AN EDUCATED EYE: RATEAU for JEANNE LANVIN and other CHEFS d’OEUVRE





 




Tomorrow afternoon in Paris, Christie’s will be auctioning from a private collection some important and striking pieces of the 20th C and 21st C by design maestros such as Rulhmann, Printz, Anthonioz and Jean-Michel Frank. First and foremost is a selection below of collectibles that grabbed A-Gent of Style‘s attention. 






























 














You can view the full catalogue here



But most importantly, there will also be twelve wonderful objets for sale by ones of France’s greatest Art Deco designers, Armand Albert Rateau, created for his friend, the legendary couturier Jeanne Lanvin. 









Rateau and Lanvin met through the couturier Paul Poiret in the early 1920s and she became one of Rateau’s most important clients. These two remarkable, strong and independent figures of the time started a regular collaboration from 1921, when Jeanne Lanvin established her Lanvin Decoration department, headed by Rateau. They collaborated on prestigious commissions such as the Daunou theatre in Paris, inaugurated in 1921, the interior decoration and furnishings of Lanvin’s villa in Le Vesinet, near Paris, and her townhouse in rue Barbet de Jouy. Furnishings from this scheme were shown alongside the Pavillion de l’Elegance  at the 1925 Paris International Exhibition.

Rateau’s singular and striking style is instantly recognisable to the trained eye and you will see below some of the sophisticated and extremely refined pieces of furniture, lighting, and objects he produced for Lanvin. In noble and pure materials ranging from bronze furniture to carved wood, Rateau’s genius and craft transformed designs influenced by his strong relationship with classical antiquity and Egyptology into the modern language of the time.

This sale is proving to be a great and timely opportunity to revisit and appreciate one of the 20th C ‘s notable design relationships.






































Today, you can see Lanvin’s now iconic private apartment at rue Barbet-de-Jouyat which Rateau designed between 1924 and 1925 re-created at the Musée des Arts Décoratifs in Paris. Simply divine
















 

 

– All images by Christie’s –


 

 

 

ART DECO, EGYPTOLOGY, THE FINANCIAL TIMES & A-GENT OF STYLE




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A-Gent of Style was thrilled and honoured to be approached in August by Abigail Fielding-Smith at the Financial Times to help with the research of a new article on Art Deco (oh the power of social media and word of mouth!). Some of you might recall the first article A-Gent of Style co-researched a few months ago for the Financial Times on Art Deco and Paris named Read Between the LinesThis time, the feature concentrated on Art Deco and Egyptomania. Whilst A-Gent is no expert or specialist about Art Deco – just a humble and passionate aficionado – he was delighted to work on another Art Deco project and to delve with great alacrity into the singular aspect that is Egyptology – of which he knew little – one of the many influences of the prominent decorative and visual style of the 1920s and 1930s. It was also a great pleasure to see inspirational designers (Shahbaz Afridi, Martyn Lawrence Bullard, David Collins Studio, Lisa Fine, Tessa Kennedy, Lulu Lyttle of Soane Britain, Guy Oliver), some of whom A-Gent of Style has the privilege to call friends, being featured or quoted.

Below are the scans of the article which came out now three weeks ago in the House & Home section of the FT (A-Gent of Style was in Tangier at the time and had to wait to return to London to be able to see the print version). You can click on each image to enlarge it.

A big thank you to Abigail Fielding-Smith and the Financial Times for their trust and support.

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THE ROCK OF MONACO and THE GOLDEN CAGE: SONG QI




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Whilst London is currently getting the dusty pink treatment via Sketch courtesy of India Mahdavi, Monte Carlo welcomes today a new addition with an injection of plush green and chic black in a décor where every inch is opulent, every detail visually exciting, and sharp angles cohabit harmoniously with curvaceous shapes.

Iconic Hong Kong-born chef and restaurateur Alan Yau, creator of internationally starred London establishments Wagamama, Hakkasan, Busaba, Yauatcha and Princi (each and single one coincidentally one of A-Gent‘s regular haunts), opens today, for lunch, in Monaco the majestic doors of Song Qi. The Principality’s first luxury Chinese restaurant, co-founded with proprietor Riccardo Giraudi, was conceived by Monaco-based design duo Emil Humbert and Christophe Poyet and reflects the golden age of Shanghai in the 1930s whilst the name evokes not only the famous Chinese dynasty but also refers to the philosophical meaning of ‘qi’, a notion that translates as ‘breath’, ‘spirituality’ and ‘power’.



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Situated on Avenue Princesse Grace overlooking the harbour, the 100 square-metre eatery with 75 covers has been created with refined materials, sumptuous features and meticulous Art deco detailing with a contemporary twist. The chic
black lacquer panelling and marble-topped tables are softened and counterbalanced by the plushness of the martini olive-green velvet, somehow reminiscent of Paris restaurant Monsieur Bleu designed by Joseph Dirand (don’t be deceived by the name; see A -Gent of Style‘s feature here), covering the banquettes and also the Ico Parisi-esque chairs with spiny legs and brass sabots. The large geometric black-and-white star tiled floor stretches across the single room under a silver-leaf coffered ceiling to give centre stage to a lacquer box and golden cage-shaped private dining booth with strong accent of brass also echoed on the finishes of the lattice-fronted bar, table frames, mirrors and lighting around the restaurant. The cuisine will be traditional Chinese with ingredients sourced in France although spices will be imported from China, and the fine wine offering will feature references from around the world.

Another reason for A-Gent of Style to detour via the Monegasque capital this summer on his ritualistic visit to the Riviera.



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Riccardo Giraudi and Alan Yau, creators of Song Qi

Riccardo Giraudi and Alan Yau, creators of Song Qi


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– Photos by Song Qi – 



 

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