Eight experts laboured for 12 months to redecorate the interior of the French President's Elysee Palace and give much of it a totally new look.
Eight experts laboured for 12 months to redecorate the interior of the French President's Elysee Palace and give much of it a totally new look. Their work was revealed to the Press on Wednesday (Feb 16) and astonished and delighted newsmen for the uncompromising avant-grade spirit of the modernised apartments. The work was ordered by President Pompidou and carried out by the national Furniture Research unit.
Yacob Agam, entrusted with the project, was given a free hand with the apartments, on condition that no structural changes were made and that the total effect should make the rooms a little more intimate.
SYNOPSIS: Outside, the Elysee Palace in Paris looks the way it has for two-and-a half hundred years.
But inside, this week, there's the tang of fresh point, new polish, and all the signs of a revolution. This is one of two diplomatic reception rooms refurnished and restored to earlier standards of glory, by eight experts on French furniture. It's the first major re-decoration at the Place in 50 years.
And just down the passage comes the shock.
Adventure in design, like this wall of changing colours, is not usually expected in today's State buildings, but President Pompidou has expressly asked his experts to make French furniture contemporary and put it back on the map.
The accent here is on comfort and quiet, with paintings, lithographs and sculptures revealing the French President's taste in modern art.
Yacob Agam, the man responsible for the ultra new-look, was present on Wednesday when his team's work was shown to the Press. He told reporters he was given a completely free hand on the understanding that he made no structural changes and produced a more intimate atmosphere.
The dining room with its glass droplet ceiling and quiet tables completes a new way of decorating that's already been labelled "Pompidou-style".