A Los Angeles-based writer and interior designer, Mallery Roberts Morgan is the Los Angeles correspondent of Architectural Digest France and the co-curator of DIEM: TALKS DESIGN, an annual symposium offering culturally resonating discussions, panels, and keynotes from leaders in the fields of design, fashion, architecture, and fine arts.
Presented by the West Hollywood Design District, the 5th annual DIEM: TALKS DESIGN, curated by Roberts Morgan and Frances Anderton (host of KCRW’s Design and Architecture), will explore the theme of ‘Co-Everything’ and feature a series of panels addressing the most interesting issues and trends in culture and design today.
Roberts Morgan graciously lent her time for a Q&A with The Agency to discuss this year’s symposium and the role social media and collaboration play in her own design work.
What does ‘Co-Everything’ mean to you?
The really terrific thing about DIEM—what sets us apart from other symposiums throughout the year—is we are 100% content driven. Each spring we organise the DIEM Creative Council. It’s an informal roundtable of influencers and tastemakers whose opinions matter to us. We discuss the most important trends we see in the creative industries, and this is what informs our theme. The question that kept popping up this year was, ‘If you’re not sharing, are you losing out?’ This includes many forms of sharing, from social media, collective programming and co-working spaces to collaborative creativity.
Do you feel a person’s daily routine is influenced by the co-everything movement? Does social and/or digital media serve as the catalyst for this shift?
Checking social media when I get up in the morning has become a part of my routine. As a writer and designer I find it interesting and informative to start the day seeing what’s happening in the worlds of people I know and work with, or simply as a window into the world of popular culture. I do try to ‘curate’ my social media by eliminating anything that doesn’t feel informative. For example, I try to follow feeds on Instagram whose posts are well researched, thoughtful or creative. I also use social media as a tool to let people know what I’m doing: my latest design projects, an article I’ve written or keeping everyone up to date on an event like DIEM.
Is there someone in today’s society that you feel best emulates this concept?
The lifestyles of every millennial on the planet emulate some form of sharing.
You collaborate with clients, architects, and the like on many projects as an interior designer. How does collaboration impact your design work?
Collaboration is everything. I base all my interior design projects around the concept of curating a collection. My unique expertise comes from writing about design for nearly twenty years. The goal for each design project is that every piece we bring into the house tells at least a small part of the history of design. That way, when the children of my clients want to sell their parents furniture in forty years’ time, it won’t go to an estate sale or some long-forgotten storage room, it will go to Sotheby’s or Christie’s. Not because it’s the most expensive or rare, but because it has some intrinsic value due to its provenance. This creative process depends entirely on collaboration. First, the very personal collaboration with my clients, and then the broader and vastly important collaboration with the decorative artists, dealers, gallerists and artisans I depend on to create curated interiors.
DIEM: TALKS DESIGN will be held on November 11 at the West Hollywood Design District Showrooms. For more information or to register for the event, visit www.DIEMevent.com