…from the palaces of Morocco and India to the Murano glass factories and sunsets on the Nayarit Riviera.