A writer in his interior
The house in Guernsey gave shelter to Victor Hugo during his exile between 1856 and 1870. Those fifteen years prove decisive in building his reputation as a committed and rebellious writer.
Hauteville House, located on the heights of Saint Peter Port in Guernsey, is a “true three-storey autograph, and a poem in several rooms”, as his son Charles wrote.
The renovation project, which began in April 2018, allowed us to restore the appearance of the house and its decorations to reflect the design conceived by Victor Hugo himself. This residence, more than a place of memory, is a masterpiece of restored decorative art.
Letters describing the orders placed by Victor Hugo with the Maison Braquenié convinced Mr. Audinet, director of Victor Hugo’s home, to call on Pierre Frey to participate in the restoration in order to faithfully capture its original spirit.
Research was based on old photos of the site and textiles that are still in place. For the first fabric, a 17th century damask and a 20th century reweave, identical in every aspect to the one used by Victor Hugo, were found in our archives. For the second fabric, the original was quite deteriorated making it difficult to
discern. La Maison Pierre Frey proposed a two-tone damask with similar decorative effects. The original color was replicated by custom-dying the yarns to match a tiny sample recovered within the seam where it was protected from the light. The colourful atmosphere of the salon of the time was thus restored to resemble its original décor, with one small exception: the replacement of the original silk fabric was woven with a fireproof fibre in order to meet the current safety requirements for a public space.
To complete the project, Pierre Frey was also asked to reweave the edge of the carpet, which was in too poor a condition to be reused.
The third place, “Chateau de Chambord – Loire Valley”, is to be discovered in the next newsletter!
Known for its eclectic and contemporary collections, Maison Pierre Frey
nevertheless cultivates a strong attachment to the past and to tradition.
For Patrick Frey, understanding the past helps to understand the future.
Through their Archives department, created in 2003 and consisting of more
than 30,000 documents, it is committed to reviving and sharing a heritage
common to all. Thanks to its know-how and perfect mastery of techniques,
in a relatively short time this fabric editor has become a privileged partner
of museums and an active participant in French cultural life.
Ainsi, sans préjugés d’époques ou de styles, la Maison Pierre Frey participe à de nombreux événements, par la biais de prêts d’archives ou de fabrications spéciales, permettant au grand public de revivre des pans de notre histoire, de la Renaissance au 20 ème siècle.
without favor for a particular period or style, the Maison Pierre Frey participates in many events through the loan of archival documents or special reproductions, giving the public an opportunity to experience parts of our history, from the Renaissance to the 20th century.
Proof in three places, three eras, three experiences :
Exhibition Elise Djo-Bourgeois – “Sur le motif” (6 April- 16 June 2019) at the Villa Noailles (Hyères, France)
A woman artist in the 1920s
When Pierre Frey purchased Lauer in 1995, he discovered design treasures produced in the 1920s by a group of exceptional artists: Lalique, René Prou, Burkhalter, Sue and Mare and, of course, Elise Djo-Bourgeois.
Little known to the general public, this designer of patterns for fabrics and carpets used brightly coloured geometric shapes as her pictorial language. Her career is closely linked to that of her husband, Georges Bourgeois dit Djo-Bourgeois, architect and decorator, known for his interior design, boutiques, apartments and villas such as Villa Noailles in Hyères. The premature death of her husband when he was not even forty years old put an end to their respective careers, causing their work to be forgotten.
Contactée pour identifier des tissus sur des photos noir et blanc des années 1920, la maison Pierre Frey a très vite envisagé de prêter un nombres importants de documents en sa possession, conçus par Elise Djo-Bourgeois : Quarante-neuf archives, textiles imprimés, déclinés en une multitude de coloris, un recueil d’empreintes ainsi qu’un livre regroupant des photographies anciennes de tapis. Ces archives ont permis de redonner vie aux décors imaginés par le couple. Les textiles aux couleurs éclatantes d’Elise venant contrebalancer l’image un peu austère que les photos en noir et blanc laissaient imaginer.
Contacted to help identify the fabrics seen in black and white photographs from the 1920s, Pierre Frey very quickly agreed to lend a large number of documents designed by Elise Djo-Bourgeois that are in its possession,: 49 archives, printed textiles in a multitude of colours, a collection of prints and a book containing old carpet photographs. These archives have given new life to the environments imagined by the couple. Elise’s brightly coloured textiles counterbalance the austere images that the black and white photos suggest.
A sponsorship accompanies this loan with the reprinting of a design by the
artist on a cotton percale that completes the scenography and shows the
use of fabrics as Elise Djo-Bourgeois had imagined. For authenticity, the imperfections caused by the original printing process, known as wood plate printing, have been reproduced on the reissue.
Part of this archival collection held by Pierre Frey was presented during the exhibition Couples Modernes at the Centre Pompidou Metz, where the couple of Djo-Bourgeois decorative artists also had their place residence.
