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David Hicks

(1929—1998) interior designer and author


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(1929–98) Internationally recognized as a distinctly English interior designer and decorator, Hicks studied at the Central School of Arts and Crafts, London. However, the opportunity to decorate his mother's house in fashionable Belgravia, London, brought him to public notice through a feature in House and Garden. In the 1950s he went into partnership with Tom Parr (who was later employed by Colefax & Fowler). In the 1960s he catered for the fashionable, but affluent, younger market sector of the period, designing textiles, carpets, and ties characterized by bold colours and geometric patterns. In 1960 he had married Lady Pamela Mountbatten, Prince Philip's first cousin, which established many connections for interior design commissions. The establishment of David Hicks Ltd. in 1969 opened up many further opportunities, with a prestigious client list including Helena Rubenstein and Princess Anne. He also won important commissions in the public eye, such as the nightclub on the QE2 ocean liner and the British Embassy in Washington. His work was hallmarked by bold combinations of the modern and the traditional, whether in contrasts of furniture, furnishings, and materials or his use of bold colours. Apart from his interiors, which featured in many magazines around the world, his influence was further disseminated through his very visual books, including David Hicks on Decoration (1966) and David Hicks on Bathrooms (1970).

From A Dictionary of Modern Design in Oxford Reference.

Subjects: Industrial and Commercial Art.


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