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News / Faïencerie de Charolles: a renaissance through design

Faïencerie de Charolles: a renaissance through design

Since the Faïencerie de Charolles took as artistic director, the designer Aurélie Richard, this Living Heritage Company since 2016, reborn from its ashes. Cyrille Frappé and Christophe Busti, the recent buyer and director of the company, are doing everything they can to wake up the sleeping beauty.

The Burgundian manufacture, defends the know-how of ceramics since 1844, day when Hippolyte Prost, son of potter, laid the first stone of the company. Cyrille Frappé, a service provider specializing in packaging, fell in love with this small company of only ten people and took on the challenge of re-launching an earthenware factory with incredible manufacturing processes and heritage. Christophe Busti, who has been entrusted with the management of the manufacturing site, maintains the artisanal aspect with the manufacture of plaster molds, the mixing of clays from the region, the making of the slip and the consolidation by grog to gain in resistance, a solidity that differentiates the Faïencerie de Charolles from its competitors, specialists in simple decorative pieces.

Aurélie Richard is the artistic director of the Charolles faience factory since 2019 © Laetitia Bouquerel

Instilling modernity


Aurélie Richard has chosen to rework the color chart, with no less than 150 colors ranging from Lotus to copper, alabaster, Dune, Ebony or Elephant in smooth, crackled, satin, shiny or metallic finishes, created by colorist Nathalie Collier, in charge of Color Research, before and after single or double firing in a kiln at more than 1,000°C.

Glouglou decanter / Cy light fixture, design : Eric Tache and Aurélie Richard © Laëtitia Bouquerel

Aurélie Richard’s first collections, Boréale, Tandem and Alba, used simple shapes, but she delved into the brand’s archives, which hold the famous Garouste pedestal table (by Elizabeth Garouste and Mattia Bonetti, designed in 2001), to try to modernize the red Charolles carnation surrounded by forget-me-nots, the signature of the FdC brand. The hand stylized petals are found on more generous shapes but the Glouglou decanter, melted in one piece, remains one of the best-sellers of the brand. Because the customers are faithful to their objects and it is not rare to see old ones coming back to simply acquire the water carafe of their childhood for its unspeakable gurgling. The Ring has been reworked into a table lamp and vase and has been re-dressed in multiple colors. The Globe projector, enamelled on the outside and matt on the inside, placed on the floor, is a real technical feat.

New partnerships


In search of new manufacturing procedures and creation of forms, she called on Baptiste Lanne who opposes smooth surface and surface carved with a gouge, made through a counter-molding that retains all the roughness in the lamp Clapot. Alain Gilles, with Fat&Slim, combines earthenware for the base and Fermob metal for the top of these coffee tables to be placed discreetly at the end of sofas.

Clapot lamp, design : Baptiste Lanne / Fat&Slim coffee table, design : Alain Gilles © Laëtitia Bouquerel

The Cy luminaire, designed by Eric Fache and Aurélie Richard, combines earthenware with a composite linen reflector, the Varian, made of vegetable resin from recycled corn to defend an association of French manufacturing. Thermoformed, it crowns a small light, graceful and technical at the same time. Small accessories that come to renew the catalog FdC. Talking about color with material and material with color, this is the new challenge of FdC, specialist in enameling collection, designer and manufacturer.

Bénédicte Duhalde