The exhibition “Sur le motif” at Villa Noailles is the third exhibition to explore the little-known and cloistered work of Elise Djo-Bourgeois since 1937.
The second place, “Hauteville House, Victor Hugo’s house in Guernsey”, is
to be discovered in the next newsletter!
Nicknamed the King of Fruits, the pineapple has been the object of fantasies since their discovery in 1493.
Originally tasted only in candied form due to the length of transport, Europeans first discovered its true flavour at the end of the 17th century when gardeners finally managed to acclimatize it in the West.
From then on, its oval shape and crown of leaves have never ceased to seduce artists and draftsmen and constitute timeless decorative elements.
Once again, from the latest collections of the maison Braquenié, the pineapple is used in several printed fabrics, épinglés, linen damask, velvet and wallpaper.
The strength of the colours and materials brought up-to-date in Comptoir d’Orient and Compagnies des Indes, give an undeniable contemporary twist to pineapple motifs from 18th century documents kept in the house’s archives.
Four centuries after its arrival in Europe, it seems that the enthusiasm for the King of Fruits is not about to wane.”
Let’s discover the history of 47, an emblematic place for Pierre Frey who, after starting out on rue des Jeûneurs, moved to 47, rue des Petits champs in 1937 and never moved again.
Giovanni Battista Lulli
The adjoining buildings at 45 and 47 rue des Petits Champs were built between 1671 and 1682 on behalf of Giovanni Battista Lulli, superintendent of royal music. Built by the king’s architect, Daniel Gittard, a student of Louis Le Vau. These two buildings are located near the Louvre and the Palais-Royal where the Royal Academy of Music is located.
It first served Lulli as his main residence. Looking up, we can still note some decorative elements of the façade that remind us of the activity of its illustrious owner.
Lulli rented it for 1600 French Pounds a year. An adviser to the king in parliament, the Baroness of Thoré and even the Marquise de Saint-Germain Beaupré, reportedly resided there.
Optical illusion of the stonework
The façade is characteristic of the most beautiful classical architectures of the 17th century. Made of ashlar, it extends over five visible levels and the last one slightly recessed. The first level consists of a trompe l’oeil of stonework, a reminder of the first level of Lulli’s main residence and the most beautiful Florentine palaces of the Quattrocento. This practice was common in the 17th century. The false joints were painted in a slightly darker colour to give rhythm to the facade and imitate the elegance of the ashlar. The axial symmetry is marked by a carriage gate topped by an arched keyway. Originally, this door gave access to an inner courtyard that has now disappeared.
At that time, architecture was more than a housing project, it had to serve the glory of France like all the Arts. Daniel Gittard returns to the ancient aesthetic and creates a regular facade that brings balance. The upper levels have smooth dressed stone walls, marked by straight lines that give it a beautiful sobriety. The noble floors are pierced with large openings that allow ample light to penetrate. The work on the railings is a fine example of the art of ironwork of the time.
Let’s push open the carriage door of this building to discover the history of this place which has never stopped reinventing itself as the House has evolved. Pierre Frey first occupied the first floor before gradually becoming the owner of the entire building. The spaces were used for different purposes: showroom, offices, accessory shops on the ground floor and now become the House’s headquarters.
The wooden staircase has survived the vicissitudes of time. Rising to the left in the old courtyard, it serves all the floors. The wrought iron railing has a simple and elegant design. Each level is composed of a floor in terracotta tiles with a geometric pattern.
Number 47 is more than an address, it is part of our identity!
For its next sale “The Collector: English & European 18th & 19th Century Furniture, Ceramics, Silver & Works”, which takes place in New York on April 9, 2019, Christie’s asks Pierre Frey to imagine a staging highlighting the furniture and objects of the sale, by associating it with the latest collections of fabrics and wallpapers from the Maison whose name it bears.
Pierre Frey, loves eclecticism. Mixing styles and periods, creating a subtle mix and match, not focusing on perfection, give, according to him, more strength and character to an interior. He proposes to combine fabrics and wallpapers from 18th century archival documents with contemporary motifs inspired by travel and to mix velvet and printed fabrics, weaves and multicolored embroideries.
To express his way of seeing the decoration and recreate the atmosphere of a real interior, Pierre Frey chooses from among the many majestic pieces offered for sale and sets his heart on classic silverware cutlery, which he can use with his contemporary dishes, a particularly unexpected flamingo that should please his children, mirrors, of which he is very fond, large antique carpets that always have a lot of effect and marble busts, pieces for which he could start a collection!
All the elements are combined to offer an astonishing staging, an extraordinary setting for a prestigious auction.
The Arty wallpaper from the Maison Pierre Frey was chosen by the Spanish interior design office, L.A. Studio Interiorismo, to line the walls of the presentation room of the International Contemporary Art Fair, ARCO Madrid.
