Architectural Digest joins Black Interior Designers Network to launch 'The Iconic Home Virtual Show House'

NEW YORK (WABC) -- For 100 years, Architectural Digest has been the leading authority in design. Featuring the work of some of the most sought after architects and designers in the world.

Now, Architectural Digest wants to lead the way in inclusivity, by amplifying the voices of African Americans in the industry. Its major effort kicks off Wednesday.

"Underrepresented voices need to be heard," said Amy Astley, Editor-in-Chief of Architectural Digest.

Astley joined forces with the Black Interior Designers Network to launch the Iconic Home.

"19 designers from 16 firms, all black designers designing incredible rooms," she said.

"They've been tremendous when it comes to making us feel comfortable enough to make this happen and be creative and be free as we should be," said Keia McSwain, President of Black Interior Designers Network.

This first of its kind virtual show house features photo-realistic renderings. It gives those looking for inspiration a totally immersive, shoppable experience. And it gives the designers who contributed a massive platform.

Samantha Josephat and Luis Medina of Studio 397 based in Brooklyn are responsible for the overall architectural design.

"We wanted to support Samantha, the 397th licensed black female architects in our country, in all the time of licensing architects," Astley said.

"I had the awesome opportunity of doing the wellness room," said Anthony Dunning, Travers Haven Design Firm.

The Manhattan-based interior designer went from selling furniture to designing spaces for newsmakers and big-name companies.

Dunning says he hopes this historic collaboration brings even more opportunity.

"Being exposed to those opportunities so that people can be comfortable dialing your number and saying, 'Hey, I want you to work on you know this large commercial property or I want you to work on my Hamptons home or my castle in France,' you know," Dunning said.

Astley says while she's proud of this effort, the iconic home is just the beginning.

The Iconic Home Virtual Show House runs from November 18-24.

RELATED: New app connects diverse college students with employers

----------
* Get Eyewitness News Delivered
* Follow us on YouTube
* More local news
* Send us a news tip
* Download the abc7NY app for breaking news alerts
Copyright © 2020 WABC-TV. All Rights Reserved.