A CERAMIST AND A GOLDSMITH: ROUARD & JEAN-E. PUIFORCAT
At the Exposition des Arts Décoratifs, the same pavilion, which is itself a work of art of exquisite finesse, brings together the collections of the master ceramist Rouard and the prestigious goldsmith Puiforcat. Its frontispiece bears the inscription: "La Revue Art et Décoration et le groupe des Artisans français contemporains".
An attractive clarity emanates from its appearance.
Its harmonious general plan and delicate decoration honour its author, the well-known architect Henri Pacon.
Man discovered ceramics when he discovered fire. The field of ceramics is therefore infinite.
All clay materials suitable for the potter's art are grouped under the general heading of ceramics. Nowadays, as in the past, the potter, now the ceramist, has the task of providing for the adornment of our interiors and the necessities of our tables. In order to fulfil this double role, Rouard has surrounded himself not only with the collaboration of the masters in ceramics of our time, but also with the help of all those who have made a name for themselves in the trades related to the art of the ceramist. And this is how he created the lively phalanx of "Contemporary French Craftsmen".
THE ROUARD EXHIBITION
All that the taste of the ceramist-glassmaker, the passion for "Beauty" of the art publisher can bring together in will, effort, research and results, has its faithful reflection, its eloquent expression in the Rouard exhibition.
In front of its elegant and harmoniously arranged showcases, one has the sensation of being transported to the fertile centre of the working life of the crafts.
Even those who had had a foretaste of it by visiting the beautiful shops at 34 Avenue de l'Opéra were deeply impressed by this overall presentation. But connoisseurs from the provinces and abroad, the curators of our great regional museums, and informed amateurs from all over the world, many of whom participated as judges in the work of the Exhibition's jury, had the sensation of a revelation.
THE PUIFORCAT EXHIBITION
The famous Puiforcat House of Goldsmiths is one of the oldest in Paris. It is run by its current head, his son, Jean-E. Puiforcat.
Still in his youth, Jean-E. Puiforcat made himself. The teaching of the schools did not disturb the natural clarity of his vision, nor did it set limits to his imagination, which is always on the alert. He is the craftsman par excellence, that is to say, the pure-bred artist, whom nature has generously endowed and to whom practice, that master Muse, has taught all the possibilities that the exercise of one of those beautiful crafts allows, which make a man a god since they give him the rank of creator. And no doubt his artistic culture and the ingenious sureness of his eye owe much to the good fortune which enabled him, from his earliest childhood, to be in contact with "the beautiful collection of ancient goldsmiths, in the midst of which he and his father live constantly in their workshops at 14 rue Chapon.
His exhibition is the magnificent result of his first years of work and effort. In its entirety, as well as in the details of the articles it contains, it shows the mastery of this young man's beginnings and the striking advance he was able to make on the general inspiration to which his profession is subject.
French art is notably indebted to Jean-E. Puiforcat for the use of coloured stones in silverware. Through him, silver is transformed into a new metal, coloured with a fiery luminosity, and all sparkling with the singing brilliance of gems. This is the answer to the exaggerated reproach made against our era for creating sadness, which has enabled French silversmiths to retain their prestige in the face of the curious Danish achievements.
Mr. Jean-E. Puiforcat is out of competition, member of the jury and rapporteur of the class X, metal, and Mr. Rouard is also out of competition, member of the jury and president of the international jury of ceramics, class XI.
Thus, the high esteem and the votes of their peers have called these two appreciated artists to an appreciable honour.
©L'Illustration - 1925