Perrier-Jouët, the official champagne sponsor of Design Miami/ 2012, commissioned the London-based duo Glithero to create a work that mirrors the champagne house’s Art Nouveau heritage. What’s been produced is a magnificent experiential environment that bewilders the viewer’s perception of time and space – and which heralds the splendor of natural forms.
“Lost Time” was inspired by Emile Gallé’s iconic design for the house’s Cuvée Belle Epoque champagne, itself available for tasting at the special exhibition space in the Design Miami/ 2012 fair. The bottle itself served as a muse, but so did Perrier-Jouët’s House in Epernay, France, which holds over 200 works by masters of the Art Nouveau school. Tim Simpson and Sarah van Gameren of Glithero created “Lost Time” as a meditation on the organic geometries that are found throughout nature and in the Art Nouveau movement. What resulted are a series of suspended parabolas – curved constructions made from thousands of arching, silver beads – that hang in the dimly-lit room over a reflective pond.
The water below inverts and multiplies the draping forms, and the low lighting brings the viewer’s sense of time to a standstill. Drawn from the Catalan master Antoni Gaudi – an extremely influential figure in the Art Nouveau movement – “Lost Time” plays with the same principles he often employed: upside-down structures relying on the force of gravity to determine and elucidate the final forms. The result is a masterful exposition that articulates both the heritage of Perrier-Jouët and the art and design movements that have informed the champagne house’s brand identity.
After Design Miami/ 2012, the work will be taken to the Maison Belle Epoque (Perrier-Jouët’s estate in Epernay), and will sit alongside the works of Emile Gallé, Daniel Arsham, Noé Duchaufour Lawrance and others. Visitors to “Lost Time” will experience a suspension of disbelief and a restored sense of awe in design’s ability to enunciate the bold, yet simple, force of nature.