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    Marie Jeunet

    Marie Jeunet

    1. Where were you born and where are you from ?

    I grew up surrounded by nature, between fields and forests in the Vexin Natural Park, 45 minutes outside of Paris. I also came regularly to Paris to see my family, which forged a large part of my artistic culture. At the age of 12 I lost my father and after that I moved around a lot, I got closer to Paris from year to year and at 19 I moved there for my studies.

    2. What is your first memory connected to the art world ?

    My paternal grandmother had the soul of an artist, she was engaged a lot with music, and sang in cabarets. She grew up in Paris and was nourished by all kinds of arts. She married my grandfather who had golden hands, he knew how to draw, paint, do calligraphy… and together they opened a lighting store.

    This grandmother took me to Paris very often, to discover the city, its richness, to see shows and exhibitions… She was really a big part of my cultural education. I particularly liked the child surrealist movement, no doubt for its dreamlike universe. A world where we let the unconscious express itself freely. I felt well immersed in this world of dreams.

    And then in the small village in the countryside where I lived as a child, there was a craftsman that I admired a lot, a master glassmaker. It is quite unlikely when you know that there were only 600 inhabitants in this village! He was in the square, in front of the church, a stone’s throw from my house. There was only one bakery and this craftsman as the merchants in the village. I spent many hours in front of his studio. I dreamed of being able to manipulate all these colors too and play with light like he did… So you have to believe in your childhood dreams.

    3. Have you always worked in the art/design field ?

    I worked for 12 years as a creative specializing in communication mainly for luxury brands.

    I had the chance to work for Dior, Cartier, Saint-Laurent among others. I really enjoyed learning from these great houses. To be able to produce content and tell their stories, I first had to know the story of these brands well.

    I also got an eye because I exchanged daily with artistic directors, photographers or directors, it was very enriching.

    At the same time, in my free time, I learned to make stained glass and then the confinement was the trigger. I started, I was lucky to be well surrounded and that gave me the strength to dare.

    4. What led you to the design creation ?

    I started working on stained glass in a Parisian workshop, but I was frustrated at not being able to create anything other than panels when glass was an incredibly rich medium. I was overwhelmed by the reflections the glass was able to produce. So I had to find a way to bring it to life in a different way.

    I am also passionate about the decorative arts, I collect a lot of objects that I search carefully, sometimes for months. I affectionately call them “My precious ones”. So I wanted to create narrative and emotional objects.

    5. How would you describe your creative process and it influences ?

    I draw a lot of inspiration from nature, the elements, flowers, colors, light, reflections…. And the other strong influence is the world of jewellery, I love goldsmithing, I started to work on carving this year.

    As with a piece of jewellery, I do my best to sublimate the material, and for that I literally highlight it.

    6. Could you describe a typical day of your work ?

    There aren’t really any typical days. I would rather say that there are different categories of days. The days of drawings, research, and days dedicated to the imagination – my favorites!

    The production days require a lot of concentration because I work with very fragile materials. They require attention but they also bring out very beautiful emotions. Succeeding in bringing an idea to life is always a magical moment.

    And then there are more administrative days of development and communication around my work. It’s not my favorite part, but you have to do it.

    7. Why did you choose the specific materials you work with ?

    For their rarity and uniqueness. They all tell a different story, some like onyx and marble have been buried for millennia, each highlighted vein reveals a bit of history. Glass, depending on its texture and colors, can transport us to totally different universes. Brass comes as the finishing, to consecrating the works as “precious objects”.

    8. What are the technical particularities of your creations ?

    I try to create light sculptures that float on the walls for example. Unfortunately they do not hold together by magic and finding the right structure is not always easy. And it’s a bit the same for the models to be posed, for the Gems collection, the jewels are very large, the volumes which recall the codes of the jewels are voluntarily exaggerated and yet the pieces are fine and flexible which one cannot not guess at first. For the white onyx designs, I create the illusion of lightness with the material looking like a cloud when the pieces are actually very dense.

