Just because the week is over (TGIF!) doesn’t mean it’s too late to learn something! On today’s History Lesson we’re examining the work of one of the furniture design greats: Jacques Adnet. Often associated with French Deco Modernism, Adnet’s pieces focus on geometric simplicity and an innovative yet traditional use of materials such as leather, brass, and enameled metal. The clean lines and often sculptural nature of his designs allow them to blend seamlessly with a multitude of different interior styles helping capture that eclectic look so many clients and design enthusiasts yearn for. Below we review some of our favorite pieces…
Look familiar? Notably one of his most successful and reproduced designs is this leather and glass mirror produced while working for Hermes. This single piece captures the essence of French Modernism but ultimately the Adnet design philosophy.
Before he was well known in his own right, Jacques Adnet designed in collaboration with Maurice Dufrêne. Many of these earlier designs reflect Adnet’s streamlined interpretation of neoclassical design with their delicately tapered legs and brass caps. Above, a desk chair, as well as a Cuban mahogany game/dining table, below.
From 1928 – 1960, Adnet became director of the La Compagnie des Arts Francais which proved an effective platform for him to implement his now more modernist deigns. It was at CAF, where Adnet developed some of his most iconic designs. While he experimented with more luxe materials such as leather, precious woods, smoked glass, and parchment, his designs always remained simple and linear.
Above, a cocktail table’s metal frame is wrapped in hand-stitched red leather and holds a glass top. It’s thin metal frame allows the piece to almost float but it’s punchy red color gives it a graphic pop. Below, a chest of drawers in black leather and brass is the perfect combination of feminine meets masculine and I particularly love the bamboo accents – a nod to Chinoiserie perhaps?
There are leather arm chairs and then there are Jacques Adnet’s leather arm chairs, above. Their curvilinear arms and slightly lower seat height say not to take them so seriously. They’re the type of chairs that would look equally amazing in both a traditional or super modern interior.
Even mundane items like a firewood rack, left, and a magazine stand, right, get the Adnet treatment with the incorporation of black leather and brass.
And how about this playful little guy? Adnet took a whimsical departure from the norm when he designed this chandelier. Would this not be darling in a boy’s nursery? Next time you’re browsing a showroom take a good look around–you’ll start to see Adnet touches popping up everywhere. Have a great weekend!