Designer Spotlight

Q&A with Christine Markatos Lowe

This week, Saatchi Art’s Director of Art Advisory to the Trade Hayley Miner chatted with designer Christine Markatos Lowe about her love of flowers, Matisse and The Grateful Dead. 

Christine Markatos Designadmin-ajax, a residential design studio founded in 2005, is best described as an imaginative union of modern and classical influences where elegant rooms are enlivened with a fresh mixture of pattern, color and texture. It is founder Christine Markatos’ training in drawing, sculpture, and printmaking that serves as the groundwork for her aesthetic inclinations. She brings a unique artistic perspective to each interior she designs, and her passion for detail is showcased in sophisticated spaces customized to enhance her clients’ lifestyles.

A survey of Markatos’ interiors shows an elegant, serene and always interesting collection of images. Making use of vibrant yet neutral palates, natural materials and striking art, Markatos manages to singularly hone in on a unique combination of her clients’ actual lifestyles – as well as dream interiors. Markatos’ work spans the nation with major projects in New York City, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Hawaii. Each design is customized to answer the needs of the individual homeowner, while remaining appropriate to scale and setting. Current projects include an estate in Santa Monica, a residence at the Four Seasons at Hualalai, a Greenwich Village duplex, and the new Katharine Kidd Boutique – a Los Angeles retail showcase for the eponymous fashion designer.


How would you describe your taste in art?

Varied! I’m drawn to abstract paintings but also love photography and black and white figurative drawings.

What type of art do you collect?

I collect black and white drawings and I’m crazy for flowers. James Welling has an incredible series of colorful abstract leaves that I admire.

What is the one work of art you would want to own if you had an infinite budget?

If I could own anything, it would be The Open Window by Henri Matisse. It lives at the National Gallery and was recently part of a group show at LACMA. It’s a fauvist painting and the colors explode off the canvas. I want to walk into that seaside room and never leave!

What music do you have on your playlist?

I love all different types of music. I have a wide range of favorite artists on my play list from Jerry Garcia to Jack White. I still enjoy composing playlists to suit my mood.

How do you select art for your design projects?

I work with an art advisor who I take to my clients’ homes where we go over what my client’s art desires are and how to best mix that with the house aesthetic. Then the fun begins!  Choosing art is such a personal experience and I have found that by trying different pieces in the house we often are surprised by what works.

Want to work with an Art Advisor of your own? Work with a Saatchi Art curator–it’s free.