LVMH Métiers d’Art presents the exhibition “une cosmogonie d’océans” culminating the artistic residency of Josèfa Ntjam



Twelve sculptures installed in an abandoned space: Josèfa Ntjam offers us an immersion into the depths, fed by mythological tales from West and Central Africa. New embodiments of ancestral divinities, hybrid beings from some undefinable time. These characters were born from the artist’s earlier digital works, including films and installations, combining scientific research, socio-philosophical concepts, and mythologies with new technologies.  

Josèfa developed a series of characters for her residence, like a proposal for new techno-artisanal iterations that speak to us of an ancient future, a timeframe that never ceases to slip away. 

Taken as a family of hybrid beings from some unspecified future time, these sculptures inhabit Ntjam’s fictional landscapes, somewhere between space and the oceans. They are interstellar, fluid, and move with the currents to share stories with us that have never been told.  

This project was developed in collaboration with teams from the Franco-Portuguese Jade Groupe, specialized in luxury metalworking, artisanal expertise, and cutting-edge technology. 

The exhibition titled a cosmogony of the oceans will run until 25 March in Paris on Rue de Richelieu, just a stone’s throw from the future headquarters of LVMH Métiers d’Art, which will open its doors before the summer, bringing together under one roof the showrooms of its houses on all five continents.  

Since the establishment of LVMH Métiers d’Art in 2015, the aim of its artistic residency programme has been to forge new links between artists and artisans. The selected resident is provided raw materials – often rare, luxurious, different from what they are accustomed to working with – and is guided over the course of a year through the process of shaping them using tools, methods, and techniques specific to the LVMH Métiers d’Art house that will produce the artist’s project. Seven budding talents have already benefited from the know-how of manufacturers, artisans, and producers who are relatively unknown to the general public, even though each one of these houses is a repository of specialized expertise in fine leathers and metals for leather goods and jewellery.  

For the entire year 2023, Josèfa Ntjam worked in the workshops of the Jade Groupe, based in Paris and in Portugal, to create her exhibition a cosmogony of the oceans. “The Jade artisans transformed the impossible into reality,” says the French artist, who envisioned sculptures nearly two metres high, even though the company is specialized in small components and jewellery for major luxury houses. This challenge of scale was compounded by technical and production difficulties that prompted Jade technicians to rethink their tools, design and production processes, and range of materials, colours, and finishes… Josèfa Ntjam’s works in metal are produced in colours which were hitherto unthinkable for the artisans of Jade Groupe, acquired by LVMH Métiers d’Art in 2021.  

“This artistic residency pushed us out of our comfort zone,” says Pedros Domingos, the project manager in charge of Joséfa Ntjam’s work. 

“Each residency surprises us for the extent of its impact,” observes Jean Baptiste Voisin, LVMH Group Strategy Director and President of LVMH Métiers d’Art. “The artist’s passion soon joins that of the artisan. They meet, they share ideas, and then seek solutions together. They produce multiple prototypes and enrich their respective know-how with techniques that will stay with them long after the joint project has ended. These residencies are also great on the human level. They’re exciting, they unite our teams, they encourage artists to explore other fields, to experiment with media and materials that go beyond their usual range.”  

Thomas Mailaender, Amandine Guruceaga, Marion Verboom, Sabrina Vitali, Raphaël Barontini, Eva Nielsen, and Anne-Charlotte Finel, in that order, have been the artists in residence in the LVMH Métiers d’Art programme, directed by Léa Chauvel-Lévy.  

The identity of the artist selected for the 2025 artistic residency as well as the name of the LVMH Métiers d’Art house that will host them will be announced in the next few months.