This week in our Inspirations interview series, CoCo Design Partner Jenny Madden tells us about her experience with interior design and how art is an important part of it. Her company, Jenny Madden Design, is a full service interior design firm working with clients in the greater New York City area, offering client-oriented design assistance in both residential and commercial spaces.
CoCo: Tell us about your training and experience in design.
Jenny: I started out by studying architecture at Columbia University in New York City. It was a great foundation, and of course the city itself has plenty of design inspiration. I gained experience at both architecture and interiors firms and even spent several years at a general contracting company, which has given me unique expertise on the implementation side of design. My team brings a lot of valuable experience to our projects as well. Maggie is a fellow designer licensed in architecture in both NY and NJ and Greg is on top of the bookkeeping ensuring all of our product orders are placed with care.
CoCo: What sort of work/projects do you take on?
Jenny: Jenny Madden Design primarily works on residential projects. Those projects range widely from a master bedroom update in Manhattan to a full home design for a new construction beach house. Although the project scope can vary, all projects start out the same way: with a conversation. I can’t design for a client until I get to know him/her.
CoCo: How important is art in your work?
Jenny: The right piece of artwork can transform a space from simply well-designed to absolutely stunning. One of the most rewarding parts of my role is seeing the way the many pieces in a room come together to create a cohesive space on installation day. Artwork plays an incredibly important part as it adds a personality to a room that other design factors like furniture pieces, space plans or color schemes alone cannot. A well-designed room will still feel unfinished until the artwork is hung, even in a small space like a bathroom.
CoCo: Tell us about an artist with whom you have collaborated in the past.
Jenny: I have a great collaborative relationship with James Chororos, a NYC-based photographer. I even have two of his pieces in my own home! He started out in architecture as well so we have a common perspective. His portfolio is amazing and I love the use of artistic photography in certain spaces. Each artistic medium has its place!
CoCo: Describe one of your favorite clients. What made it fun and productive to work with them?
Jenny: I love working with each one of my clients! I enjoy the variety that comes with different personality types, project scopes and budgets – as they say “variety is the spice of life.” I’ll highlight one recent client with whom I grew especially close. The project was a complete house remodel for a family of five that spanned about 15 months. These clients were energetic, decisive and positive throughout the project, which made our meetings and site visits something to look forward to. They were also straightforward and transparent with both their budget and design style.
From a design standpoint, they were willing to take risks that resulted in stunning and personalized spaces. It makes me so happy to see how much the family is enjoying their new house.