25.06.2020 - 02.01.2022

Places to be

WENDY ANDREU, CLEMENT BRAZILLE, matali crasset, JENNY FEAL, PORKY HEFER, ANIMA ONA, ORNAGHI & PRESTINARI, JERSZY SEYMOUR, CELINE THIBAULT & GERAUD PELLOTTIERO, YUAN YUAN

LIVRET DE VISITE (FR)

VISIT BOOKLET (EN)

Places to be brings together 14 international designers around a common project: jointly reconstituting a unique living space, made up of 11 rooms each conceived by a designer. This mission is shrouded in mystery, like the famous Cluedo game. As initial information, the invited designers were only given the dimension of their respective spaces. Without knowing anything about the neighboring spaces, they developed their own aesthetic universe and imagined an entirely practicable environment, from furniture to objects, that visitors can use.

The exhibition intends to reposition design as an everyday environment with utilitarian value and no longer as a category of museum artworks. Places to be values design as a discipline, at the crossroads of art and industry, intended to conceive and manufacture utilitarian objects, spaces or images.

Imagined by Nathalie Viot, director of the Fondation d’entreprise Martell, developed by Laurent Geoffroy, engineer at Chalvignac and created by the teams of this Charente-based company, the scenography of Places to be is made up of gigantic circular stainless steel tanks, varying from 2.50 to 3.50 meters high and from 16 to 66 square meters, welded together and connected by passages cut out of the walls. Unexpected and monumental, this metal structure evokes both the surrealist landscapes of the Italian painter Giorgio De Chirico (1888-1978) and the clustered silhouettes of the Tunisian dwellings of Tataouine, chosen by George Lucas as the set for few scenes in the Star Wars saga.

Some photographs of emblematic design pieces are spread in the different spaces of Places to be to compare the contemporary creation with the design’s heritage dimension. They have been selected among the von Vegesack collection, hosted at the Domaine de Boisbuchet in Lessac (16).

Places to be presents many challenges: it is the Foundation’s first collective exhibition and the artists were challenged to create, within an exhibition space, some «places to be», living spaces that are habitable, though new to the visitors. This transdisciplinary exhibition is a continuation of previous installations, Par nature by Vincent Lamouroux, the Pavillon Martell by SelgasCano and L’ombre de la vapeur by Adrien M & Claire B. Pursuing the intention of the Foundation to bring together different creative fields, Places to be unveils, among others, pieces and objects in wood, glass, ceramics and fabric made in the Ateliers du faire (arts & craft studios) on the 1st floor of the Foundation and inaugurated this year.

The ecosystem envisioned since the launch of the Foundation in 2017 finally got real.

Photos © C.K. Mariot