Monday, May 31, 2010

More Poiret Savoir Faire

In incredible stark contrast to his fashions and design aesthetic Paul Poiret commissioned the Villa Poiret from the architect Robert Mallet-Stevens in 1924 -1925.

This seems to be a complete departure from everything that we tend to associate with Poiret and is a testament to his innate sense of style and savoir faire. It seems hard to even contemplate that Poiret had any serious intentions of even living here considering that the building is pure simplicity in itself, something which Poiret seemed to scorn. Everything for Poiret was over the top rich and vibrant and in excess. He excited in eastern exoticism, with colours and richness running headlong in abandon in clothing and interior design schemes.

However Poiret described the design as “United surfaces, sharp edges, sharp curves, polished materials, angles, clarity, order. This is my home and geometric logic " Seems hard to imagine Poiret ever saything this.

Unfortunately Poiret never occupied the villa as he and his company fell into bankruptcy. Only occupying the lodge pending completion until 1928, the villa was finally sold in 1930 (to pay debts) to the actress Elvira Popescu, who hired architect Paul Boyer to complete the project, distorting the original plans. Popescu occupied the villa until 1985, from when it was abandoned.

Luckliy it had been bought by a prominent industrialist and is being restored to its former glory. One can only imagine what Poiret would have done with the interior had he been financially able to live there. It could have been a turning point in his design aesthetic, which might have seen his fashion also evolve with the times, instead of dying an inglorious death.

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