Gustave Tiffoche

1930 - 2011



Born on July 23, 1930 in Saint-Nazaire. He trained at the Technical College of Saint-Nazaire before joining the Chantiers de l'Atlantique at the age of 17, as a draftsman and then model maker and designer. He stayed there for 16 years and participated in the construction and decoration of many transatlantic liners such as the "Shalom" and the "France". At the same time, and until 1953, he took drawing classes at the municipal school with Emile Gautier, an activity he was passionate about and which he practiced all his life. In 1961, Tiffoche did an internship with Norbert Pierlot at the Château de Ratilly and continued his training at La Borne. Two years later, he set up his workshop in Guérande, which he equipped with a wood-fired kiln and then a second gas-fired kiln, which enabled him to create sculptures and monumental ceramic pieces. It was in 1963 that Gustave Tiffoche began to produce unique pieces in enamelled stoneware, fired in wood at 1300°C, of tableware and small decorative objects, often of beautiful size and sculptural character, magnified by very beautiful materials.
Between 1970 and 1985, many young ceramists came to learn or perfect their craft, or collaborated directly with him by working in his studio.
In the 80s, he became passionate about architectural ceramics. He realized a monumental ceramic fountain for the IUT of Saint-Nazaire in 1981. Thereafter, many monumental works in stoneware (fountains, bas-relief or liturgical furniture) will decorate the cities of La Roche-Sur-Yon, Niort, Rennes and many others.
In 1987, he was asked to teach at the School of Plastic Art in Saint-Nazaire, and taught there until 1990. In 1991, he ceased his activity as a ceramist (the workshop was taken over by his daughter-in-law, Pascale Henry) but continued to paint and exhibit his work, moving towards free figuration, after having started in a lyrical abstract vein.
From this period on, exhibitions follow one another throughout France and abroad. Thus, after participating in the Salon des Artistes Décorateurs in Paris in 1969, he received the gold medal for creative crafts at the international exhibition the same year in Stuttgart. He also participated in exhibitions in Montreal in 1970, Munich in 1971, Faienza in 1972, Dakar in 1984, Saarlouis in 1994.