The art restorer Yolaine Voltz works for antique dealers, museums, institutions and private collectors in France and abroad. Passionate about the restoration of globes and fans, she ensures their durability. This is a way of participating in their transmission and promoting their importance in the cultural heritage. She has always enjoyed taking on new artistic and scientific challenges.
Even as a child, she used to spend hours reproducing famous paintings and drawings or repairing objects that had been damaged by time. Between Yolaine Voltz, art and science, it is a passionate relationship.
Five years of study punctuated by courses in chemistry, calligraphy, art history and copying of validated works of art have culminated in a Master’s degree in “Restoration and conservation of graphic art works on paper”.
During an internship at the Musée de l’éventail, the young woman was won over by the aesthetics and the infinite variety of this accessory. Later, in the restoration workshop of the large formats of the BnF, faced with one of the world’s major collections of ancient terrestrial and celestial globes, she discovered another way of travelling round the world. Nowadays, globes and fans are two facets of the same passion for complex, articulated, three-dimensional objects rich in history.
Yolaine Voltz is the sole qualified restorer to have this double expertise in France. She has been working for over 10 years and devotes 100% of her time to this profession.
Her talent has been noticed by Sylvain Le Guen, a French master in the art of fans making, who has chosen her to be his student. In 2019, Yolaine Voltz won the first prize for the art craft company of the Paris-Est Marne et Bois region.
In her workshop, named l’Utile Zephyr, one of the names given to fans in the 18th century, art objects are restored in accordance with the ethical rules of restoration, such as: stability, harmlessness and reversibility of all the operations carried out. And when a restoration requires it, Yolaine can count on a network of skilled craftsmen with complementary skills.
In order to make the objects of her passion known to a wider public, this young lady gives conferences, is involved in associations in France, Great Britain and the United States, writes articles and takes part in specialized programmes.
She is recognised for her expertise and rigour, as well as for her enthusiasm and sincerity.
Le maître et son élève
of excellence for
a rare know-how»
«Our meeting took place around an 18th century fan whose paper leaf had been left for dead.Having entrusted it to Yolaine, I was really impressed with her understanding of the mechanics of the object, with the precision and cleanliness of her work. This is why, a few years later, faced with the urgency of passing on the work and the desire to concentrate more on the creation of contemporary models, I asked Yolaine if she would agree to become my « Student ».
Contrary to what is commonly thought, this designation emphasizes the recognition of skills already acquired. Indeed, the “Élève Maître d’Art” is only considered as such once he/she has completed his apprenticeship within his/her training course in a rare profession. The training is long and the mastery of restoration techniques specific to textile leaves and tablettery is acquired through practice.
As Yolaine had already been a professional fan restorer for 7 years, I suggested to her, in addition to her know-how, to do further work on silk, textile finishing, pleating and lining. Together, we also visited the many stages of making a fan frame in order to be able to reproduce elements for restoration purposes.
Yolaine has a sense of observation and a dexterity that ensures a result that meets the highest expectations. Today, she is completely autonomous and can face all types of fan restorations.
We continue to learn from each other and enrich our knowledge acquired through the intelligence of our hands, put to good use through experience and sharing.»
Sylvain LE GUEN
Master of Art fan maker1
1. In France, the title of Maître d’Art is awarded by the Ministry of Culture to craftsmen with rare skills.