Foliage of Séverina Lartigue
The work of Séverina Lartigue is a rare profession of excellence. She is a designer of flowers and foliage destined for haute couture, which she produces according to precise techniques and unchanged for more than two hundred years. Passionate about her profession and anxious to preserve a unique heritage, she gathered in her studio that she has put together more than ten years ago in Lisieux, a collection of tools and documentation, thus transforming her into a true museum. She works primarily for luxury fashion houses and institutions, such as the Opéra Garnier or for creators like Manoush or Monique Van Heist. Séverina Lartigue has agreed to talk to us about her profession, which is full of rigor and poetry.
Can you tell us about your work, how did you come to this area of expertise and why?
I am a designer of silk flowers, my workshop is now 15 years old and is part of the EPV (Living Heritage Companies). I carry out all the steps of the making of a flower, preparation of the fabrics, cutting, dyeing, embossing or shaping and assembly with respect for rare and valuable know-how. My background is particular, I invented a customized work in which I use all my skills: photography, drawings, modeling, research of materials, transformation, dyes, communication, management …
How do you perceive your work and what is your relationship to Nature?
I am a designer in volume specialized in architecture, landscaping and I have been making flowers for ever. I am a girl of the woods and meadows. What I like is to mix technicality and poetry, the opposite. Understand the mechanics of the vegetation, its identity and its personality. I often compare vegetables to faces and then interest me in their postures. We men have faces composed of two eyes, a nose, a mouth and two ears to simplify, yet we can distinguish the faces of women from those of men and recognize us. It is the same for plants. A flower has a heart, petals, sepals. The shapes, the colors, the ribs, the dimensions … will make it possible to identify it. What is the difference between a bindweed, a violet and a lilac? This work is very important and passionate. But it is far from restricting itself to theory, feeling is essential. For me the posture of the plant is related to poetry. I try to transpose what one finds charming in a climbing rose to a crown of small roses for example.
© Stéphane Janou, Séverina Lartigue
le site de Severina Lartigue: www.severinalartigue.fr