L’usage des jours. 365 ceramic objects by Guillaume Bardet / Musée de design et d’arts appliqués contemporains, Lausanne
March 27 – May 26, 2013
Opening reception: Tuesday, March 26, 6 PM.
During the period from September 21, 2009, until September 20, 2010, the French designer Guillaume Bardet drew one object a day. As an extension of this «artistic and human performance», from fall 2010 he saw to the creation of each object. He did so in collaboration with fourteen ceramists from the Dieulefit region (Rhône-Alpes, southeast France), where he had settled in 2009 in order to flee the Parisian hullabaloo.
It took a good measure of determination, passion, enthusiasm and energy for Guillaume Bardet to become the hub of an alliance built up of individuals, companies, institutions and collectivities, all of whom agreed to join this human and creative adventure with him for an over two-year period. It also demanded a great deal of nerve and talent for the designer to bare himself, revealing not only his basic concerns and strokes of imagination, but also his weak spots, his doubts and his trial-and-error approach. And all this in order to uncompromisingly give their full due to his formal and aesthetic solutions.
Guillaume Bardet entrusted the scenography for this itinerant exhibition to his friend, the designer Vincent Dupont-Rougier, insisting nonetheless on a preconception whereby time passes very slowly (a one-year period) and very rapidly (that of a single day). And this by resorting to elements in the service of simplicity, structuring and narration, so as to bring to mind both linearity and profusion, families and uses, moods and fancies.
The exhibition also brings to light various phases of inspiration, the artist’s manner of working and his search for solutions. Interspersed among each of the seasons, information is provided alongside Guillaume Bardet’s sketches, his 3D drawings, and photographs, together with a written record of the remarkably fruitful dialogue Bardet inspired between himself and the many ceramists involved. In the words of one of the latter, Guillaume Bardet found out how to «tell a story» and «seek out the lines» in each of the forms he had designed and observed taking shape in the artisans’ hands.
This outstanding personal challenge entailed a nigh-to-monacal and introspective approach in 2009; it was followed by a more collegial phase in 2010, climaxing in the production of 365 brand new ceramic works. These have since been presented as the theme of a monographic exhibition of a new kind, shown at several museums and exhibition venues partnering this initiative. The mudac represents the last lap on the exhibition’s itinerary, which included Sèvres («City of Ceramics») in France (near Paris), Le Grand Hornu Images in Belgium, the Château des Adhémar (Contemporary Art Center) in Montélimar (France), and the Maison de la Céramique du Pays de Dieulefit in 2012.
The publishing house Bernard Chauveau has published a catalogue that, beyond accompanying this exhibition, will serve as a tangible record thereof far beyond this presentation. The publication boasts 400 color illustrations, and is bilingual (French and English). Readers are treated to 365 ceramic pieces, as photographed by Pierre-Olivier Deschamps, and to complementary essays contributed by Lorette Nobécourt, Catherine Geel and Claude Eveno (ISBN 9782363060136, 55 €).
Thanks to this ambitious project, Guillaume Bardet and his ceramist colleagues were named the winners (Prix Dialogues) of the year 2011 Bettencourt Prize for the Intelligence of the Hand.
Born in 1971, Guillaume Bardet attended ENSAD in Paris, obtaining his degree in 1999. An encounter with Jean-Marie Massaud (French architect, inventor and designer) led the two to work together until June 2001. Having decided to strike out on his own, Guillaume Bardet drew up and submitted his personal projects, collaborating with various design companies/editors (Ligne Roset, Cinna, Triode, Marianne Guedin Edition, Aquamass, De Vecchi, Livi’t, etc.).
Accepted as a resident at the Académie de France in Rome in 2002, he spent one year working at the Villa Medicis, where he drew up a 9-part project in marble—Mobilier immobile, presented at the Yves Gastou Gallery in October 2003. From 2005 to 2009, he was appointed project director at the ENSCI (Higher School for Industrial Ceramics), in Paris. In 2008, Perimeter Gallery Paris displayed his latest creations in Paris, and at respectively Art Basel and Art Miami. The following year, Art Basel featured his piece Babel, a two-meter-high porcelain tower for a suspended vegetable garden.
In parallel to his exhibition activity, Guillaume Bardet has actively pursued his interest in interior decoration, working as much on commissions by Renault as on those by private clients. Further still, he has taken up urban design, in collaboration with the architectural firm Passagers des Villes, Lyon—notably, in the French cities of Besançon in 2007 and Chambéry in 2009. He lives and works in Dieulefit (Rhône-Alpes, France).
Danaé Panchaud, Public Relations
Tel. +41 315 25 30
mudac – musée de design et d’arts appliqués contemporains
Place de la Cathédrale 6
Above: Guillaume Bardet, October 16, 2009, Géométrie élémentaire, composition in collaboration with Séverine Dufust, Ceramic, 57.7 x 35.5 cm. Photo by Pierre Olivier Deschamps, edited by Bernard Chauveau.
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