BEAUTY IS PRODUCED
by the PLEASING APPEARANCE
and GOOD TASTE of the WHOLE.
– MARCUS VITRUVIUS
Architect, engineer and author of De architectura, the original ten books of architecture, Marcus Vitruvius lived in the 1st century BC, and professed that perfect proportion existed in human design. His discussions of human proportions and their relationship to architecture were referenced in his drawing of a man standing with his arms and legs outstretched in a circle and a square. The drawing, made famous by Leonardo da Vinci’s illustration of the Vitruvian Man, serves as the foundation for much of the great architectural structures still standing to this day, and many of the historical spaces we have readapted into RH Galleries – such as the Historic Museum of Natural History in Boston, the Historic Post Office in Greenwich, the Historic Three Arts Club in Chicago, the Historic Bethlehem Steel Building currently under construction in San Francisco, and our new gallery scheduled to open this Fall in the Historic Meatpacking District in New York City. The notion that beauty is produced by the pleasing appearance and good taste of the whole, as referenced in the quote above, is at the core of our design philosophy at RH.
We, like Vitruvius, believe the most pleasing environments are a reflection of human design. They are a study of balance, symmetry and perfect proportions. We respect the hierarchy and important relationships between architecture, furniture and décor that create harmony. It’s a discipline of addition through subtraction, where less becomes more, and calm is created through continuity. The result is a design where the whole becomes more valuable than the parts. We subscribe to Vitruvius’s principles, and you will find them reflected in the pieces we choose, the structures we build, and the compositions we create across our galleries, source books, websites and clients’ homes around the world.
It’s been over 2,000 years since De architectura, and 500 years since da Vinci’s illustration of the Vitruvian Man. To this day, Vitruvius’s work inspires and reminds us that many of the answers to our design questions, and our hope to create harmony, can be found not by scouring endless books, magazines or websites, but rather, by simply looking in the mirror.
Chairman / CEO