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1957–74 Suzy and Pierre Delbée PA R I S , F R A N C E

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P I E R R E D E L B É E , T H E P R E S I D E N T O F JA N S E N, and his wife, Suzy, a member of the Lazard banking dynasty, was both a backdrop for lavish entertaining and a testing ground for decorative schemes and ideas. As with so many residences of architects and designers, it was never really completed; it continued to evolve until Pierre Delbée’s death in 1974. With this understood, there was no better example of the quality of workmanship and high level of creativity produced by Jansen than this chic, eclectic residence, the home of a man noted for his personal flamboyance. The entrance hall, which served as a part-time dining room, took the firm’s characteristic historicism and melded it with Dalí-esque surrealism. In just a few steps, a visitor was introduced to the extremes of Jansen’s offerings, as well as to the highest levels of materials and craftsmanship available. The entire room, including the ceiling, was encased in Louis XV-style paneling, which had been painted varying shades of blue. Against this formulaic Jansen backdrop, the Delbées exhibited cabinetmaking treasures such as a circa-1760 pair of ormolumounted black lacquer corner cabinets. Above these cabinets, which flanked the apartment’s front door, were displayed two imposing 16th-century Italian reliefs of ancient Roman senators, representative of Suzy and Pierre Delbée’s interest in classical art objects. The room was H E A PA R T M E N T O F

OPPOSITE: ENTRANCE HALL

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Jansen: Decoration (excerpt)  

Jansen showcases 30 of the company's most alluring commissions, including rooms for the Duke and Duchess of Windsor, the Shah and Shahbanou...

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