Paris Design Week 2023 An audaciously arty journey

From the vibrant banks of the Seine to the winding alleys of Le Marais, Paris Design Week is back and bolder than ever! Taking place from September 7th to 16th, the 13th edition of this iconic event celebrates extravagance, audacity, and humor. This year’s theme is “Enjoy!” and encompasses the vivacity and flair that only the City of Light can provide. With 350 locations and 450 participants, it’s time to discover the artistic highlights of Paris Capitale Magazine.

The Right Bank journey begins under the Art Deco glass roof of the renowned Tajan house (37, rue des Mathurins, 8th), dedicated to the exhibition “50 Ceramics 50”. Take note, masterpieces from the golden age of the ‘50s by Picasso, Georges Jouve, Colette Guéden, and Suzanne Ramié will be scattered on September 19th! At Place de la Concorde, within Design on Course, the marvelously renovated Hôtel de la Marine stages the brilliance of Franco-American artist Jeremy Maxwell Wintrebert, the recipient of the Liliane Bettencourt Prize for Hand Intelligence® in 2019. In the courtyard of this 18th-century archi- tectural gem, Magma, an installation of 80 gold and silver blown glass disks, embodies the formation of a star, creating a dialogue between past and present, from September 8th to 19th.


The younger talents in contemporary ceramics unite at Hors Séries gallery (91, rue Saint-Honoré, 1st) in “New Designs”.They present 100 unique pieces and limited editions o n the themes of gardens and boxes. Art galleries increasingly embrace this event, founded 13 years ago by Maison & Objet. The wandering quickly reaches Le Marais, where the Swedish Institute (11, rue Payenne, 3rd) hosts the exhibition “Fine Dying” by Misschiefs, the feminist platform founded by Franco-Swedish Paola Bjäringer. Inside this quirky atmosphere, a spectacular table presents the creations of nine artists and designers, leading us to the avant-garde blend of art, design, and fashion at L’Éclaireur (40, rue Sévigné, 3rd), unveiling “Tables: A from model from surface to Volume”, featuring 15 names chosen by the house’s c director, Amine Amharech. Galerie Joseph (116, rue de Turenne, 3rd) showcases “Everyday Paradise”, focusing on the engaged craftsmanship of Brazil, while Pierre Bonnefille’s poetically iridescent pieces are exhibited in “Rhizome(s)” at his gallery (5, rue Bréguet, 11th).

Left Bank lures

Crossing the Seine, the enchantment continues. Within the
Palais Royal garden (1st), Emmanuel Barrois’ stunning glasswork Réflexions amazes with a 15-meter-high three-dimensional scaf-
fold interlaced with 6,000 meters of transparent prisms, on dis-
play from September 7th to 14th. A stroll away, discover Gabriela Sismann’s Portable Works of Art (33 quai Voltaire, 7th), incredible 4 ancient pieces reinvented with contemporary craftsmanship.

Further along, at 30 rue de Lille (7th), mirrors by Nicolas and Sébastien Reese, ceramics by Isabelle Sicart and Helle Damkjaer, combine in a high-flying dialogue cherished by gallery owner Carole Decombe. At MiniMasterpiece gallery (16 rue des Saints-Pères, 7th), known for its renowned artist and designer jewelry, Format Raisin, the first personal exhibi- tion of jewelry-sculptures by Maïlys Seydoux-Dumas, is unveiled. For his first participation, Jean-Marc Lelouch, a 20th-century decorative arts enthusiast, showcases exceptional pieces in collabo- ration with his lea- ding artists at his gallery (11 quai Voltaire, 7th). For ten days, aficionados of cutting-edge design and ultra-chic decor will immerse them- selves in the rhythm of design, from traditional Parisian furniture quarters to new creative class landmarks. Amidst pop-up shops from major decor brands, temporary installations, creator meet-ups, and numerous openings, everyone will find their delight. Make sure not to miss this audaciously arty extravaganza that encapsulates the spirit of Paris at its most innovative and elegant!


Shared design

Internationally renowned designer, Matali Crasset has been working since the 1990s at the crossroads of an artistic, anthropological and social practice. She has just taken over the artistic direction of the Nouveau Printemps de Toulouse and brought to life the Ferme Hi Bride in the Luberon. For the Opéra de Bordeaux, she is launching, this winter, in the scenographic design with the romantic ballet Giselle. His two Parisian exhibitions, at the Le Corbusier Foundation in September and at the Philippe Valentin gallery in December, pursue his same desire: to create a link.

