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MAXIME OLD

(1910-1991)

Born in Maisons-Alfort (a suburb of Paris), France, Maxime Old was the grandson and son of fine cabinetmakers. He received his formal training at Ecole Boulle in Paris and his work attracted the attention of the influential school director, Andre Frechet.

From there he served a privotal apprenticeship (1928-34) in the workshop of Jacques-Emile Ruhlmann, the eminent French Art Deco designer. In Ruhlmann’s Atelier he learned the precise production methods of the master and participated in the furnishing of oceanliners that included the 1928 Liberté and the 1931 l’Atlantique.

From 1935 he showed his work at the salons of Société des Artistes Decorateurs regularly and at editions of Salon des Arts Ménagers. His work was shown at the 1937 Exposition Internationale des Arts et Techniques dans la Vie Moderne, a pivotal exhibition that was to affect contemporary design throughout the 1940s.

After World War II he was commissioned by the French government to produce furniture ensembles for the Ministries of Economy, Financeand Industry. In 1953/54 he did extensive work for the 15-story Hotel Marhaba in Casablanca. His private commissions were global.

Old’s designs were known for elegance and refinement and he was active into the 1980s.