May 23rd 2022

BEHIND THE SCENES:
ESTHER SHALEV-GERZ,
KING & KING
A new sculpture
Installed in the United States

May 16th 2022

BEHIND THE SCENES:
SAVE THE DATE
BAD+
July 6-10 2022
HANGAR 14

May 9th 2022

BEHIND THE SCENES:
LINDA KARSHAN
Backstage filming ‘Two Feet Walking’
By Ishmael Annobil, Filmmaker
In response to the architecture of Murray Edwards College
Cambridge University
8th April 2022

May 2nd 2022

A WALK IN MY LIBRARY:
HELMUT FEDERLE

April 25th 2022

BEHIND THE SCENES:
BENEDICTE DELAY WITH JASON BUTLER
‘ONE ON ONE’
Exhibition at ArtHouse Jersey
14 April – 2 May 2022

April 11th 2022

NATURE NOTES:
HELLO TO SPRING, PARIS

April 4th 2022

BEHIND THE SCENES:
A WALKED DRAWING, ‘TWO FEET WALKING’,
By Linda Karshan
In collaboration with Filmmaker, Ishmael Annobil
In response to the architecture of Murray Edwards College,
University of Cambridge

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March 28th 2022

BEHIND THE SCENES:
ISHMAEL ANNOBIL, 'INSOMNIA'
Coming soon at L'Interstice, Arles
Opening on April 15, 2022

March 21st 2022

BEHIND THE SCENES:
JASON BUTLER, ‘ONE ON ONE’
Launch new ArtHouse exhibition space
Jersey, England

March 14th 2022

BEHIND THE SCENES:
ART & LANGUAGE, "THESE SCENES", 2016
Acquired by Centre Pompidou

March 7th 2022

BEHIND THE SCENES:
ESTHER SHALEV-GERZ
Bauhaus-Museum,
Weimar, Germany

February 21st 2022

BEHIND THE SCENES:
LOSING DAN GRAHAM
1942-2022

February 14th 2022

BEHIND THE SCENES:
THE DEVELOPMENT OF BAD+
BORDEAUX + ART + DESIGN
New dates: July 6-10 2022, at HANGAR 14

February 7th 2022

BEHIND THE SCENES:
2000 THANK YOU NOTES
7 February 2022

January 31st 2022

BEHIND THE SCENES:
NEW SPACE FOR JSVCPROJECTS

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January 24th 2022

BEHIND THE SCENES:
ROBERT STONE
Debut with Haines Gallery at FOG Design + Art 2022
San Francisco, CA

January 17th 2022

BEHIND THE SCENES:
MISCHA KUBALL
nolde / kritik / documenta
A project by documenta archiv, Draiflessen Collection and Mischa Kuball
NEW DATE: FALL 2022

January 10th 2022

UNAPOLOGETIC CONTENT.

January 3rd 2022

HAPPY NEW YEAR 2022!
WARM WISHES AND NEW ADVENTURES

December 13th 2021

BEHIND THE SCENES:
MINYADES
An exhibition of paintings by Richard Höglund
The Bonnier Gallery, Miami
December 2021
A Catalogue Essay

December 6th 2021

BEHIND THE SCENES:
MISCHA KUBALL
ReferenzRäume
Museum Morsbroich
5 December – 24 April 2022

November 29th 2021

BEHIND THE SCENES:
ABOUT THE TREES
Thanksgiving 2021

November 25th 2021

UNAPOLOGETIC CONTENT.

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November 15th 2021

BEHIND THE SCENES:
THE WORLD MAP
Thanks to Mr Hide

November 8th 2021

BEHIND THE SCENES:
KOEN VANMECHELEN LABIOMISTA, GENK (BELGIUM)
The book launch and debate
“NOT TO BE MISTAKEN”, November, 4th

October 25th 2021

BEHIND THE SCENES:
OCTOBER 2021
"Linda Karshan: The Covid-19 Conversation"
Still in the limelight

October 18th 2021

BEHIND THE SCENES:
IDE TO POLAND
POSTSCRIPT PARIS

October 11th 2021

BEHIND THE SCENES:
IDE TO POLAND III
Out of the oven
Warsaw Sept 28-Oct 3

October 5th 2021

BEHIND THE SCENES:
HELMUT FEDERLE
NOVARTIS Campus – Forum 3, Basel
DIENER & DIENER - WIEDERIN
2005

October 2nd 2021

BEHIND THE SCENES:
BETWEEN LISTENING AND TELLING
Esther Shalev Gerz
Nuit Blanche Paris,
Tonight

September 27th 2021

UNAPOLOGETIC CONTENT.

