Introducing the 2023 AD100 – today’s top talents in interior decoration, architecture, and landscape design. When we’re looking for incredible interiors that are liveable yet stunning, these are the names we always come back to. Stay tuned and discover the Hall of Fame of 2023’s AD100!
© Laziz Hamani
Belgian entrepreneur Axel Vervoordt is renowned for both his spectacular domestic interiors and his empire of art, antiques, and design deals. His astonishingly consistent style, which has come to be associated with Belgian design itself, is embodied in somber, minimalist, and rustic spaces with a neutral color scheme—with not a speck of color or pattern in sight. There’s no doubt that Vervoordt, an AD100 Hall of Famer, is a tastemaker; as new and old interior design fads come and go, many of our decorating obsessions can be linked back to him. Examples include low coffee tables and plaster walls.
© Laurian Ghinitoiu
One of today’s top architectural firms is led by Sir David Adjaye, a Tanzanian-born architect who is known for his use of angular, almost demanding forms and a distinctive palette of somber materials. Adjaye Associates, with offices in London, New York, and Accra, develops cutting-edge projects that are infused with ideas of cultural identity. A number of private apartments, including one in Brooklyn for artist Glenn Ligon, one in Tel Aviv for the Batsheva Dance Company, and one in New York City’s mixed-use Affirmation Tower are among the other works of the AD100 designer.
© Scott Frances
Deborah Berke, the first female dean of the Yale School of Architecture, infuses her work with an intellectual rigor that enables it to respond in novel yet wholly appealing ways to the site, surroundings, and customers’ needs. High-profile structures designed by her firm Deborah Berke Partners for prestigious universities like Harvard and Princeton are the furthest thing from ivory towers; instead, they fit effortlessly into their campuses and are open to the local community.
© Eric Piasecki
Ellie Cullman, a native New Yorker, has been running her interior design business for decades and offers her socially engaged clientele complex, personalized designs that frequently incorporate art. She co-founded Cullman & Kravis with her late partner Hedi Kravis, and the company creates spaces that stand out for their variety and mingling of hues, patterns, finishes, and time periods, reflecting a lively, modern take on traditional decoration (perhaps most notably in Cullman’s own Connecticut home).
Howard J. Backen
© Casey Dunn
California-based Backen & Backen – Architecture | Lifestyle | Wellbeing’s Howard J. Backen has a decades-long portfolio of housing, retail, and hospitality projects, as well as more than 40 wineries, that interact with and are inspired by the West Coast surroundings he has helped develop. The AD100 designer and his firm’s designs feature a pared-down aesthetic, natural materials, and large, wide spaces that beautifully frame the surroundings.
© Tom Mannion
The distinctive perspective of British interior designer Ilse Crawford has enabled her to produce ground-breaking rooms that have altered expectations about what cutting-edge design looks like. Ilse Crawford, a former writer and magazine editor, founded her design firm, Studioilse, in 2001. She has used an approach similar to an industrial design company to focus her creative energy on warm, welcoming residences (like this one in Stockholm) and hospitality projects that appreciate natural materials and elegant, hospitable settings that are nostalgic without being precious or extravagant.
© Vincent Leroux
India Mahdavi has contributed to redefining the aesthetic of opulent interiors for more than 20 years by giving them a whimsical and, most importantly, refined sense of color. The Iranian-born designer works from her Paris studio to produce colorful designs for homes, hotels, restaurants, furniture, accessories, and retail spaces. The Gallery at Sketch, her ground-breaking restaurant, was dubbed the world’s most Instagrammed restaurant in 2014. Its almost totally pink rendering can be credited with inspiring the industry to once again embrace color in a fresh and modern way.
© Matthew Hranek
Jacques Garcia is widely regarded as one of France’s top interior designers and architects today. The Villa Astor in Sorrento, Italy, and storied hotel projects like Paris’s Hôtel Costes, Marrakech’s La Mamounia, and New York’s Nomad are just a few examples of Garcia’s elaborately built, luxurious dwellings. Garcia has also amassed a portfolio that epitomizes classic French design.
© Nicolas Matheus
Jacques Grange, a Paris-based interior designer with a 50+ year career, is still going strong. One example is his most recent book, Jacques Grange: Recent Works, published by Rizzoli in 2021, which features 31 new projects in his lavish characteristic style. Yves Saint Laurent, Valentino Garavani, Princess Caroline of Monaco, and François Pinault are just a few of Grange’s notable clientele. He also incorporates a wide range of styles and historical periods into his interior designs.
