Abraham & Rol
Janine Abraham and Dirk Jan Rol worked in symbiosis all their life. Janine can be considered as one of the first women designers in France. She trained in one of the most prestigious French schools, Camondo, under great masters like Maxime Old or René-Jean Caillette. Dirk Jan Rol began with cabinetmaker training in his home country, Holland, and soon joined the National School of Decorative Arts in Paris, whose artistic influence seduced him. He attended classes of Louis Sognot and Paul Dupré Lafon before joining Jacques Dumont’s studio. Both trained in the rigor, inventiveness, modernity and great tradition of the French decorative arts.
Their aesthetic connivance quickly turned into an idyll and they got married in 1955, opened their own agency and participated in many exhibitions. They were noticed for the creation of models such as a fireside chair in folded metal wire and aluminum—today in the collections of the Georges Pompidou center—and the revolutionary rattan armchairs. Their modern productions are always remarkable, inspired as much by the traditional Japanese house as by contemporary American architecture. Sophisticated staging and a taste for graphic arts and architecture allowed them to design chains like Yves Rocher and Huchers Minvielle.
Their talent for using a wide variety of materials (aluminum, rattan, metal, plywood, tempered glass, plexiglass) allowed them to create some of the most iconic furniture of the 20th century, including the sun chair or convertible AR bench. They became architects and built beautiful villas open to nature, because Rol had always dreamed of being a landscaper. They rarely designed lighting, and none was published, probably because it was too expensive for the time. Nevertheless, one finds there the sense of the carefully treated materials and intimacy typical of their architecture by the enhancement of the luminous atmosphere.