Serax has introduced La Mère – the first ceramic tableware line designed by Marie Michielssen. The assortment is an ode to family and the unique experiences of motherhood and grand-motherhood. Embracing the shared meal as a moment that brings people together in otherwise fast-paced lives, the collection reflects the often-intuitive roles women have inhabited in family life through the generations.
Marie Michielssen has been designing for Serax more than 25 years. She has created countless objects inspired by and intended for everyday life. Her designs are functional but aesthetic at the same time thanks to her artisanal approach and choice of soulful materials.
In terms of form, La Mère has become a collection that links the past with the present: the tableware looks somewhat nostalgic but is innovative in many ways. The collection consciously shows the craftsmanship with which each piece is made. The shapes are irregular and clearly show how each piece is hand-moulded. Despite the artisanal aspect, the tableware appears refined.
All pieces in stoneware are finished with a glaze in broken white or a warm dark brown, almost black; colours that she used earlier on her ceramic vases. As a third contrasting colour, she chose a powerful Venetian red. She also consciously chose these colours to create a mix and match of white with dark brown or red with dark brown.
The collection was largely conceived vertically: by modeling plates and (inverted) bowls into a single element, new forms are created that literally take the presentation of the dishes to a higher level. Designed with festive occasions in mind, the collection includes table centrepieces and vases to complement and complete the table arrangement.
Other eye-catching details: the double ring at the bottom of the plates/bowls provides more stability, and the cups are fitted with lids. Not only does the lid keep the contents of the cup warm, but it also has something homely about it. In this way, a cup may also be used to store or present sugar, sweets, etc.
Alongside the La Mère tableware, Marie Michielssen designed five basic pieces of cutlery. The fork, spoon, soup spoon, knife and coffee spoon in stainless steel were deliberately keep a severity to balance the playfulness of the dishes. The result is four shapes that stand out from classic cutlery with three of them aligning perfectly. This shared proportion gives them an organic elegance.
The three small grey glasses perfectly complement the La Mère ceramic dishes. The shape is reminiscent of a classic chalice, which is given a contemporary character through the choice of glass.