LES BAUGES – FRANCE
Jean-Paul is one of the last masters of the Bauges region to perpetuate the ancestral know-how of the wooden crockery turned on a pole lathe.
Born in the Bauges, Jean-Paul knows all the secrets of his massif: its history, its traditions and its woods.
For 60 years, he has perpetuated ancient gestures to turn his pieces which reveal all the technicality, finesse and nobility of this craftsman’s know-how.
The wooden tableware produced in the Bauges was named “Argenterie des Bauges” by the Bishop of Geneva in 1645 but has actually existed in the region since the 14th century. This so-called “poor person” crockery was made in the surrounding woods by craftsmen who shaped a multitude of objects: bowls, cups, pockets, bolletons, spoons… and was then sold by hawkers.
Each piece was unique, of various shapes and uses and turned with green wood unlike the traditional wood lathe so that the dishes lasted over time and did not break. Timeless objects, raw and delicate at the same time, hyper-sensitive and which tells us about history, manual work, yesterday’s life and which are full of meaning.
A few months after the sale of two of his pieces in the Auction House at Piasa, for the first time more than a hundred pieces are brought together in Paris, for the time of an exhibition, some of which are more than twenty years old.
La Maison de Commerce team went to get them in Savoie in Jean-Paul Rossi’s attic, for whom getting this crockery known is essential, and so that this ancestral know-how is not lost.