PAUL IRIBE (B. PAUL IRIBARNE GARAY)

(1883-1935)

 

French designer and illustrator, Paul Iribe, was active in Paris France and later in his career, Hollywood, California in the USA.

In his early career Iribe was a caricaturist for French journals and in 1908 he founded Le témoin (The Witness). As a member of the world of high fashion he influenced taste by illustrating a fashion portfolio for couturier Paul Poiret.

Later he opened his own decorating studio and designed furniture, fabrics, wallpaper and objects in collaboration with Pierre Legrain. His furniture was often veneered with amaranth, ebony, and Brazilian rosewood with inlays in contrasting colors.

Iribes Modernism always tended to the baroque, inclined toward a 19th Century sense of luxury and he applied this aesthetic to the entire apartment he was commissioned to do by Jacques Doucet.

In 1914 Iribe settled in Hollywood, CA and worked as theatrical designer for film directors including Cecil B. DeMille. The lush sets for De Mille’s The Affairs of Anatol (1921) and Cleopatra (1934) were among Iribe’s well-known accomplishments. As a traditionalist he was opposed to the UAM (Union des Artistes Modernes and in 1926 he wrote a manifesto against modern art.

In 1930 he returned to France and illustrated periodicals and books. Among his most famous graphic designs is the Lanven emblem represting Jeanne Lanvin dressed for a ball with her daughter at her knee.  He was close friends with Coco Chanel and designed costume jewelry for her as well.

Iribe’s furniture was produced in quite limited quantity, generally only by commission.