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Philippe Starck

Chair Designer Philippe Starck


Born 1949 in Paris, France

Practising in France

Studied at School Camondo – Architecture D’intérieur Et Design in Paris

“Everything should be organised elegantly”

Philippe Starck was born in Paris into a family from Alcase, a coastal region in Eastern France. His father, Andre Starck, was an aeronautics engineer and built airplanes. He greatly inspired the junior Starck in a lifelong pursuit of creativity and rigor, to the point where “invention was a duty”.

Phillippe graduated in 1967 from the Camondo School for Interior Architecture and Design in Paris.

At age 17, he was hired by legendary fashion designer Pierre Cardin. Starck quickly realised that they were complete opposites – his ambition was to sell 1 million chairs for $1 each, while Cardin wanted to sell 1 chair for $1 million. He left after three months.

In his early career, he designed a variety of objects including a floating lamp and a portable neon sign. In the late 1970s, he gained recognition for his audacious interior design of iconic Parisian nightclubs La Main Bleue and Les Bains-Douches.

He founded his first industrial design company Starck Product in the late 1970’s. It was later renamed after a famous Philip K. Dick novel. His philosophy of “democratic design” led him to focus on mass-produced consumer goods. He especially liked the idea of reducing cost whilst improving quality.

In 1983, at the age of only 34, he became known to the general public when President François Mitterrand commissioned him to decorate the private apartments at the Élyśee Palace.

Throughout the mid-eighties, Starck designed interiors for a number of restaurants, bars and hotels around the world. These include the Café Costes in Paris (1985), Manin in Tokyo (1985) and Starck Club in Dallas.

Starck considers himself no more an architect than a designer, yet he designed a number of buildings in the 1980s and 1990s. These include Nani Nani (1989) and the Asahi Beer Hall (1990), both in Tokyo, and the Baron Vert offices in Osaka (1992).

In France, he designed the control tower at Bordeaux airport (1997) and the extension of the Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Arts Décoratifs in Paris (1998).

Jean Paul Gaultier commissioned him to transform his boutiques in Paris, London and New York. This is especially significant if one considers that Starck famously refuses to accept design input from his clients.

Other notable bricks and mortar projects include Rio de Janeiro’s Faena and Fasano Hotels (1997) (the former named best hotel of the year by the magazine Wallpaper and complimented by Conde Naste Traveller for its “atmosphere and design”), Bilbao’s sprawling 30,000m2 Alhóndiga cultural and leasure centre (2012), now known as Azkuna Zentroa, and Mallorca’s exquisite Port Adriano Marina.

The striking and poetic Le Nuage building in Montpellier (2014), which was Europe’s first inflatable private building, and a steel wine cellar designed to resemble “a raw metal blade plunged in the terroir” for Bordeaux winery Château les Carmes Haut-Brion, designed in collaboration with Luc Arsène-Henry, are two of Starck’s architectural masterworks.

Starck loves the ocean and he has left an indelible mark on the world of yacht design. His notable designs include sailing yachts Virtuelle (1999) and Sailing Yacht A, which at 145 meters and 12 700 tons is the largest sailing yacht in history. He also designed the motorized yachts Wedge Too (2002) and Motor Yacht A (2008).

The late Steve Jobs, known for his exacting standards of design and functionality, hand-picked Starck to design a yacht for him. The superyacht “Venus” was completed in 2012, a year after Jobs’ passing in 2011. It is universally praised as a marvel of modern design.

Starck’s ambition of democratizing design envisions that well-designed objects should not be the preserve of the wealthy.

For this reason, his furniture is often manufactured from durable materials like plastic and capable of being mass-produced, thereby bringing down the cost.

His Masters Chair, a homage to the masters of furniture design – Arne Jacobsen, Charles Eames and Eero Saarinen, and Louis Ghost Chair, of which more than a million have been sold, are two examples.

Over the years, Starck has designed bathroom elements, a toothbrush, tableware, décor, street furniture, lighting, office equipment, graphics and vehicles for sea, land, air, and space. In all, more than 10 000 designs bear his name.

Undeniably, he is one of the most consequential designers of our time.



