Robert Mathieu #Part II

100 years / 100 light - Part I : 1950-1955

29/10/2021 - 11/12/2021

To celebrate the tenth anniversary of its installation on rue de Seine and the centenary of Robert Mathieu’s birth, the gallery is dedicating the year 2021 to a major retrospective exhibition in two parts, bringing together the fruits of nearly 15 years of collecting his luminaries. After the success of the first part (1950-1955) in the spring, the gallery presented the second part (1955-1965) in the fall.
The greatest French lighting designer was still unknown!
Robert Mathieu, the lighting designer with more than 150 models, is still little known to the general public because of the rarity of his pieces on the market, but is highly sought after by specialized collectors. Contrary to a traditional designer, Robert Mathieu did not only conceive his luminaries but he realized them, like an artist, in his workshop in the rue de Charenton. What is remarkable about Robert Mathieu is his creativity, unique in France and with which only the Italian Gino Sarfatti could compete, but also the very high quality of execution of his pieces which are still in perfect condition today.
An unseen exhibition after 15 years of collection
Pascal Cuisinier has been collecting all of Robert Mathieu’s lighting fixtures for fifteen years. It has taken all this time to see the rarest and most exceptional pieces come onto the market, amassing more than a hundred of them, including about 80 different models, presented to the public for the first time! 
This second exhibition, presenting pieces from 1955, the pivotal year of his production, showed the transformation of forms, more and more minimal and radical, with, little by little, the colored lacquered metal disappearing in favor of the very graphic black and white, and the appearance of metallic gray lacquers and a brand new material at that time in France: Plexiglas, which was called perspex. This material allowed the design of atmospheric lighting fixtures, with a diffuse and elegant light. This almost exhaustive exhibition demonstrates Robert Mathieu’s ability to constantly reinvent himself, to experiment with new shapes and lights, to master new materials and the inspirations of his time, which makes him without a doubt the most creative of French luminaries.
One of the most exceptional pieces presented in this second part is a double pendulum ceiling light which is probably the only one known in the world today !