Artist and designer Hadiya Williams has launched a new decor collection of pillows and wall coverings with F. Schumacher & Co.
The collection, Williams says, was inspired by her search for home, a theme in the film “The Wiz.” The movie’s visuals also influenced the collection.
“I was inspired by ‘The Wiz,’ one of my favorite films/musicals — from the story to the style, the design and visuals from the mid- to late 1970s,” she says.
Williams is chief executive officer of Black Pepper Paperie Co., a Washington, D.C.-based mixed media art and design studio she founded in 2017. Her work includes one-of-a-kind visual art, surface design and ceramic art, as well as paper goods, apparel and home decor.
She says that, like many Black Americans, she is always seeking to make connections to “what feels like home, lineage, safety and community” and to understand her “familial foundation.” History, cultural memory, migration and ritual are major influences on her thought process and designs.
“I also decided to use the idea of ‘way finding’ as the foundation for this (Schumacher) collection,” Williams says. “I was inspired by the way we move and shift ourselves for spiritual and physical survival or respite.”
Schumacher, with headquarters in New York and Fort Mill, South Carolina, offers fabrics, paint, wall coverings, trims, rugs, pillows, accessories and other items to the interior design industry. It has more than a dozen showrooms throughout the United States.
In introducing the collection with Schumacher, Williams says she is honored to share an artistic journey with Lois Mailou Jones, a pioneering Black artist who worked as a successful pattern designer for Schumacher during the 1930s.
Williams, a member of The Black Artists and Designers Guild and The Art Brand Alliance, has also done product collaborations with Wall Pops (peel-and-stick wallpaper), West Elm (wall art) and Walpa, a Japanese wallpaper company.