There are few places where you have the possibility to go from Ethiopia to Greenland, from the plains of the United States of America to Japan. Each weekend, Frédéric Coridon invites you on this incredible journey through objects as unusual as aesthetic. During your trip, it is not impossible that your eye stops on the extraordinary collection of weapons, and if you do not leave with one of these pieces full of history, you will keep at least from this visit, the desire to come back very quickly ...
What is your background ?
I studied electrical engineering which led me to work in the building sector and at the same time, I always had an attraction for the world of the collection and old objects. I quickly could acquire some first objects, in particular old weapons, field in which I specialized myself. For a few years, I sold old weapons on arms exchanges. In parallel, I began to be interested in the extra-European arts and I I started to buy on an individual basis, African and Oceanian objects. My bulimia of acquisition was much greater than my capacity to resell. So I settled in the Flea market, where I practiced in addition to my other profession. I finally had want to go a little further and I left the world of construction to devote myself exclusively to the art market and to the flea market. Today, it's been almost three years since I have been there and I found my place.
What drives you in your two specialties?
The journey… On the one hand, through ethnic objects which take us through geographic areas, exploring different cultures and above all which have an aesthetic aspect which can shock, surprise and which can also be moving. It is quite extraordinary!
Concerning the ancient weapon, my attraction is undoubtedly like that of all the children who looked at westerns. The more we explore it, the more we realize that the domain of the ancient weapon is not as repulsive as we could imagine it. Behind the weapon itself, there is the beauty of the object. What interests me today is to value this beauty, as well as the culture that exists around the ancient weapon. It is fascinating to observe that since the birth of international diplomatic relations, weapons have been offered as an act of recognition of the supremacy of the other and represent a mark of respect. When a dignitary arrived to offer his saber to the enemy, the war stopped. All the symbolism around the weapon makes it an object which goes far beyond the simple tool to kill. Its diplomatic and aesthetic symbolism is great.
From which parts of the world do your non-European pieces of art come from?
I do not have a favorite provenance for the pieces that I present. What counts above all is the emotion that will strike me, the aesthetic quality and the beauty of the materials, not research around a region. When you look at my booth, all continents are represented, as well as many eras. Little by little, my booth has become like a big cabinet of curiosity. Visitors can be quite confused and be attracted by an Ethiopian shield and finally leave with an ancient weapon.
What does Paul Bert Serpette represent for you?
Today in France, Paul Bert Serpette is the last physical representative of the ancient object culture. Today it is a market which makes it possible to bring to collectors and the curious, the interest of the object. Paul Bert Serpette continue to promote his antique dealers as a value for international clients. Paul Bert Serpette is essential!
Can you tell us about a piece that is close to your heart?
Among the objects that I particularly like, both in terms of time, aesthetics and state of conservation, I have this magnificent French spinning pistol which is dated 1630. The French spinning pistol was the most fragile, but the most elegant. Its state of conservation is extraordinary, it is endowed with a rare elegance.
These are objects that have passed from hand to hand and which represent the aristocracy of French and international arquebuserie. It is an extremely rare object and today, a pistol like this, you can travel all over Paris and France, you will not find a similar one It is not an exceptional object, it is an extraordinary object!