''... through my works, I have always sought to get spectators to behave differently. I wanted to find ways to fight passivity, dependency and ideological conditioning by helping viewers develop their ability to think, compare, analyze, create and act.''
Artist Julio Le Parc is an emblematic figure in the history of art. Born in 1928 in Argentina, he was a forerunner of Kinetic Art and Op Art, co-founded the Groupe de recherche d’art visuel (G.R.A.V.) and received the International Grand Prize for Painting at the Venice Biennale in 1966. His art offers viewers a multi-sensory experience in light, color, energy and movement. The collaboration between this indefatigable artist and Bernardaud confirms that his work is as current, playful and innovative as ever.
Incorporating the vocabulary of his iconic Celebration sculptures, Balloon Monkey, Balloon Rabbit and Balloon Swan marked a spectacular new chapter in Jeff Koons’s oeuvre. Whether it is the seductive reflective surface, the intricate knots, creases, or twists, no detail of the work was compromised in rendering these balloon animals in porcelain. Koons, intrigued by Limoges porcelain, partnered with Bernardaud to realize this complex work. For over 150 years, Bernardaud has worked with the most skilled artisans at their workshop in Limoges and created new technologies to achieve these porcelain editions.
Balloon Dog is an iconic work within the highly acclaimed Celebration series, which Jeff Koons began in the mid 1990s. The Celebration artworks reference certain times of year (holidays and birthdays) but also the celebration of the cycle of life. What else could suggest the cheer of children’s parties more eloquently than a colorful balloon, twisted into the instantly recognizable form of a dog. According to the artist, “It is about celebration and childhood and color and simplicity – but it’s also a Trojan horse. It’s a Trojan horse to the whole body of art work.” Balloon Dog has the profoundness of an archaic sculpture.
The monumental Balloon Dog sculptures were made from precision engineered mirror polished stainless steel and finished with a transparent coating of either blue, magenta, orange, red, or yellow. Despite its ten-foot and one ton metal, no detail was spared in the rendering of the Balloon Dog’s form. The artist’s exacting standards are one of the most captivating aspects of Koons’s art as captured in the porcelain Balloon Dog (Yellow), which simulates the mirror-polished stainless steel of the monumental sculpture with its metallic yellow finish and then attached to a reflective porcelain plate.
This highly complex project required the skill and expertise of modelers, decorators and glazers within the workshop of the company, and new technologies were created in order to meet the artist’s requirements. Jeff Koons has chosen Bernardaud for its expertise.
"I was always intrigued by porcelain, by both the economic and the sexual aspect of the material. Porcelain shrinks in the oven; therefore, there is a tightness to the material. Porcelain was the emperor's material but today it has been democratized and everybody can enjoy porcelain. That's why for these qualities of its material being it is the reason I used it in Banality Series. I am really thrilled to be part of the Bernardaud collection". Jeff Koons
The quotidian kitchen is central to Subodh Gupta’s practice both materially and conceptually. It is therefore natural that Gupta’s work be present on a dinner plate. The trompe l’oeil image captured on the ceramic plate is in fact a painting of vividly coloured leftovers with the spoon seemingly put down just a moment ago as the meal was completed. The viewer is invited to imagine a tempting sweet or sumptuous dessert relished by an unknown eater, creating a paradoxical aesthetic and emotional experience of envy and enjoyment.
On the occasion of May 68’s 50th anniversary (1968-2018), Bernardaud has created a commemorative and offbeat object; a paving-stone, mythical symbol of May 68’s rebellion... but in porcelain. The House then called upon the artists Bachelot & Caron who had the idea to “retouch" the famous photos that Gilles Caron took of the events and place them on each side of the paving-stone.
The paving-stone exists either in white bisque, in a limited edition of 1968, or decorated in four thematic series: Manifs, Paris, Pouvoir, Sixties. Each series is numbered and limited to 68.
Making the work of Joan Miró accessible in unexpected ways – this was what prompted Successió Miró to approach the French porcelain manufacturer Bernardaud. The intense and highly demanding partnership that ensued gave rise to this table service taken from the book Parler Seul. Its 100 pieces use the precision of porcelain to express the painter’s extraordinary freedom, and invite us to partake of an undeniably joyous meal.