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September 20th 2021

BEHIND THE SCENES:
ART BASEL HALL 2.0C1
René Schmitt and ART & LANGUAGE
THESE SCENES, 2016

September 6th 2021

BEHIND THE SCENES:
MISCHA KUBALL
Wolfsburg and Utopias

September 2nd 2021

BEHIND THE SCENES:
IDE TO POLAND
A new expedition on the CERAMIC & FOOD ROUTE

August 30th 2021

BEHIND THE SCENES:
IDE TO POLAND
A new expedition on the CERAMIC & FOOD ROUTE
Bright blue and white ceramics fill the dining room with warmth and visual appeal

August 23rd 2021

BEHIND THE SCENES:
IDE TO POLAND
A new expedition on the CERAMIC & FOOD ROUTE
Starts today in Warsaw through 3 October

August 2nd 2021

BEHIND THE SCENES:
ESTHER SHALEV-GERZ
SUMMER IN PARIS

July 30th 2021

UNAPOLOGETIC CONTENT.

July 26th 2021

BEHIND THE SCENES:
ON THE ROAD AGAIN
ARCO MADRID,
1st Art Fair in 2 years

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July 23rd 2021

UNAPOLOGETIC CONTENT.

July 19th 2021

UNAPOLOGETIC CONTENT.

July 16th 2021

UNAPOLOGETIC CONTENT.

July 12th 2021

BEHIND THE SCENES:
IN THE ARTIST'S STUDIO
JASON BUTLER "THE COLLAGES"
Pop-Up Exhibition, Jersey

July 5th 2021

STILL BEHIND THE SCENES:
NINA NOWAK'S EXHIBITION
Galleri Susanne Ottesen, Copenhagen

June 28th 2021

BEHIND THE SCENES:
PER KIRKEBY UNREALISED BRICK PROJECTS
Galleri Susanne Ottesen, Copenhagen

June 21st 2021

NEW ARRIVALS:
MISCHA KUBALL

June 18th 2021

A WALK IN MY LIBRARY:
HELMUT FEDERLE NIETZSCHE-HAUS SILS-MARIA
Schwabe AG Basel, 2004 Peter André Bloch & Jan Thorn-Prikker
on the occasion of Helmut Federle's "Edelweiss im Nietzsche-Haus, Sils-Maria" exhibition in Nietzsche's Haus, Sept 2004 to July 2005

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June 14th 2021

BEHIND THE SCENES:
L'INTERSTICE ARLES OPENING
JOSETTE SAYERS AND GUILLAUME ZUILI'S PHOTOGRAPHS
Brave and fearless

June 11th 2021

BEHIND THE SCENES:
CONGRATULATIONS ISHMAEL ANNOBIL
DIRECTOR for "LINDA KARSHAN: COVID-19 CONVERSATION"​
WINNER BEST SHORT DOCUMENTARY AT MYKONOS INTL FILM FES

June 4th 2021

BEHIND THE SCENES:
THE LAUNCH OF REAL TIME AND THE 3BS

May 31st 2021

BEHIND THE SCENES:
FLOWERS OF PERHAPS
LIOR GAL
ENGELS PLEIN, LEUVEN BELGIUM

May 24th 2021

BEHIND THE SCENES:
MATHILDE BRETILLOT DESIGNS NEW MUSEUM FOR LA MANUFACTURE DE GIEN

May 17th 2021

THIS TIME TWO YEARS AGO:
DRAW ART FAIR, LONDON, 2019, DESIGNER MATHILDE BRETILLOT AND ARCHITECT MISKA MILLER-LOVEGROVE

May 10th 2021

NEW ARRIVALS:
WETTERLING, STOCKHOLM

April 25th 2021

A WALK IN MY LIBRARY:
HELMUT FEDERLE
ABSTRACT PAINTING OF AMERICA AND EUROPE
Ritter Verlag, Galerie nächst St. Stephan, Vienna Rosemarie Schwarzwälder, 1988

