This week, at a reception at the Solomon R Guggenheim Museum, Benjamin Moore announced their pick for “Color of the Year.” And it’s a surprising one: Caliente AF-290. It’s a vibrant, energetic color, which I love. And I think will brighten up many people’s homes, should they be bold enough to give it a try. It’s an unconventional choice for sure, but certainly more exciting than their 2016 choice, Simply White.
“Caliente is… a lush carpet rolled out for a grand arrival; the assured backdrop for a book-lined library; a powerful first impression on a glossy front door. The eye can’t help but follow its bold strokes…”
—Ellen O’Neill, Benjamin Moore & Co.
And considering they have 3500 hues to choose from, it’s no easy feat to pick a winner. A lot of cultural research goes into making the pick. For instance- red made starring media appearance in shows like Handmaid’s tale and Twin peaks. It graced the walls of the newly restored TWA lounge in L.A. It was all over the runways (and continues to be for Spring 18), and at the Comme des Garcons show at the Met. In speaking with Architectural Digest, Ellen O’Neil, Director of Strategic Design Development, gave a little background on how they landed on their surprising pick:
“This year I made the inevitable detour to go to the Women’s March in D.C. the weekend before I went to Paris. Looking out on the mall you just saw this undulating wave of color—it was the pink spectrum, everything from shocking to dusty rose to red. It was incredible to see that largesse of color…So we started talking about famous red rooms—Diana Vreeland’s apartment, Carolina Herrera’s apartment… I remember going to the new Ritz Bar in Paris and what that bar felt like. When we were in Milan and Paris all the Gucci stores were paneled in channeled red velvet—it’s this cloak of luxury. You just felt like something important always happens in a red room.”
I may be biased, as I painted my former kitchen red, and currently have red Scalamandre zebra wallpaper in my current kitchen, but I think there’s so many possible uses for this powerful color. Even if it’s not covering a wall, but just a pop color pillow, a bold upholstered chair, or a bright red artwork, it can really bring a room to life. Here’s hoping the general public agrees!