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Monday, April 7, 2014

MOVERS and SHAKERS: Isabelle Arpagian, Franco-German Artist Participating in Faberge's 2014 The Big Egg Hunt in Manhattan Our Coverage Sponsored by Stribling and Associates

Isabelle Arpagian

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Isabelle Arpagian is a Franco-German artist, a recognized and recurring medalist in France and Germany, and has exhibited worldwide. Born in Hamburg, Germany in 1972, Arpagian spent her childhood in South East Asia. Returning to Europe, she continued her studies at the School of Decorative Arts in Vienna, Austria, and in several specialized workshops in Paris. In 2011, Isabelle participated in the world–renowned competition "Best craftsperson and artist of France."  
She travels the world creating unique artworks for historical castles, private homes and art collectors.

Among her achievements of monumental works, Arpagian created and painted an entire chapel in France. She also completed a version of « The FourSeasons, » for a private castle in Germany. This installation was based on the boudoir of Marie Antoinette at Fontainebleau, and included over 25 painted panels. Using palladium leaves in the interpretation, Arpagian employed historical techniques and pigments of the 18th century. This installation was acknowledged by the French Minister of Culture in 2010, and in the same year the collection of panels was exhibited at the Schloss Charlottenburg in Berlin where the collection was well-received by critics and the press.

In 2013,  Arpagian was commissioned by a private art collector to design and paint an entire villa. In the dining room of this villa are original Tiffany stained-glass windows and Arpagian was asked to paint a mural to complement the windows. The hand-painted mural is a tribute to one of the great American artists.

Her art works art can also be seen in the houses of luxury watchmakers and jewelers : «WEMPE » ( Paris, New York and Beijing) or "Elysées Horlogerie" on the Champs Elysées in Paris.  
The television channel ARTE has devoted a program on her unique talent. FRANCE 5 is filming a documentary of the painted chapel created in France.  
Arpagian has worked with prominant artists including Rachid KHIMOUN, Victor and Rolf, Doris Kloster , Luc Ferry, Valérie Lemercier for an important auction in Paris and New York.  In 
November 2013, Isabelle had her last solo exhibition in the Metropolitan Club in New York.  
In Febuary 2014, she represented France during the MUSCAT Festival in Oman showing exceptional art work.  
In April 2014, Faberge has invited Isabelle to New York to participate in the «The Big Egg Hunt» and Manhattan is delighted by her talents.  Her newest creation can be seen in public in New York, and we are thrilled to present Isabelle Arpagian as our latest Mover and Shaker.  Peachy Deegan interviewed Isabelle for Whom You Know.

Peachy Deegan: 
What's your first art memory? 
Isabelle Arpagian: 
When I was 8 years old, visiting the immense Louvre in Paris with my parents and seeing the most fabulous paintings. 

What does art mean to you? 
Art is a philosophy to me: a way of living. To be only surrounded with exceptional art works.  No place for intellectual mediocrity. Art brings and connects the most powerful energy together exchanging aesthetics, philosophy, liturature and music with cultivated and refined generous human beings. 

How do you as an artist make your piece personally impactful to your client when commissioned for an individual? 
Each art work I create for a client is unique; it is like we would say in France « C’est de la Haute Couture. » The art work is done for the client and each work is created for the person.   
When I start creating, it starts in the first few seconds when I actually meet my client. I can deeply sense the energy of what the persons is and I concentrate on what he or she is searching for. And within the first few seconds or hours I have a flash and I can actually see the artwork infront of my eyes. 
It is like composing music. It is always the first few hours that the creation arrives from somewhere, where we artists have a direct line. 

Which five pieces that you've created have been the most meaningful to you? 
1. German Castle : A copie of the Boudoir of Marie Antoinette. A creation of 25 pannels for a Diningroom. White gold Panels Greek Mythologie and using only the finest pigments created in my atelier. Private collection 
2. Italy : Mural paintings with a collection of Comfort Tiffany Stained glass for a Dining room. 
3. Empress I & Empress II : Art object using only the finest material 
4. Le Meilleur Ouvrier de France 
5. French Castle : Painted Chappel 6m x 13m . 
Monumental Oriental Artwork . Painted on 8 pieces of canvas. for a private Collection 

Which piece was the most challenging that you worked on and how did you confront its challenges? 
Each art work is for me a personal challenge. A challenge of reaching perfection and aesthetics. 

What should we all know about the Faberge egg hunt? 
The house of Fabergé is the principal sponsor of the Big Egg Hunt, whose intent is to raise money for charity and more specifically for Elephant Family and Studio in a School, based in New York City.  
Fabergé called for artists world wide to be generous to create a unique egg. Thanks to the generosity of the artists and buyers we make things happen. 

