Remembering Mario Buatta

Image: Chester Higgins, Jr. / The New York Times / Redux

Image: Chester Higgins, Jr. / The New York Times / Redux


The New York School of Interior Design is saddened by the news that longtime advisory board member and renowned interior designer Mario Buatta passed away on October 15.

Mr. Buatta was an accomplished designer, completing spaces for clients including Mariah Carey, Henry Ford II, Malcolm Forbes, Barbara Walters, Nelson Doubleday, Mr. and Mrs. S.I. Newhouse, Charlotte Ford and Billy Joel, as well as the interiors of Blair House in Washington, D.C. Hailed as the “Prince of Chintz” for his love of bright, sumptuous spaces draped in floral fabrics, his work is unmistakable and exceedingly beautiful. But we remember Mr. Buatta as more than a gifted designer: we remember his wonderful sense of humor and his support for NYSID’s students through the Mario Buatta Scholarship fund.

In October 2011, NYSID honored Mr. Buatta by renaming the space housing the College’s materials library and work area for students in his honor. The Mario Buatta Materials Atelier is a grand room that’s at the very heart of the school, and we’re honored that it is named after a friend of the College and a loyal supporter of the NYSID Library. In honor of his lasting impact and legacy to the design industry, Mr. Buatta was the inaugural recipient of the College’s Lifetime Achievement Award at NYSID’s annual gala dinner in 2011. He will be deeply missed.

Read Mr. Buatta’s New York Times obituary here.

David Owens-Hill