Jean Prouvé - Disruptors: Evening Sale of 20th Century & Contemporary Art, Design and Watches Hong Kong Thursday, May 25, 2023 | Phillips
  • Provenance

    Piasa, Paris, 'Collection Design Jean - François Declercq', 27 May 2014, lot 22
    Acquired from the above by the present owner

  • Literature

    Peter Sulzer, Jean Prouvé: Œuvre complète / Complete Works, Volume 4: 1954-1984, Basel, 2005, pp. 180-81
    Galerie Patrick Seguin, Jean Prouvé, Volume 2, Paris, 2007, pp. 522-23

  • Catalogue Essay

    These exceptional sun shutters (Lots 340 & 341) are a testament to mid-century French architect Jean Prouvé's innovative approach to building design. His signature use of industrial materials in architecture is apparent in the use of ribbed aluminium and painted wood. This material helped provide a relatively lightweight yet durable structure for the schools in Cameroon for which they were designed. Prouvé's sought-after designs truly exemplify the modernist construction principles of the period, emphasising the considered use of new materials to create functional and efficient structures. The two sun shutters are striking examples of this approach, with their sleek and industrial aesthetic. At over 2.5 meters tall, they are impressive pieces that showcase the architect’s mastery of scale and can be used both indoors and outdoors.

  • Artist Biography

    Jean Prouvé

    French • 1901 - 1984

    Jean Prouvé believed in design as a vehicle for improvement. His manufactory Les Ateliers Jean Prouvé, located in Nancy, France, produced furniture for schools, factories and municipal projects, both within France and in locations as far flung as the Congo. Though he designed for the masses, pieces such as his "Potence" lamps and "Standard" chairs are among the most iconic fixtures in sophisticated, high-design interiors today. Collectors connect with his utilitarian, austere designs that strip materials down to the bare minimum without compromising on proportion or style.

    Prouvé grew up in Nancy, France, the son of Victor Prouvé, an artist and co-founder of the École de Nancy, and Marie Duhamel, a pianist. He apprenticed to master blacksmiths in Paris and opened a small wrought iron forge in Nancy. However it was sheet steel that ultimately captured Prouvé's imagination, and he ingeniously adapted it to furniture, lighting and even pre-fabricated houses, often collaborating with other design luminaries of the period, such as Robert Mallet-Stevens, Le Corbusier and Charlotte Perriand.

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Sun shutter, designed for schools in Cameroon

aluminium, painted wood
271.5 x 177.5 x 10.6 cm. (106 7/8 x 69 7/8 x 4 1/8 in.)
Circa 1964. Manufactured by Les Ateliers Jean Prouvé and Velam, France.

HK$80,000 - 120,000 

Sold for HK$101,600

Contact Specialist

Anastasia Salnikoff
Head of Mid-Season Sales
+852 2318 2014

Thomas Perazzi
Head of Watches, Asia
+852 2318 2001

Disruptors: Evening Sale of 20th Century & Contemporary Art, Design and Watches

Hong Kong Auction 25 May 2023