Starck By Starck

by | 24. Aug 2012


Starck1.jpgPhoto: Jean-Baptiste Mondino

We have to replace beauty, which is a cultural concept, with goodness, which is a humanist concept.
/Philippe Starck

Philippe Starck wants to bring love and happiness into your life by designing objects, environments, and appliances that will brighten your days.


He spent his childhood under his father’s drawing boards, sawing, cutting, gluing, and sanding, dismantling bikes, motorcycles and other objects. Several years and several prototypes later, he has changed life at the French presidential palace, the Italians have asked him to renew the notion of furniture, and he has turned the Royalton and Paramount in New York, the Mondrian in Los Angeles and the Delano in Miami into the first classics of the new hotel world.

Starck-3.jpgPhoto: Todd Eberle
The Delano Hotel, Miami

Starck-4.jpgPhoto: Kartell/Pesarini& Michetti
Ero’s – Transparent polycarbonate chair

Starck-5.jpgPhoto: Michel Leliévre Studio
TeddyBearBand – Children’s soft toy

Starck’s overwhelming international success and cult-star status are proof that people everywhere are receptive to his kindhearted philosophy and distinctive aesthetic sensibility. The democratic design projects that he has undertaken with Target (USA) and j/ii (Japan), as well as the Taschen bookshops in Paris and Los Angeles and the Bon restaurant chain, are among the recent projects included in this updated volume that traces the entire career of today’s foremost design.

Starck-6.jpgPhoto: Patricia Bailer
Bon restaurant, Paris

The following quotes from Philippe Starck are from an interview with Pierre Doze:

Starck-7.jpgPhoto: arcspace
Asahi Beer Hall Tokyo, Japan

In our civilisation, there are permanent forms which are part of every epoch and every culture. They are not especially difficult to detect.  A minimal knowledge of physics, astrophysics, and perhaps mathematics, brings to light certain patterns that make these subjects easier to understand. It is striking to see the extreme similarity between these scientific propositions and the forms that recur in all times, places and civilisations.
/Pierre Doze

Starck-8.jpgPhoto: Kartell/Pesarini & Michetti
La Boheme – Polycarbonate stools

One example among many is the general form of the vase, the amphora. The curves it describes represent the proportions of the universe with some accuracy. In the pre-Big Bang, we find the plinth. The Big Bang is the foot. The swelling body of the vase is that of the expanding universe. Its neck is a slight contraction followed by a weak expansion.
/Pierre Doze

Starck-9.jpgDr Klein – Set of six toothpicks

As a producer, I’d be ashamed to find myself satisfied by mere production. If, designing a toothbrush, I thought of nothing but the toothbrush, I’d be dumb or venal. I try to be neither: that’s the duty I recognise. I have to think of the mouth this brush will enter; I have to acquaint myself with its owner. I need to know the kind of society that has given rise to this life. I need to acquaint myself with the species of animal that created this civilisation.
/Pierre Doze

Starck-10.jpgDrawing by Jean-Baptiste Mondino

Dreaming is a form of action. Idleness is a form of action. The idle man stares at the sky and sees what constitutes our eternal ceiling. The sky is one of the things that constructs us, one of our constants. But it is not what people believe. I should like to close this circle by turning over in my bed and scrutinising the stars.
/Pierre Doze