Mathieu Mategot (France, 1910-2001)

Mathieu Matégot (4 April 1910 – February 2001) was a Hungarian/French designer and material artist. He was one of the most renowned French designers of the 1950s.

Born and educated at the Beaux Arts school in Budapest, furniture and tapestry designer Mathieu Matégot moved to France in the early 1930s, where he worked as a window dresser and women’s clothing designer.
He learned metalworking techniques as a prisoner of war in the 1940s, and upon his release began designing furniture, pioneering many of what we now identify as midcentury design tropes, like metal-mounted rattan, steel tubing, and perforated sheet metal.
The workshop made chairs, tables, sideboards, desks and other objects that he had designed. At first based in Paris, the workshop later moved to Casablanca. All the furniture and other objects had clever, practical and amusing designs. Distributed to decoration shops in editions of 200, his work was extremely successful.
Matégot designed the three-legged "Nagasaki" chair in 1954 and the "Copacabana" armchair (1955/1956), both made of steel tube and perforated sheet metal, characteristic materials whose use Matégot pioneered. The Nagasaki chair is now held in the design collection at the Musée des Arts Décoratifs, Paris. The Copacabana armchair is in the design collection at the Centres George Pompidou, Beaubourg, Paris.
Matégot furnished or decorated numerous prestigious buildings such as the Hotel de France in Conakry (1951), the Drugstrore Publicis (1958) and the Maison de l'ORTF both in Paris (1962).
By the 1970s, Matégot returned to producing tapestries, many of which evoke Abstract Expressionist paintings.
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