“Je m’aperçois que je n’ai pas pensé à attirer votre attention sur ce qui me paraît – et qui vous paraîtra j’en suis sur aussi – un principe nécessaire sur la Côte d’Azur. Je veux arriver à ce que notre dispositif donne le soleil le matin dans les chambres à coucher, et le soleil de l’âpres-midi dans le salon, parce que c’est pour avoir le soleil que j’irai dans cette maison.” Charles de Noailles, 1923, first correspondance with Robert Mallet-Stevens.
At that time Charles de Noailles probably couldn’t have imagined that his villa set high in the hills of Hyères would become a unique place of patronage. Transformed into an architecture and art center, the villa houses each year the “Festival international de mode et de photographie”, “Design Parade”, as well as many other cultural events.
The villa has always been a stage for artistic encounters, exchanges, and montages. A montages of images, ideas, periods, and legacies. The Villa Noailles and its patrons undoubtedly expanded the definition of patronage in exploring all of its myriad forms.
A “place of production” of a quasi-systematic confrontation between high and low culture, in which modernity was already considered as a combination of numerous influences, a montage of forms, seemingly unsuited towards coexisting in the same space. Modernity as an encounter of influences which, through their intertwining, resulted in the emergence of a rhizomatic dialogue, no longer concerned with the separation of disciplines.
A decision to live not at the heart of the avant-garde, but within the Avant-gardes themselves.