Following on the sale of the historic furnishings of the Ritz Hotel in 2018, Artcurial will be auctioning on 21, 22 & 23 June 2020, close to 1,500 lots dedicated to French Arts of the table and Arts of living.
For the occasion, Artcurial will hold an exhibition at the Hôtel Marcel Dassault, with a scenography specially created for Artcurial by the renowned French interior designer and gourmet Laurent Buttazzoni.
Artcurial: What prompted your collaboration?
Laurent Buttazzoni: Stéphane Aubert, an auctioneer at Artcurial, had been looking through my book Diner à la maison, which was published at the end of last year by Rizzoli. I think he liked the style of the very colourful photos, in which the crockery, linen and dishes are shot close up.
A: How will you display the Ritz Paris crockery?
LB: If it isn’t broken, don’t fix it: the same team - that’s to say the same photographer, the same stylist and I - are going to shoot the photos at home. The idea is to make owning these services seem accessible. With crockery, we always want it to look pretty. It’s the mix - of sophisticated and affordable - expensive and inexpensive, that makes it work. A bit like in interior design: mix and match!
A: How many services are you going to stage?
LB: Six different services, from the gourmet restaurant one to the room service plates! And I have chosen them to illustrate different times of the day: the pink floral one for a vegan lunch amongst girlfriends, the green and white cups for a tea with scones, the red and gold plate for a sophisticated dinner, the blue service for a more intimate supper and not forgetting the glasses for cocktail hour and the services decorated with flowers in green and pink for breakfast. Of course the cutlery, plates, teapots and some pretty silver-plated metal tumblers will play supporting roles.
A: As an interior designer, you are known for your contemporary vision (n.b. as well as private commissions, he has completed projects for such prestigious locations as the Thaddaeus Ropac gallery in Pantin and the Kreo gallery). That’s a very long way from this rather vintage tableware, isn’t it?
LB: Vintage and re-use are actually very current, like in fashion. I love hunting for new pieces and collecting. I have just come back from Mexico and again I couldn’t resist. I brought back some textiles and some glasses. I have nearly a whole closet full of napkins and tablecloths! Plenty for playing with colours, flowers and stripes. What’s fun is that twist with more contemporary accessories, which brings it all up to date and makes the whole thing more vibrant and playful.