Signatures Singulières Magazine provides readers with a double headline this month. The Parisian designer Hugues Chevalier recently opened a new showroom on boulevard Saint-Germain in Paris, and the “Saint-Germain” collection by Reda Amalou has launched there.
Above left: Frédéric Taïeb, President of Hugues Chevalier and the designer Reda Amalou. Above right: sofa end Buci.
The Hugues Chevalier furniture brand is located at 226 boulevard Saint-Germain, a stone’s throw from the rue du Bac. The location is key because design brands and the greatest decorators are crowding into this popular district.
The new 200 m² showroom, very contemporary and bright, will not disappoint. Through the long bay windows – a nod to timeless industrial glass walls – Hugues Chevalier’s creations make their mark. Subtle decorative elements, such as the bronze banister of the staircase, enhance the decoration. They recall the Art Deco spirit and the essence of the brand. Indeed, Hugues Chevalier is a designer of high-end furniture that reinvented Art Deco furniture in the 1980s.
So the “Saint-Germain” collection with Reda Amalou fits naturally into the neighbourhood… boulevard Saint-Germain! The collection includes key pieces such as the Medicis table, the Stanislas and Fleurus sofas and the Malaquais bed. Reda Amalou explains his approach in the following way. “For this first collaboration with Hugues Chevalier, I was directly inspired by the 1920s and 1930s in Paris and the city’s great decorators. I drew on the original codes of the House of Hugues Chevalier to create refined and contemporary lines echoing the Art Deco period. »
Reda Amalou is a creator of experiences. More than 20 years ago, he founded the architecture agency AW2. His first aim was to take over the space and make it a place of emotions. Then, he wanted to bring design into play. In 2013, Reda Amalou opened his own house, REDA AMALOU DESIGN, where he creates furniture & ornaments.
Each of his creations carries a story. Whether it is a childhood memory in Algeria, the tumultuous period he spent studying in London or the excitement of his travels. Reda Amalou is always on the lookout for a discovery. His work is made up of flashes of brilliance. They contain fragments of life and are a homage to craftsmanship and multiculturalism, which impose themselves in interiors with great fluidity.
Interview with Reda Amalou
Architect and designer
Reda Amalou: it was born in a meeting during an exhibition to which Frédéric and Laurent Taïeb came. They liked my work and, above all, the link between this work and Hugues Chevalier seemed obvious. Simple lines, fine materials… and always a search for balance. Then, there was also a personal connection: the Taïeb family immediately trusted me. And that’s how we were able to develop the Saint-Germain collection.
Reda Amalou: it’s a special period. It is both a period of strong innovation, with an effervescent twentieth century, and a period when craftsmen and exceptional work took on a more popular dimension. The search for a pure line, sublimated materials, details and assemblies and freedom created a style of incredible richness. In my work, it is both this line and this balance that I seek. So that the object becomes “obvious”, like an emotion.
Reda Amalou: we had to be part of the continuity and find a new way of expressing what “Hugues Chevalier” is. So I worked on the Saint-Germain collection with simple shapes that highlight the materials. The work on the assemblies – the marbles, the woods, the leathers – then became the most important element. Like a direct reference to Hugues Chevalier’s past or the sewing of a leather highlighting an oak armrest or a drawer or a skirting board comes to support and give full meaning to the design. I have also expanded the collection to include less common elements such as low consoles or even some accessories such as the candle jar.
Reda Amalou: for Hugues Chevalier, 2020 is the year in which we are going to consolidate the Saint-Germain collection. It involves working on certain details, possibly adding certain accessories and reworking the choice of materials. But the collection will not be extended. Personally, I am working on my next exhibition at the Secret Gallery. A new scenography which will present some new models from my collection, and which will include objects and works that have been bought or lent. In doing this I wanted to show what inspires me as much as what I create… From 19 March 2020 at the Secret Gallery, 19 rue de Varenne in Paris’ 7th arrondissement.
Hugues Chevalier Paris Rive Gauche
226, Boulevard Saint-Germain
Tél. : +33 (0)1 56 88 50 70
Hugues Chevalier Paris Rive Droite
14, Avenue de Friedland
Tél. : +33 (0)1 53 76 42 42