Saturday, May 14, 2016
Jean-Louis Clerc met Robert Dumas in 1950, when the artist was in his forties, with a string of prestige collaborations to his name. Clerc went on to create a dozen carrés with the house of Hermès. Bain de mer is based on an original drawing belonging to Jean-Louis Clerc’s family.
The decade is the 1950s. On a deserted beach, a young woman in a broad-brimmed hat sits gazing at the sea. Her name is Minouche, and she is none other than the artist’s wife, captured with his characteristically lively, light touch, in just a few lines, evoking the graphic elegance of an era. Duplicated here, the drawing suggests a strip of vintage film, a sweet souvenir of summer, the kind we warm to on a cold winter night.
Saturday, May 7, 2016
Chased by a leopard, a vervet monkey turns to face its predator, his expression anxious and uncertain. In Zulu culture, the leopard symbolises royalty, while the vervet monkey represents intelligence and wit – fine qualities, though they may not be enough to save his life here. But who knows? Giant King Protea blooms (South Africa’s national flower) surround the two protagonists, and the carré is framed with a border of amazumpa motifs, used in Zulu pottery. Ardmore is a collective of Zulu, Zimbabwean and Sotho artisan potters, founded in 1985 by Fée Halsted, in Kwazulu Natal, South Africa.
Today, the group numbers seventy members: creative artists dedicated to reinventing traditional styles, united by their recognition of what our common humanity and fraternity truly mean: that each of us exists thanks to others. This carré marks the beginning of a new collaboration between the collective, and the house of Hermès.