Hermès Editeur Daniel Buren

Hermès Éditeur
Daniel Buren

Photos-souvenirs au carré is the edition of a series of 365 unique pieces on silk. 

The artist

Daniel Buren was born in 1938 in Boulogne-Billancourt. 
He lives and works in situ.

The project

The links between Hermès and Daniel Buren have a long and rich history. In 2000, he inaugurated La Verrière in Brussels, a space dedicated to contemporary art. Six years later, the house asked him to inaugurate a new site and he produced the in-situ installation entitled “Filtres colorés” for the Atelier Hermès in Dosan Park, Seoul. These two events would have relevance for the genesis of Photos-souvenirs au carré. 

Daniel Buren initially suggested printing thousands of Hermès scarves on silk, all of them unique, from thousands of “photo-souvenirs”. Invented by the artist, this term refers to the hundreds of thousands of photographs he had accumulated since the fifties, which he defines as “unpretentious photos and nothing more” (Les Écrits, 1988). It is a concept that relates to his own work as well as to photos taken during his travels around the world. 

For this project, twenty-two photo-souvenirs were selected and framed in 2 to 4 different ways per photo, with 18 framing options depending on the photos chosen. The photographs are framed with the artist’s signature coloured stripes – an omnipresent visual that unites them all, creating a connection while marking their differences. 

To print the photographs onto silk, Hermès chose the inkjet technique, a procedure that allows an infinite number of colours to be produced, where traditional screen printing only allows for a limited number. 

The 365 unique scarves created by Daniel Buren for Hermès Éditeur may be considered works of art, but the artist likes to remind us that they were above all designed to be tied around the neck, draped around the shoulders, even crumpled: “They are unique objects, but made to be worn,” the artist points out. 

The scarves

365 unique pieces.

The editions

  • Josef Albers

    For its first edition of works of art on silk, Hermès immediately thought of Josef Albers, one of the great colour theorists, and in particular his Homage to the Square series. Six of his works were selected and reproduced on silk, then produced in 200 units each.

  • Hiroshi Sugimoto

    For its third edition, Hermès invited Japanese artist Hiroshi Sugimoto. And so Couleurs de l’ombre was born, reproducing 20 Polaroids on silk to form a limited edition of 20 scarves produced in 7 units each, or a total of 140 scarves measuring 140 cm x 140 cm.

  • Julio Le Parc

    For its fourth edition, Hermès invited Julio Le Parc, a major figure in the kinetic and optic art world, to put his own stamp on the iconic silk scarf. A true ode to colour, his proposal entitled Variations autour de La Longue Marche led to the edition of 10 series of six unique scarves.