French designer

Charlotte Perriand

(1903 - 1999)

Charlotte Perriand positively is the most important French designer and architect. She is born in 1903 in Paris and 1920-25 studies at the École de l‘Union Centrale des Arts Décoratifs. After graduation she starts designing furniture and causes a sensation with her 'Bar sous le toit' (bar under the roof), made of nickel plated copper and anodized aluminium - designed for her own studio and shown at the exhibition Salon d' Automne in 1927. Here she meets Le Corbusier and his cousin Pierre Jeanneret, in whose studio she will work for the next ten years. Charlotte Perriand is significantly involved with most of the furniture designs of those years.
In the 1930s Charlotte Perriand turns away from steeltubes and starts designing rustic wooden furniture in a free form (Form Libre), for which collectors pay peak prices today. This style gets enhanced by her stay in Japan from 1940, where she spent a number of years due to the war and became design consultant for the Japanese Board of Trade. Her later furniture designs are reminiscent of Japanese forming, for instance the 1953 chair 'Synthèse des Arts' (synthesis of the arts).
Back in Europe, Charlotte Perriand once again closely cooperates with Le Corbusier and Pierre Jeanneret. In the 1950s she also works with Jean Prouvé. Sales and distribution of Perriand's and Prouvé's furniture is taken on by the famous Paris gallery Steph Simon. At the end of the 1960s she participates in designing 'Les Arcs', hotels and apartments in the French Alps. At the end of the 1970s Charlotte Perriand oversees the re-edition of Le Corbusier's furniture for Cassina.