12 Exceptional Objects from Paris Design

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Launch Slideshow

Following the great success of 2017’s Design sales, which totalled more than €40 million, the first Paris Design sale of 2018 will take place on 3 May. The auction once again features a variety of exceptional objects, many of which have fascinating stories to tell. Click ahead to see some of the highlights.

Design
03 May 2018 | Paris

12 Exceptional Objects from Paris Design

  • Le Corbusier, Pierre Jeanneret and Charlotte Perriand, Chaise Longue Basculante, circa 1930.
    Estimate: €120,000–180,000.
    The Chaise Longue Basculante  was conceived in 1927 from a series of drawings by Le Corbusier representing nine ways to sit. At the same time Charlotte Perriand, who had just graduated from the Ecole de l’Union Centrale des Arts Décoratifs, was working on the totally new concept of metallic furniture design, and decided to meet the internationally renowned architect Le Corbusier to show him her work. He immediately offered to hire her in order to develop and realise his ideas, also partnering with his cousin, Pierre Jeanneret. The Machine à repos (resting machine) is one of the icons of 20th-century decorative arts. A hymn to streamlined comfort – this chair was once placed in the Maharaja on Indore’s bedroom.


    Design
    03 May 2018 | Paris
  • Bedroom of Maharajah d’Indore, circa 1970.
    Showing Le Corbusier, Pierre Jeanneret and Charlotte Perriand, Chaise Longue Basculante , circa 1930. Estimate: €120,000–180,000.


    Design
    03 May 2018 | Paris
  • François-Xavier Lalanne, KL Drawing Board, 1964-1966.
    Estimate: €500,000–700,000.
    An incredible discovery, known only by a select few, this piece was commissioned by Karl Lagerfeld for his apartment on the rue de l’Université in Paris. It was designed with the owner’s needs in mind, incorporating features specifically requested by Lagerfeld, from a tray with an adjustable incline to a light source for working into the night. In the mid-1970’s, the table passed to another enlightened collector: Jacques Grange. The famous decorator installed his new acquisition in his apartment in the 6th arrondissement, where it remained until the 1980s.


    Design
    03 May 2018 | Paris
  • Henry van de Velde, Commode, 1900-1901.
    Estimate: €30,000–50,000 each.
    "I imagine (...) that some of my furniture might well end up in decorative arts museums. I classify those for M. von Mutzenbecher amongst my best creations (...)." Henry van de Velde wrote at the end of 1899 about the furniture he designed for the Baron Victor von Mutzenbecher, a successful industrialist who collected works by modern artists. This set is highly important because, along with the furniture of the Nietsche Archives, it is among the first creations designed in Weimar. Only a few details such as the vast curves of the buffet and the brass handles of the chest are reminiscent of his earlier works. The forms are no longer sculpturally conceived but instead developed to rationalise the construction, however some unseen ornamentation to the underlying architecture still remains.

    Lot 32


    Lot 34


    Design
    03 May 2018 | Paris
  • Jean Dunand & Jean Lambert-Rucki, Chiens Four Panel Screen, circa 1928.
    Estimate: €150,000–200 000.
    "The exhibition of modern French decorative art at Lord and Taylor’s has breadth, sweep, élan... It is a very good show indeed, for it gives a sense of the unity an interdependence of all the arts: but one can scarcely see the spectacle because of the spectators. They have come in thousands to see this exhibit," wrote Lewis Mumford in New Republic, on March 20, 1928.

    This was the exhibition where this screen by Jean Dunand was first shown to the world, and it’s a masterful example of the artist’s work. The elegant form and subtle lacquer, emblematic of Dunand’s work, were probably decorated after a drawings by Jean Lambert Ruki. The engraved and gilt-enhanced refers to the aesthetic favored by the artistic avant-gardes of the time, from Cubism to Italian Futurism.


    Design
    03 May 2018 | Paris
  • Booth of Anne-Sophie Duval Gallery, designed by Karl Lagerfeld with the paravent featured at the back, Biennale des Antiquaires, Paris 1972
    Showing Jean Dunand & Jean Lambert-Rucki, Chiens Four Panel Screen , circa 1928. Estimate: €150,000–200 000.


