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Hervé Baley

Spatial Living

November 2 – December 14, 2022

Hervé Baley
Hervé Baley
Hervé Baley
image of hervé baley chair

Press Release

Magen H Gallery is pleased to announce our exhibition titled “Hervé Baley: Spatial Living” which showcases the work of french architect and designer Hervé Baley.

This first ever exhibition on the architect’s body of work includes around 50 pieces, created throughout his career and spanning four decades, from 1960 to the 1990’s, and two countries, France and Morocco. This chronological and geographical panorama is intended to attest to Baley’s furniture production’s direct link with his architectural process, naturally and indubitably flowing from the dwelling, the result of concepts born of a sensitive, poetic, and almost mystical reflection of the space.

An idealist architect, Hervé Baley was always an advocate of spatial poetry and went against France’s postwar trend favoring Modernism and its rationalistic rigor. His discovery of Frank Lloyd Wright, during his student years at the École des Beaux-Arts of Paris in the 1950’s, marked a turning point in his creative path, embracing immediately the American master’s human, poetic and sensitive architecture, stemming fully from its environment, from the facade to the furniture inhabiting it.

Predominantly wooden pieces with dynamic constructions, low lines and a rejection of right angles, the pieces included in this retrospective are striking demonstrations of the architecture and lifestyle Baley sought to promote. Specifically created for different projects, from his own home/studio in the 1960’s, to MIFERMA’s Cansado project in Mauritania (c. 1960) or a large private estate in the 1990’s, these pieces epitomize the architect’s entire oeuvre: imprevisible, contrasted, subtle, and always in line with the environment they were created for.  

Hervé Baley managed to offer his era something different: a humanist architecture that could stand up to Le Corbusier’s Modernist movement. Through this exhibition, we hope to convey the importance of his work in the history of French and European architecture and design and the postwar era reconstruction, his revolutionary language, and the fresh energy he kindled to an excessively monocentric architectural landscape.

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