INTERVIEW: MARIE BURGOS

Designer Marie Burgos is a world renowned interior designer and artist. In this interview, she takes us through her exciting journey in design, international inspirations from Paris to the Caribbean, and her creative process in building her masterpieces.

54KIBO: CAN YOU TELL US A BIT ABOUT YOUR PATH TO A CAREER IN DESIGN?

MB: In my life, I aspired for more balance, happiness, and harmony. Through Feng Shui, I learned that my home environment had a huge influence on my emotions, achievements, and happiness. I’ve always admired the architecture and beauty of Paris, my native country, and with a family that originated from the beautiful island of Martinique, I experienced the color and natural elements of nature in the Caribbean. My mother is a painter, one of my brothers is an executive chef, the other a musician, and my husband is a photographer! For years, I was the only one working in a very corporate career as a General Manager of restaurants, training teams and opening new stores. I lived in Paris, London, Luxembourg, NY, and finally LA. It’s in NY that the need to use my natural creativity began kicking in, the rest is history!

My company was founded in 2007 in NY, focusing on high-end residential design. Then we started working in the hospitality and commercial industry, designing hotel rooms and offices. We expanded our office to the West Coast in 2018 and launched our first furniture collection.

54KIBO: WHAT IS YOUR CREATIVE PROCESS?

MB: In Interior design, I focus on listening and observing to be able to grasp as much as possible of my clients’ personality and visions, as inspiration for their space. The first meeting is always very important to start establishing a bond with my clients and also have a feel of the space. Before starting the design process, I think about the ideal lifestyle and how I could bring beauty, but also, supportive energy to their home or office.  

When I start designing, I have a concept in mind, then drawings, selection of items, and budget start coming in play to compose a design presentation that will wow them and then actually implement the project with the highest quality of service. The next step is CAD drawings, and manufacturing hand-in-hand with our makers to create the perfect piece. I like to have great relationships with my team, my vendors, and my collaborators too so we can create the best products for my clients.

54KIBO: INSPIRATION FOR YOUR COLLECTION? FAVORITE ITEM?

MB: When creating pieces for my collection, it is more of a husband and wife bonding team. My husband draws beautifully. We create pieces that are inspired by our Caribbean heritage and resonate with our sense of comfort.  

Our goal is not only in the interiors that we design, but also, to provide that sensation and feel of wellbeing when people sit in our chairs and live with our light fixtures or accents. We like to balance Yin and Yang by pairing straight lines with curves, as you can see on our Milo and Cayenne chairs. Also, pairing hard surfaces with plush sofas, layering material for richness and using the beautiful colors of our island. 

My favorite item is our Milo Chair, which is named after our son Miles. This chair is generous, conformable, with a lively color, made by Mom and Dad and very authentic like our Miles! 

54KIBO: WHAT INTRIGUED YOU TO JOIN 54KIBO?

MB: I see more and more African diaspora influences in the world of design. Rich colors and patterns inspired by Africa and the Caribbean are appearing... I love that 54kibo exclusively showcases the craftsmanship of artists and designers of the African Diaspora! It is so important to support our art and value it highly, as it should be. You are giving us a platform to shine and grow. I wish many more beautiful artists’ work will appear on your platform.  

I love the necklace-inspired lampshades by Candice Lawrence. They are contemporary, feminine-looking, and authentic at the same time. I love the fact that they’re handmade so a lot of love and craftsmanship was put into them. I already purchased 2 for some of my design projects! 


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