Artists

  • Jean GIREL

    Jean GIREL

    Ceramic

    here
  • Serge AMORUSO

    Serge AMORUSO

    Leatherwork

    here
  • Christian BONNET

    Christian BONNET

    Tortoiseshell Art

    here
  • Roland DARASPE

    Roland DARASPE

    Gold and Silver Smithing

    here
  • François-Xavier RICHARD

    François-Xavier RICHARD

    Hand blocked Wallpaper

    here
  • Lison DE CAUNES

    Lison DE CAUNES

    Straw Marquetry

    here
  • Nathanaël LE BERRE

    Nathanaël LE BERRE

    Freehand Metalwork

    here
  • Michel HEURTAULT

    Michel HEURTAULT

    Umbrella and Parasol Design

    here
  • Sylvain LE GUEN

    Sylvain LE GUEN

    Fan Design

    here
  • Pietro SEMINELLI

    Pietro SEMINELLI

    Pleated Textile Design

    here
  • Fanny BOUCHER

    Fanny BOUCHER

    Heliogravure

    here
  • Laurent NOGUES

    Laurent NOGUES

    Embossing(Gavtrage)

    here
  • Gérard DESQUAND

    Gérard DESQUAND

    Heraldic Engraving

    here
  • Nelly SAUNIER

    Nelly SAUNIER

    Feather Art

    here
  • Emmanuel BARROIS

    Emmanuel BARROIS

    Glasswork

    here

Movie(3:20)

Jean GIREL

Ceramist

Ceramic artist Jean Girel believes that ‘Pottery speaks to all the senses. It makes them intelligent, it gives them a soul.’ As with all the artistic craftsmen and women exhibited here, his approach is a life choice, an ongoing passion, a vocation whose purpose transcends the artist, to become something much broader. With humility, he observes nature, experiments with techniques, even trying to do what no one else had ever attempted: inventing tools, building kilns, documenting propositions in dozens of notebooks, destroying the works that do not attain the utmost level of excellence. He considers that each piece must ‘have an unexpected result, something that renews his desire to create’. Bringing together several of his ceramic series, the exhibition tells the story of the artistic and human journey that he has been on for forty years: to rediscover the technique, which had been lost since the Jian potters of the Song Dynasty, of the ‘Yohen Tenmoku’ bowls, whose outside glaze takes on astounding iridescent hues, while inside, a galaxy of round and oval patterns evokes ‘a starry night sparkling in the sky’. There are only four left in the world. The presentation of the master potter’s research, through about sixty Yohen Tenmoku, is in itself a remarkable event in the world of ceramics.

Jean Girel discovered the potter’s wheel when he was ten years old and was introduced to the craft a few years later by a traditional potter. However, after studying at the Ecole des Beaux Arts in Macon and obtaining a Bachelor in Fine Arts in Paris, he embarked on a career as a painter. During a visit to the Guimet Museum in Paris, he came across stoneware from the Chinese Song Dynasty (10th to 13th century) – a decisive encounter that steered him toward what would be his life’s work: in 1975, he decided to dedicate himself exclusively to ceramics. In 2008, he fulfilled the dream of every potter to set up an atelier next to his own clay deposit, on the site of a former tillery. Girel has published several books, including La Sagesse du Potier [The wisdom of the Potter] in 2004, Brève histoire de la céramique [A brief history of ceramics] in 2014 and La céramique song ou l'art des cinq éléments [Song ceramics or the art of the five elements] in 2015. He was a painter first, and it is with the eyes of a painter that he observes nature, aspiring to share through his ceramics the emotion that he feels in front of a landscape. For the past 40 years, he has been on a passionate journey, an exceptional human and artistic adventure: to rediscover the technique, which had been lost since the Jian potters of the Song Dynasty, of the Yohen Tenmoku tea bowls, of which there are only four left in the world – three of them in Japan, where they are considered to be national treasures. The bowls are kept at the Fujita Museum in Osaka, the Ryokoin in Kyoto and the Seikado Bunko Art Museum in Tokyo.

