On the occasion of her next sale of art and furniture, the auctioneer Patricia Casini-Vitalis will present at auction on July 5 three monumental stained glass domes from the France Vitrail International workshop, supervised by Eric Bonte. Two of these contemporary creations, estimated at 120,000 to 220,000 euros, were exhibited at the Grand Palais and the Carrousel du Louvre.
If during the 2019 Biennale des Antiquaires, spectators were more attracted by the sculptures, furniture or old paintings that populated the stands of the Grand Palais, the most curious and dreamy were able to see, looking up, a jewel of glassware: a signed Art Nouveau style dome Eric Bonté, adorning the ceiling of the building. This masterpiece will be presented at auction by Patricia Casini-Vitalisauctioneer within the house Copages Auction, on July 5 in Paris, accompanied by two other original stained glass windows from the France Vitrail International workshop. Under the aegis of Eric Bonte, these craftsmen dusted off the image of stained glass, giving it a contemporary aesthetic while remaining faithful to the ancestral know-how of master glassmakers.
The revival of French stained glass, between tradition and modernity
After high school, Eric Bonte joined the National School of Applied Arts Olivier de Serre, where he met Joseph Key Ray, a former master glassmaker who gave him his studio in Issy-les-Moulineaux. His first creations, as majestic as they were innovative, won over the world and orders poured in. To respond to this, Eric Bonte founded the France Vitrail International workshop in 1988 and surrounded himself with around twenty glassmakers with whom he notably produced an 8,400 square meter stained glass window, intended to join the Notre-Dame-de-la basilica. -Peace of Yamoussoukro, in Ivory Coast. In the purest respect for the tradition of stained glass, these craftsmen use glass of different colors and textures, crimp the lead stained glass windows and decorate them with grisaille paint, enamels and sandblasting and acid etching. Estimated between 120,000 and 220,000 euros, the three stained glass domes presented at auction on July 5 testify to this know-how. ” These exceptional stained glass windows, six meters in diameter, are all made using traditional stained glass techniques and hand painted. A metal structure serves as their support, dismountable and numbered »says auctioneer Patricia Casini-Vitalis.
Eric Bonte’s Allegory of Night
Executed in 2015, the centerpiece of the sale shows eight glazed arcades that evolve around a central circle representing a twilight sky. The whole is punctuated by pilasters, accompanied by a frieze around the edge, evoking the art of Renaissance trompe-l’oeil, with its faux marble and acanthus leaf motifs. In a sensual alloy of glass, fantasized female figures intertwine and fly away in the cloud towards a night strewn with stars. baptized allegory of night, this cupola invites, for the time of a dream, to a nocturnal journey. Eric Bonte creates a subtle play of light, mixing transparency with darkness, and invites the eye to linger on details alternately shiny and opalescent. “A stained glass window is not very useful, you just have to put yourself under it and dream”, recalls the master glassmaker.
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