Opening reception


About this Exhibition

Imagined by French designer Ionna Vautrin, Le bestiaire is a collection of costumes that celebrates the animal kingdom, rousing the imaginations of young and old alike. For the occasion, French artists created their own imaginary zoo of abstract, unexpected and hyper realistic animals, from the very tame to the extremely wild.

When we dress up, regardless of whether we become beautiful or ugly, good or bad, marvelous or monstrous, everyone gets into character and is excused of all odd behavior, without being subject to ridicule. Many designers have explored the world of childhood through this lens, transforming everyday objects into art inspired by the zoological world.

These stunning costumes on exhibit are born out of the illustrative fantasies of an eclectic team comprising Studio Brichet Ziegler, Perrine Vigneron and Gilles Belley, Anne Lutz, Joachim Jirou-Najou, Felipe Ribon, Les Graphiquants, Twice, Helkarava, Malika Favre, Amélie Fontaine, Leslie David and Ionna Vautrin.

About Ionna Vautrin

Designer and artist Ionna Vautrin was born in France in 1979. She graduated from l'Ecole de Design Nantes Atlantique in 2002. After receiving the Grand Prize in Creation from the city of Paris in 2011, Vautrin opened her own studio, and now collaborates with brands such as Foscarini, Moustache, Kvadrat, Christian Dior, Sancal, Super-ette, Lexon, Serralunga and more.

She describes her style as a meeting between industry and poetry, creating simple, yet surprising, everyday objects. Organic and geometric shapes, cheerful colors, and an intuitive and functional usage are all hallmarks of her work.

Find out more about the artist

Above (from left): Leo Parciparla © Helkarava, Coq Hardy © Perrine Vigneron and Gilles Belley, Perroquet Rouge © Amelie Fontaine, Yoio © Twice

Gallery Hours

Monday, 5:00 PM - 9:00 PM
Tuesday through Thursday, 9:00 AM - 9:00 PM
Friday and Saturday, 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM


This event is presented as part of Boston Design Week. This event is made possible thanks in part to the Mosaïque Cultural Fund and Jean-François and Nathalie Ducrest.

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The exhibition is co-presented with the French Institute Alliance Française (FIAF) in New York. It is part of Oui Design, a program initiated by the Cultural Services of the French Embassy in the US, with the support of Institut français-Paris, the French Ministry of Culture and Communication, FACE Foundation and the Florence Gould Foundation.

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Spotlight on Design

In April, we're putting the spotlight on design​ as we welcome French designers and architects who have been expanding their practices beyond the expected. Whether devising a zoo of imaginary animals, orchestrating an interactive festival of contemporary art or building structures that challenge notions of private and public space, our featured events give a glimpse into French design today.

Call for Artists


Our art exhibition program showcases local and international artists whose work has a connection with French and Francophone culture.

Whether you draw your inspiration from an artistic movement, a specific artist, a subject or a technique, you can submit your work for an opportunity to present your art to the public in our elegant brownstone's gallery in the heart of Back Bay, for month-long exhibitions from September through June.

Artists and projects are selected by a committee of art professionals, artists and art connoisseurs who meet twice a year. Applications are accepted on an ongoing basis.

To submit your work please refer to the Call for Artists in which you will find a detailed description of requirements and conditions.

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