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  • Charlotte Perriand’sLa Maison au bord de l’eau” © Louis Vuitton

  • Charlotte Perriand’sLa Maison au bord de l’eau” © Louis Vuitton

  • Charlotte Perriand’sLa Maison au bord de l’eau” © Luis Vuitton

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Charlotte Perriand´s “La Maison au bord de l’eau” by Louis Vuitton for Design Miami

Louis Vuitton brings to life for Design Miami one of the lost projects of world known architect, designer, planner, photographer and longtime Le Corbusier collaborator Charlotte Perriand, paying homage to the life and work of an iconic figure of the 20th century. The project is called “La Maison au bord de l’eau” and it’s a beach house planned by Perriand back in 1934 as a competition entry for the magazine “L’Architecture d’Aujourd’hui” (Architecture Today). Unfortunately, it received the second prize and was never realized. The modernist masterpiece was a prefabricated holiday home suitable for mass production, an economical eco-friendly creation that represents Perriand´s desire to develop affordable, functional and appealing designs for the masses. Charlotte Perriand later reworked the idea into several variations for wealthier vacationers, leaving behind a great variety of versions found in her sketches. Perriand always remained faithful to her design principles, creating functional living spaces in the belief that better design helps in creating a better society. “La Maison au bord de l’eau” was rebuilt, thanks to Louis Vuitton, according to the original plans, in partnership with Perriand’s daughter Pernette Perriand-Barsac, proving that Perriand’s work still remains as relevant and inspiring as ever.

Louis Vuitton, a brand that has always shown a great interest in art and design, was also inspired by Charlotte Perriand’s unique talent and bohemian lifestyle for its Spring-Summer 2014 “Icônes” collection, in an attempt to reinvent feminine elegance by combining craftsmanship, creative freedom and functionality. It was in fact this collection that served as an inspiration to build “La Maison au bord de l’eau” since Julie de Libran, Louis Vuitton Women’s Creative Director, discovered the plans of the house while exploring Perriand’s archives during the preparations of the collection. As the brand points out, although a certain degree of adaptation was necessary to translate the original drawings and notes into a tangible structure, the spirit of the designer was respected to the fullest.

The house, which was crafted in a workshop outside Milan and was later shipped to Miami, is build from iroko and okoume hardwoods and glass set on a stainless steel frame. It features newly fabricated furniture, made out of oak, walnut and slate, which are inspired by the original designs that Perriand created between 1929 and 1942. “La Maison au bord de l’eau” is directly inspired by Perriand’s experience of holiday and leisure and is a perfect example of the simplicity and functionality that always defined her. Jacques Barsac, who has authored several books on Charlotte Perriand and her work, told recently to Ocean Drive magazine: “La Maison au bord de l’eau is actually the first building that Perriand designed outside of the Le Corbusier office, the first project as a freelance designer and architect. As such, she was free to apply her skill in a way that reflected her personal take on the value of design”.

Charlotte Parriand, who was the first woman to work as a designer and architect and had a tremendous influence to the many women who followed her, had a real passion for innovative design and many of her creations are now considered modern classics. Louis Vuitton, a representative of timeless French design, couldn’t find a better way to pay tribute to a figure that represents modernist architecture at its best. “La Maison au bord de l’eau” was unveiled at Design Miami and was followed by a dinner hosted by Louis Vuitton Malletier CEO Michael Burke and Design Miami Chairman Craig Robins, with Delphine Arnault, Michelle Williams, Jean Pigozzi, Pharrell Williams, Elle Macpherson, Fabiola Beracasa, Cindy Crawford and Pernette Perriand-Barsac among the guests.

“La Maison au bord de l’eau” will be on display until December 8 at the beach behind The Raleigh Hotel, Miami.