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April 11th 2021

BEHIND THE SCENES:
LUKAS HOFFMANN, CNAP ACQUISITION AND TWO EXHIBITIONS

April 9th 2021

BEHIND THE SCENES:
ESTHER SHALEV-GERZ, WEFRAC 2021

April 2nd 2021

BEHIND THE SCENES:
"LINDA KARSHAN: COVID-19 CONVERSATION"
selected by Nawada and Hollywood Boulevard Festivals

March 29th 2021

BEHIND THE SCENES:
ESTHER SHALEV-GERZ
CNAP ACQUISITION,
"Describing Labor", 2012

March 26th 2021

BEHIND THE SCENES:
A STUDIO VISIT WITH DEANNA PETHERBRIDGE

March 22nd 2021

BEHIND THE SCENES:
JSVCPROJECTS & INTERNATIONAL DESIGN EXPEDITIONS

March 2nd 2021

BEHIND THE SCENES:
HELMUT FEDERLE IN NEW YORK

February 22nd 2021

BEHIND THE SCENES:
RICHARD MILAZZO OBSZINE #3
The Sadness of Bad Thinking

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February 15th 2021

BEHIND THE SCENES:
RICHARD MILAZZO OBSZINE #3, ART, POETRY, AND THE PATHOS OF COMMUNICATION,
The Art of Impeachment

February 1st 2021

BEHIND THE SCENES:
WITH POET/CURATOR RICHARD MILAZZO
REVISITING OBSZINE #3

January 12th 2021

A WALK IN MY LIBRARY:
POETRY IN SEDITIOUS TIMES

January 5th 2021

HAPPY NEW YEAR AND SOUVENIRS FROM 2020!

December 31st 2020

A WALK IN MY LIBRARY:
DECEMBER 31, 2020
JASON BUTLER'S EXHIBITION
Meyer Schapiro, “Theory and Philosophy of Art: Style, Artist and Society

December 18th 2020

BEHIND THE SCENES:
LIOR GALL, BRUSSELS, 2020

December 11th 2020

HIGHLIGHT:
LOVE LETTERS
A new participative project by artist Koen Vanmechelen

December 4th 2020

BEHIND THE SCENES:
LINDA KARSHAN AND THE BROOKLYN RAIL

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November 27th 2020

BEHIND THE SCENES:
NOVEMBER 2020, LINDA KARSHAN
The Covid Conversation, A New Film

November 6th 2020

A WALK IN MY LIBRARY:
PARIS, NOV. 6, 2020
ABËTËI by Ishmael Fiifi Annobil

October 20th 2020

BEHIND THE SCENES:
MATHILDE BRETILLOT
Designs new offices for Parfums de Marly, Paris

October 12th 2020

BEHIND THE SCENES:
BERLIN STUDIO VISIT - LUKAS HOFFMANN

October 7th 2020

BEHIND THE SCENES:
BERLIN

September 24th 2020

BEHIND THE SCENES:
GALERIE NÄCHST ST. STEPHAN ROSEMARIE SCHWARZWÄLDER, VIENNA
Friederike Mayröcker, Curator Hans Ulrich Obrist - until 10 Oct
Schutzgeister/Guardian Spirits

September 9th 2020

BEHIND THE SCENES:
JSVCPROJECTS AND KOEN VANMECHELEN
The Battery Channel Podcast

September 1st 2020

BEHIND THE SCENES:
ARTISTS IN THE STUDIO, JERSEY

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August 25th 2020

BEHIND THE SCENES:
MANIFEST OF THE TRUE

August 18th 2020

A WALK IN MY LIBRARY:
3 LOVE POEMS IN THE SUMMER

August 11th 2020

BEHIND THE SCENES:
SUMMER NEWS

August 4th 2020

BEHIND THE SCENES:
ROD MENGHAM,
Awarded the Cholmondeley Award for Poets

July 28th 2020

BEHIND THE SCENES:
JILL SILVERMAN VAN COENEGRACHTS RECOMMENDS

July 21st 2020

BEHIND THE SCENES:
LINDA KARSHAN
Studio visit

July 14th 2020

BEHIND THE SCENES:
STEFANO CIGADA,
"Frammenti" at the Museo di Roma in Trastevere

January 2nd 2020

HAPPY NEW YEAR 2020!

