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MADO JOLAIN (1921-2019)

Mado Jolain was born in Paris in 1921. During the Occupation, she joined the School of Decorative Arts in Paris and the drawing and sculpture workshops at La Grande Chaumière. There she met René Legrand who was more oriented towards painting. Sensitized by the craze for ceramics that began before the war, Mado Jolain made her first attempts as a potter in the oven of a utility ceramics workshop, rue d’Alesia. In 1946, Mado Jolain and René Legrand married and moved to Montrouge where René set up his painting studio. The ceramic workshop was not far; it was in the 14th district. René Legrand turned their first pieces. In 1948, creations from the Mado Jolain workshop were exhibited for the first time at the Salon des Ateliers d’Art Décoraire and L’objet 1948, a post-war exhibition held at the Galerie Denise Breteau, rue Bonaparte, Paris. In 1950, the ceramic workshop moved to Montrouge. All the productions of Atelier Mado Jolain turned and developed in different ways. Members of the Chamber of Trade Union Ceramists and Workshops of France, present at all Salons Decorative Art Workshops, Mado Jolain attended other ceramists of his era: Jacques Blin, president of the Chambre Syndicale, Fernand Lacaf, Roger Capron, Robert Deblander, Pol Chambost, The Argonautes, Norbert and Jeanne Pierlot, Jacqueline Lerat. She created mainly ceramic for the home and tables with enamel decorations more and more stylized over the years. In 1955, Denise Majorel organized an exhibition for Mado Jolain in her gallery, La Demeure-Rive gauche. Mado Jolain ceramics were distributed in decorative and tableware shops, as well as in the Primavera Printemps shop run by Colette Guéden. His work is the subject of many quotes in magazines such as Arts and Decoration (1952) and Furniture and Decoration (1949-1953-1955-1956). In 1964, Mado Jolain made a trip to Japan where she visited the Hamada workshop, and in England in the footsteps of Bernard Leach. Despite these visits to masters of ceramics after the war, Mado Jolain remained inspired mainly by the research of great architects like Le Corbusier, Jean Prouvé, Alvar Aalto. In 1963, she exhibited her garden ceramics at the Galerie du Siècle a gallery of Saint-Germain des Prés. With garden ceramics, Mado Jolain moved towards more monumental creations. In 1963, she made a cloister wall for the greenhouses of Auteuil on a commission from Daniel Collin, landscape architect at the Direction of gardens of the city of Paris. In 1966, her exhibition in Folklore gallery in Lyon was the last of her activity as a ceramicist, which eventually stopped in 1970.

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