    Design
    03 May 2018 | Paris
  • Marcel Coard, Cabinet, circa 1925.
    Estimate: €450,000–550,000.
    This rediscovered masterpiece, one of only two examples known today, was acquired from Marcel Coard in the 1970s. Its geometric shape is enhanced by the contrasts in the colours and material used – soft white shagreen, cold blue lapis lazuli and warm brown Macassar ebony. The piece echoes the spirit of Cubism, which heavily influenced Coard’s designs in the 1920s and 1930s. At once modern and luxurious, the design went on to be used for the bedroom furniture of Marcelle Cocteau, sister in law of Jean Cocteau.


    Design
    03 May 2018 | Paris
  • Christiane Eriksson, Bibliothèque, 1912.
    Estimate: €70,000–100,000.
    Christian Eriksson was a Swedish sculptor who belonged to a family of cabinet makers. Working alongside his brothers under the name Bröderna Erikssons Möbelverkstad, they designed furniture which often included motifs carved by Christian. Among their clients was the art historian Carl G. Laurin, for whom they designed, around 1899, the first version of the present bookcase which the Svenska Slöjdföreningen (the Swedish Society of Crafts and Design) exhibited the same year.

    In March 1912, Jacques Doucet commissioned a replica of the bookcase for his Parisian townhouse in rue Spontini. The present lot was commissioned only three months before the sale of his classical art collection in June 1912 and foreshadows Doucet’s growing interest in the art of his time.


    Design
    03 May 2018 | Paris
  • Eileen Gray, Two Four-Panel Screens, designed circa 1960, executed circa 1973.
    Estimate: €400,000–600,000.
    These two screens are from an edition of five with two variant heights edited by Eileen Gray’s niece, Prunella Clough, in 1973. Monika Kinley, a collector and curator and also a friend of Prunella Clough, held an exhibition in 1975 that included drawings and furniture chosen by Eileen Gray and her niece, including the two present lots, one of which is documented in a photograph of the exhibition. Three of the five screens were purchased by museums: the Portsmouth City Museum, the Leicester City Art Gallery and the Bristol Museum & Art Gallery. The present lots are the only two screens remaining in private hands.


    Design
    03 May 2018 | Paris
  • Interior of Andrew Crispo, circa 1980.
    Showing Eileen Gray, two four-panel screens , designed circa 1960, executed circa 1973. Estimate: €400,000–600,000.


    Design
    03 May 2018 | Paris
  • Jean Prouvé, 6x6 demountable house, circa 1944-1945.
    Estimate: €450,000–550,000.
    Following WWII, the French Minister of Reconstruction Raoul Dautry, fascinated by the Ateliers Prouvé, commissioned houses to relocate the victims of Lorraine and Franche-Comté. In these areas where bombing was intense housing that could be produced quickly was needed. Jean Prouvé designed houses that could be assembled and dismantled quickly using prefabricated elements. This house is one of several installed in 1945 in a small village of the department of Doubs and, due to its remoteness, is one of the few survivors. Most were destroyed a few months later to make room for post-war reconstruction plans. Beyond the elegance of its form, this house shows the genius of its creator.


    Design
    03 May 2018 | Paris
  • Henri Simmen / Eugénie O’Kin, Pot with cover, circa 1925.
    Estimate: €20,000–30,000.
    Following the destruction of his family home in the Aisne during WWI, Jules Dormeuil, who came from an important family of collectors, decided to rebuild and redecorate in the Art Deco style. In his search for the most beautiful of objects, he fell in love with Henri Simmen’s ceramics, with their stoppers delicately carved by his partner Eugenie O’Kin. He purchased the eleven pieces on offer here and the collection has remained in his family until today.


    Design
    03 May 2018 | Paris
  • Pierre Chareau, MB 113 desk, circa 1921.
    Estimate: €200,000–300,000.
    In 1932, with the help of iron worker Louis Dalbet, Pierre Chareau designed the interior of Hélène and Maurice Farhi’s new apartment on the Avenue Raphaël in Paris. He installed an adjustable metal screen across the room, as well as a sliding glass and metal wall, creating a modular space which could either be used as a large living room or partitioned to create a dining room in the centre.

    Pierre Chareau also provided the furniture and drew upon his previous designs for inspiration. This desk , executed after the first example designed in 1921 for Edmond Bernheim, is a more luxurious and sophisticated than the former. The overall shape of the desk is clearly inspired by architecture and perfectly illustrates the phrase “Architect of furniture” a term usually given to the designs of Pierre Chareau.


    Design
    03 May 2018 | Paris
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