Internationally renowned French architect and winner of many prestigious awards, including the Pritzker Prize in 2008, Jean Nouvel describes himself not as a designer but as an “architect who does design”.
As such, a collection based on the essence of forms was born. Focusing on the circle, a symbol of purity, Jean Nouvel created for Roche Bobois a lacquered table and a sideboard-column; creations which are at once mysterious and obvious, whose shapes sculpt and reflect the space that surrounds them.
An exceptional collaboration which demonstrates the deep-rooted ties between architecture and design.
Three questions for Jean Nouvel / Architect
What immediately struck you about Roche Bobois?
Jean Nouvel: During my meetings at Roche Bobois, I became aware of the importance of the multiplicity of collections initiated and developed with many designers. I was fascinated by the look and the know-how of this French company, a rare thing in the design world, which is the key to establishing and maintaining international notoriety.
What was your inspiration for this collection?
Jean Nouvel: I tried to imagine how to be a part of the eclectic universe of Roche Bobois, how I could incorporate my pieces into that world, how they would fit. I noticed many lacquered pieces of furniture, which is one of the constants of the collections. I love lacquers and mirrors, because they make it possible to tilt space into other dimensions. I like dark mirrors that you can get lost in. I’d already started to use Daquacryl, the astonishing, resistant synthetic lacquer used at Roche Bobois, for personal projects, because I like the plasticity of the material. This is how the collection was born.
How would you describe your table?
Jean Nouvel: In my eyes, the Chinese-inspired round table with the turning top symbolises the abundance and discovery of Chinese cuisine, which never ceases to renew itself. During my travels to China, I’ve always been surprised to see that these festive and ceremonial tables have no stylistic characteristics. They’re just a plate of glass or marble, placed on a rotating mechanism in the center. There’s nothing festive, magical or exceptional about them.
So, I explored the idea of using a two-tone lacquered table, with a rotating part that would be more colourful. A thin top on a thick base.