The partnership of Hutton Wilkinson and the late Tony Duquette is a special one that goes back almost a lifetime.
Wilkinson was in seventh grade when he first discovered the famous Tony Duquette in a LA Times Home magazine article featuring the artist and his wife of 46 years, Elizabeth.
Duquette was a famous artist and designer known for his stage and film sets, costume designs, jewelry designs, interiors, and sculptures – to hit on just some of his talents! Throughout his extensive and successful career he won many awards, including a Tony Award, and had his art displayed in numerous famous museums across the globe, including being the first American artist to be asked (and honored!) with a one-man exhibition at the Louvre in Paris.
Duquette was also known for his innovative art creations, including his new art form, called “Celebrational Environments”, where he created installations dedicated to certain topics. One such Celebrational Environment, Our Lady Queen of the Angels, was created as a gift to the people of Los Angeles to celebrate the bicentennial and was hugely successful.
Childhood Dreams Come True
Wilkinson’s obsession with the work of Duquette grew throughout the years. In 1970, when he was just seventeen, he left school and began working for the designer – a childhood dream come true! The two eventually became business partners who worked together for over 30 years, and five years before Duquette’s death in 1999, Wilkinson bought 50% of Tony Duquette Studios, Inc.
With the help of Wilkinson, Duquette was able to complete projects up until he died at the age of 85. Wilkinson then became the President and Artistic Director for the business and continues to serve in that capacity today.
As President and Artistic Director of Tony Duquette Studios, Inc, Wilkinson continues to present jewelry and home-furnishing collections inspired by designs he and Duquette created together throughout their partnership. He also has his own business where he creates interiors, costume jewelry, and home furnishings that are sold on the Home Shopping Network.
Wilkinson is known for, and proud of, his excessive style. He creates flamboyant pieces and interiors that use a mix of bold colors, gold leafing, patterns, colorful murals, and animal prints. He also incorporates unusual collectables from a variety of time periods and places all over the world.
Wilkinson at Home
In 2001, Wilkinson and his wife Ruth purchased Duquette’s 3000 square-foot, Beverly Hills home, Danwridge, and preserved it. It became the headquarters for Tony Duquette Studios, Inc and will remain unchanged to serve as future inspiration to the business.
The couple then built their own 4000 square-foot 3-story home next door, which overlooks Dawnridge and is connected by a beautiful garden. The home includes a grand circular staircase, a double height glass wall in the living room overlooking the tranquil pool and gardens, and is decorated with many Tony Duquette pieces and Elizabeth Duquette paintings.
As you can imagine, there is nothing minimalist about the Wilkinson home. What do you think about his bold and eclectic style?
See more from the Tony Duquette and Hutton Wilkinson collaboration here: http://tonyduquette.com
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