I SEE DESIGN in a very specific way. My personal preference is for spaces that are strong and spare, minimalist yet luxurious, tightly focused but rich in visual pleasures, essential and without excess. I have a passion for interiors that transport, that captivate the senses, that envelop the viewer with a bit of wonderment. My goal as a designer is to create unique environments with clear, forceful identities—spaces that make strong visual statements. Every room should be comfortable, functional, and suitable, of course. I also believe deeply that the role of interior design is to command and fulfill the eye, not provide it with endless distractions. To be able to achieve this, I rely on something I call “simplicity.”
I believe in simplicity. I also believe that there is nothing simple about it. Simplicity only occurs when every last element of a design solution strives to be essential, balanced, and powerful, with integrity, and no compromise in the details. It takes education, discipline, rigor, and skill to select what is suitable for a particular space, an individual client, and a preferred style. It is not easy to edit a world of almost limitless available choices, to pare away at what is possible to reveal what is absolutely necessary. Experience has taught me that the only way to achieve this is with an educated, principled, and disciplined eye. At the heart of this process, I think, lies the ability to see.
In the pursuit of simplicity I am guided by my principles. They derive from my education and experience, and they have proven to be the operating rules of each and every one of my endeavors. For me, the pursuit of excellence with attention to detail is first and foremost. I have a passion for searching out the best of everything. I need to touch items and understand them, so that I can weigh my choices against the highest standard in every aspect. Second, and probably most important, is my absolute respect for integrity, a constant in all things in my life. Third is to be as creative and innovative as possible. I love to think outside the box and approach the design process with an open mind. I often reevaluate traditional choices and expected solutions. These three principles, in combination, form the foundation of my approach to design, and over time have become my guiding disciplines. They serve me as I navigate through the many twists and turns of the problem-solving process that is design. With them, I endeavor to understand what can be best or ideal in the given situation. Then I evaluate the options. Only through rigorous application of my disciplines can I pare away and arrive at the necessary and essential. For me, this is the essence of simplicity.
Seeing is a very difficult thing to do. Most people “look ” at a lot of things but never “see” anything. Looking is emotional; seeing is an intellectual process.
— Albert Hadley