    9. What advices could you give to beginning artists who would like to create sculptural design works ?

    I would say that even without training you should not be afraid to dare. We can learn everything by passion and even later on.

    10. If your works had to belong to a design movement, in which one would you define it ?

    It’s hard to choose just one, my work is really a mixture of several totally different universes.

    Some pieces are minimalist, others could approach surrealism with very organic shapes…

    11. What designers have influenced you ?

    Max Ingrand, Willy Daro, Willy Rizzo, Mariah Pergay.

    12. What contemporary designers do you appreciate ?

    Pauline Deltour, she was my friend, my guide and my lucky star. Without her I would never have started. Her disappearance is a huge loss for the world of design and for the world in general.

    Sabine Marcellis, the queen!

    Daniel Roseberry at Schiaparelli.

    13. What contemporary artists (in any kind of art) have you been inspired by ?

    Georgia O’keeffe, Mark Adams, Ema Larson for their work on color.

    Simone Pheulpin, Zhu Omu, Ronan Bouroullec, Kate MccGwire for the organic shapes, strats, volumes.

    Robert Gossens and Les Lalanes for the goldsmith work.

    Georgia O’keeffe, Mark Adams, Ema Larson for their work on color.

    Simone Pheulpin, Zhu Omu, Ronan Bouroullec, Kate MccGwire for the organic shapes, strats, volumes.

    Robert Gossens and Les Lalanes for the goldsmith work.

    14. If you had to summarize your creations in one word or sentence, what would it be ?

    Poetic, delicate, precious

    15. Is there anything you would like to add ?

    That I feel very lucky to be able to experience all of this.

    Proust Questionnaire with very short answers (one or a few words) :
    (The Proust Questionnaire is a set of questions answered by the French writer Marcel Proust. Other historical figures who have answered confession albums are Oscar Wilde, Karl Marx, Arthur Conan Doyle, Stéphane Mallarmé, Paul Cézanne…)

    1. What is your idea of perfect happiness?

    The reflections of the sun on the sea

    2. What is your greatest fear?

    To lose my loved ones

    3. What is the trait you most deplore in yourself?

    My emotional storms

    4. What is the trait you most deplore in others?

    Lack of empathy

    5. Which living person do you most admire?

    My spouse, a model of love, wisdom and benevolence

    6. What is your greatest extravagance?

    To make the most of life.

    7. What is your current state of mind?

    In love with life

    8. What do you consider the most overrated virtue?

    The justice that I find unequal far too often

    9. What is the quality you most like in a man ?


    10. What is the quality you most like in a woman ?


    11. Which words or phrases do you most overuse?


    12. Which talent would you most like to have?

    To sing in tune

    13. If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?

    I wish I had more self-confidence

    14. What do you consider your greatest achievement?

    My conversion

    15. If you were to die and come back as a person or a thing, what would it be?

    A swallow

    16. Where would you most like to live?

    In the sun, facing the Mediterranean Sea

    17. What is your most treasured possession?

    Memories of my dad

    18. What do you regard as the lowest depth of misery?


    19. What is your favorite occupation?

    Look for rare items, the ones I call “my precious ones”

    20. What is your most marked characteristic?

    My joie de vivre

    21. What do you most value in your friends?


    22. Who are your favorite writers?

    Boris Vian

    23. Who is your hero of fiction?

    Maude for her extraordinary joie de vivre.

    “Harold & Maude” to read and see absolutely! Al Ashby’s film is a marvel. An ode to life, to love, to madness.

    24. Which historical figure do you most identify with?

    Lady Diana, Princess of the Heart. Princess but free!

    25. Who are your heroes in real life?

    The caregivers and volunteers around the world

    26. What are your favorite names?

    Orson, my son’s first name of course.

    27. What is it that you most dislike?

    Intolerance and milk

    28. What is your greatest regret?

    Never have traveled alone

    29. How would you like to die?

    With a smile

    30. What is your motto?

    “Strong, otherwise it’s not worth it”. I like the intensity.

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