Fondation des États-Unis | From November 6: Exhibition – « Golden Door » by William Adair | Art-Hop-Polis
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From November 6: Exhibition – « Golden Door » by William Adair | Art-Hop-Polis

In partnership with the Saint Omer Foundation, the Fondation des Etats-Unis is pleased to house William Adair’s Golden Door to commemorate the 75th anniversary of D-Day. The Door will be accessible starting from November 6 and during all of our cultural events.

Artist William Adair has been developing The Golden Doors to Infinity for nearly ten years. With this project he collects abandoned doors and repurposes them as “entryways” into cultural and historical events. First, he gilds them. Then he installs them at historic sites across the world to be written and marked upon by visitors. The messages left on the doors, inspired by the sites where they are installed, honor shared cultural values. The gold leaf connects the messages through gold’s universally symbolic value.

The Golden Doors to Infinity Project fosters a close connection to the military, due to Adair’s ancestral history of Naval service, as well as the inspiration he draws from working with the art collection at the Army and Navy Club in Washington, D.C.  As a result, this series includes a number of doors that memorialize military conflicts of the 20th century and honor the pursuit of freedom. In particular, Adair has embarked on creating D-Day Doors, which began in 2014 with the Gold Beach Door. On June 6 of that year, the 7Oth anniversary of D-Day, Adair carried the door to Normandy Beach, where visitors left their messages on its surface to commemorate the event.

In 2019, on the 75th anniversary of D-Day, Adair returned to Normandy to install a door on the sacred sands of Omaha Beach. After the celebration, The Omaha Beach Door was exhibited at the American Ambassador’s residence in Paris, to symbolize the longstanding alliance between France and America. Its next stop is the Fondation des Etats Unis at the Cité internationale universitaire de Paris, symbol of French-American friendship amongst students and youth in France.

~ Susie Chorro, director of Gold Leaf Studios

About the artist

William Adair is recognized for his work as a conservator and historian of picture frames. In the early 1970s, he began working at the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery, where he became a museum specialist focusing on gilding, frame history, and the connections between fine art and traditional decorative arts. He founded Gold Leaf Studios in 1982 in Washington, DC, where he built his career as a frame maker and gilder. Adair leads workshops, lectures, and organizes exhibitions about frame history, frame making, and gilding. Adair’s artwork is in numerous collections, including the Smithsonian American Art Museum. In 1991, he received the Rome Prize in design from the American Academy in Rome. In 2011, Montgomery College in Maryland, hosted a retrospective exhibition of his career as an artist and frame maker. He is represented by Govinda Gallery in Washington, DC.

About the Saint Omer Foundation

The purpose of the Saint Omer Foundation is:
– To revisit the cultural roots of Franco–American historical ties (expand the classic vision of the Franco-American heritage of Lafayette, Tocqueville and WW1 and 2)
– To understand the correlation between values and leadership (17th c. French education and American history)
– To transpose history to the common challenges of our societies today;
– To leverage the centuries-long tradition of cross cultural education;
Our output is to train Young Ambassadors for Societal Excellence (YASE) through research and education, multilevel student exchanges and master classes

~ Saint Omer Foundation