Master of Art since 2000
Chevalier of the Order of Arts and Letters in 2007

https://www.jeangirel.fr

Movie(3:15)

Serge AMORUSO

Leather worker

It is custom work that characterises Serge Amoruso’s creations, each of which is designed to ful l his clients’ needs or desires. Exploring the combination between varied materials, different kinds of leathers blended with titanium, carbon bre, ivory or meteorite fragments, Amoruso’s goal is to always go beyond what is asked of him. With the obsession of doing things ‘a bit differently’, he brings out the beauty of the materials and elicits contrasting emotions, using leather, a medium that is imprinted by the marks left by time.

Venetian-born and Parisian by adoption, Serge Amoruso started to work at an early age in his cabinetmaker father’s workshop. When he was 15, he opted to work with leather, fascinated by the sensuality of the skins and the multiple possibilities presented by this natural material. He trained at the Ecole Grégoire-Ferrandi, where he graduated as a saddlery and leather goods craftsman in 1978. Seven years spent at Hermès, in the prestigious ‘trunk atelier’, allowed him the acquire the knowledge and skills to master all the production stages necessary to create an object in high-end leather work, and to value elegance above all else. He then spent ten years sharing his passion with disadvantaged youth, while at the same time going on an inner quest: he walked the Zanskar Range, climbed the Himalaya twice, and travelled to Japan to perfect his aikido skills.

In 1995, he opened an atelier in Paris, where he continues to receive clients and create custom-made objects of desire for them. From leather goods to furniture, a cigar humidor or a scooter coated in alligator skin, an elevator covered in galuchat or the interior ttings of a boat, Amoruso, who believes that ‘each piece is a story’, transforms the wildest dreams into reality, accepting the most audacious orders, astounding his clients and exceeding their expectations. The master leather worker enjoys combining rare materials, pieces of ebony or rosewood, elements of mammoth ivory or meteorite fragments. On his quest for innovation, experimenting with new combinations, he uses, for some of his creations, titanium or carbon bre. Amoruso cultivates an ongoing relationship with Japan, where he goes twice a year, with much joy.

Master of Art since 2006

http://www.sergeamoruso.fr

Movie(3:15)

Christian BONNET

Tortoiseshell artisan – spectacle-maker

A true magician, Christian Bonnet enhances everyday objects, combining the beauty and transparency of the tortoiseshell with a grafting technique that he is the only person in the world to master. Whether he is conceiving bespoke eyeglasses for the most illustrious clients – from Le Corbusier to Yves Saint-Laurent–, restoring ancient objects or creating tortoiseshell sculptures, Bonnet uses his talent and intimate knowledge of tortoiseshell to create exceptional objects, inventing technical solutions and new aesthetics.

Christian Bonnet is one of the last tortoiseshell artisans in France. The successor of a family tradition that spans three generations, he learnt to work this noble and natural material from the age of fourteen, training as a spectacle maker with his father, while taking theoretical classes at the Pasteur optical school. In 1980, he took over as head of Maison Bonnet, which had been founded by his father thirty years earlier. Beyond his family legacy, Christian Bonnet is also the unique depositary of the skills, workshop secrets and tools of the last tabletiers, who have slowly disappeared, making him the last guardian of this ancestral tradition dating from Antiquity: the art of the tortoiseshell. Bonnet is passionate about tortoiseshell, from the richness of its colours – blood-red to honey yellow and multiple shades of amber – to the magic of its transparencies. The artist does not only play with aesthetic possibilities, he takes advantage of the organic specificities of tortoiseshell. He likes to share his love of tortoiseshell, be it explaining his craft to a neophyte who is lucky enough to visit his workshop, or meeting his Japanese counterpart Araki Hitochi, with whom he exchanges and collaborates with occasionally; the two men compare perspectives on their art, which, in their own way and according to their cultural heritage, they both master.

Master of Art since 2000
Living Heritage Company label in 2015
Chevalier of the Legion of Honour in 2008

https://www.maisonbonnet.com


©JYLSC

Movie(3:15)

Roland DARASPE

Silversmith

Compared to the delicate work of the feather-artist or the fan-maker, the physical aspect of the silversmith's work introduces us to a new relation between the artist and his material of choice. Roland Daraspe considers that the noise and vibration of his tools on metal are part of his creation process and dreams up contemporary creations that are both object and sculpture. Creating facets on the surface or hammering in delicate impacts, he invents surprising gradients, experimenting with silver and copper alloys.

