René Crevel’s prolific work, an emblematic figure of the Art Deco movement, will be on display until 26 March 2023 at the Musée des Avelines, Saint-Cloud’s art and history museum, supported by the Drac Île-de-France. The exhibition "Confort et utopie, l'esprit Art deco" brings together more than 200 works and invites you to discover an artist who played a fundamental role in the redesign of architecture and decor and his interest in cultural and artistic life and the city.


"Comfort" and "UtopiaRené Crevel’s rich artistic career. A journey that undoubtedly embraces the eclectic originality of an authentic work that remains attentive to the territory.Comfort" and "Utopia"forge the powerful framework of a renewal of the edilitary and ornamental enterprise. Artisans unite with artists, architects with decorators, builders with painters, in a society that we want more harmonious and less unequal.

The Musée des Avelines, a museum of art and history in Saint-Cloud, invites the public to meet this artist, architect, decorator and painter, who is a supporter of total art and who perfectly embodies the rich period of Art Deco, from the 1920s to the Second World War. Paintings, drawings, vases, furniture and tapestries by René Crevel, an unknown artist with an early vocation, are exhibited.

Our garden in Saint-Cloud

After a Rouen youth filled with drawing and painting, the beginnings of Parisian life led him to meet Fauvism, Nabis and Cubism. In 1925, he became one of the great names of the new style, Art Deco, alongside artists such as Jacques-Émile Ruhlmann following the international exhibition of Modern Decorative and Industrial Arts in Paris, which was decisive for Crevel.

Then he moved to Saint-Cloud in 1928. He lives and works in his house-workshop (a villa in which he resides for 35 years), a masterpiece of architecture.

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Our garden in Saint-Cloud 1932, Oil on canvas 50 x 61 cm Safa Collection © Safa Collection / Phot. François Fernandez

At the end of the thirties, Crevel developed a major project to redevelop the city along the banks of the Seine. After three years of work, with the collaboration of architect Lucien Lepeltier, he completed the plans in early 1941. This major project cannot be implemented. A full-fledged citizen, he puts his creativity and energy, his skills and his reputation at the service of the population and the municipality, is involved in civic life, and tirelessly develops the city’s cultural and artistic life.

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Le Palais de l'Artisanat, International Exhibition of Arts and Techniques 1937 Ink from China, gouache and pencil on paper 43 x 65.80 cm Safa Collection © Safa Collection / Phot. François Fernandez

architect decorator of the Art Deco period

René Crevel appears to be one of the greatest interior designers of the Art Deco period, developing many private mansions and interior stores. He is interested in many fields of decorative arts: decorative panels, stained glass, wallpaper, fabrics, tapestry, carpets, ceramics and furniture. His creations were made and distributed by the most famous factories and signs of his time: the Sèvres factory, the Limoges porcelains, the Aubusson tapestries, etc.

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Plate "Coconut and antelope", red and gold 1931 Manufacture Bernardaud & Cie, Limoges Edition Ateliers Legédé-Le Grand Dépôt, Paris Porcelaine pâte vert d'eau Ø 24 cm Safa Collection © Safa Collection/ Phot. François Fernandez

René Crevel loves the entertainment world. He designs costumes and sets, especially for the play Atlantis (character ofAntinea), first theatrical adaptation of the novel by Pierre Benoit (1919) performed at the Marigny Theatre in 1920.

Projet de décor de scène pour Taï-Tsoung, opéra d’Émile Guimet-site.jpg

Stage design project 1917 Watercolour and gouache on paper 35.40 x 46.20 cm Safa Collection © Safa Collection / Phot. François Fernandez

Exhibition route

Guided tours, concerts, conferences or workshops for children... Find the programme of activities related to the exhibition on the website of the museum of the Avelines

Snap shot : "Projet pour la Rive de Saint-Cloud, Les Jeux nautiques, 1941 Watercolour and gouache on paper 42.80 x 61 cm Safa Collection © Safa Collection / Phot. François Fernandez"