Raul Barreneche -- Interior Design, 8/1/2006 12:00:00 AM
Forget liberté, égalité, fraternité. The French Syndicat National des Antiquaires rules according to authenticité, qualité, honorabilité. Since 1956, the decorative and fine-art dealers' syndicate has organized biennial Paris fairs under the Grand Palais's beaux arts cupola. Too bad a rivet fell from that glass-and-steel roof in 1993, shattering a display case, shuttering the main hall, and precipitating a $120 million overhaul.
Now, after more than a decade spent exiled to the basement of the Musée du Louvre, more than 100 dealers are returning to the Grand Palais for the 23rd Biennale des Antiquaires—and they're moving far beyond the show's customary Louis XVI armoires. Among the growing number of modernist dealers: Jousse Entreprise from Paris (Alexandre Noll, Maria Pergay) and Vienna's Bel Etage (Wiener Werkstätte, Josef Hoffman). If that's not enough important furniture, the Louvre's newly renovated Musée des Arts Décoratifs opens the very same day. September 15-24; 33-1-44-51-74-74; biennaledesantiquaires.com.