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Maison & Objet Fall 2011, Part Three

Six artisans showing the creative side of elegant craftsmanship

by Isabelle Doal in Design on 16 September 2011

Parts one and two of our Maison & Objet coverage looked to the fully materialized innovations in furniture and sustainable design, but one of most inspiring sections of the expo is the area dedicated to arts and craft. In this sector creativity reigns, and each artist's distinct know-how turns raw materials into unique collectibles, sophisticated jewelry, intriguing lamps and more. Each object tells a story, many of the hands that made them.

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Observing the world through ancient and forgotten optics, Dominic Stora's kaleidoscopes, optical games and early animation devices like the phenakistoscope are as much an objet d'art as they are an entertaining toy. His range of unearthed spy devices and more can be purchased by contacting Stora at apreslapluie[at]orange[dot]fr.

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Based in Brittany, French artist Pauline Bétin creates beautifully fragile glass sculptures. Imprisoned in the blocks are dreamlike images that seemingly float within the glass, half erased and half embedded within the material. Featuring landscapes or urban industrial environments, the artist works with both mediums to explore the mysteries of opacity and illumination. Bétin sells her decorative objects under the moniker La Fabrique du Verre.

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Poetic stories to get kids to sleep is what the paper lampshades and other enlighten paper figures created by Papier à êtres tell. The couple behind the company is both paper craftsmen and artists and most of their creations are made out of their own homemade cotton or linen paper production.

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The graceful white figures and handblown lighting sculptures borrow their soft charm from the folded paper they are made from. Inspired by fairy tails, the mini tree-hut lamps and moon-like suspension lamps featuring tiny swinging figures are known to enchant a child's room or the Parisian Opera House.

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Parisian Aude Tahon tells stories of princesses with her refined ultra-feminine floral jewlery. Handmade using the traditional Korean technique of knotting twisted silk yarns or by braiding cotton threads, the artist makes airy rings, bracelets and other creative body accessories.

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A trained architect, ceramist Beatrice Bruneteau creates contrasting sandstone and porcelain housewares under the name Brune.

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Inspired by rock, cliffs and tree bark, her smooth tea sets and attractive flower pots reflect her talent for pottery, while the willowy tree branches simply allow anyone to elegantly bring a bit of nature indoors.

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Marseille-based Jean-Pierre Giusiano turns everyday objects into functional works of art. Kitchen utensils, bicycle pieces or gear boxes are given new life as desk lamps, coffee tables or stools.

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