Expert's comments and biography : Artist and interior decorator graduated from the School of Fine Arts in Toulouse and the School of Decorative Arts in Paris, Janine Janet nicknamed by Jean Cocteau "the princess of shells" is first attracted by drawing and painting. sculpture. In 1936, she met the portraitist Jean-Claude Janet. In 1952, Cristobal Balenciaga allowed him to fully express his talent and assert his style by creating the decorations for the windows of his fashion house located on Avenue Georges V in Paris. Any creation then begins with a drawing, very often in watercolor or gouache. The artist indeed needs to project on a sheet of paper his emotions and his baroque and phantasmagoric imagination. Janie Janet belongs to an artistic current which will, in reaction to the purity of Art Deco, favor ornamental profusion. Influenced by the surrealists who appreciated the strange and the irrational, she reveled in the marvelous of her studio-apartment in the rue des Petits Hôtels, which resembled André Breton's cabinet of curiosities. The preparatory drawings for his creations discovered by the gallery are all the more precious and rare as they are often witnesses to the artist's ephemeral creations. For their realization, the artist draws from his iconographic repertoire including the idyllic nature of his childhood in Reunion and gives each element a life of its own. It is therefore not surprising to find in her creations: Shells, mother-of-pearl, madrepores, plants, bark or stones that she submits to strange metamorphoses. Indeed, the artist in a singular way, mixes in his works the kingdoms (plant, animal, mineral and human) thus raising the question of our close link with nature. Is it the human who turns into stone, into plants or is it the other way around? Aren't man and nature two sides of the same coin? Janine Janet then enchants the public with her creatures (sphinxes, naiads, fauns, nymphs...) and offers a magical universe that is a real breath of fresh air in the 50s and 60s. An exhibition entitled "Janine Janet. Metamorphoses" will be dedicated to him in 2003.
The artist's clients were numerous :
- Showcases of luxury boutiques: Balenciaga, Givenchy, Ninan Ricci, Balamain, Lanvin, Dior, Hermes, Fourrures Shrank in Munich, Black Starr and Gorham in New York, Jacques Fath Paris, Helena Rubenstein, Haviland
- Showcases of stores: Roger et Gallet, Le Printemps, Henry at the thought faubourg Saint Honoré Paris, Chausseur Emeraude, Chantelle
- Great goldsmiths: Jewelery Chaumier, Maison Christofle, Arthus Bertrand
- Sets and costumes: for films (Testament of Orpheus by Jean Cocteau, shot in 1959) or prestigious evenings
- Covers of magazines including Vogue
- Interior decoration: At the request of Dennis Lenon, she will create a bronze Venus for the Queen Elisabeth 2 liner of the Cunard Steam Sheap Liverpool company, Fabrics for Pierre Frey, Furniture decorations for Gilbert Poillerat, John Dévoluy or Alberto Pinto
- Creations and party decorations for famous people: Francine Weisweiller, Paul Louis Weiller, Prince Ali Khan, Ludmilla Tcherina, Jean Marais, Pierre Arpels...
This description was developed by us following our expertise and the various reference books on the artist in our possession, any copying is therefore prohibited.