In the eye of Nathalie Dupuis

This week, ceramic or not to be. Specialized in 20th century ceramic art, Nathalie Dupuis presents us a table-sculpture lamp by Juliette Derel and gives us some secrets ...

Juliette Derel (1918 - 2007)

Juliette Derel was born in Gisors in Normandy. In 1937 she entered the School of Fine Arts in Tours where she learned painting, drawing, Art History and ceramics. She completed her training as a ceramist in a craft factory in 1939.

She already exhibited her work at the Salon de l'Imagerie in Paris in 1942. In 1949, she decided to settle in Vallauris and joined the Grand-Chêne workshop, until 1952. In 1953 she married the ceramicist Jean Rivier , both restored a house in Vallauris and built their own wood-fired oven, which they shared until their separation in 1961.

She will exhibit in France on many occasions, notably at the Musée des Arts décoratifs in Paris in 1969 (an openwork wall panel), as well as abroad, in Montreal (1959) Caracas (1960), Prague (silver medal in 1962).

Openwork table lamp, circa 1965

This table-sculpture lamp is made of modeled and enamelled chamotte clay with inclusion of mirrors. Its dimensions are as follows: Height: 39 cm - Width: 18 cm.

Juliette Derel does not practice filming, she models and sometimes calls on a turner. Over the years, it is moving towards an increasingly sculptural production, made up of unique pieces in chamotte clay, as here. Very famous for its mirrors, the lamps by Juliette Derel are much rarer. The texture and enamels of its pieces are also very popular with collectors.

Why did you choose this piece?

My choices are mainly directed towards artistic ceramics. These ceramists using the medium of earth produce sculptural and pictorial works, thanks to its elasticity combined with enamels and of course the intervention of fire.

The utilitarian piece becomes a pretext for their artistic expression and their personality uses the utilitarian object as a pretext. These artists thus tend more and more to the production of unique pieces, as here, with this table lamp by Juliette Derel.