• Susan Dickenson

Raymond Waites is now 'Artemis'

Artemis is now the legal name of the man formerly known as Raymond Waites, the iconic moniker associated with

Artemis, photographed in the Art-Lite showcase at Frederick Cooper, High Point Market.Artemis, the man formerly known as "Raymond Waites," in the Frederick Cooper showroom, High Point Market.
nearly 50 years of design success in the home décor, fabrics, tabletop, wall paper, bedding, bath, rugs and furniture categories.

The announcement may come as a surprise to buyers visiting the Frederick Cooper showroom at the High Point Market this week, where the high-end lighting producer is launching an approximately 50-piece collection of Artemis' new Greco-Roman inspired lamps, accessories, chandeliers and garden stools in a palette of silver, white, crystal and taupe.

At a Saturday night debut party for the collection, called Art-Lite, Artemis spoke at length with Home Accents Today about the name change, which was required for legal reasons and the simple fact that the name is owned by someone other than the person formerly named Raymond Waites.

The story starts six years ago, Artemis explained, following his treatments for cancer and heart problems - a time in his life when he was pretty certain he artemis tagwas close to dying. "There was a board meeting, the (Raymond Waites Design) partners put all these restrictions on me, so I said ‘You know, if you all are so unhappy, why not just buy me out?'"

Via a grandfather clause, the designer was able to continue his designs for Lane Venture, Jaipur Rugs, Guildmaster and the Phillips Collection. Following the pre-market launch announcement for "Art-Lite by Raymond Waites," he was contacted by the RWD group.

"This was just a week ago, so it was very upsetting," Artemis said. "We weren't sure what we were going to do. Then a lawyer called and suggested I just change my name. And I said, ‘Change my name?' He said, ‘Yes, change your name to something else and then you can do any collection you want.'"

"I called (Frederick Cooper Creative Art Director) John Cunnningham and he said, ‘Why don't you call yourself Artemis ... the Greek god of the hunt ... Artemis ... that translates well to Art-Lite ...' and I said, ‘I like that. In fact, I think that's kind of great!' I called the lawyer and asked him to send the paperwork."

artemis and friendsArtemis and friends, at the launch party for the Art-Lite collection at Frederick Cooper.

So, henceforth his name is Artemis, as is the name on his mailbox, passport, legal documents, signature, and - by next market - home furnishings collections. Asked how he felt emotionally about the change, he called it a new beginning. "I think its fun. I'm approaching it as fun. It's also like it opens up everything I've been having trouble with - my hands are no longer tied."

"You know, Alexander Julian (who also has an eponymous collection with Frederick Cooper) came in here and said, ‘I'll give you a great story line. And it's true. Historically in Japan, following many years of success, an artist will change his or her name to show that it's the talent and not the name.'"

The Art-Lite Collection by Artemis is showing at the Frederick Cooper/Wildwood showroom, in the 200 Hamilton building.

 

Susan DickensonSusan Dickenson | Editor in Chief
sdickenson@homeaccentstoday.com

Susan Dickenson is the editor in chief of Home Accents Today, where she has spent more than a decade covering trending topics, best practices and news items pertaining to the manufacturing, retail and interior design segments of the home furnishings industry. A graduate of UNC, Dickenson spent 15 years in the Washington, D.C., area, writing and researching in both the public and private sector. After relocating to her native North Carolina in 2003, she freelanced as a writer of general interest, business, garden and home items for local and national publications before joining Home Accents Today in 2006 as retail editor.

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