A New Seating for the Musée National Picasso in Paris

Tectona presents the benches designed by ECAL student Isabelle Baudraz

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A New Seating for the Musée National Picasso in Paris
13/03/2018 - Cultural institutions hold a special place in Tectona’s history. Tectona’s first collaboration with the world of design dates back to 1992, when the brand was chosen to manufacture a bench designed by Andrée Putman for the CAPC Musée d’Art Contemporain in Bordeaux.

Since then, Tectona’s creations have found their way into a number of prestigious institutions: the Glenwood bench can be seen at the Musée Rodin and the French National Archives, the circular bench at the Tuileries Garden and other pieces at the Élysée Palace, the Assemblée Nationale, the Chateau de Versailles, in Chambord, etc. Designed by Isabelle Baudraz, a student at ECAL/University of Art and Design Lausanne, for the Musée National Picasso - Paris and manufactured by Tectona, the new benches will be installed this spring to be featured in an exhibition opening on 17 May.

They will also be previewed at Milan Design Week, on 16-21 April, both by ECAL - at Spazio Orso 16 - alongside the ‘ECAL Digital Market’ exhibition, and by Tectona, in the Milan showroom (Via Della Moscova, 47/A). The Story Behind the Collaboration.

More than 30 years after Diego Giacometti was commissioned to create the building’s furniture, the Museum asked ECAL/University of Art and Design Lausanne to design new seats for some of the exhibition spaces. The Museum chose the project of Isabelle Baudraz. And together they decided to entrust the production to Tectona.

New Seating for the Musée National Picasso - Paris
Looking to create easy-to-move furniture that would blend into the Museum’s various atmospheres, Isabelle Baudraz imagined two different-sized benches that combine together, offering the possibility to create a variety of shapes that would fit in diverse contexts. Everyone soon agreed on the idea of a simple bench, inconspicuous and welcoming, which blends into the environment but still has character.

And on the idea of two benches interlocking together, allowing the furniture to fit elegantly into the various settings of this magnificent 17th century mansion - from the smaller loft rooms to the larger ground-floor halls. The visual disruption caused by the two benches interacting together results in a surprising effect, giving the piece a very strong identity. The seats can be positioned in line or as an island block, based on a list of configurations recommended by the designer.

Indiscretions : Small Details Making a Big Difference
Designing furniture for a place visited by hundreds of people every day implied considering not only the context but also practicality. The furniture needed to be designed in such a way that visitors would not play with it, move it around or rearrange it, but it still needed to be easily assembled by the Museum’s staff. Ultimately, the seating slats grooves were added on both extremities of the seating slats to receive the cross bar of an adjacent bench, locking it into position.

The legs’ rounded upper ends replicate the shape of the cross bar and the grooves in the slats. The fillet under the slats helps guide the movement when assembling two benches together. The thickness of the slats was chosen for optimal comfort, the number of slats to provide sufficient seating depth and the distance between two slats to ensure enough spacing for slats to slide with ease. Prototypes produced at the Tectona Atelier during the final development phase required a few additional adjustments on the structure without altering the original design, making the final product even more elegant and durable.

An exhibition entitled “Diego Giacometti at the Musée Picasso” will open at the Musée National Picasso - Paris on 17 May, running until October 2018. It tells the story of the work Diego Giacometti began in 1982 when he was commissioned to design furniture for the Hôtel Salé - home of the Musée National Picasso in Paris.

A collection of chairs, benches, tables and lights designed specially for the Museum, which were truly the highpoint of his career as well as his final commission before he passed away in July 1985. The exhibition will also feature the new benches designed specially for the Musée National Picasso-Paris and manufactured by partners ECAL and Tectona.

Tectona on Archiproducts.comA New Seating for the Musée National Picasso in Paris

A New Seating for the Musée National Picasso in Paris

A New Seating for the Musée National Picasso in Paris

A New Seating for the Musée National Picasso in Paris

A New Seating for the Musée National Picasso in Paris

A New Seating for the Musée National Picasso in Paris

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