For centuries the French have been recognised as leading the way in design. Now Marie Christine Dorner adds her name to that long list of designers with furniture for Ligne Roset and interior design for French ambassadorial residences and Parisian hotels. Does it get more French? (Read on because the answer is yes).
Marie Christine graduated from the École Camondo, a private institution for product design and interior architecture in Paris, after which time she travelled the world before living, working and absorbing the culture in Tokyo for a year. In Japan, the young designer met Teruo Kurosaki, founder and director of Idée. Teruo asked Marie Christine to design a range of furniture, and inspired by origami, her first collection evoked the contained, angular and flowing forms of ideograms. She soon after exhibited the collection to high acclaim with Philippe Starck contributing the introduction for the exhibition catalogue.
Returning to Paris in 1987, Marie Christine started her own design studio and quickly became a leading figure in the world of French design. Her work included the renovation and refurbishment of hotel La Villa Saint Germain des Près (1988) and the restaurant at the Comédie Française at the Palais-Royal (1989), as well as designing and fitting out ambassadorial residences for the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Marie Christine was awarded the Grands Prix du Design in 1995 and the title of Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres (Knight of the Order of Arts and Letters) in 2012.
Furniture design is still one of Marie Christine’s preferred areas as she creates one-off commissioned pieces as well as collections for furniture manufacturers such as Ligne Roset. With a focus on experimentation and production, her designs have intriguing forms and an exceptional level of craftsmanship.
This can certainly be seen in the One Shape side table, which comes from her 2004 collection “Une forme, One shape.” The collection was based on the idea of a single form being produced in a variety of sizes, each with a different function: jewellery, pendant, side table and sculpture.
Marie Christine’s Koya is a colourful and cutting-edge interpretation of the traditional French secretary desk, in which timber and fabric screens form the framework of the furniture; and the MCD collection is similarly architectural with high sides, and plush, tufted cushions.
Amongst Marie Christine’s other products for Ligne Roset are the Demi-Teintes mirror and Jali table lamp. The Demi-Teintes mirror (or “half-tones” in English) reflects its surroundings in tones of grey and bronze, while the Jali table lamp has an intricately woven brass grid that projects a highly decorative shadow.
Now based in London, Marie Christine is continuing to design for Ligne Roset and her most recent creations are the luxurious sofa called Cover, which has a removable quilted cover, and the Amédée armchair and sofa, which are equally elegant and sophisticated with a quilted and stitched lumbar support and a footstool for when it’s time to relax.
We look forward to seeing more of her work and to Marie Christine continuing to be a leader in French design. C’est tout!