Creative talk

Jeanne Tresvaux du Fraval

Friday 26 May 2023

PHOTO CREDIT : Julia Velázquez Charro and Florian Touzet

With a dual training as a designer and a visual artist, Jeanne Tresvaux du Fraval imagines and develops her works by drawing inspiration from the material world around her: objects, clothing, installations and stage sets... 

She confronts natural materials and colors to give birth to memories, scents and sensations. In 2018, she co-founded Studio de Lostanges with her sister Louise, a clothing publishing project in Brittany.

For Sessùn Alma, Jeanne has imagined a scenography with soft colors, to discover from May 25. A talk with a multidisciplinary artist.

You are a visual artist, a designer... Can you tell us about your journey?

I have a dual background as a designer and a visual artist. After studying at the Ecole des Arts Décoratifs in Paris and at the Rietvelt Academie in Amsterdam, I trained at Hermès. 

My artistic research work continued in various residencies: Domaine de Boisbuchet, Domaine de Keravel, Abbaye de Maubuisson, Villa Belleville. 

Last year, I had the opportunity to take part in the Design Parade in Toulon, organized by the Villa Noailles. My project was about the realization of a modular interior dedicated to napping. 

Today, I work on installations, scenographies, objects and clothes.

You use various mediums - drawing, textile, ceramic... - in each of your installations. How does this plurality fit in with your practice?

My desire to blur borders between disciplines started at the beginning of my studies. 

The first step is always the sketch which is an essential phase of my research. I think my pieces by deconstructing objects. The materials and techniques I use are ultimately the obvious consequence of the forms.

The confrontation of materials and colors gives rise to memories, scents and sensations. 

Can you describe your studio?

I am currently in residency at Villa Belleville in Paris. My studio has a large glass roof and is therefore very bright. In this space, I have imagined a long metal bar on which I arrange and compose my installations. I make use of this place to work with ceramics, textiles, wood and drawing. And because of the central location of this studio, I regularly receive people to discuss future projects and have coffee!

Where do you get the textiles and other materials used in your creations?

I get the raw material I work with mainly from flea markets, old stocks or on leboncoin. 

I love old materials, heavy textiles of great quality, salvaged wood and yellowed paper. Indeed, the material is a real challenge that defines the limit of the forms. I work with natural materials, such as linen, beeswax, clay, paper... For ecological reasons first of all, but also in order to give more space to the shapes, sensations and smells that materials provoke.

Your collections have a certain formal and visual diversity. What are your sources of inspiration?

I draw my inspiration from the purely material world of our society. This profusion of objects, shapes and colors has become a real visual language. 

I am inspired by everyday objects, by all the usual forms, all the gestures and clever ways we invent to organize our intimate space. 

I really appreciate storage and filing systems, as well as tools. These are pure necessary forms.

Your installations question social issues, including the environment, storage, consumption, comfort... What message do your creations carry?

I accumulate forms, create batches, elaborate collections. I also overlay pieces to give them a certain form in order to forget their function. This abundance of shapes, materials and colors enables me to question the material world around me. The consumer society in which we live urges me to reinvent my environment and my needs.

Which piece of work is most representative of your world?

Maybe my batches of objects or my hanging arrangements. I systematically integrate a hanging system in the pieces I imagine. Whether they are in textile, paper, ceramic or metal, it is the most recurrent element in my installations.

Can you tell us about Studio de Lostanges co-founded with your sister Louise?

Studio de Lostanges is a clothing publishing project in Brittany. We design one collection per year of timeless pieces, made by local manufacturers.

Each piece is inspired by clothing from Breton trades and history. We imagine a modular wardrobe made of natural fabrics that adapt to different morphologies and seasons.  

Studio de Lostanges is the wish to work on sustainable clothing, respectful of nature and local know-how.

You have participated in a dozen exhibitions in France and abroad. Can you tell us about a project that has left its mark on you?

A few years ago, I did a residency at the Domaine de Boisbuchet in France. I was reflecting on life in self-sufficiency and the objects that were necessary. Each object was made with materials found in nature. This research led me to reflect on our needs.

What does Sessùn make you think of?

A solar bohemian energy! I am inspired by the mix of materials, colors, proposals as well as the Mediterranean and its surroundings.

How did you image the scenography at Sessùn Alma?

I imagined a warm, relaxing space. The large textile pieces with warm and luminous colors offer an immersive setting. The elements are covered, wrapped and protected, to invite the spectators to a carefree and sensitive wander.

FIND THE LOOK OF Jeanne Tresvaux du Fraval

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