say hi to_ Garance Vallée
When I first found Garance Vallée's instagram account, I felt like we were living in some sort of strange parallel universe. For her, a chic French girl living in New York City and for me a New York Girl living the cliché dream in Paris. A renaissance woman of various talents; an architect, an illustrator, a furniture designer and fine artist on top of super model looks and an earthy down to earth disposition - Garance has it all. Studying architecture in Paris and finding inspiration from the Bauhaus and Memphis movements, her background informs a very specific and unique style in her illustrative work.
I had the pleasure of getting to know Garance once she arrived back in Paris as we set up a first collaboration together in our online series 'Design Studies'. For 'Design Studies' we offer an artist three options of architects and furniture designers and ask them to choose one as inspiration for a new series of four illustrations. I loved that her interior and architectural line illustrations were balanced with the organic curves of memphis design motifs. Real and surreal, old yet new, simple yet deep. As with most great artists, her work is not only aesthetically pleasing (we can't get enough) but leaves the viewer intrigued to the story each illustration seems to inspire. What is this place? Who lives here? Can you draw my next house?
For Garance's series of illustrations, she transforms the work of Le Corbusier by deconstructing and staging his work by putting his objects and furniture into another chronology of space. She then put her interpretation of the famous 'Villa Savoye' in ruin, as a relic of the past, as an image overtaken by time - an ancient memorial of sorts.
Garance Vallée is certainly one of the hottest up and coming artists coming from the contemporary art scene in Paris. With many new projects in the pipeline for the new year and we will be eagerly following what she does next. We are especially excited to see where her interior architecture projects develop into, we get first dibs on her designing our next office.
I. Can you please describe your collaboration with say hi to_ and what you did do with us?
I created a series of illustrations which then became limited edition prints as apart of say hi to_’s ‘Design Studies’ series as well as collaborating on an exhibition of these pieces in Paris.
II. What did the creative process look like? (how we worked together to develop the idea and collaboration)
The process was quick and easy, we were on the same wavelength from the beginning. After a bit of back and forth on the theme and the inspiration, I envision a series of four drawings. We discussed a lot about the color palette and the editorial vision which helped inform the concept. It was a real exchange about my work and Kristen’s feelings. I was given the opportunity to have carte blanche in my creative expression and reinterpretation of the work and world of legendary architect Le Corbusier.
III. What types of projects are you interested in working?
Projects inspired by architecture of course and working in ‘micro-architecture’; design objects, furniture…. I specialised in scenography during my studies so I really love the way of constructing drawings or images setting a scene with objects.
I like to deconstruct materials, play with textures. As for my drawings, I design all the objects within those imagined spaces, creating my own little world.
IV. What does say hi to_ represent to you?
A beautiful meeting place, an opportunity to present and introduce work, a platform to enter the design world, a springboard for the future….
‘Terra’ at Martina Gamboni 2018