As part of their first state visit, and in the company of Madame Brigitte Macron, Their Majesties, King Charles III and Queen Camilla visited le19M. During their visit, they took the opportunity to meet craftsmen and women, artists, and students of the new educational programme run by CHANEL, The Prince’s Foundation, and le19M.
King Charles III’s first state visit to France included a variety of commitments, many of which highlighted the importance of sustainable development and community, values shared with CHANEL and le19M. Their Majesties were hosted at le19M by Madame Brigitte Macron and by Bruno Pavlovsky, the President of CHANEL SAS and President of le19M.
le19M is a space for work and education, and as a meeting place, and is part of CHANEL’s vision to preserve and educate on fashion, decoration, and design savoir-faire. It is located between the 19th arrondissement of Paris and the Porte d’Aubervilliers and brings together under one roof ten Maisons d’art, their teams, and their archives— representing nearly 600 artisans and experts—, la Galerie du 19M, and the École Lesage.
During their visit, the King and Queen met with several artisans with innovative, heritage savoir-faire from several workshops of the Maison Lesage, which will celebrate its centenary in 2024. At Atla Galerie du 19M, they met designers, artists, apprentices, and members of the educational and non-profit networks who contribute to the venue’s multi-disciplinary programme.
The Royal couple also took the opportunity to greet the students from the first class of the educational programme, “Métiers d’art de CHANEL and The Prince’s Foundation in partnership with le19M”. From January to June 2023, these students were in residency at the Lesage embroidery school and trained in the savoir-faire of the Lesage, Lemarié, and Montex houses.
The embroidery workshop
His Majesty the King visited the Maison Lesage embroidery workshop, where he met with Lesage’s artistic director, Hubert Barrère and three embroiderers, Gaëlle Gaudron, Marie-Line Ledon Lion and Léa Mignon, who spoke about their profession and embroidery techniques.
The King then met British students who are part of the first class of the educational programme, “Métiers d’art de CHANEL and The Prince’s Foundation in partnership with le19M”. Based in Highgrove in Gloucestershire, this intensive 24-week training programme explores and develops the creative practice of embroidery with a focus on acquiring and perfecting skills.
As part of the educational programme, the British students were hosted in residency on several occasions between January and June 2023 at the École Lesage and the workshops of the Lesage, Lemarié, and Montex houses.
The textile workshop
Her Majesty the Queen and Madame Brigitte Macron visited the textile workshop, where they were received by the director of the department, Laura Arguelles. At the workshop, the textile designers Louise Maillard and Olena Pysarenko demonstrated the craft of tweed embroidery on a traditional loom.
la Galerie du 19M
On their visit to la Galerie du 19M, their Majesties were welcomed by Madame Karine Franclet, Mayor of Aubervilliers and Monsieur François Dagnaud, Mayor of Paris’ 19th district. Here, they were introduced to the exhibition by Carla Fernández. The “Future is Handmade” is an exploration of the world of the designer and stylist from the perspective of her collaborations with the Mexican artisans whose craft and savoir-faire she celebrates.
During the visit, Their Majesties met with:
- Nathalie Abscheidt, workshop manager and model maker at Maison Goossens;
- Carla Fernández is a fashion designer at the forefront of ethical fashion who works on documenting and preserving the textile heritage of the indigenous communities of her country, Mexico;
- Felipe Horta, an artisan from Erongarícuaro (Michoacán) and mask-maker with whom Carla Fernández works;
- Aska Yamashita, artistic director of Atelier Montex, as well as embroiderers from the workshop;
- Apprentices in training in the workshops of the various resident Maisons at le19M;
- Community members from le19 M’s partner educational and non-profit networks.
Before departing, the King and Queen received an embroidery that they produced at the end of the programme from Bruno Pavlovsky and the six students of the “Métiers d’art de CHANEL and The Prince’s Foundation in partnership with le19M” programme. Its design showed a field of wildflowers from the Highgrove property, the private residence of the King in Gloucestershire, where The Prince’s Foundation is located.
Bruno Pavlovsky, President of CHANEL SAS and President of le19M, recalled the long-standing commitments of the Métiers de la Mode initiated by CHANEL to training young people and helping them to find work.
He said, “This visit to le19M by King Charles III and Queen Camilla honours our commitment to the preservation of our unique heritage and to the promotion of the Métiers d’art of fashion and decoration.
The ‘Métiers d’art de CHANEL and The Prince’s Foundation, in partnership with le19 M’ educational programme, is further proof of the central importance of knowledge sharing at le19M: both to inspire vocations and to attract new talent and thus contribute to the worldwide influence of French fashion and its future. More than ever, handicrafts are trades for the future, both in France and in the United Kingdom.”
Photography by David Atlan, Leanne Punshon of Little Bird Photography and Alix Marnat.
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