Among the lenders to the show, there is one collector whose name is less known, but his passion and expertise has brought him to assemble the world's finest collection of Eileen Gray's modernist furniture, photography, drawings, and architectural blueprints. He is the ultimate connoisseur and his collection, contains some of the most precious masterpieces of modernism, had remained private until recently. With the exception of one occasion in the early 2000's, his collection has remained anonymous, and when leading pieces to exhibitions and publications, he was not identified. However, during the past four decades, he was able to develop an unprecedented expertise, while living with icons of design in his chic home on La Rive Gauche, Paris. Last fall, he presented his collection publicly for the first time at Frieze Masters in a showcase entitled 'Eileen Gray: Une Collection Moderniste.'
Gilles Peyroulet is known more as a dealer or historical photography than as a design collector. His Galerie Gilles Peyroulet which he shares with his dynamic partner Dominique Chenivesse was founded in 1987. For the occasion of showing the Eileen Gray collection at Frieze Masters in October the two published a catalog of the collection which is as pristine and refined as the design of Eileen Gray. In it, Peyroulet tells the story of his journey into the world and life of Eileen Gray, whom he considered 'genius.' Since being introduced to her at 19, he began developing an interest, researching, learning, while keep shaping and enriching his collection and scholarship. As a collector, he happened to be at several important intersections, but the turning point was the sale of the groundbreaking modernist furnishings, which Gray created for E 1027 villa, taken place at Sotheby's Monaco in 1991. He was then able to acquire pieces from her second home, Tempe a Pailla and to develop a thorough understanding of the significant of her oeuvre and experimentation with radical and poetic ideas.
Gilles Peyroult is the ultimate connoisseur. All images included in this post courtesy Gilles Peyroulet & Cie, Paris.