Stair revisits the ‘World of Mario Buatta’ April 16-17

World of Mario Buatta

English ‘Betts’s Patent Portable Terrestrial Globe’ with presentation box, 28 x 14 x 14in (open). Estimate: $500-$700. Stair image

HUDSON, N.Y. – Stair Galleries will present the last in a series of auctions to disperse the collections of renowned interior designer Mario Buatta on April 16-17. The April 16 auction is devoted to ceramics. It will be followed the next day by “Treasures & Trifles: the World of Mario Buatta.” Bid absentee or live online through LiveAuctioneers.

Buatta’s collection includes various ceramics from the 19th and 20th centuries. Each piece reflects the interior designer’s iconic style, which harkened to the grandeur of another era.

World of Mario Buatta

Group of Continental porcelain lettuce-form wares. Estimate: $400-$600. Stair image

The collection features a curated selection of porcelain and earthenware. From traditional tableware to trompe l’oeil cabbages, there is sure to be a surprise to grace every shelf and tabletop. Included in this online auction is porcelain by Wedgwood, Spode, Derby, Vladimir, Lady Anne Gordon, Mottahedeh and many more.

World of Mario Buatta

Pair of 8-inch-high Derby porcelain vases and a smaller vase. Estimate: $300-$500. Stair image

Mario Buatta adored anecdotes and, in keeping with the spirit of a successful room telling a whimsical story, he mingled color, pattern and delightfully themed objects with abandon. His signature style championed delicate detail with a circus of myriad themes including a taste for Brighton Pavilion Orientalism, Gothic tracery, objects based on the animal kingdom and nature.

World of Mario Buatta

Assembled Wedgwood creamware in the ‘Shadow Leaf’ pattern and similar patterns. Estimate: $600-$800. Stair image

Balancing high and low creative touches with ease, Buatta reveled in lofty and lovable accents, gingered up odd juxtapositions, and had a field day with the multiple layers that make rooms memorable. Featuring toleware, treen, lacquer, chintz pottery, papier-mâché, shell work, animalia, decoupage and decalcomania, the sale Objects, Treasures & Trifles is a cornucopia of chic as only Buatta could conjure.

World of Mario Buatta

George III painted tea caddy with inlaid reverse glass painted panels, 7in high. Estimate: $800-$1,200. Stair image

Buatta developed a clientele that ranged from the rich and famous—Mariah Carey, Nelson Doubleday, Charlotte Ford, Billy Joel, Peter Duchin and Malcolm Forbes—to the merely rich. Buatta’s rooms were immediately identifiable. His New York Times obituary observed: “He was particularly fond of chintz, the printed cotton fabric with a glazed finish, and made exuberant use of pillows, fringes, swags, tassels, bows and ruffles. With some tassels costing hundreds of dollars each and fabrics hundreds of dollars a yard, curtains in a Buatta room might cost $12,000 in today’s money by the time they were hung.”

The auctions will begin at 11 a.m. Eastern time both days. For additional information about any item in the auction, call Stair at 518-751-1000.