Artist in Residence: Florence Balducci Puts Her Whimsical Touch on Your Morning Coffee Mug post image

Art Interviews

Artist in Residence: Florence Balducci Puts Her Whimsical Touch on Your Morning Coffee Mug

Charming and beautifully offbeat, Florence Balducci’s imaginative illustrations are like the fanciful drawings inside a children’s storybook. The Parisian artist’s signature quirky works now appear on Anthropologie monogrammed mugs, which make the perfect companion to your morning coffee.

To celebrate Anthropologie Home’s arrival at Nordstrom, Balducci created an original piece exclusively for us in our Downtown Seattle store. We caught up with the Paris-based artist as she prepared for this installation—an elaborate labor of love–to discuss her artistic process, from inspiration to execution, and how she plans the perfect dinner party around her tableware.

What inspires your illustrations?

Literature, nature, animals, London and my home in Paris—my inspiration comes from everywhere and everything. Also people inspire me: poets, writers, singers, actors and cinema, even science. Reading art books on a terrasse in Paris early in the morning is one of my favorite moments.   

Once you are feeling inspired, what comes next?

I’ll start by drawing the real idea—putting my thoughts onto the paper. It’s my favorite part. Then I’ll flip through books to help me build the story, sketch some more ideas and create a mood board. After that, I’ll talk to people, or the brand I’m working with, about the idea before starting on the final drawing. Finally, I draw, always with music on to help me concentrate.

What’s on your playlist?

David Bowie, Lou Doillon, or classical. 

Which mug is your favorite?

My favorite mugs are the “A,” the “M” and the “V.” “A” for the humor, “M” for the story, and “V” for the simplicity.

What can you tell me about your upcoming art installation?

The visual is a big red heart where we find some of the illustrations from the mugs all together like flowers, blooming from the top of the heart. I have the idea sketched on paper, now the challenger is to recreate it on canvas!

I understand you like to host dinner parties. Do you think about hosting while designing tableware?

The table is the center of the dinner party and so the first thing I do is think about what I want in the middle my table: a flower, a plant, a sentence, something vintage; a book, a movie—and that’s what inspires my the rest of my choices. It might help me pick the food I cook, or it could dictate what color I choose for dinnerware. After that’s settled, I choose the menu and begin to cook by 5pm, but planning the table is always the first step.

SHOP: Anthropologie Home