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For the Love of Furniture Guillaume Cuiry, owner and founder of La Galerie Nationale, at Alserkal Avenue, Dubai talks vintage art furniture with HEALTH.

Getting into the business

Coming from a traditional family, my love for designer art furniture started when my parents, lovers of 18th century decoration, set up my study room with Joe Colombo pieces. Later, my very best friend Jacques, who is into antique furniture, exposed me to 40’s and 50’s antique pieces. It was him who became a source of inspiration, which led me to dedicate my free time studying the 20th century design and designers and eventually setting up my own gallery in the UAE.

The benchmark of well-designed furniture

There is no single parameter. Each piece has a unique character and each has a particular emotional effect on the one viewing it. However, the main reason to value a design item is a combination of many criteria or factors such as: Who made it? Only very few designers have a complete interesting collection. Another factor is the story or inspiration behind the piece and its history or the provenance of course as a guarantee of uniqueness and authenticity. Technique at times is part of the value, as well as quality of the work, creativity, and timelessness of the design.

Your favorites

My Art Decorative favorite period is definitely the Modernist and inside the Modernist movement designers such as Royere, Prouve, Ingrand, Franck… and so many more. If I have to choose one, I will select Jean Royer as the leader and totally timeless creator. The most emblematic works he did are the ‘Liane’ wall lamp and of course the ‘polar bear’ sofa. Unfortunately, he produced only a very few pieces. This is the reason why these kinds of pieces are now in the high price level and always sought out by worldwide collectors.

3 ways to turn a room into a show-stopping space

  • The best advice is to be passionate and curious. These qualities will lead you to be interested in depth, at all aspects, and be involved in the vintage art furniture community.
  • If in doubt about a purchase (period, authenticity, designer), we will be on hand to offer our advice and will always be passionate about art.
  • Finally, buy books, visit museums, visit the galleries, visit the exhibitions – you will certainly get inspiration. Educate yourself well and keep on learning. The first purchase of a vintage art
    piece is very important because it often defines a long process of acquisition and it takes time to decide on a particular piece of art that you would want to own.
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