WantedDesign is a platform dedicated to promoting design and fostering the local and international creative community throughout the year.

What We Discovered in France This Summer

What We Discovered in France This Summer

Villa Noailles, city of Hyères
Finalists at Villa Noailles

Summertime is always a very privileged and great time for us to spend time in France, with so many inspiring places to visit, and friends from the industry to meet. We are pleased to share a few of those discoveries with you, including one of our favorite destinations in the South of France: the Design Parade at Villa Noailles and Toulon. After the south, Odile Hainaut, co-founder of WantedDesign, went to Paris to represent WantedDesign at Paris Design Week and Maison & Objet. There was a lot to see, and many people to meet with.

Design Parade Villa Noailles

Ineke Hans at Villa Noailles

“For maybe 12 years, I have been doing my “South of France” summer tour, most of all to visit the very inspiring Design Parade in Hyères, certainly one of my favorite destination to scout new talents. And it’s also a pure pleasure to walk inside and outside the domain.” Odile Hainaut.

The house built by architect Robert Mallet-Stevens for Charles and Marie-Laure de Noailles, between 1923 and 1927, in the hills above the city of Hyères, hosted this year the exhibit of Guest of Honor designer Ineke Hans, also the president of the Jury who selected the 10 finalist designers on view across the house.

“Anima II” by Claire Pondard and Léa Pereyre

The very colorful scenography, signed by Lucas Djaou, was itself a piece of art, sometimes shadowed a bit the presentation of the designers. My “coup de coeur” went to “Anima II”, by Claire Pondard and Léa Pereyre who won the Design Parade Hyères Grand Prize and the Public Prize. Both graduated from ECAL in Industrial Design and focuses on the digital world and its evolution. Anima’s installation was poetic and interactive, with laser-cut colored plastic mobile creatures reacting to their environment, in that case working beautifully within the space, scenography and color palette.

Distraction fonctionnelle by Stéven Coëffic

Stéven Coëffic won the Special Mention of the Jury award with his series “Distraction fonctionnelle”. Interested in the dialogue between human and object, with a focus on everyday life object, the playful collection reminded us of François Chambard’s design language.

Robin Bourgeois at Villa Noailles

It was nice to see Robin Bourgeois’ minimalist collection on display as part of the 10 finalists.

In Robin’s words, “À hauteur d’assise is a research-based project inspired by retreats in several French Cistercian abbeys. These unique experiences sparked six objects that transmit the heritage of the Cistercian in our times: making do with little, building to last, living amongst nature, being attentive to our surroundings and contemplation. These are discreet proposals for our everyday life.”

Design Parade Toulon

Primo Sole by Carla Genty (École Nationale Superieure des Arts Décoratifs de Paris) and Léa Ollivier (University de la Mode of Lyon)
Sardine Sardine by Madeleine Oltra (Design Academy Endhover) and Angelo de Taisne (École Nationale Supérieure d’Architecture)
La Toilette aux coquillages by Paul Bonlarron (ENSCI les Ateliers)

Design Parade Toulon, the 6th Interior Design Festival  at L’ Ancien Évêché was an absolute treat: the venue is a beautiful “écrin” to present the 10 selected young interior designers, in competition for the “Grand Prix” and the Mobilier National Award. Rodolphe Parente was the President of the Jury and guest of honor. The Award went to the well deserved “Sardine Sardine” installation, by Madeleine Oltra and Angelo de Taisne. 

Other of my favorites are all the projects that truly interpret and reflect the mediterranean characteristics: its landscape, materials, colors, soil, vegetables, the play between sun and shadow, the fragrances, even the sound coming from the wind, birds or waves. On view until October 20.

Hotel des Arts, Toulon

At the Hotel des Arts, the exhibit “Interieurs Modernes 1920-1930”, from the Collection Design of Centre Pompidou, was a nice way to look back to the different facets of the modern interior in France and the influence of those iconic designer names, including Charlotte Perriand, Le Corbusier or Robert Mallet-Stevens. 

Interieurs Modernes

The exhibit, with a scenography signed by Joachim Jirou-Najou, is on view until October 30 2022. 

OH: “I added a stop to the recently opened Mediterranean Campus of the Interior Design Camondo school, demonstrating that the South of France is definitely attracting more and more young creatives, inspired not only by the breathtaking surrounding landscape, but also by so many architectural and sites history, access to specific materials and craftsmanship.”

Paris Design Week

Ending this summer French tour with Paris and my take away from Maison & Objet: the Dutch Rising Talents, and the “Power Color” exhibition by Elizabeth Lerriche, which were the most inspiring parts, in addition to discover a few young companies focusing on circular economy and sustainability, and to meet with many friends from the industry and from the WantedDesign community.

Closing this Saturday, September 17, Paris Design Week was a particularly dense and diverse program across the different parts of the capital. 

L’Academie du Climat in Paris

Odile was particularly interested to discover the “new garde”. 

Starting with the exhibit “Design for a wild world”, at the Climate Academy, 17 schools part of the Campus des Métiers d’Art presented projects (trying) to respond to the environmental challenges. A few projects did that successfully, including @Alissonburnier, from ENSAD, with her project “le fil de l’eau”, and Camille Balestra, from Ecole Boulle, just graduating with a DNMADE (diplôme national des métiers d’art et du design) and specializing in wood cabinetry; Camille designed and fabricated a little serigraphy mobile studio, a way to engage with people in the streets, in particular on topics like climate change.

At the Mobilier National – Manufacture des Gobelins, the Campus des Métiers d’Art announced the winners of the competition awarding the best projects exploring innovative and sustainable use of wool. 

Carte Blanche exhibit by Hanna Anonen | Photo credits: Aurélien Mole

In Saint-Germain-des-Prés, multiple events, including  the “Carte Blanche” to our recent resident Finnish designer Hanna Anonen is on view until November 19 at the Finnish Cultural Institute. Hanna Anonen presents several series of interior decoration pieces including  a series of photographs representing Anonen’s brightly colored pieces staged in the snowy, pure and harmonious landscapes of the Finnish nature.

In the Marais, in addition to visiting Atelier George’s exhibit and discover Eve George exquisite new glass collection “cime”, on display interesting projects with a responsable approach at the rue Froissart Design Factory include Manufacture de Papier @objectif_terre, as well as a collaboration between Adagio, Ligne Roset and designer Thomas Delagarde, an alumni from Ecole Camondo, to rethink contract furniture in responding to multi functionality, simplicity, space constraints and with a responsable production process.

Looking forward to sharing with you our next trip to Design Week Mexico in October.

Manufacture de Papier

Follow us at @wanteddesign to keep up to date with our trips around the world in search of inspiring projects, places or organizations and emerging talents.