© Mohamed Somji
The incredibly daring buildings created by French architect Jean Nouvel challenge all preconceived assumptions of conventional design. The Pritzker Prize-winning architect‘s museums, music halls, towers, and residential complexes each have their own distinctive style, playing with wide expanses of color and shapes that seem retro-futuristic. The Louvre Abu Dhabi, one of his most famous works, is made up of numerous white cubes covered by a huge dome made of millions of interlocking aluminum stars. It takes a lot of skill to create something entirely new for every commission.
© Miguel Flores-Vianna
John Stefanidis, an interior designer residing in the UK who was born in Egypt to Greek parents, has worked with a long list of notable customers, including Ann Getty, the Duke of Westminster, and Lord Rothschild. The AD100 designer has developed a reputation for adding quirky color pops and Mediterranean flair to his stately, classical designs throughout his career. John Stefanidis is well known for his interior design work, but he also creates furniture and fabric. He is frequently motivated by his travels, a client’s wants, or a strong hue.
© Manolo Yllera
Before Kelly Wearstler made a name for herself, New York was the undisputed hub of the American interior design industry. However, by introducing a distinctive, glitzy aesthetic to the local scene and playing with numerous 20th-century inspirations, including Hollywood Regency, to create a look all her own, Wearstler tilted the balance of design power toward Los Angeles.
© Ryosei Watanabe
Large-scale avant-garde work helped Kengo Kuma establish his reputation. The Japanese architect draws influence from Japan’s traditional element-based architecture and frequently uses organic materials like stone and wood. In addition to his architectural work, he is praised for his thought-provoking writing. The most recent of his numerous publications, Kengo Kuma: My Life as an Architect in Tokyo, was released in 2021.
© Allan Pollok Morris
One of France’s most famous landscape designers, Louis Benech is a fixture in his home country’s elite scene. The Paris-based AD100 landscape designer has a long client list of well-known figures from the cultural establishment, including Yves Saint Laurent and, more recently, Diane von Furstenberg, and has established a reputation as a designer who can adapt French ideals in various ways for a variety of locations after receiving international recognition in 1990 following his renovation of the Tuileries in Paris’ first arrondissement. He has recently created outdoor furniture for companies like Royal Botania and Edmond & Fils.
© Miguel Flores-Vianna
Madison Cox maintains a low profile, practically just appearing as a shadow of himself online. But his creations speak for him. The garden designer has created some of the most impressive public and private gardens, including the garden at the Aga Khan Centre in London and the 1,000-acre landscape of Anne Bass’s Connecticut estate and Marella Agnelli’s Ain Kassimou.
© Iwan Baan
Renzo Piano, an Italian native now living in Genoa, has built famous museums, gleaming corporate headquarters, and urban residential skyscrapers that have defined modern architecture in the 20th and 21st centuries. Renzo Piano eventually opted for a design of glass-and-steel structures that have the uncanny ability to simultaneously (and seamlessly) create a sense of identity and weightlessness after completing his ground-breaking and contentious inside-out Centre Pompidou museum in Paris (with Richard Rogers) in 1977.
© Robert Couturier
Since he immigrated to the United States from France in the 1980s, shortly after receiving his design degree, Robert Couturier has been a mainstay of the New York interior design scene. His career was begun when French-British financier Sir James Goldsmith recruited him at a young age to construct a significant estate in Mexico. This led to many unusual commissions. Today, the attractive and friendly genius decorates penthouses, mansions, and opulent flats in a variety of styles, from traditional French décor to the fully contemporary, with a blend of grandeur and drama and bursts of color.
© Roger Davies
Rose Tarlow, a Los Angeles-based interior designer, antiques dealer, and proprietor of a boutique, has been defining Californian style for decades. With a new flagship location for her furniture, lighting, and fabric company, Rose Tarlow Melrose House, in Beverly Hills and an upcoming interiors book, Tarlow has cemented her reputation as a genuine decorator’s decorator. Tarlow has designed homes for celebrities like Oprah Winfrey and David Geffen with a love of natural materials, especially all things wood, and soulful, rustic furnishings in solid, neutral colors.
© Foster + Partners
Because of his emphasis on technical innovation, sustainability, and purposefulness, British architect Norman Foster, winner of the Pritzker Prize, and his long-standing firm Foster + Partners have changed how architecture may be utilized to support change in contemporary life. His portfolio includes everything from private homes and furniture to airports (including a brand-new airport in Kuwait) and museums, but his style has been particularly influential in office buildings, such as his HSBC Tower in Hong Kong from 1986 and the circular Apple Park in Cupertino, California, from 2018.
© Patrick Tourneboeuf
Tadao Ando, a Japanese architect who won the Pritzker Prize, mostly uses the material concrete in his work and continually exemplifies how architecture can coexist peacefully with nature and its surroundings, even with little or no ornamentation. His calm, perforated-concrete buildings appear to serve a variety of purposes, including those of private residences, museums, and even churches.