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September 9th 2019

BEHIND THE SCENES:
PER KIRKEBY,
"Brick Sculptures"

September 2nd 2019

BEHIND THE SCENES:
IDE TO PUGLIA
"Ceramic & Food Route",
Recent Summer 2019 Highlights

August 26th 2019

JSVC HIGHLIGHTS:
ART & LANGUAGE, LONDON

June 17th 2019

BEHIND THE SCENES:
DRAW ART FAIR LONDON

April 22nd 2019

BEHIND THE SCENES:
ART & LANGUAGE, EXHIBITION AT GALERIE MICHAEL JANSSEN, Berlin

March 4th 2019

BEHIND THE SCENES:
DR. SUSANNE A. KUDIELKA,
Private art collecting is a passion

July 25th 2018

BEHIND THE SCENES:
KOEN VANMECHELEN
“It’s About Time”

July 4th 2018

BEHIND THE SCENES:
DAYDREAMING WITH STANLEY KUBRICK,
Exhibition at Somerset House, London

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all posts title image

BEHIND THE SCENES:
MATHILDE BRETILLOT DESIGNS NEW MUSEUM FOR LA MANUFACTURE DE GIEN

May 24th 2021

PART I

Museum buildings

When I was growing up my parents came back from Paris with a small group of colorful plates which became “the dessert plates” for major family events. They were not fine china, nor earthenware but something apart, bright scenes of different storefronts for the butcher, the baker, the cheese store etc. Today there are six of the original eight and they still have pride of place in my mother’s cupboard, next to the pile of much-loved white Rosenthal plates she chose as a bride in 1951. Color was always to be used sparingly on the table, she said.

When you grow up in a modernist house with an orange garage door painted bright in homage to Frank Lloyd Wright, with uncomfortable Eames chairs and Mies tables when all of your school friends live with softness and comfort, design takes on many levels of oddness and discomfort. The arrival of these dessert plates from GIEN were a lively surprise in my adolescence, when the split-level house had given way to one with slate roof and stone walls built in the 1920’s. A Bauhaus interior, my mother said. But still the GIEN plates were there, and brought something else to the table with festive homemade dinners with pecan pie, or apple pie made by my mother, and then those added by various sisters-in-laws.

Display area for finished works inside “La Manufacture

How do you put any kind of judgement on plates that have lived with generations from different countries and traditions? Originally designed for grand dynasties, royalty even, GIEN ended up there on the shelf in my childhood kitchen, and there remains as I write this today. After a year of pandemic and not getting home, these plates take on yet a new vibration. Which is why it is interesting to me that Mathilde Bretillot, the visionary French designer, still to some a well-kept secret like mom’s cake plates– has been invited to rethink the new museum at La Manufacture de GIEN, to begin the celebration of their 200th anniversary.

PART II

I caught up with the designer and asked about the project as it is developing into something special adjacent to the factory where the plates, bowls, pitchers, object de vertu are still being produced in a process that incorporates mechanical with the human touch that is unique to each object, a hand finishing. We do not have a word in English for such a combination of machine with hand. But the French have coined it well with “La Manufacture”. Nor do we have a word for “faïence” which is glazed ceramic pottery.

Designer Mathilde Bretillot inside “La Manufacture

This project of redesigning the museum which takes the public into the spirit of GIEN is more complex than it first sounds. After all, you could say, how difficult is it to explain what has been going on for two centuries of plate making? But as a place, a real heart beating environment, where people and kilns and machines work in a studio atmosphere, where the factory complex includes, gardens where artisans sit under the trees to have lunch, or the much-loved factory store where treasures with slight flaws find new adoptive parents, as a creative hub and a battery for social history, ah this is something else entirely. This is not just a story of plates.

