Mithé espelt


Born in 1923, Mithé Espelt is a French ceramic artist based in the Camargue, at the gates of Provence. A close friend to Frédéric Mistral (Nobel Prize in literature, 1904), her grandfather introduced her into the upper echelons of both the artistic and intellectual world. She rubbed shoulders with Jean Hugo, Jean Cocteau, Pablo Picasso, Christian Bérard and many others...

At the end of her studies, she moved to Paris for two years and produced jewellery and ceramic buttons for Line Vautrin. Back in the Camargue, she formed a pottery workshop and her clients included Louise de Vilmorin, Jaime Sabartés... While in her spare time, she receives her friends in her house in Séte: Valentine Schlegel, her sister Andrée and her husband Jean Vilar, her neighbour François Desnoyer (the painter, friend of Fernand Léger), Jean Hugo and Pablo Picasso.

Mithé exhibited at the La Roue gallery in Vallauris in the company of the greatest ceramicists of the time. The great Emilie Decanis saw in her one of the hopes of the new generation. In 1948, Charles Démery, the founder of the SOULEIADO brand, spotted her jewellery and offered to distribute it around the world. Thus for almost 40 years she designed Souleiado jewellery.

However, at the beginning of the 1950s, she stopped signing her pieces and devoted herself to the creation of small everyday objects for women: mirrors, jewellery chests and trays... Through her work, she questioned the notions of desire, appearance and gluttony.

Long attributed to François Lembo, due to the misinformation spread on Google and despite the denials of Renaud Lembo, her work and the extraordinary story of her life were finally revealed in Antoine Candau’s book “Mithé Espelt, the discreet luxury of the every day” published in September 2020.

Le luxe quotidien
d'un club privé



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The Art & Collectibles department of the iconic Parisian luxury brand,, regularly creates events around Mithé Espelt’s work. They constantly offer a stunning selection of mirrors, chests and jewellery. All the objects have been authenticated by Antoine Candau.
Paris Rive Gauche – 36 boulevard Raspail – 75007 PARIS
et 24/7 online –
+33(0)146 34 35 31


Ouverture en ligne Janvier 2022

La boutique du site offrira prochainement aux amateurs une sélection régulièrement mise à jour de pièces exceptionnelles munies de leurs certificats d’authenticité, provenant de la collection d’Antoine Candau,
auteur de la monographie et expert de l’œuvre de Mithé Espelt.


Auteur de la monographie « Mithé espelt, le luxe discret du quotidien », Antoine Candau fait autorité sur l’œuvre de l’artiste. Son expertise est régulièrement mise à contribution par les principles maisons de vente aux enchères, et il essaye toujours de renseigner gracieusement les amateurs courtois. Pour toute information sur un objet de votre collection, nous vous remercions de renseigner la fiche jointe.

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Les conditions de délivrance des certificats d’authenticité sont adressées par courriel sur simple demande.

Mithé Espelt (1923–2020) is an outstanding French ceramicist who left behind a remarkable collection of jewelry, small mirrors and little treasure chests. She soon met with success but from early on, she fled the limelight and chose not to sign her creations. As a result, less discerning observers tended to attribute her work to François Lembo, Georges Jouve and even Denise Gatard.
In the early 1950s, Mithé set up a studio in Lunel, nestled between the plains of Camargue and picturesque Provence. There, she spent the next forty years nurturing an artistic project that echoed the contemporary mood. It was only when she met Antoine Candau that she agreed to reveal more about herself. He was, she said, “capable of looking beyond objects, beyond beauty…”. Together, they retraced her life and work in an inspiring monograph that reads like a gripping novel.

Antoine Candau is somewhat self-deprecating when he says that he searches for elusive pieces of art for customers who have ceased to exist. He has been a familiar figure on the art scene since the mid-1980s. He first established himself as a “talent spotter”, and a good one too, but later became more of a discreet “treasure hunter”. His finds, ranging from Middle Age marvels to contemporary design pieces, regularly ended up in the display cases of the world’s museums and art fairs, and he also ran galleries in Paris and London. But what is Antoine trying to tell us as he extols the sublime work of a 97-year-old artist who shared essential messages on happiness and the beauty in things? Is it really surprising that this art expert, renowned for unearthing budding talents, should cast new light an overlooked artist as he invites us to ponder on the workings of fame?

Les conditions de délivrance des certificats d’authenticité sont adressées par courriel sur simple demande.