Pierre Charpin at Apartment N°50 in la Cité Radieuse by Le Corbusier
Pierre Charpin is taking the stage this year at the Appartement N°50 at la Cité Radieuse in Marseille. The apartment has previously hosted temporary installations by Ronan and Erwan Bouroullec in 2010 and Jasper Morrison in 2008 and Konstantin Grcic in 2013.
Appartement N°50 is a privately owned home in the iconic Cité radieuse, the Modernist apartment block in Marseille, France. It’s scrupulously protected in its original 1952 state and was classified as a “Historic Monument” in 1995. Thanks to the generosity and passion of its owner who still reside in the apartment, the place is made accessible to the public during the summer months of each year.
To insure that Le Corbusier’s visionary Unité d’Habitation has the same vibrancy today as when it was originally conceived, the apartment is turned into a temporary stage for the ideas and works of contemporary designers.
Pierre Charpin sophisticated creations seem to fit perfectly with the original work by Charlotte Perriand and Le Corbusier. The artist also chose to keep some of his predecessors works. Objects designed by Jasper Morrison, Konstantin Grcic and Ronan & Erwan Bouroullec punctuate the set as a signs of continuity.
Le Corbusier built la Cité radieuse, imagined as the vertical village between 1947 and 1951. Its design was inspired by travel, which explains why it looks like a giant steamboat anchored in a park. Around 1,600 people live in its 334 famously sound-proofed duplex apartments with functional 1950s interior design in a grid of modernist lines of exposed unsurfaced concrete.
[divider]About Pierre Charpin [/divider]
Born in 1962 in Saint-Mandré, Pierre Charpin is a visual artist who obtained his degree from the National School of Fine Arts in Bourges (F) in 1984. In the early 1990s, he decided to concentrate on designing objects and furniture.
He has since embarked upon a number of research projects with associations such as CIRVA (1998/2001) and CRAFT (2003/2005) as well as product design collaborations with internationally known design companies like Alessi, Cristallerie, Saint-Louis, Design Gallery Milano, Ligne Roset, Manufacture Nationale de Sèvres, Pamar, Post Design, Tectona, Venini and the Wrong Shop.
He collaborates often with the Galerie kreo in Paris for different research projects. Since 2005, he works exclusively with the Parisian gallery for the production of his limited edition pieces. He has created several series of objects and personal exhibitions with kreo such as: Platform in 2006, All’aperto in 2008, 8 1/2 in 2009 and Ignotus Nomen in 2011.
In 2004 he was the prizewinner of the competition launched by the Société des Eaux de Paris (Paris Waterworks). Designed to convince Parisians of their tap water’s quality and incite them to drink more of it, his cast glass Eau de Paris water carafe was produced in a batch of 60,000.
The vase “Triplo”, created in 2004 and produced by Venini, was a part of the 2005 Compasso d’Oro (Golden Compass) design competition. The Paris Salon du meuble (furniture fair) named him “Creator of the Year” in 2005.
In 2010 he designed the scenography of the exhibition “Mobiboom” for the Musée des Arts Décoratifs in Paris as well as the scenography for the third edition of Milan’s Design Museum de la Triennale, “Quali Cose Siamo”.
In 2011 he showed a personal exhibition at the Grand Hornu in Bossu, Belgium. The exhibition was entitled Pierre Charpin : 20 années de travail and he exposed many pieces designed between 1990 and 2010.
Many of his pieces are a part of the permanent collections of the FNAC (Fond National d’Art Contemporain), the Georges Pompidou center, the Musée des Arts Décoratifs and the Grand-Hornu Images. He is also a part of many private Contemporary Art and Design collections in France and internationally.
Next to his design work, he has been working as a professor in the industrial design department at ECAL (Ecole Cantonale d’Art de Lausanne) since 2008.
After spending a lot of time in Milan (Italy) in the 1990’s, he currently works and lives in Ivry sur Seine in Paris.
Photography © Philippe Savoir & FONDATION LE CORBUSIER/ ADAGP