“My grandfather adored ceramics”, says Joan Punyet Miró. These words were invaluable for Bernardaud and formed the invisible thread that would guide the research undertaken in Successió Miró archives and Fundació Joan Miró in Barcelona. The aim behind this research was to find original documentation that could be transposed to porcelain without misrepresenting it.
‘‘Bacteria interact with each other at the microscopic level, communicating where and when they should search for food. In this series, strains of Paenibacillus and Salmonella, known to cause a variety of diseases such as food poisoning, typhoid fever, and bacteremia are allowed to grow and spread on dishes. The patterns emerge from an initial population of bacteria that swim outward through an Agar gel using their motorized tails, creating the equivalent of a microscopic traffic jam of bacteria..’’ Vik Muniz
"In this project, Prune and I wanted to focus on a man’s most essential ‘‘tool,’’ his hands, which can function as a drinking cup or as eating utensils. As Darwin put it: ‘‘Man could not have attained his present dominant position in the world without the use of his hands’’. Here, our hands have been photographed. Families will pass on an heirloom dinner service that once belonged to ancestors of which nothing remains but a photograph and a few plates. At least our descendants will have the photograph right on the plate! Prune and I live in New York where we initiated a community of artists that holds big dinners every month. Everybody cooks, everybody brings something. The dinner table is a nerve center where we share a taste for good things, the art of living well! It’s nearly ten years since Prune and I put on our first art show, called ‘‘Toit et Moi’’, at the very beginning of our story together. Those plates are a logical and symbolic collaboration for us.’’ JR
Limited edition of the original wedding service created in 1952 by Marc Chagall in Vallauris for the wedding of his daughter. Each piece bears a different drawing reproduced with brush strokes executed by hand. The images evoke the poetry, tenderness, fantasy and humor derived from the richness of the painter's creative universe through his most favorite themes: the woman, the couple, the flowers, the circus and animals. "For Ida" is a dinner service for 12 that consists of 69 numbered pieces, stamped with the signature of Marc Chagall and is a limited edition of 225 services accompanied by a certificate of authenticity.
In the spirit of Alexander Calder’s kinship with France, the Calder Foundation has asked Bernardaud to craft reproductions on porcelain of Calder mobiles from the 1940s and 1950s.
The selection of these masterpieces of spatial complexity charge the surrounding space with infinite possibilities. With their black and red silhouettes vertically arranged and intensified by shapes with cut outs, these mobiles exude a radiant splendor that, in the manner of Bernardaud’s storied craftsmanship, continues to cultivate inspiration among sophisticates worldwide.
The collection Treilles illustrates the designer's research in architecture, design and nature while incorporating the company's desire to use porcelain in home decor.
The artist is inspired by the 18th century "Salon des Porcelaines" at the Capodimonte Museum in Naples where porcelain elements are mounted on mirrors, thus blurring the distinction between what is seen and what is reflected.
"For my project with Bernardaud, I created two sets of tableware, which I call Misfits because they do not match each other. Each set has different sized plates that vary in shape and pattern. Together, these two sets can be combined for a misfit dinner for two or one set can be used to serve a lonely dinner for one." Marina Abramovic
In 1874, architect Charles Garnier commissioned Auguste Rubé and Philippe Chaperon, internationally recognized master decorators of their time, to decorate the Salon de la Lune and the Salon du Soleil situated at the extreme ends of the Paris Opera foyer. The Salon de la Lune is located on the east end of the opera house entrance and leads to the glacier or refreshment room. The Salon du Soleil to the west leads to the fumoir or smoking room. The two decorative coupes are inspired by the ceiling of these two salons and represent all the richness and beauty of the 19th century.
Kara Walker explores controversial themes of race, gender, sexuality and violence. She is best known for her appropriation of the silhouette, which she has used in room-sized installations, sculptures and smaller works on paper or here on this pitcher. Walker's work illustrates and overlays racial stereotypes of the past and present; her work not only addresses slavery and racial discrimination in the antebellum South, but also raises awareness to the intrinsic bigotry that still exists throughout the United States.