Claudine Lachaud, Atelier Caraco, at the Maison d’Exceptions show

(English subtitles available)

“My name is Claudine Lachaud and my studio is named Atelier Caraco. We make things specifically for theater, film and opera. This led us to making historical costumes and specializing in traditional know-how which we transcribe for a contemporary audience. It has become our favorite exercise. Often traditional know-how is manual; we try to transpose aspects to machine work but sometimes it is a shrewd blend of both manual and machine expertise. A question of knowing where the hand stops and the machine begins. What the hand must do so that the machine works as a hand might. It is a bit of a game of forgery. It takes skill, patience, imagination…

This exceptionality in terms of know-how is not something that everybody can do. It requires both human and technical qualities. But human… The exceptionality will never been technical, it will necessarily be human. Alexander McQueen said that dresses ought to be signed by their designer as though they were sculptures. I think that we can see somebody’s signature in the way a piece is fabricated. That is what is exceptional, and this may not be visible to everybody. It is not just the exploit, but also the personality that will be reflected in the craftsmanship.”