You have been in the design and architecture industry for around 14 years, tell us how you began in your career in interior design?

It has been around 20 years working in the design, architecture and art related industries. My career as interior designer was an act of consecutive additions. Everything that happened in my professional life took me where I’m now. It has been a beautiful process: First I worked with architecture during the last years of my studies of architecture. Once I received my degree I worked with interior architecture and furniture (great Europeans brands). From here I moved into the art world: director of an art gallery, curator and finally producer for an artist. After 3-4 years working in this sector I did interior architecture and interior design.

Kitchen Kitchen

When I moved to London I worked predominantly in the bathroom and kitchen sector and from here I founded my company 5 years ago. Every step during my professional life allowed me to understand experience and learn about the different aspects involved in creating a “home”.

What’s your starting point for a design when a client comes to you?

The starting point has to be understanding not just the client’s brief but the client himself/herself. It is this understanding that allows focusing the design process towards creating an environment that relates completely to his/her/their life style.

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Tell us about one of your most memorable projects.

During these five years even though I’m specialized on residential projects one of the most memorable projects has been a commercial one but, funny enough, it relates 100% to a domestic environment. I was asked by the client to create a series of rooms that were the visual and functional expression of a confident, discerning and well established individual for whom design and a dynamic, stylish life style is important.

The project is a showroom that has: A kitchen at the core of the space, an imposing stairs, a hall that greets you with a sunken wine cellar, a dining room (multipurpose room) and a bar.

Cellar Cellar

The realization of this beautiful concept makes it a memorable project for me plus the fact that the client gave me the opportunity to design everything including a very special feature wall 5 mts high, a tapestry and the selection of the art work. The show room opens to the public at the end of November in East Grinstead, Hehku is its name.

How do you source interior decoration, lighting and furniture? Do you attend auctions, search online?

For me it is very important to be constantly updating my knowledge about design and art so I visit regularly trade shows, showrooms, auction houses, etc so I source pieces from all these sources plus online research.

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What Design Masters of the 20th and 21st century have inspired you?

It is  a very complicated question as I have an eclectic appreciation of beauty.  I feel related to the XX and XXI century pivotal moments more than to individuals:

XX Century: The Art Deco and The Bauhaus were for me great creators of beauty, design trends and styles that still are valid and inspiring.

XXI Century: The creation of LED light and the omnipresent use of technology (automation) are as inspiring as scary.

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How do you incorporate works of art within the interiors you design?

For me a house without art lacks individuality and character so it is very important for me to incorporate it in ways my clients feel comfortable and happy to live with: it may be prints, photography, paintings, tapestries, conceptual art, etc.

Use photography, art. Use photography, art.

How they are placed will depends on the space, the pieces around them, what the client wants to see always and what needs to be enjoyed sporadically.

What’s the best advice for someone searching for inspiration to redecorate, whether they’re selecting a few new pieces or having a complete overhaul?

For me the best advice is having a clear vision of what wants to be achieved, without that vision there won’t be consistency or harmony or taste. It will be just an accumulation of objects.

Tell us about your own home, what’s your favourite room? Do you have a special piece of furniture and how did you acquire it?

My favorite room in my home is my bedroom. I just moved recently so still in the making (working on the art pieces). My favorite piece in there is a Victorian cast iron work I rescued.  Every day it tells me about London, city I adore, my home.

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What are you own tastes in art? Any favourite artists or artworks?

There are two realities I’m interested in art: The beautiful and the sublime. From this perspective some of my favorite artists are: Monet, Modigliani, Munch, Piranessi, Marc Quinn, Tapies, Baselitz, Millais, Rossetti, Mona Hatoum, Mapplethorpe, Ben Nicholson, Thomas Ruff, Cindy Sherman, Burra, Malevitch, Richard Serra, Robert Motherwell, Shusaku Arakawa, Gego, etc

We thank Mr Diego Correa for the interview.

Get more information about his interior designs on Diego Correa's website.