From his initial training as a coppersmith and then in aeronautical mechanics, Roland Daraspe has retained his love of metalwork, a mastery of the hammer and a taste for physically defying his material of choice. When he decided to dedicate himself to silverwork in 1978, it was as an autodidact. Just over a decade later, in the early 1990s, a solo exhibition at the Bordeaux Museum of Decorative Arts was recognising his work as a master craftsman. Since then, commissions from collectors, museums and French institutions have been unwavering, giving him the freedom to push his craft further, developing shapes, experimenting with new techniques, combining metal alloys and coupling silver leaf (his material of choice) with snake wood or hard stones. Creating facets on the surface or hammering in delicate impacts, he invents surprising gradients, juxtaposing silver with nickel silver, a zinc, silver and copper alloy; doubling his pieces with silver-gilt; or revisiting the Japanese Mokume-gane technique, also known as ‘wood eye metal’, which creates the illusion of natural wood grain by overlaying, welding and laminating different metals, resulting in vibrant colour effects. Nature, which the silversmith lives in proximity to, is often an inspiration, influencing the shape of his objects, where harmony meets perfection, sensuality meets precision, and rigour meets creativity.

Master of Art since 2002
Living Heritage Company label in 2006
Liliane Bettencourt Prize for the Intelligence of the Hand in 2006

http://daraspe.com

Movie(3:16)

François-Xavier RICHARD

Wallpaper creator

Since discovering this medium, François-Xavier Richard has made it his ambition, with audacity and curiosity, to experiment with all the possibilities offered by wallpaper, devising his own tools and machines and using new technology to revisit techniques that had fallen into disuse since the 16th century, like stone paper. Whether he is designing new motifs for his personal collection or restoring ancient wallpapers from the 18th and 19th centuries, his creation is as much intertwined with the past as it is with the present.

A painter, sculptor and engraver, François-Xavier Richard graduated from the Ecole nationale supérieure des beaux-arts in Angers, and first sought a career as a set designer and scenographer for the theatre. In his early explorations, he researched artisanal techniques such as egg tempera, stamping and wood engraving. In 1997, he discovered hand-block wallpaper printing at the Maury atelier in Tours – one of the last manufacturers using this technique – and decided to focus on this 18th-century tradition, which had been completely abandoned since the mid 20th century. Two years later, at the age of 27, he founded the Offard atelier, an artisanal manufacturing company that specialised in the restoration of ancient wallpapers for the Monuments Historiques (Historical Buildings society), and the creation of bespoke wallpapers for luxury houses, designers, decorators and artists. In a spirit of experimentation and innovation, the Offard atelier combines traditional processes with new technology; using the natural pigments or rabbit-skin glue that have been used for centuries, printing paper one colour at a time, applying motifs on board-shaped blocks that are passed through hand-operated presses, while at the same using computers to print the blocks digitally.

Living Heritage Company label in 2006
Liliane Bettencourt Prize for the Intelligence of the Hand in 2009
Laureate of the Villa Kujoyama artists' residence programme in Kyoto in 2017

http://www.atelierdoffard.com

Movie(3:14)

Lison DE CAUNES

Straw marquetry

Lison de Caunes learnt the art of straw marquetry by restoring ancient pieces for twenty years, before dedicating herself to creating unique pieces that revisit this French 18th-century artistic craft, a staple of the Art Deco movement, of which her grandfather André Groult was a distinguished representative. In collaboration with the designers, decorators and luxury houses that commission her work, she transforms the simplest of fibres into precious materials. Luxury born from a simple material, this technique derived from a French historical heritage that has been reinvented, is accomplished, with this object, to perfection.

After studying bookbinding and gilding at the Union des Arts décoratifs, Lison de Caunes experimented with different rare materials, from galuchat to eggshell and parchment. Fascinated by the discovery of a commode in straw marquetry in the window of an antique shop, she decided to dedicate herself to the craft, reviving a family passion inherited from her grandfather, the famous decorator André Groult. Surrounded by objects created by her grandfather and armed with the tools he left her, it is first by restoring ancient pieces – from private collections or museums, or those picked up in antique shops – that she learned the skills and techniques, the subtlety and precision of straw marquetry. It is in contact with these objects of the past, testimonials of a remarkable knowledge, that she was able to revive a craft commonly used in the decorative arts between the 17th and 19th centuries, before falling into disuse and then reappearing sporadically in the Art Deco style of the 1920s. She decided at the end of the 1990s to devote herself mostly to creating her own objects while also working in collaboration with well-known designers and interior decorators. A humble material, straw demands in fact patience and precision, passion and knowledge, talent and creativity to transform into a noble and luxurious surface, rare and precious. A craftswoman whose expertise is recognised around the world, she is also something of a historian, regularly organising exhibitions and publishing books on straw marquetry, telling the story of its beginnings as well as its current perspective, offering an overview of the countries where it is used, highlighting its uniqueness and revealing its wealth.