L.A. Studio is specialized in the decoration of ephemeral places and in the search for unique pieces to stage the exclusive objects and furniture selected for ARCO. L.A. Studio was inspired by the bright and intense traditional colors of Peru, the country of honor of the fair.
Pierre Frey’s Arty wallpaper evokes a giant and abstract work of art composed of multicolored paint touches that reveal the original canvas in places. It is an ideal preamble before access to the 200 international art galleries exhibiting this year.
A diptyque x pierre frey collaboration
The famous fragrance house diptyque has collaborated with the fabric creator Pierre Frey to stage its collection of fourty-nine scented candles.
This meeting echoes the origins of diptyque. At the time, each candle was paired with a particular textile that graphically evoked the fragrance and its universe. Today, diptyque returns to this original concept by choosing the ideal motif for each of its scented candles from among Pierre Frey’s archival and current collections of fabrics and wallpapers.
At diptyque, all the senses are awakened. The house has fun combining motifs and scents but also mingling scents between them. This playful process of association and correspondence originated in 1963 by the three creators who composed their own olfactory landscape around their first fragrances Hawthorn, Cinnamon and Tea. They lit the candles in pairs and mixed them at will. To enhance the duos of scents and the play of their association, diptyque created five limited edition boxes decorated with Pierre Frey’s creations.
The diptyque x pierre frey boxes
The Arty and Heather prints chosen for Roses and Jasmin evoke the petal throws during the floral festivals in the South of France. We can imagine the scents of Violet ink and of the Leather of an artist’s pouch in the association of a flower field drawing with a graphic and masculine motif. The warm and woody scent of Sandalwood blends with the green and heady accents of Tuberose in a mild tropical atmosphere. Cypress and Fig tree fragrances are depicted through watercoloured motifs with green and woody accents mixed with the blues of the sea, echoing the landscapes of the Mediterranean.
At last, the two new creations of diptyque, Lily and Narguile, are associated with a black and white archival drawing from Pierre Frey, whose graphics evoke the long pistils of the freshly cut white flower, and the print on linen 1920, with its spicy shades and circular patterns suggesting the honeyed smell and scrolls of tobacco. Combined together, these two candles tell a different story and transport us to the twilight, in the heart of an oriental garden…
Thus, the scents are reinvented through combinations and bring back precious memories and magical moments, thanks to the power of scents on memory.
Like fabrics or wallpapers, candles decorate the rooms of the house with scents and offer through the sense of smell and look an escape to a sublimated elsewhere.
images ©Diptyque ©Pierre Frey
The somptuous Metropole Monte-Carlo palace by Jacques GarciaPrinces room
Facing the Mediterranean Sea, the Metropole Monaco is one of the most famous luxury hotel on the French Riviera.
In a spacious Belle Epoque style architecture, the interiors designed by the well-known French decorator Jacques Garcia combines magnitude and refinement. The nobility of the Fadini Borghi fabrics chosen for the hotel blends perfectly with its classic, comfortable and precious decor. The brilliance of the velvets, as well as the chiselled motifs which are so representative of the Italian Renaissance, underline the fresh and luminous Mediterranean atmosphere of this timeless and sumptuous palace.
Sforza, velvet, Fadini Borghi Portraits gallery Virginia Colony in gold, jacquard, Fadini Borghi Reception gallery
Aurelio, velvet, Fadini Borghi
images ©W.PRYCE + ©STUDIO PHOENIX
Roman sofa in Teddy, curtains in the new print “Obsidienne”
The new decors of Pierre Frey’s showrooms embody the 2019 collections of fabrics, wallpapers, rugs, carpets and furniture of the House.
Charles sofa in Viggo, curtains in the new Pierre Frey embroideries “Wokabi” Axel armchair in Esteban, curtains in the new Pierre Frey print “Pachira” Alfred sofa in Marin, curtains in the new print “Pachira”, cushions in the new wool “Mombasa” Blandine armchair in Shabby, new Pierre Frey wallpaper “Vahiné” Aristide sofa in Yeti, curtains in the new embroideries “Wokabi” Boussac decor Sofa in Yeti, cushion in the new Boussac weaving”Woodstock”, new “Fever” rug from Boussac Tokyo sofa in Judith, new Boussac rug “Fever”, cushions in the new Boussac “Marin” (velvet) and “Woodstock” Faust armchair in Fine velvet, curtains in the new Boussac printed linen “Fever”
The furniture showroom of Pierre Frey Stockholm sofa in Scarlette, new Pierre Frey wallpaper “Ayo” cushion in “Yeti” cushion in Yeti wool and new velvet Marin cushion in the new velvet “Baltazar” Roseline sofa in the velvet Opera, cushion in the new Boussac printed linen “Tempo” and the new velvet “Baltazar” from Pierre Frey
images Anne-Emmanuelle Thion
Decors by Christèle Ageorges for Boussac and Véronique Villaret for Pierre Frey