  • Lewis ghost chair
  • Tip top table
  • Miss K soft table lamp
  • Juicy Salif Citrus-squeezer
  • Prince Aha stool
  • Toy chair
  • Small Ghost Buster Night Table
  • Masters chair
  • Mr Memeu parmesan cheese seller with grater
  • Gnomes in Gold and Black
  • Romeo Louis II pendant light
  • One More Please Stool
  • Bubble Club sofa
  • Mademoiselle chair
  • Toptop rectangular cafe table
  • Miss K Table lamp
  • Bronze porcelain stool
  • Masters stool
  • Romeo moon S1 pendant light
  • Charles Ghost Stool
  • I. For Kartell (powered by Autodesk)
  • Smart Wood
  • Sun Tan Collection
  • Miss Lacy 50th anniversary edition (Driade)
  • Lou Eat Without Armrest
  • Costes 50th Anniversary Edition
  • Torquemada Collection
  • Lou Speak
  • Cara
  • CW
  • A
  • Caprice and passion, Chairs (Cassina)
  • Cinemascope (Driade)
  • Lou Eat (Driade)
  • Lou Think (Driade)
  • Maria Maria (TOG)
  • Stanley (Magis)
  • Rita Veld (Tog)
  • Madame (Kartell)
  • OKA Chic (TOG)
  • Misa Joy (TOG)
  • Jono Pek (TOG)
  • San Jon (TOG)
  • Uncle Jim (Kartell)
  • Ema Sao (TOG)
  • Diki LEssi (TOG)
  • Light Rock (TOG)
  • Light Rock (TOG)
  • Arak (Kartell)
  • Uncle Jo (Kartell)
  • Zartan (Magis)
  • One More Please (Kartell)
  • Miss Less (Kartell)
  • Broom Chair (EMECO)
  • One More (Kartell)
  • Tan (DEDON)
  • Masters (Kartell)
  • Magic Hole (Kartell)
  • Play With Dedon Lounge (Dedon)
  • Super Impossible (Kartell)
  • Play with Dedon Chair (Dedon)
  • Pip-E Chair Without Armrests (Driade)
  • Out-In (Driade)
  • Ring (Driade)
  • Privé Collection
  • Bon Pure White (XO)
  • Monseigneur (Driade)
  • Bon Folding (XO)
  • HI Cut (Kartell)
  • Saint Ethic 2006 (XO)
  • Privé Collevtion
  • Moore
  • Loulou Ghost (Kartell)
  • Mi Ming (XO)
  • PIP_E Chair (Driade)
  • Yes
  • Impossible (Kartell)
  • Icon Chair (EMECO)
  • Caprice, Chair, Collection Privé
  • One Café Chair (Driade)
  • BO (Driade)
  • Victoria Ghost (Kartell)
  • Lago (Driade)
  • Darkside Chair (BACCART)
  • Victoria Ghost (Kartell)
  • Bon (XO)
  • Oscar Bon (Driade)
  • Couture (XO)
  • Bon Rocking Chair (XO)
  • Lorenzo Le Magnifique
  • Objet Perdu (Driade)
  • Saint Ethic 2001 (XO)
  • Strange Thing (cassina)
  • Ploof
  • Soft Egg
  • Crossy Chair (Target)
  • Hula Hoop (VIRTA)
  • Bubble Club (Kartell)
  • ZBORK (Kartell)
  • Hudson Chair (EMCO)
  • Cam El Eon
  • Ero’s (Kartell)
  • The Club (XO)
  • Slick Slick, Chair (XO)
  • La Marie (Kartell)
  • Big Nothing
  • Penninsula
  • Miss Trip & Miss Trap (Kartell)
  • Cheap Chic (XO)
  • Monsieur X Rocking (XO)
  • Ceci N’est Une Brouette (XO)
  • Brach, Paris
  • Villa M, Paris
  • Wine Cellar, Chateau Les Carmes de Haut-Brion
  • A.T.H Prefabricated Accessible Technological Homes (RIKO)
  • Le Nuage, Montpellier
  • Ma Cocotte Aux Puces, Saint Quen Flea Market
  • La Alhondiga, Bilbao
  • Fasano, Rio De Janeiro
  • Ensad (National School of Decorative Arts), Paris
  • Airport Control Tower, Bordeaux
  • Le Baron Vert, Osaka
  • Starck House, Issy-Les-Molineaux
  • Asahi Beer Hall, Japan
  • Nani Nani- Tokyo
  • Le Moult, Issy-Les_Moulineaux
  • Laguiole, Aubrac


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