Founded in the late seventies, Ecart International is the brainchild of the ineffable Andrée Putman, the brilliant aesthete who singlehandedly revived the neglected work of some great designers from the 1930s, including René Herbst, Jean-Michel Frank, Pierre Chareau and Eileen Gray. Following her instinct informed by her unique taste, Putman made the rather counterintuitive choice of re-editing some iconic designs from the past, despite the fact that, at the time, the business of furniture was all about newness.
Born in a family of scholars and artists, Andrée Putman had to go through many different jobs and a painful divorce before finding her true calling, and making a name for herself in the world of design. Her passion for craftsmanship, her knowledge of French Arts Decoratifs’ tradition, and her eye for minimalist shapes gave her an edge on her fellow interior decorators.
By naming this new venture Ecart – which means gap, or distance in French and is the word “Trace” spelt backward – Putman made the first of her many statements: she was distancing herself from the general trend and going back to the traces left by the great masters of the early 20th century. She trusted her instinct and her taste for beautifully executed, essential designs. She did not expect such immediate, overwhelming response, and in no time she was catering for international collectors and interior decorators, by re-issuing stunning pieces of furniture.
Thanks to her commitment, the world rediscovered the beautiful, innovative work of the legendary masters of the past; she reset and expanded our visual culture in terms of interior decoration. Sadly, Andrée Putman passed away in 2013, but her legacy lives on through Ecart International, which continues to promote timeless designs and offers re-issues of 20th century iconic furniture as well as new contemporary pieces.