Thierry Jeannot


THIERRY JEANNOT Artist BIO / CV & Artist Statement

Jeannot has been living in México for the last 20 years. He focuses on generating high added value to recycled materials and is interested in traditional techniques and working closely with crafts-people. In the 1980s with Thierry Mugler in Paris as well as for himself, he began working with a range of unconventional materials. 

Jeannot orients his work toward paradox and contrast, transforming what might be seen as a plague, into sophisticated designs - PET bottles on store shelves, tossed in the trash, or on the street are transformed into one-of-a-kind chandeliers, appearing like crystal. The pieces are constructed from hundreds of plastic bottles meticulously selected, cut and reassembled as an exceptional object. He follows a design philosophy where design and the production process are never separated. A coffee table for example is constructed through marrying scrap materials with sophisticated handcrafted bronze parts, and gold and silver leaf with burnt wood. Jeannot likes to maintain a strong connection to history and the decorative arts but at the same time the resulting design-art pieces create a paradox and thus question customary symbols of luxury and our preconceptions of the value of materials.


His work has come to favourable acclaim both in Mexico,  the United States and Europe, where his pieces are part of private collections and have been exhibited in Museum and gallery shows.

[e.g. MAD Museum of Art and Design, NYC, 2014 / MAK Museum of Applied Arts, Vienna, 2018-19 / Museo Franz Maier, Mexico City, 2018-19]


My first approach to design was in the 80s when I developed and produced contemporary jewelry made out of acrylic and other materials, and started to collaborate with the fashion industry (Thierry Mugler) and Haute Couture in Paris. In 1996, I made my first trip to Mexico and started to work in collaboration with local crafts and initiated to run a workshop. Since 2005, I have been  designing  unique and limited editions pieces. I have been angling my present work towards researching new ways of constructing and designing. What we call re-purposing and recycling came to me as new possibilities and I definitely wanted to use them in a new way as one uses any other conventional technique or material.

I observed PET bottles containing liquids, nicely organized in a store, and then those same transparent containers discarded on the floor or accumulated in the trash right in front of my studio in the old downtown of Mexico City. My first decision was to use them as if they were crystal and transform them into an iconic lighting design: a chandelier. By involving people from my neighbourhood, the question of supply was naturally resolved, in recycling those bottles just before the trash process and thus being able to do the strong selection I needed. This was my experience when designing the chandeliers ‘Transmutation 1’ and ‘Green Transmutation’ in which I question symbols of luxury as well as the preconception and value of materials.


At the same period, I was observing and analysing the strong aesthetic enlightenments and patterns from Baroque and other periods. This was the initial statement of those pieces: to achieve a true transformation of those specimen of plastics into a luxury symbol, a classic Chandelier and reach a strong effect on the public eye in the sense of ‘what you see is not what you get’. Its an art-design piece about Illusion (there is a story of a women in Washington who thought the chandelier was part of the old mansion where my exhibition was - the story is mentioned in the Four Seasons magazine article. My work also talks about the subjectivity we have towards the value of materials.”


'NEO BAROCO', museum exhibition at Museum Franz Maier, Mexico City, February-April, 2019

‘THE BEAUTY SHOW’ by Stefan Sagmeister & Stephanie Walsh, MAK, Vienna, Oct-2018 - April 2019

‘MEXICO DESIGN TIME”,  group show, Marion Friedmann Gallery, 192 Piccadilly, London, September, 2018

‘VIA - Sustainability in Design, Paris, September 2018

'DELICACY REVISITED', with Marion Friedmann Gallery, London Design Festival, October 2015

'DELICACY', MIART Milano, with Marion Friedmann Gallery, April 2015

‘NEW TERRITORIES’ at MAD (Museum of Art and Design), New York, opening Nov. 2014

ABIERTO Diseno Mexicano - IBDF fair - Design Festival Mexico City, October 2013

‘RECOLLECTIONS’, Marion Friedmann Gallery, Designjunction, London Design Festival, Sept. 2012


‘Design for a Sustainable Future’, curated by Sustinendi, Clerkenwell Design Week, London, May 2012

MEXICO WEEK UK, Marion Friedmann Gallery, March 2012

SUPERDESIGN, group-showcase during FRIEZE Art Fair London, Oct. 2011
 ‘ENLIGHTENED WASTE’, Marion Friedmann Gallery, London Design Festival, Sept. 2011

‘RETHINKING TRADITION - Contemporary Design from Mexico’, Washington D.C., Mexican Cultural Institute
Thierry Jeannot Lighting

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