Category:Charbonnet, Marc

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Marc Charbonnet was born into an ancient 18th century French-American Louisiana family with a lot of silver and no one to polish it. That bit of dirty laundry means what it means to people who care, of which Marc is not one. One of six children, he found escape in his sister's doll collection. Later he discovered mentors in the eccentricities of his mother's friend Paulette, and the stories of his father's grand and imperious friend Mr. Rolf, whose tipsy first wife was debutant of the year and would often send whole dinners violently crashing to the floor with her forearm when a waiter's service displeased her. Attending Catholic school left Marc with a enlightened opinion on the unfortunate decline of nuns' fashions throughout the years: "From gliding across floors like angelic swans, holding their long veils with lithe hands during the gusty New Orleans afternoons, eventually reduced to wearing cheap street cloths, sneakers and junk earrings, proudly rolling through hot city avenues looking like lesbian muskrats." Not that there's anything wrong with lesbian muskrats. As a child he was told these ladies were "the brides of Christ," and now they resemble the roller coaster operators at the amusement park his family used to visit during summer weekends. Summers were otherwise spent in pools, riding horseback, and sliding down the rail of the tall, wide staircase that lead to the front door of the Charbonnet home. Keeping to himself, with the exception of a minority of colorful, like-minded locals, he grew into a deep appreciation for the truly beautiful: objects, stories, songs, furniture, clothes, boys and girls. Tired of drama, he left for New York City on July 4th, 1987, Marc's day of independence. A blessed iconoclast, Marc fell into potluck rather than a pot of gold. After his success in New York as an interior designer, Joseph Holtzman asked Marc to appear in his notorious shelter magazine Nest. Responding to renowned photographer Alexis Hay's demands to take his home portrait up a notch, Marc posed on a recliner wearing his black velvet bishop's robe with a ruby, sapphire and emerald-encrusted cross pendulously hanging just above the top of the slit robe, revealed his nude, gorgeous gams, crossed and crowned on each foot with his exact replicas of Dorothy's ruby red slippers from The Wizard of Oz (not to mention he's nestling inside his 1,000-plus doll collection room — an obsessive habit aided more by his experimenting with Prozac than by his sister's childhood influence). Marc was selected as one of Architectural Digest's "Top 100 World Designers" for three consecutive years. He has designed Fifth and Park Avenue homes, country homes, corporate headquarters and houses in his hometown of New Orleans, as well as restoring Judy Garland's childhood home at the Judy Garland Museum in Grand Rapids, Minnesota. Marc runs his own interior design business in New York, where he lives with his three boys, Benny, Magi and Gomez (his beloved Chihuahuas). Lunch is his favorite sport. Marc states, "I owe 75 percent of my success to thank you notes and dirty jokes."

From the profile at his Interior Design business website ( ):

Marc Charbonnet has run his own New York interior design firm, MECA (MARC EDWARD CHARBONNET ASSOCIATES), since 1991.

Mr. Charbonnet has had the distinct honor of being selected as one of the 100 Designers in the January 2004 release of Architectural Digest's "The New List, The AD100, The World's Top Designers and Architects". Mr. Charbonnet has also been featured in the January 2002 release of Architectural Digest's "Today's Designers & Legendary Design, The New AD100". In addition to these article listings, Mr. Charbonnet has also been featured in the January 2000 release of Architectural Digest's "Interior Design Legends". Mr Charbonnet has also appeared in several features such as shopping trips in his hometown and AD AT LARGE features in other locations.

He is the designer of Michael J. Fox’s Sharon, Connecticut estate featured in the June 2000 Architectural Digest, as well as the Manhattan apartment of Michael J. Fox and his family featured on the cover of the October 1997 issue of Architectural Digest. He has also designed many residences on New York's Fifth and Park Avenues, and in his hometown of New Orleans, as well as other parts of the country.

His interior design firm is full staff and full service. MECA designed interiors include such diverse elements as custom designed mosaic floors, plaster cornices, wood paneling, special plated hardware, hand-painted borders, and are furnished with a mix of the best of the antique and the new, the important and the decorative.

His diverse talents include furniture design and lighting fixture design; working with sources used by famous museums, he has been entrusted with entirely framing one of the world's great private art collections. Marc has worked as a photo stylist, creating interiors for Lancôme ads featuring Isabella Rosselini, a CD cover for Mary J. Blige, and photo shoots of John Leguiziamo.

Most recently, Mr. Charbonnet's designs were featured in the February 2004 issue of Architectural Digest: "Before & After." This features the Time Warner Building interior design which details Charbonnet's Kitchen & Breakfast. Most recently, Mr. Charbonnet’s work is feathered in New York Spaces Volume 3 #6 2007

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