Design Profile: Axel Vervoordt

Axel Vervoordt -longstanding favourite of the aesthetically astute, and design maestro numero uno -deserves a special mention on this blog.

With his academic and emotive approach to interiors, he has captured the attention of everyone from performing artists (Katia and Marielle Labèque), design professionals (Calvin Klein), and media personalities (Ellen DeGeneres) for decades. From his use of natural light to his wabi sabi inspired interiors, Vervoordt currently stands as the reigning king of design.


Everything needs a deep human reason
“I believe in the historical, not the merely decorative. I like depth, not superficiality – everything needs a deep human reason, and for me it is important to create something interesting, not just decorative. I find the spirit of things much more important than the look of things – I really don’t mind if things are ugly. They have their own beauty, if only one looks hard enough.”  – Axel Vervoordt, Story of a Style


On expressing inner life through interiors
“My task, as I have seen it from a very young age, has been to rediscover beautiful works of art, to save them for the future, to reveal them for what they are, to show them at their best, to give them a better place in the world – and, perhaps, by doing this, to create inner harmony and find new ways of expressing the inner life.”  – Axel Vervoordt, Story of a Style


On the art of living
“To me, “volledig”, the Flemish term I use a great deal to explain the philosophy on which I have founded my life and work, means “the fullness of emptiness”. Conjuring the space of the future out of the fullness of past taste. Keeping the very best and eliminating all but the essentials.
According to Tibetan tradition, the philosopher-leader’s mind should be wide enough to embrace paradox and contradiction, polarity and ambiguity, conflict and incompatibility.
For 30 years I have been interested in developing an art of living which can transform the ordinary object into an objet d’art and the everyday gesture into perfection – the fullness of emptiness.” – Axel Vervoordt, Story of a Style


On setting the scene for people & objects
“I love the tension between different objects and different cultures and I always let the space I am restoring inspire me. In decorating a house it is as exciting for me to bring out its history as it is to suit the character of the present owners, who must, of course, feel comfortable in their home. Above all, my task is to give things and people a better place in the world.”– Axel Vervoordt, Story of a Style

To learn more about Axel Vervoordt, his design company, gallery and family foundation click here

All images courtesy of

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