Roman and Williams is, first and foremost, focused on people and their experiences of a space. Firm principals Robin Standefer and Stephen Alesch founded Roman and Williams Buildings and Interiors, named after their grandfathers, in New York City in 2002. Having worked together for a decade designing sets for significant Hollywood films, the pair took their first steps away from film when Ben Stiller asked them to design a home for him in Los Angeles; Roman and Williams was born and the firm hasn’t looked back since.
We believe that the story of a space is just as important as the design and the objects that go into it – it all plays into the experience. As a firm, we are never focused on a definitive style from any era. We love to strip things down to their essence – instead of design, we strive for integrity and character. We consistently find the tension between spontaneity and vigor, refinement and rebellion, and past and future. We focus on a vernacular language, because vernacular is beyond design. It’s from the heart.
We are known for our contradictions and our use of layers and eclecticism. We take a traditional foundation and then rebel against it with lively irreverence. We design unselfconsciously, and our secret is to focus on things we love. We never allow ourselves to be limited by what we did last and search for the neglected and the unused. Our wish is to stimulate our spaces, raise their temperature, and to create voltage in the environment and use them to inspire.
At Roman and Williams, we are interested in spaces and objects that people can truly use and things that genuinely last. We are devoted to rebelling against disposability and the common stereotypes of what it means to be “modern” today.