ARP portrait

A.R.P. (Atelier de Recherches Plastiques)

1954 - 1957

The Plastic Research Studio – A.R.P – is an association between three talented designers: Pierre Guariche, Joseph- André Motte and Michel Mortier.

They all met during their experience at the agency A.R.H.E.C of Marcel Gascoin, at the same time a meeting point place but above all a training place of the first French designers. If Pierre Guariche leaves the agency in 1952 to open his own studio, Michel Mortier and Joseph-André Motte continue to work at the agency. And with the support of Marcel Gascoin, they decide to collaborate together. The two friends then, share a booth at Salon des Arts Ménagers in February 1954, where they both presented their own creations. The event is a success, and Pierre Guariche makes no mistake about it, by offering them right afterwards to associate themselves upon a «think tank». The principle of a collective signature is born. The status registered on October 1954, the trio quickly settles in the area of the Faubourg Saint-Antoine, already preparing their participation to the contest of the Centre Technique du Bois(Technical center of wood) organized a year after at Salon des Arts Ménagers in 1955. Prize winner of the contest, they received the first prize for the living room and child bedroom, and the second prize for the parents one. Their collaboration receives a great success and the year 1955 is considered in many respects as “the A.R.P year”. Their presence on the specialized shows brings them a great visibility and enables them to collaborate with the most specialized producers and makers in the field: Steiner, Airborne, Disderot.

The trio also takes in charge the interior design of several places, including the offices of EDF in Compiegne in 1955, and the interior design of the apartment of Hugues Steiner in Neuilly. Apart from their interior architectural projects, it is in the field of series furniture production they will endeavor to evolve by working with the best technical services providers, Airborne and Steiner for the seats, Minvielle and Cabanne for the furniture, Disderot for the lights. We owe them in particular a complete collection of seats with a standard seat and adaptable feet as well as the very first juxtapose modular set also named “Minvielle element”.
Following the success received by this “think tank” group, each of them were solicited by personal project and they decided to separate at the beginning of 1957. Joseph-André Motte was requested by his friend Henri Vicariot for the second interior design campaign of the Orly Airport. Michel Mortier inaugurated his own structure, as for Pierre Guariche,he was requested on interior design projects in Firminy.

Although of a short time period, the A.R.P group inaugurates a new type of collaboration under a working group of the same vision, common aesthetic and aiming to champion a democratic contemporary furniture, uncluttered and functional, adapted to the new post-war way of life.


Common stand by Joseph-André Motte and Michel Mortier at the Salon des arts ménagers / Foyer d’aujourd’hui section
Creation of the A.R.P. (Association de recherches plastiques) by Pierre Guariche, Joseph-André Motte and Michel Mortier
Xe Triennale of Milano / Gold medal for the EDF offices at Compiègne, France

Salon des arts méngers / Foyer d’aujourd’hui section
Design of the Electric House / SAM
Centre Technique du Bois contest / 1st and 2nd prices

Design of the personal apartment of Mme et Mr Steiner / coll. Henri Lancel
Salon des arts ménagers / Foyer d’aujourd’hui section / French art Triennale / Paris

Salon des arts ménagers / Foyer d’aujourd’hui section XIe Triennale of Milano / Silver medal
End of the association, Pierre Guariche become art director of the producer Meurop (Belgium), Joseph-André Motte work on the Orly Airport with Henri Vicariot et Michel Mortier create his own interior design agency and become art director of the Maison Française 55 / Bvd Haussmann
ARP portrait
ARP 1957 archives
ARP Maison individelle dans la Marne circa 1955
ARP portrait
ARP MINVIELLE bureau avec retour
ARP portrait les Fères Jacques