Wednesday, February 3, 2016

M&O: russet, ochre, black and blush

all photos: Le style et la matière
Richard Ginori

Maison & Objet January



Maison de Vacances


Vandra Rugs

not their best seller, I was told -
but definitely eye catching

& Tradition

No More Twist

a young textile design studio whose name will have you smiling if you remember 
The Tailor of Glouster

Ercuis & Raynaud

L'Atelier du Renard

embroidery on leather



slightly less subtle than in reality


all photos: Le style et la matière

Monday, January 18, 2016

Help! 4500 years of textile history at risk

Félix Fontaine manufacturer, Nicolas Romain designer

In the proud city of Lyon, 
the fabric museum that contains 2.5 million works of textile history 
- many absolute master pieces -
is at great risk of closure. 

Despite the fact that it is recognized as one of the largest and most important 
textile collections in the world, its budget has been cut in favor of Confluences, the
new museum inaugurated in Lyon last year. 

Can you imagine the textile collections of the Met, the V & A, or LACMA 
left to sit inaccessable in some dark storage warehouse ?

And, the textile museum is not alone. 
It is linked to an impressive decorative arts museum which would equally be shut down.

The current exhibit at the Musée des tissus is called Le Genie de la Fabrique.
"The exhibition is a tribute to the city of Lyon and its silk working citizens who were able, through their incredible sense of perfection and inventiveness, to elevate weaving fabric not only to the rank of a remarkable craft but to that of a true art."

The exhibit is set to continue into June 2016. 
but if a solution is not found this Friday, January 22, 

the museum could close in March 2016.

Coptic funerary cushion
French textile technology and design is an extremely 
important part of  textile history, but the collection is not only French.

It contains world textiles that span 4500 years.

Regula Schorta, director of the Swiss Abegg Foundation confirms,

 It is one of the rare textile museums covering almost all fields, topics, regions. Its importance is global. I also want to emphasize the very important role of the museum in the field of restoration of antique textiles and training activities also concern international professionals.*

Lyon silk brocade 18th century
Chambre de la Reine Versailles
design Jean-Francois Bony 1786
image Le Point
At the Victoria & Albert Museum, Lesley Miller is in complete accord: The Textile Museum is one of the most important collections in the world both in size and quality and for its geographical and chronological scope. It is also unique for its silk collections of the local industry that had - and still has - international importance. It contributes to research worldwide through its reserves, its library, its and its permanent and temporary exhibitions.*

*quotes translated from an article by Didier Ryker of Le Tribune de l'Art

designer Agnan Kroichvili
source Marlie
Oh, irony! 
It's just when we are starting to experience 
a renewed interest for fabric design, that this happens. 
Of course, the management of cultural heritage should never be a matter of trends.

Isabelle de Borchgrave exhibit
Maison Lamy et Giraud designer Pierre-Adrien Chabal-Dussurgey  
 Lyon, 1867, presented at the Expositions universelles Paris 1878 

Sarabande   Edith Meusnier 2007

I  don't want to believe the verse from Joni Mitchell will come to pass -

Don't it always seem to go
That you don't know what you've got
'Til it's gone -

A good number of you have already signed the petition started by 
Daniel Fruman, textile specialist and collector, 
and I thank you.
For those who haven't yet, you can do so by clicking below.

Please help keep the Museum open 
by signing the petition here
before the last chance meeting of January 22.

Thank you!

Monday, January 4, 2016

It's a new day

ateliers de luxe
Marking time.
The new year never seems real to me until the regular schedule begins again after the holidays. A little night prowler in search of  crispy croquettes knocked over a porcelaine bowl of clementines during the night so I am not as fresh as I would like to be today after a sleep break to clean up the pieces that were all over the kitchen. There's so much to do without even considering resolutions. I need energy.

fabric from Lanvin gown 1936
 Cat food has to be rationed ever since two cats live under our roof. It's the slinky black panther who made mischief last night. Was he really hungry or just bored? These once reasonable eaters will gorge themselves just to prove to one another who can eat the most, but mostly it's the older tiger who throws his weight around to say who is boss.

Sharon Shalita and Maytal Barokas
So much for any true understanding of cat psychology. 
I do know that we humains have been eating a wee bit too much these days because of a delectable over-supply of festive foods that it would be a pity to waste --

Issy Miyaké
but that we will never get too much of  seeing beautiful things to lift our spirits. 
Enthusiasm and the downward-facing dog pose (the cat just isn't the same) are my two favorite antidotes for fatigue.

anonymous French gouache design

A happy and energetic new year to you!

