L’enlèvement d’Europe (the abduction of Europe)
Aubusson tapestry woven in the Hamot workshop.
If he is best-known as an interior decorator (responsible with Louis Süe, his co-founder of the Compagnie des Arts Français, for numerous projects including JeanPatou’s residence and the assembly room of the ocean liner “Ile de France”) and one of the originators of the Art Deco movement, Mare originally trained as a painter : this double experience allowed him to design tapestry cartoons for both National Manufactures and also the Hamot workshop at Aubusson.
This tapestry, displayed in 1932 on Lucien Rollin’s stand at the Salon des Artistes Décorateurs (Cf. Mobilier et Décoration, 1932, pp. 193 and 290), is probably a one-off, whose conception dates from the year of the artist’s death. The aesthetic (a very faithful reproduction of a painted original), and the subject (mythological) both seem highly traditional and distanced from the contemporary preoccupations of Marius Martin at the Ecole Nationale d’Art Décoratif d’Aubusson ; André Mare here illustrates one of his favourite decorative motifs : a basket overflowing with flowers carried on the head of one of Europe’s handmaidens.