Master of Art since 1998
Living Heritage Company label in 2016
Chevalière of the Legion of Honour in 2011

http://www.lisondecaunes.com


©GILLES TRILLARD

Movie(3:17)

Nathanaël LE BERRE

Freehand metalworker

Freehand metalworker Nathanaël Le Berre is always pushing further the limits between his creations – notably a pair of side tables created especially for this exhibition – and the field of sculpture. Exploring the complexity of shapes, experimenting with chemical patinas, he has fashioned his identity and singularity through his medium.

Nathanaël Le Berre studied stained glass at the Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Arts Appliqués et des Métiers d’Art, before choosing to dedicate himself to metalwork. It is at the school that he first discovered he could express his thoughts and inner world through the ancient technique of metalwork, using a sheet of steel, tin, brass or copper, on which he could create – from a flat surface – form and space. After graduating, he went on to perfect his skills in the workshop of sculptor Hervé Wahlen, while, at the same time, working for an ironwork designer and different silversmiths. In 2004, he set up his own workshop, bought the tools, the steel hammers and the boxwood mallet of Gabriel René Lacroix, a renowned metalworker from the 1920s, and started on the solitary path of personal creation. His repertoire of shapes started slowly to expand, his range of patinas to widen, taking him further and further in the exploration of possibilities offered by the metals he defies, tirelessly, in a sort of ascetic practice that is always rigorous and impassioned. The sacred and mystical influences from his childhood permeate his creations that, instilled with a spiritual dimension, reveal the invisible. Defining himself as a sculptor who uses the traditional and artisanal techniques of metalwork, Le Berre combines the discipline of the craft with freedom of expression. From the physical work that goes into hammering a metal sheet, he is able to create emotions. From the tension of volumes, the way they bend and unbend, the circulation of energy through vacuums and solids, emerges a sensation of serenity, infusing each piece with an invitation to meditate on nature, humanity, metal and time – all of which feed his creative process.

Liliane Bettencourt Prize for the Intelligence of the Hand in 2014

http://nathanael-leberre.com

Movie(3:18)

Michel HEURTAULT

Creator and restorer of umbrellas and parasols

To breathe beauty into everyday life, umbrella-maker Michel Heurtault spends his days recreating, restoring and designing exceptional umbrellas and parasols. Fascinated by these objects since his childhood – objects for which he sees endless creative possibilities – Heurtault adds a touch of the past, with infinite attention to detail (a handle or a piece of fabric) in every one of his contemporary creations, a habit dating from his days as a costume-maker for the theatre.

Umbrellas were the first toys of Michel Heurtault; as a child, he would disassemble them to understand their mechanism and replicate their architecture. This passion never left him, becoming his life and his art. Without any formal training, but with a respect for fine materials and a quest for beauty, he taught himself the subtlety of the fabric’s alteration, the complexity of the cut, and the demands of the assembly work. Considered the most passionate among the collectors of umbrellas and parasols (there are more than 2000 in his collection, which for 30 years has nourished his imagination and his creations), Heurtault has an encyclopaedic knowledge not only of the object and its history but also of its styles, fashions, shapes and materials. The Parasolerie Heurtault, where ancient techniques are perpetuated and a heritage is shared with future generations, received the Living Heritage Company label in 2011.

Master of Art since 2013
Living Heritage Company label in 2011

http://parasolerieheurtault.com


©Greg GONZALEZ

Movie(3:20)

Sylvain LE GUEN

Fan-maker

Sylvain Le Guen blurs the line between object and work of art. He explores ‘the folds within the folds’, opening up new dimensions, revealing the surprise of a complex origami design that pops up when the fan is opened. One of the youngest French Masters of Art, Le Guen devises unexpected combinations of materials, coupling ancient montures (mounts) with modern leafs.

