Under his fingers, the earth is transformed into vases with peach skin or black charcoal, and the trees are adorned with ceramic growths, with soft hybrid volumes… Noticed during the last Paris Design Week, the new pieces by Norman designer Stéphanie Langard illustrate the transfiguring power of matter, blurring the boundaries between art and design.
She takes malicious pleasure in making the material pass for what it is not. Designer, sculptor, ceramist, interior designer, artistic director, this multi-talented designer, born in 1976, loves above all to breathe beauty and poetry into her works. A graduate of the Ecole Supérieure d’Art et de Design (ESAD) in Reims, passed through the box of the Art Center College of Design in Los Angeles and the Domus Academy in Milan, she holds her taste for natural materials and highly developed skills, hours spent as a child in the workshop of his cabinetmaker father. However, his large and luxurious “Toupie” of blown glass, olive wood, silk and copper straps, unfit for use, noticed during the 2014 D’Days at the Musée des Arts Décoratifs in Paris, like his astonishing ” referee’s chair Emile” from 2015, playfully questioning our ability to adapt, testify to his disposition to transcend the gesture dictated by a technique.
Selected, in 2019, to represent France at the 10th International Biennial of Ceramics in Gyeonggi, South Korea, she now seems to be returning to her first love, most often exploring stoneware and ash wood from the Eu Forest, dear to her heart, to their asperities and intrinsic qualities, sometimes unsuspected. With the help of very precise drawings, she immerses formless, sensual, almost malleable forms in the earth. Indeed, the ceramics of his vases with their elegant, often modernist lines, seem to tend to be mistaken. Their model worked with a scraper or sandpaper can give the illusion of a wool felt that breathes. Moreover, it seems to have made it her signature, which can be found on display at Superstudio, during the “1000 Vases” event for Milan Design Week in September 2021, or even during the final Paris Design Week, at 80 rue de Turenne, through “Bodies”, his solo show presenting a corpus of 60 pieces.
Last September and October, “Crowned Trees”, an installation made up of five pieces in Ash wood and sandstone, also took over the Place du Louvre, between the neo-Gothic belfry of the Saint-Germain-L’auxerrois church, urbanized nature and the Museum of Louvre. With a very beautiful effect, this set in the middle of which was enthroned an imposing welcoming trunk, in its center, an astonishing “couple”, challenged by its ambiguous aesthetics. Working on the irregular surfaces of these woods like a skin until their moires appear, Stéphanie seized on the imbalance of their volumes and undulations, crowning them with pieces of sandstone, with organic shapes, sometimes on the edge, almost human beings, who seem to be talking to each other, hugging each other, even thinking…
From these trunks destined for the fire or to become parquet because they have too many defects, Stéphanie Langard brings out surprising presences, ghostly, sensual, playing on the illusion of their materials, colors and dazzling reflections in the sun. Leaving everyone the freedom to appropriate them by touch, Stéphanie Langard makes her design creations a beautiful subject for reflection and mystery.