Le Havre, World Heritage Site

Perret Show-Flat: Children's Room.

Furniture and design

The choices for interior lay-out were guided by the furniture designed for the show flats at Le Havre and meant for the war victims: a lounge by René Gabriel (Urbanism Exhibition of 1947) or a children’s bedroom by Marcel Gascoin (Porte Océane and Perrey District, 1952-1953). These decorators are fully conscious of the “luxury for all” concept and their furniture gets widely distributed.

René Gabriel, the “poor man’s interior designer”, creates furniture in a classical and simple style, intended for good quality mass production.

Marcel Gascoin takes up these ideas, finds inspiration in Nordic style furniture and starts his own mass production line. Three key-words describe their furniture: solidity, rationality, adaptability; they keep their distance from the Avant-Garde, as their vision of a “home” does not exclude traditional materials and shapes. Although forgotten today, these interior decorators started up the Design movement and passed on their know-how to the following generations of interior decorators (Pierre Guariche…).

The furniture is essentially standard and minimalist, using simple, rustic, and sturdy materials (oak, beech), showing a certain cohesion and named “Reconstruction Furniture” (by Patrice Favardin) or “Fourth Republic”. More than a style, these decorators bring modernity into the home: rational use of space in order to make movements and cleaning easier, practices adapt to needs and become simple and flexible, interior distribution is reorganized and innovative furniture is introduced.



Marcel Gascoin furniture, table, chair, wall shelf, baby basket.
Dining Corner in Living Space, Gascoin.
Desk area and bedroom, Gascoin
Children's room, René Gabriel.