Moved by the magic of a fan that he played with when he was eight years old, Sylvain Le Guen started exploring the mechanisms of this object that has fascinated him ever since. He created his first fan when he was ten, and then taught himself progressively the art of these little treasures of ingenuity. The restoration of ancient pieces helped him along his journey of technical discovery of the objet, the knowledge of its history and symbolism – a sign of power or a status symbol – before evolving into a symbol of elegance at the beginning of the 20th century. In 2001, Serge Davoudian, an antique dealer, and Fabienne Falluel, the chief curator of the Galliera fashion museum in Paris, both of whom encouraged him to make it his living. In his atelier, which he moved to the Drôme region in 2005, he alternates between the restoration of ancient fans, orders for collectors and the cinema – in 2006 he created 29 fans for Sofia Coppola’s film, Marie-Antoinette – and collaborations with artists and creators – such as perfumer Francis Kurkdjian, for whom he reinvented the perfumed fan – all the while developing his personal creations. Le Guen studies the anatomy and development of the object with the rigour of a scientist, but it is with the magic of a poet that he dreams up surprising three-dimensional volumes that allow delicate pop-up flowers to appear in the folds of a fan or reveal complex origami designs. Mastering each step of production from beginning to end, Le Guen practises several trades, from marquetry to embroidery and feather-artistry.

Master of Art since 2015

http://www.sylvainleguen.com

Movie(3:19)

Pietro SEMINELLI

Master of pleats

For Pietro Seminelli, folds and pleats in textiles or paper are an immersion into our memory, into our inner Self. In a desire to take more risks, to scale up his work, he created for the exhibition a space that invites the visitor to experience a material that is guided by emotions.

A cabinet maker and an interior designer by training, a graduate of the Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Arts Appliqués et des Métiers d'Arts, Pietro Seminelli started his career alongside Louis Bercut, a scenographer for the Academie Française. But it is in the workshop of Gérard Lognon, one of the last French masters of pleats, that he learned about the art of pleating, an expertise at the crossroads between geometry and the observation of the rules of nature. After becoming a master in this art that transforms a surface into a volume, Seminelli forged a new path, becoming an ‘architect of pleats’. In 1996, he set up his atelier in Normandy, allowing him to develop the art of origami adapted to textiles on an architectural scale, transforming fabrics into a sculpture or a two-dimensional textile stained glass that plays on shadows and transparencies with sophistication and elegance. With scientific rigour, Seminelli makes precise calculations and designs complex diagrams that give birth to poetic constructions and landscapes, revealing alternating ‘mountain’ and ‘valley’ pleats in which tectonics are reinvented. An artistic expression with mathematical precision, for him the art of pleating is a true introspection, an immersion into the complexity of memory, a way to put into perspective man’s place in the universe. An inventor of shapes, Seminelli is always exploring, whether it is the infinite possibilities of the sequencing of pleats, the creation of new textiles, or ways to apply pleating techniques to different mediums, from paper to ceramics. In 2013, he opened an office in New York to fulfil the numerous orders commissioned from the other side of the Atlantic. His creations have caught the eyes of the biggest architects and designers, from Peter Marino to Yohji Yamamoto, for whom, he created in 2016, a series of pleated sculptures.

Master of Art since 2006
Living Heritage Company label in 2011

http://www.seminelli.fr

Movie(3:19)

Fanny BOUCHER

Héliograveur

Fanny Boucher, with the complicity of her disciple, is taking heliogravure into a new dimension, experimenting with complex volumes, endeavouring with her ‘photographic sculptures’ or this exhibition to create works of art from the copper matrixes that are usually only a step in the heliogravure process – creating a real revolution in the world of engraving.

