When it comes to brilliantly imaginative home decorating, it's certainly a plus to have an renowned artist on hand, a point proved by our Most Loved post this week, a covetable Saul-Steinberg-decorated bathroom from the early 1950s, Loved by photographer Sophie Wedgwood.
Steinberg (1914-1999) is best known for his association with The New Yorker, for whom he worked for almost 60 years, contributing around 90 covers and more than 1,200 drawings in his distinctive illustrative style, revered for its elevation of the language of popular graphics to the realm of fine art. But Steinberg also had a great sense of fun, and a tendancy to view the whole world as his canvas: he drew on faces and photographs, painted cats on walls and floors using stools for their bodies, and evidently enjoyed placing nudes in bathtubs (other wonderful photographs of ladies lounging in baths also exist). If he were here today, it would be tempting to "accidently" lock him in your house with a plethora of art utensils and let his imagination roam free.
"If he were here today, it would be tempting to 'accidently' lock Steinberg in your house with a plethora of art utensils and let his imagination roam free"
Steinberg was not alone in his penchant for interior decorating. Other artists known to have taken a brush to their own houses include Duncan Grant and Vanessa Bell, with their wonderfully painted Bloomsbury haven Charleston, and Goya, whose deeply dark and disturbing Black Paintings adorned the walls of his dining and sitting rooms, reflecting his bleak outlook in later life. But returning to Steinberg's bathing beauties, here we catch up with Wedgwood to find out which artists she'd choose to decorate her own house and her pet bathroom hate.
Why did you choose to Love this Saul Steinberg bathroom?
I'd love to have it as my bathroom.
Which artists living or dead would you like to decorate your bedroom, kitchen and sitting room to complete your artist-decorated house?
Amrita Sher-Gil for the bedroom, I love her. Guernica by Pablo Picasso for the living room, and whoever designed The Ben Youssef Medersa in Marrakesh for the kitchen.
What's the best bathroom you've ever been in?
My friend has a bath that's full of plants. It looks great, I don't know if it's functional.
Bath or shower?
What's your favourite book to read in the bath?
What's your favourite bathroom on film moment?
Definitely the bath scene in Freddy Kruger. And then maybe Elizabeth Taylor as Cleopatra in the bath.
What's your pet bathroom hate?
When people have tonnes of reading material by the toilet.
Text by Daisy Woodward