In situ the outside of the complex is a series of buildings including a 17th century austere building which was once a former convent. The idea of La Manufacture dates back to Colbert (think Louis XIV) who was interested in collecting the best makers of France. Ergo the Comité Colbert today which does very much the same thing, and GIEN is a member. The place was founded in 1821 by an Englishman, Thomas Hall. The special quality of the faïence is a recipe of clay, sand and kaolin, fired for the first time between 1160-1180°C (to make the biscuit) Then the rich colors and additional shapes are added with patience and minute detail, one of three hand processes at this stage — painting, printing, or stencil transfer — then the object is put again into the oven.

PART III

Iconic finished works inside “La Manufacture

One of the marvels in all this is understanding that clay is a living thing, it is fundamentally an unstable substance. The historic process has become a channel for cultural transmission of all the hands that have ever worked in this studio for two hundred years, and the singular precise knowledge is why the cake plates in Philadelphia still vibrate with pleasure. Such energy is timeless and precious; the life is in the material itself and its sublime content is traced by how it has been touched by artisans day after day. This is why GIEN is rare and sought after. This is what Colbert saw so many years ago, and we see this inner creative engine through Bretillot’s treatment of the new museum opening in the fall. She begins,

“The aim is to feel you are always in between the objects as they come out and what do they show us. But you are wondering about the life, the emergence of things, the social evolution, the technical evolution. They show all of this. How many people are working, the wars, the change of energy, the ovens, the shifts in taste.”

“We are mindful that history is changing on all sides. From Chinese décor, trees or flowers for the table ware, monograms, simple outlines, then pitchers and basins for the bathroom, bowls; how do you create a new way of looking by putting new things together?”

Color samples inside “La Manufacture

One room is very 19th century, big heavy mantle piece, chimney, huge vases. Some were made for the universal exhibitions. One of the famous ones with the peacock is so big we cannot move it to do the works; this room will be more like a room, more domestic with faïence lining the walls, the owners would sit around a big table to take it in, and we will have a huge library with an alphabet of images and objects. Each of the rooms will have a way of organising it differently.”

PART IV

The lower ground floor will look like a contemporary gallery with a long ramp and the idea of the open book within the space itself. The ground floor with arches frame a sloping lower space like an open book with long pages, objects on the left and on the right, pictures, texts photos on the right. On the first floor there will be alcoves with clusters of objects, settings for tables and otherwise, which are still very much alive. The top floor is full of columns so you will go around the spaces with a set of smaller views, niches.

Preliminary sketch of the reception area for the new museum

Part of the discussion is the transition in history GIEN has experienced. Director, Yves de Talhouët wants to show the production through the history of social evolution, economic evolution and industrial innovation. There will be one big gallery where the products as real objects will be juxtaposed to the other side with historical documents showing how they were made and why, the change in energy, ovens, making a better paste which was stronger, the developments of materials and machinery.

Preliminary sketch of a display case for the new museum

“Years ago this site went all the way up to the Loire, which was how materials once arrived; a series of financial crisis in the 20th century saw this campus cut back to include the major buildings we have today. You arrive through the gate, the museum is the long building on your left on three floors. Ahead of you, across the court, will be a café, garden and the factory shop, of course. The campus is very mineral so we are working with the idea of a garden from the front of the buildings to the gate which will mirror the interior garden used by the artisans behind the studio building.”

PART V

In the end, the brand of GIEN is the story telling, what the brand is saying and what this very unique kind of production is saying; it is interesting to have this for GIEN to show what the roots have been, and these are specific and strong.

Early sketch for scenography and display for the new museum
Possible installation proposals for the exhibition space

It is very rare to have such a “Manufacture” going, it is a real luxury, a French domestic project. Faïence de GIEN is much warmer than porcelain. Europe was once so rich and still is with these things. The competition is mad, especially with mass production everywhere. But the goal for Bretillot here is to really reveal and invite the audience to experience — see, feel, even smell the culture behind these objects, “if they don’t understand why it is worth what it is worth, there will be no audience for the future. The story behind the objects talk about the content, and this is how we know they are not just objects on a shelf.”

Monumental pieces from Gien’s 200-year history in situ in the new scenography