What is your design practice?

Matali Crasset: A while ago, I said that design was used to improve the habitability of the world. But with what’s happening to us, it’s not the right definition anymore. Today, I would rather say that it is a critical tool for making the transition and questioning things.

You are making an exhibition in September at the Paris Design Week workshop at the Le Corbusier Foundation. What was your approach?

Matali Crasset: I thought it was necessary to show in this place things that go out of the frame. Take a side step. It made me think and question myself. Le Corbusier places man at the heart of space, I told myself that it was no longer a thing to do.

Why did you name your exhibition at the Le Corbusier Foundation “L’Antretemps”?

Matali Crasset: I like the idea of growing something between different temporalities. At the same time, a den is a place where you come to take refuge.

What is your project with “L’Antretemps”?

Matali Crasset: Every time I start a new project, especially exhibitions, I force myself to create something I’ve never done. So I decided, in this exhibition, to anchor myself in a story. I created a fictional community, because there is always this idea of sharing that inhabits me. This community moves to places where there are ecological disasters and its goal is to accelerate awareness, change the mindset of people.

How to call this approach?

Matali Crasset: We can say that it is an “ecotopia”. I would like to propose a journey through false documents, false spaces, and I try to do it with fantaisy, which is not science fiction, but an appropriable narrative that is not scary. The role of the designer is also affordance, that is to find the way to express oneself so that it can happen.

In December, your work will also be exhibited at the Philippe Valentin Gallery?

Matali Crasset: It’s a collaboration with a gallery in Rennes, MICA x LAB. The title of the exhibition is the name of the first project “Si nous a oublié le pain en chemin”. I found a typology of objects called the panetière, and the idea of remaking a contemporary panetière and showing old ones from the eighteenth century pleases me very much. I really like the idea that bread finds its place in space. In one room, the entire community of MICA artisans will be present with their portraits. They defend anchoring and local networks. It’s another story of community, around bread, this time.

The Manufacture de Sèvres invited you in 2018 to make ceramic works, how did you approach it?

Matali Crasset: While walking through the vast library of «forms» that is the manufacture of Sèvres, I identified vases that appeared to me anthropomorphic and that I wished to associate with others by embedding them in an idea of hybridization. The combinations are multiple so that the second vase comes to dress the first. Continuing the analogy with sewing, I “cut”, I “cut” in the vases with the help of the craftsmen, hollowing them out, developing plays of shadows and lights, full and empty. The operation is repeated several times, so as to give rise to a “parade” of silhouettes.

What does Paris mean to you?

Matali Crasset: I come from a village of 80 inhabitants. Going to Paris was my dream. When you are in Paris, there is a tension that I like, which generates projects.

You gave a new life to the Parisian kiosks in 2017, what project would you like to develop today in the capital?

Matali Crasset: I think it would be interesting for us designers to have the opportunity to participate in the issues of our neighborhood. Terraces born of Covid, for example. Rather than forbidding them and giving standards because of the aesthetics of Paris, we could have set up another system. It would have been very simple to look at who lives in the neighborhood and set up reference designers to find a singularity for terraces. There could be other modes of operation, an exchange, which would also allow us to anchor ourselves in the neighborhood. There are other things to imagine.

Who would you like to showcase in Paris?

Matali Crasset: The baker I work with regularly, Benoît Castel. He does essential work on bread and pastry. I had already made a Christmas log with him. For my exhibition “We forgot the bread on the way”, we worked together on the textile in which we put the bread back to reactivate it.

Do you have a dream?

Matali Crasset: No, because until now I work with the envy of others. The others take me much further than I project.

  • 10, square du Docteur Blanche, 16th. Until October 7. www.fondationlecorbusier.fr
  • 4, place André Malraux, 1er. www.matalicrasset.com/en/ project/les-capes-manufacture-de-sevres
  • 72, rue Jean-Pierre Timbaud, 11e. 150, rue de Ménilmontant and 11, rue Sorbier, 20e. www.benoitcastel.com.
  • 9, rue Saint-Gilles, 3rd. December 2 to January 20, 2024. www.galeriechezvalentin.com
By Anne Kerner - Published the

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