Daraux By the Light of the Sea

Jean-Loup Daraux

By the Light of the Sea

Photographs by Mario Ciampi

Daraux By the Light of the Sea

The colors and textures and exquisite details captured

in this gorgeous book have inspired me as I’ve worked on

my husband’s study. Love the use of antique hardware

and reclaimed wood. The sonorous quality of deep

natural tones balanced with just the right amount of

color and light…



Daraux By the light of the Sea

The artist, sculptor, collector Jean-Loup Daraux writes:

“I mixed contemporary with antique, languid serene colours with

others that were audacious, light refined materials with the raw, wood

and concrete, mosaics and metal. And of course I filled it with objects,

selected for their unlimited poetry.”


French design book

Detail of riveted door and antique French bronze watering can…

Jean-Loup again… “I love iron because it lies between the flame and

the anvil, because it comes down to us from the beginning of time”…

and “how can one not be enchanted by the successive repairs

on this very old watering can that I have had for so many years. “

Trouvais 18th c French bronze watering can


A detail I hadn’t really noticed until I recently found my own little

18th century French watering can (above) …

It reminds me of the French term “belle laide”…literally

“beautiful ugly”. And, as usual, I wonder where it’s been…

French Design book

You can catch glimpses of his antique watering cans

in several photos…I love homes that give a  sense of

the passions of those who live there…

French design


Here’s a larger photo that shows how all the elements are balanced…

the touch of purple…the verdigris of old copper in the cabinet…

the rough with the smooth…

French design book


Gorgeous composition of hard lines, strong color,

rough antiquity, Jean-Loup’s modern painting…

French design


Traditional study elements…the ladder, leather club chairs, a trio of

classically moulded bookcases, simple drapery hardware…

Beautifully underscored by the modernity of rough etched

concrete floors, the antiquity of over-sized antique crystal and urn…


French design book

In a foreword on Jean-Loup Daraux’s style, Guillaume Tournier writes:

“…to decorate a home is not to “dress” it, but to give it life, to fill it

with dreams and the irreplaceable: humanity, friendship and beauty.”

Of course I’m only scratching the surface of this beautiful book…

Lightly written…it’s a bit like poetry…and I find something new in

it every time I look through it…