After graduating from the Ecole Supérieure des arts et industries graphiques Estienne in intaglio engraving in 1998, Fanny Boucher specialised in the Talbot-Klic héliogravure au grain photo engraving process, which she learnt from the acclaimed engraver Gerard Desquand. The process was discovered by Viennese printer Karl Klic, after studying the work of William Henry Fox Talbot and scientist Jean-Daniel Lemoine, a 19th-century photo engraving specialist. In 2000, at the age of 24, she founded the Atelier Hélio’g, the only professional heliogravure studio in France, and one of ten in the world practicing an art so rare it is on UNESCO’s Intangible Cultural Heritage list. Boucher controls each step of the heliogravure process, from the most delicate to the most physical. She collaborates with prominent photographers and contemporary artists, who, from Gérard Garouste to Yayoi Kusama, Willy Ronis, Zao Wouki, Emilia & Ilia Kabakov, François Morellet, Yuri Kuper and Bernard Venet, entrust her with the task of interpreting their work and enhancing it with the alchemy of heliogravure. After working for ten years for this to be recognised not as a reproduction process but as an original creation, Boucher continues to innovate, as part of a strong desire to ‘take heliogravure beyond engraving’, by working her copper plates as if they were integral works of art. She opens heliogravure to unprecedented perspectives, ushering it into the world of design, interior decorating and visual arts. Since 2011, she has been accompanied by Antonin Pons Braley, a trained photographer who became her student, and to whom she is transmitting her knowledge. Together, they are taking the historical technique of heliogravure into the third dimension, experimenting on the development of heliogravure printing on new mediums.

Master of Art since 2015
Living Heritage Company label in 2006

https://www.heliog.com


©Hélio'g

Movie(3:11)

Laurent NOGUES

Embosser printer

Enhancing techniques or materials is what characterises the paper-embossing work of Laurent Nogues, who revisits an ancient French technique to discover new technical and aesthetic avenues, ushering graphic design into a new era with his innovative propositions. Exploring the characteristics of light and shadow, the complexity of relief, he ventures into large formats and takes paper beyond its limits, like with the ‘pashika’ Japanese paper, which he transforms until obtaining a perfection unparalleled in paper embossing.

After graduating from the Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Arts Appliqués Olivier de Serres, Laurent Nogues chose to embark on the path set by his father, a printer, while fostering his own explorations on the art of embossing, paper inlaying and hot stamping. Experimenting with different techniques, he combined age-old knowledge – dating from ancient times when coin stamping was used for embossing, and the Middle Ages when the art of illumination was used for hot stamping – with the latest technologies. In 1994, he founded the Créanog atelier, in a desire to save and revive techniques facing extinction, but also to be able to bring together all the different stages of creation. A true laboratory, Créanog is a place where innovation and technical revolution – from 3D programming to a digital system capable of engraving brass tools and opening up new horizons – are at the service of excellence. Enabling creations that are more audacious every time, these mechanical inventions and technological advances complement perfectly the irreplaceable work of the hand, which perfects the nervosity of a crest, conditions the quality of the shadows in the reliefs, gives the object its exceptional singularity.

Master of Art since 2011
Living Heritage Company label in 2008
Liliane Bettencourt Prize for the Intelligence of the Hand in 2015

http://www.creanog.com

Movie(3:14)

Gérard DESQUAND

Heraldic engraver

If the relationship to time is a dimension shared by most Masters of Art, it is particularly present in Desquand’s work. After spending years engraving the coats of arms, crests and signet rings of the most notable French families, he is dedicated today to inscribing history onto cylinder-shaped seals, which he rolls onto fine sheets of porcelain that retain its infinite imprint. The art of engraving, as he undertakes and reinvents it, is emblematic of the very essence of artistic crafts and their inherent link to time: time to acquire an expertise, to create an object, to inherit a legacy or ancient skills, time to transmit and research new paths.

A son and grandson of engravers, Gérard Desquand is one of the rare heraldic engravers in France; there are only four left today. After obtaining a diploma in artistic crafts in 1970 from the Ecole Supérieure des arts et industries graphiques Estienne (where his grandfather had studied in 1896), he spent a year in apprenticeship with his father before opening his own workshop in 1972. He first specialised in intaglio engraving and embossing, notably for luxury houses, before switching, in 1972, to heraldic engraving, continuing the family tradition. Desquand perpetuates, with hollow engraving in metal, skills inherited from the heraldic tradition of the Middle Ages, while exploring the possibilities of imprinting through new mediums such as porcelain, whose delicate and transparent surface, retains the mark of a figurative motif in a gentle engraving. He has always been committed to transmitting his passion and knowledge, whether it is to his student Sarah Bougault – whom he is training in the art of heraldic engraving, and to whom he passed his atelier in 2016, while continuing to work there – or in the engraving class that he taught for 25 years at the Ecole Estienne. He was President of the National Institute of Artistic Crafts (INMA) between 2013 and 2016, and is currently the President of the Grand Ateliers association, actively contributing to the definition, dissemination and the recognition of artistic crafts in France.