What or who has had the most influence on your pursuit of excellence? 
Old Masters: I like Raphael, Leonardo da Vinci, Laurence Alma Tadema and Rothko 
Authors : Stefan Zweig, & Alexandre Dumas 
Musicians : Chopin & Philippe Jaroussky 
Poets : Baudelaire & Goethe 

What are you proudest of and why? 
That I have always followed my inside voice. Having become an artist, creating what I see. Just listening one’s inside truth and following my dreams and staying natural. 
By doing that, you automatically meet the most interesting people in life who have the same vision. 
It is the hardest road but the best!!! That is what I am proud of. 

What would you like to do professionally that you have not yet had the opportunity to do? 
I have been working on a personal project for a couple of years now to actually bring it to life. It is so unique- one just needs the right moment and finances. As artists, our mind never stops with age: it gets even more powerful. 

What honors and awards have you received in your profession? 
In Germany and France, I have received 2 gold medals for creating unique works of art which has been a great honor for me. 

What one word best describes you and why? 
I can't pick just one word; I'm constantly in Search of perfection and beauty. One never stops creating, it's just infinite. That is what is so fascinating about it. 

What do you take your sense of identity from? 
From Nature 

What is your favorite place to be in Manhattan? And Europe? 
When I’m in Manhattan, I feel like at home.  I love walking down Madison avenue seeing the architecture, the energy, and the style of the people from 5th Avenue and around Central Park.  In 
Europe, of course Paris for me is a daily inspiration. Faubourg Saint Honoré and Jardin des Tulleries!

What is your favorite shop in Manhattan? And Europe?
Ladurée on Madison Avenue 
Library of the Metroplitain Museum for books 
Repetto rue de la Paix for shoes 
Sennelier quai Voltaire for art material 
Le Train Bleu Gare de Lyon for lunch 
Library of the Louvre Museum for books 

If you could hire anybody who would it be and why? 
Karl Lagerfeld. To create a faboulous défiler with art works combined. 

What is your favorite drink? 
Depends on the moment, but mainly Champagne 

What is the funniest thing that has ever happened to you at a cocktail party? 
During a cocktail party, I found myself on stage with actors. 

What is your favorite restaurant in Manhattan? And Europe? 
Manhattan : Tea and Macarons at Ladurée Madison Avenue 
Europe : Brunch at Florian’s Café in Venice 

What is your favorite Manhattan book or favorite character in Manhattan literature? And European? 
The Fountain Head 
Le Comte de Monte Cristo, Alexandre Dumas 

Who would you like to be for a day and why? 
A composer, to compare the similarity between music and painting. 

If you could have anything in Manhattan named after you what would it be and why? And Europe? 
A magnolia tree in a garden in NY and Paris 

What has been your best Manhattan athletic experience? And Europe? 
I walked from the Brooklyn Bridge up to north Manhattan 2 hours by foot. In Europe: 
La Medocain: A populaire bike trip in France. Biking with friends through the Medoc vinyards and visiting their castles From 8:00 am until 6:00pm non stop. 

What is your favorite thing to do in Manhattan that you can do nowhere else? And Europe? 
Manhattan : The best cocktail parties. They are just so unique !!! 
Europe : Finding old books in hiden libraries and small hidden ateliers. 

If you could have dinner with any person living or passed, who would it be and why? 
Jeff Koons to discuss art.

What has been your best Manhattan art or music experience? And Europe? 
Manhattan Art : Metropolitan Collection 
Manhattan Music : Michel Bublé 
European Art : Collection of Château de Chantilly 
European Music : Philippe Jaroussky 

What do you personally do or what have you done to give back to the world? 
I receive students around the world in my vast atelier in France to pass on my passion. To show how important the spirituality of art is for society. 

What do you think is most underrated and overrated in Manhattan? And Europe? 
The importance of artists in the social world. 

Other than Movers and Shakers of course, what is your favorite Whom You Know column and what do you like about it? 
Remarkable Real Estate features of Stribling and Associates. They are an exceptional family and company not only in Manhattan but the family is very appreciated in France. 
We first met in France through French Heritage Society.  They are an elegant family who are cultivated and devoted in what they believe in and I dearly respect this. 

Have you tried The Peachy Deegan yet and if not, why not?
I haven’t tried it yet but I will for sure have it personally with Peachy Deegan. 

What else should Whom You Know readers know about you? 
Manhattan has a most fantastic and generous hospitality and I would like to thank all there. It is an honor for me to have been accepted in your community. 

How would you like to be contacted by Whom You Know readers? 
Via email. 

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