FAIENCES OF APT
1751 – 1813
1793 – ?
1813 – 1898
1838 – 1923
1866 – 1907
Bernard Joseph Georges
1905 – 1973
Faucon Mady et Francis
1929 – 2018 et 1926 – 2017
1955 – 2001
1961 – 2005
The story of the Bernard family is scarcely distinguishable from that of the Apt faiences and its marbled-clay technique. Inspired by the region’s naturally occurring colored clays, it appeared in the mid-18th century in Apt and Castellet.
Joseph (1905-1973) was the sixth and final member of the Bernard line. He was the most talented, inventive and passionate of the dynasty. He was one of those great artisan-artists who becomes one with their craft, inventing their life and happiness in the workshop. And by his side worked the beautiful and indefatigable Odette!
To Joseph Bernard we owe the invention of the so-called flammée or flamed mixture (an honor he shares with the potter Léon Sagy), to which he brought a level of lyricism that none of his ancestors had achieved. He also developed floral motifs of a rare subtlety as well as a new style of incrustations at the end of his life in Morocco at the invitation of King Hassan II.
With Joseph Bernard’s son-in-law Francis and then his grandsons Jean and Pierre, the dynasty changed names, coming under the name Faucon.
Francis, who came from a very different background, produced ceramics on the margins of tradition in his spare time, and according to his whimsical and generous tastes. His marvelous pottery enchanted friends and became part of their everyday lives.
Jean, who would have doubtless preferred to be a comedian or pop singer, took the manna of generations and made it flourish thanks to his talent as a great seducer. He amassed a huge number of contacts and excelled in the production of prestigious tableware. He got the whole valley of Apt dancing, and he died young very young for having loved life too much!
Pierre who had spent his life in the air as a paragliding champion, succeeded Jean in difficult circumstances. He was sick and his life expectancy wasn’t long. His conversion from sky to earth isn’t without meaning. He used his little remaining time to refine tradition, to rejuvenate the colors, invent the “feather” mixture and the shades of grey. He also introduced airy new motifs, and braid-like angel wings.
It was Mady, Joseph’s daughter, mother of Jean and Pierre, who honored the last pending orders after Pierre’s death and officially closed the workshop in 2007.