Master of Art since 2006
Meilleur Ouvrier de France (Best Craftsman of France) in 1979

http://www.bougault-desquand.fr

Movie(3:13)

Nelly SAUNIER

Feather Artist

Whether she is producing extraordinary pieces for high-end jewellery houses or designing her own feather sculptures, Nelly Saunier plays with shimmering colours and the sensuality of feathers, creating enchantment and emotion. Infinitely precise work that can be scattered by the slightest breath, the feather sculptures of Saunier, who became known around the world after creating a spectacular bolero made of multi-coloured macaw feathers for Jean-Paul Gaultier – with whom she collaborated with for more than 17 years – deploy into installations that are both delicate and spectacular.

After growing up surrounded by nature, birds and trees, when Nelly Saunier discovered feather artistry at the age of 14, she recognised that it was her calling. She trained in feather work at the lycée Octave Feuillet in Paris – where she would go on to teach some years later – and went on to study textile design at the Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Arts Appliqués Olivier de Serres. A feather artist, Saunier is one of the last people to hold this ancient knowledge, which in France includes the ‘peacock milliners’ of the 13th century, the ‘panache feather workers’ of the 16th century, and the golden age of feather work in the 1920s. Using her intimate knowledge of feathers, the plasticity, mechanics and features of each and every one of them, she is able to give life to them, to express emotion through them. In accordance with international regulations and to ensure the protection of species, she uses ancient stocks bought from antique dealers and feather workers, retrieves the moult of rare birds or beautifies the feathers of farmyard birds, pheasants, partridges or mallard ducks. She lends her talent to couturiers, designers and costume makers, and more recently to fine jewellery and luxury watchmaking, composing delicate miniatures made of diamonds and feathers that can be scattered by the slightest breath. But it is probably through her personal creations that Saunier’s art and rich poetic world best expresses itself. A creator of emotion and beauty, the feather artist tells stories through the feather sculptures, which are regularly exhibited in contemporary art venues across France, Switzerland, the United States and Japan.

Master of Art since 2008
Liliane Bettencourt Prize for the Intelligence of the Hand in 2009
Chevalière of the Order of Arts and Letters in 2012
Laureate of the Villa Kujoyama artists' residence programme in Kyoto in 2015

http://www.nelly-saunier.com


©CECILE ROGUE

Movie(3:22)

Emmanuel BARROIS

Glassmaker

Alongside his work in dialogue with the world of design, architecture and contemporary art, Emmanuel Barrois continues to research new glass techniques every day with his team, in a quest for rigour and exploration. Approaching the conception and completion of each project with the same precision and passion, he affords himself the luxury of taking on exceptional glasswork projects, but also of crossing technical boundaries and blending practices. Combining traditional artisanal techniques and the most advanced industrial techniques, he finds creative freedom by mastering and overcoming the constraints of glass.

After training as an agronomist, Emmanuel Barrois worked in the humanitarian sector in Mali, Afghanistan and the Caribbean, before becoming a photographer for various magazines. While shooting an assignment on the preservation of heritage and artistic crafts, he met a glassmaker and discovered a fascination for light, colour and the art of physically defying the material. In 1990, without any formal training, he started to teach himself glasswork, restoring stained glass panels from cathedrals and abbeys – not so much with the intention of rediscovering an ancient skill as to experience what the glassmakers of the 13th century felt when they were creating architecture and inventing modernity. A dialogue with architect Claude Parent, and later with Paul Andreu and Jean Nouvel, was instrumental in confirming his calling and understanding the necessity – in his own words – to ‘constantly call into question, to establish the principle of discomfort as a rule’. He has collaborated with Kengo Kuma a number of times, notably in 2013 for the creation of the glass shell panels of the Marseille Fonds Régional d’Art Contemporain, and with Patrick Berger, to create the 30,000 square-metre canopy above the Forum des Halles in Paris, conceiving, for each of these large-scale projects, specific conceptual, aesthetic and technical solutions. Focused on architecture, Barrois’s work also leads him to projects of different scales, as well as to private commissions.

Master of Art since 2010
Living Heritage Company label in 2015

http://www.atelierbarrois.com