Would it be a happy effect of her childhood in the open air in Franche-Comté, Elise Fouin never ceases to refresh the interior landscapes with new ideas and delicate projects ! «Fled to Paris» as she says with a smile, to enter the Boulle school, the young woman first trained as a goldsmith, sharpening her taste for the subtle work of substance and material, before specializing in the design of objects and spaces.
Airy and delicate though it may be, Elise Fouin’s universe is nonetheless rooted in experience and reality. «The key to entry is always the material»: a dreamy looking head, yet the designer does not draw in the air, out of the blue. Favouring contact and manipulation, she lets materials dictate her projects as often as possible. Thus was born the Lucinda lamp, realized at the end of her studies, from rolled up wall insulation coils that she had fun to deploy, giving them this organic silhouette that will give free rein to the numerous interpretations. «Croissant, Shell sh or cocoons… people read many references there and it was, at the time, a first mediatic success that helped to make me known.»
If, within the framework of this project, the hand-made was by definition at the origin of unique models since one can never deploy the same shape completely identical, the story is not quite the same since Elise collaborates with publishers and industrialists on serial productions.
«The key to entry is always the material »
Far from being broken, the dialogue with the material, in these cases, is not confined to the hands but will focus on narrating the background of a process or know-how. At Drugeot labo, a family workshop specializing in woodworking, Élise Fouin is inspired by the archives and reinvents the famous hot water bottle tables by keeping their tapered legs but trading the old strapping for coloured metals and focusing on light wood rather than the traditional dark cedar. Similarly, at the end of the visit to the factory of the publisher and manufacturer of luminaires Forestier, the designer, hypnotized by the graphics of the offal carcasses days entangled which are stored there, imagines the Papillon suspension then its variation Libellule.
The inspired volatile objects seduce as much by their poetic curves as by the shifted glance that they carry on a historical know-how. The taste for diversion is an innate talent, but Élise Fouin undoubtedly developed it alongside André Putman with whom she worked for three years following an internship at the end of her studies. «She was a very free person who had a lot of humour about the things around her but also about herself. From those years, I learned that anything was possible in creation.» Under the prestigious aegis of this design icon, Élise diverts, for example, a sandow and hangs a ring on it to make a necklace for Cristofle. As unexpected as it is clever, the piece opens up new perspectives and it is this same ingenuity that will constantly be found in the designer’s future projects.
« I like it when people have the freedom to make my objects theirs, and that the use they make of them can evolve with time and their needs. »
To achieve this, you have to be full of ideas, but it seems Elise is never short of new thoughts! When it comes to exhibiting, the designer designs a modular structure that allows objects to be presented as on a sheet of paper perpendicular to the wall.
Ingenious and discreet, System T thus offers in nite possibilities for various and varied scenographies. It was also during her experimental research that Élise Fouin developed her project for Designerbox. Working on paper «magical material that allows the immediacy of doing», she designs the CANDY basket with the help of a few folds and instantly gets excited about the innovative material retained for its manufacture. Whether it is a fruit basket, a bread basket or a pocket holder, the multi-purpose object also offers a very clear insight into Elise Fouin’s creative approach by inviting the user to «finish the job» of assembling in the manner of a small hand in an haute couture workshop.
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