Armand-Albert Rateau in the Musée des Arts Décoratifs’ collections
In addition to Prince Louis de Polignac’s major donation of the contents of Jeanne Lanvin’s apartment in 1965, the Musée des Arts Décoratifs has other creations by Armand-Albert Rateau.
After the 1925 Exhibition, the museum acquired one of the chandeliers in the Pavillon de l’Élégance from Baguès Frères, the firm that produced Rateau’s bronze objects.
In 1937, following Le Décor de la vie de 1900 à 1925 exhibition at the Musée des Arts Décoratifs, at which Rateau had shown eight pieces of furniture, the designer donated two to the museum. Formerly in his apartment at 17 quai de Conti in Paris, these models were created for his first clients, George and Florence Blumenthal: a tea table with two trays ( Jeanne Lanvin owned a similar piece), and an armchair created in 1919 for their swimming pool in New York.
In 1947, the six-panel Course dans la forêt screen, donated by Rateau’s wife, complemented this exceptional ensemble. Initially comprising eight panels, this lacquer screen, created around 1925, stood at the rear of the dining room of the designer’s apartment on Quai de Conti, concealing the staircase and a window.
This collection was further enhanced in 1995 when François Rateau, the artist’s son, donated 56 drawings to the museum. Produced for the most part in collaboration with his assistant, the sculptor Paul Plumet, they provide an insight into the artist’s creative process and development, from the interior design of the barge Nomade, bought from Paul Poiret in 1913, to the prestigious commissions he executed from 1920 until he died in 1938.