One of the really interesting things to see at Maison et Objet in Paris (as well as the work of fellow exhibitors, of course!), is the Inspirations areas - mini conceptual exhibitions, designed around a chosen trend theme, by some of the most influential names in international design.
This season's curations, based around the theme 'Made', did not disappoint. The most interesting, for me, was the Human Made exhibition by Elizabeth Leriche, exploring the significance of the hand made in modern society, and showcasing the work of a diverse selection of international designers and craftspeople. The wonderful products chosen for the exhibition highlight the slow process of acquiring talent, mastering craftsmanship, the passing down of skills, inventiveness, and the rediscovery of old customs and our collective memory.
Acknowledging the growing interest in the hand made, Leriche is quick to point out that this is not simply a nostalgic movement in favour of the small trades of the past. Rather, it is a revolutionary view that acknowledges the failings and shortcomings of mass-production and its requirements of profitability and gain.
"This new relationship to objects is redefining our understanding of possession as the definition of consumption." says art director Francois Declaux.