Sunday, July 6, 2008

Musings on Hermes Scarf Artist Jean-Louis Clerc

Remember that I had mentioned that part of the joys of collecting scarves is that there is somewhat of a hint of mystery in the collecting. Here is a good example. All collectors know that Jean-Louis Clerc was a rather prolific artist for Hermes.

The mysterious part is that very little about the artist is actually known. I am still trying to research this artist, and have been for sometime now. What little I do know came from a friend in the scarf forums.

It seems that someone has control over the rights of Clerc's paintings either a descendant through his estate, or some other company that purchased the rights. My friend did not remember the details but thought that somehow a Swiss company might be involved.
Clerc designed at least two, possibly more), scarves that were not Hermes. One is called "Orchestra" by those who collect, I am not sure of the title of the second scarf.

Clerc was influenced by the work of french artist Raol Dufy. Details of this influence can be seen in Clerc's works of "Paddock", "Orchestra" and "Concerto, when compared to similar works of Dufy.

Clerc pieces especially the early ones are highly saught after by collectors. The scarves pictured above are all Clerc pieces. The top two are known to be Hermes scarves and bare the logo of the company. The bottom pieces are Clerc pieces, but do not bare Hermes logos. The top picture is one of the rarest of all Hermes Clerc designs it is titled "Joies De La Montagne" it was issued in 1946.

So you can see that collecting scarves for me is not just about the wearing, it is also about the amazing stories behind the artist. Or in this case, the mystery of lack of information (information is never lacking, it is only hidden) regarding the history behind the artists and the designs.

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