Friday, December 25, 2015

Boule de Noel

Angèle Malclès

I remember lying under the Chrismas tree, squeezed under fragrant branches with my brother, singing carols and gazing into the colorful ornaments from below. Ah, but I embellish; our tree was artificial in those days! The magic was there nonetheless. Our distorted faces were mostly noses in the shiny baubles - which only fueled our giggling in the giddy excitement of the season. I found a little of that shimmering joy in this very pretty Christmas ball (no nose though) and with it, I wish you a 
very merry Christmas day.

I'm in the car now. The day will soon be ended and the landscape rolls by as the car moves along toward the heather and broom of Brittany beneath a beautiful peach colored sky. I will be back soon - never meant to be away so long, but once the the blogging habit is disturbed, it's hard to get back with a firm foothold. Until then I'll be listening to Bing and seeing the family for some more feasting and toasting, reminding my husband to chop some mistletoe for the new year and generally, prolonging this lovely interlude as long as possible. 

Monday, November 16, 2015

Le feu sacré

Ozias Leduc source

I had arrived at the country house on the night of Friday the 13th, where in general we dine by candle light. It had been a fairly long drive with some heavy traffic where it wasn't expected. But we were happy to arrive, light the fires and begin a peaceful weekend. We didn't know what had happened back in Paris. Then just before going to bed, my worried sister called from the US thinking we were still at the apartment.

Sometimes we know there is far too much said of tragedy in the media - classic and social - and our minutes of silence could easily be multiplied by 1000.  Yet how is it possible to speak again of art, of beauty, fabrics, decoration and other privileged preoccupations in a blog such as mine without aknowledging our mourning after the barbarous acts of terror in our beloved Paris,
in our beloved world ?

The right words lack before the gravity of this situation 
but words are the first things we have at our disposition to find unity. And because in communicating we reinforce our courage, I have borrowed these from Edmond Rostand's proud Chantecler, 

C’est la nuit qu’il est beau de croire à la lumière.
It's at night that faith in the light is admirable.

Saturday, October 31, 2015

Autumn leaves me happy

photo of an unsigned painting; Le style et la matière
The season is still green, but the gold is coming along crisply. 
I went out in search of scenes like the one in my painting last week in the country... 

photo: Le style et la matière
where a sun low-hung plays among the leaves and shadows stretch out as days get shorter.

It's a time for long walks in the counryside, gathering chestnuts and mushrooms then
huddling around the fire. Simple things.

photo: Le style et la matière
I love the colors of Fall, probably more than in all the other seasons.
So glad I don't have to choose though.

photo: Le style et la matière
Toulouse -Lautrec called autumn "winter's spring."

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Like a spider on the ceiling

photo: Le style et la matière

Seen in a waiting room for guided tours at the château of Versailles. 
Did that just happen - or did the designer do it on purpose? The spider is the very symbol of waiting. Happily, not one visitor was wrapped up as a meal before, during or after the tour.

Man Ray
No arachnophobe, but I'm not always completely relaxed around these creatures. 

nusch eluard par man ray
It's largely a question of their size, pilosity and proximity. 

late Victorian brooch from Pinterest

chanel brooch

monster Spider, sometimes called Maman by Louise Bourgeois
I can nonetheless appreciate what their form inspires in art 

Gallé vase Pinterest

Woodcut illustrations by GW Dijsselhoffrom

Victorian purse Pinterest

Gareth Pugh
and very definitely, their own woven art form and its imitations.

black sprite flowers
There are spider-like flowers

golden orb spider posing as a flower
and flower-like spiders.

Odilon Redon
What are you, my friend?

odilon redon
"Why, just that, your friend," she grinned.

Bruno Freire ignat
Have you seen?
There seems to be a greater appreciation

Erik Griffioen Ragno
of arachnian geometry recently -

Romain Duclos Mini Ragno

and of the intricacies

© Studio Bouroullec
lighting in the escalier Gabriel
palais de Versailles
and ingenious harmony of their webs.

Friend or foe, it's their season now. They come in to warm their legs.
Everyone tells me that a house with spiders is a healthy house.
Shouldn't we celebrate?!

Pinterest photos here