André Morisset (23.8.1898—29.3.1982) was the Mother’s only son. His father Henri Morisset (6.4.1870—15.11.1956) was a noted French artist. Having received his early education at Lycee Chaptal School, André joined the army in October 1916 as an artillery officer and participated in the First World War. He received, as a reward for his bravery and contribution, several titles of honour which included the Cross of the War 1914-1918 (which he received just after the War), the Cross of the Voluntary Fighters and Chevalier of the Legion of Honour (these were received after 1935). In December 1919, he joined École Polytechnique and obtained the title of Ancien éléve de l’ecole polytechnique in August 1921, after which he joined Le Carbone-Lorraine. He was the director of a factory making batteries and other electrical materials for Le Carbone-Lorraine from 1926 to 1939. Later he joined the Industrial Company of Battery Cells and became the honorary President of the company. He was also associated with several foreign and international organizations and established himself very well in the elite society of Paris. On 10 September 1923, he married Wanda and was blessed with two daughters Janine (born on 7 November 1924) and Francoise (19.6.1931—15.3.2008) who was better known as Pournaprema in Sri Aurobindo Ashram. He visited Sri Aurobindo Ashram for the first time in 1949 and met the Mother after a gap of thirty-three years. In 1956, André established Sri Aurobindo Study Centre; this organization sent teaching materials, class textbooks and other objects to the Ashram School. In that very year, he established the Franco-Indian Union Association with the view of developing commercial, industrial and technological exchanges between France and India. As the Mother wanted India and France to collaborate with each other and show the rest of the world what they were capable of achieving, André worked to realize her dreams. After the demise of Pavitra in 1969, André became the de facto Director of Sri Aurobindo International Centre of Education and the Mother gave all Her directions through him. When Auroville was established in 1968, he became a channel of communication between Auroville and the Mother.
A set of photographs of André Morisset has been published in the online forum of Overman Foundation.
With warm regards,
Same as above.
André Morisset seated on the Mother’s right at the Playground.
Photographs Courtesy: the late Pournaprema, Ms. Gauri Pinto and Anurag Banerjee.