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Born in 1909 in RIMINI in Italy, René GRUAU, Count Renato Zavagli Ricciardelli della Caminate, is French by his mother, Marie GRUAU DE LA CHESNAIE, from which he took his artist’s name. He began to draw from his earliest childhood and published His first drawings at 14 years. At 18, he already publishes his fashion designs in Italy, England and Germany.
From 1946 until 1984 he collaborated with International Textiles for which he would draw all the covers.
From 1947 began the meeting and the formidable adventure with Christian Dior to which the name of GRUAU will remain forever closely linked. This year marks the publication of the first famous advertisements for Dior Parfums. From 1966 to 1972 the most famous perfumes of DIOR « Eau Sauvage », DIORELLA, DIORISSIMO, will see the feminine silhouette created by GRUAU supplanting the bottle, exalting by the ellipse of its forms the very spirit of the Perfume.
The following year he discovered the United States and offered his talent to Harper’s Bazar and Vogue. Two years later, he became the exclusive artist for Flair.
In 1949, René GRUAU drew the famous poster of Rouge Baiser and made the cover of the magazine Club.
From BLIZZAND to BEMBERG, from PANCALDI to RODIER all industry of the century illuminates the genius of GRUAU their Posters and posters.
In post-war FRANCE PARIS juponne and GRUAU the Magnificent lights with his brush the glittering nights of the LIDO and the MOULIBN ROUGE of which he creates the unforgettable posters.
Since 1989, the world of Fashion and Haute Couture from DIOR to Hubert de GIVENCHY, CHANEL and Christian LACROIX will use its elegant graphics.
With GRUAU, as the Hebrew culture wants, the dwarf mounted on the shoulders of the giant to become bigger than him … Following the formidable artistic movement of the beginning of the century, advertising graphics became an Art in its own right and s ‘Inscribed in the Evolution of the History of Art … ..
Since its death in 2004, at the age of 95, the coast of RENE GRUAU has not stopped climbing and CHRISTIE’S realized in New York in May 2010 a six-figure sale for an oil on canvas, René GRUAU, Entitled « rêverie »
From the exuberant flattering hats of Madame Figaro’s blankets to the impressive hair and disheveled of her personal drawings, evoking the exaggerated headdresses of Jacques de Bellange and the Italian Mannerists of the School of Fontainebleau, not to mention straw hats, Haut de Form and other melon hats undoubtedly linked to the Club covers and the Lido’s Posters, GRAU’s work is a hymn to the hat.
GRUAU will use a superb red feather to enliven the diagonal of a club cover in 1951, responding vertically to a back face wearing a bowler hat, homage to the asymmetrical construction of the Masters of Japanese Utamaro and Hiroshige.
If GRUAU uses the hat as an accessory to structure space and meet his plastic requirements, which are those of the artistic movement of the XXth century, he neglects the symbolic connotations associated with this element of costume. To change your hat is to change your ideas, to have another view of the world. GRUAU’s recurring gesture of removing his hat corresponds to both an art of living and a « Mannerist » will to transform the world, to sublimate it.
But GRUAU the Italian can not deny the Comoedia del Arte: Pantalone the old merchant who makes money the thread of his life disguises a black beret and a large black coat lined with red, the primordial colors of René GRUAU. If Polichinelle is also often dressed in red, the style of GRUAU owes to the Commedia Del Arte the importance of the improvisation and the gesture of the body. His characters, always in motion, hidden by so many hats and masks reverberate in the festivities given by Jacques Fath and the Count of Beaumont.
In ancient Egypt, to improve one’s appearance was already a spiritual one. A voluminous wig sculpted in beeswax, for example, expressed a strong sexual symbol and linked her wearer to Hathor, the goddess of festivities and love. Like the shoe, from the medieval era, the hat defines the social rank.
In the middle of the 19th century, the top form became the symbol of the bourgeoisie, its imposing height enabling the man of the street to appear larger. By enjoying this form of hat, the aristocrat GRUAU championed the notion of respectability and perfection in the street world, and a stable, refined, controlled democracy that Greek term « aristocratos » the power of the best according to Platon and Aristote.
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