Interview: Jean Marie Massaud

Jean Marie Massaud works in a wide range of projects, from furniture, to architecture to futuristic airships; whatever he designs has a strong imprint of lightness, technology research and innovation.
Slow Chair

How's your creative process?

No recipe. No specific process. I have a global understanding of situations, of world behaviours. The market economy is a living eco-system and the eco-system is a complex and symbiotic mechanism. Every information, be it a sight, a conversation, help me to have useful mental visions for my work. A good design is a creative synthesis that provides some answers to the stakes of the world and time. If design is an exercise on progress, then it is crucial to understand the global context and the stakes. Once the real stakes are identified, it is possible to ask one-self the relevant questions and to work on progressive answers.

MassaudAd-Hoc armchair manufactured by Viccarbe, 2006

What's the best tool you use?

My brain, my intuition, my discussions with the others, and also a piece of paper and a pencil.  

Slow Chair Slow ChairSketches and final products for Axor, 2009

Could you do what you do without a computer?

Yes. I believe that the technology brings means but it does not provide the directions.

Massaud Massaud  Slow Chair

Sketches and prototype for the Mahn Hotel in Puerto Vallarta, 2003

Which is the hardest part in the process of creating a new object?

When creating a new object, I always consider the life experience. I prefer the being to the having, the emotion to the matter. In a way, I always consider the global stakes before considering the object. So the hardest part is to bring the editor of the product to understand the goal and to value it. 

Slow Chair
Archibald leather armchair manufactured by Poltrona Frau, 2009

and the most fun?

Great adventures are human adventures. Through my works, I have the chance to meet visionary people and share thoughts and actions with them.

The most important skills a designer should have?

Opened, progressive, curious... a designer should not be trying to design but to be a good living and progressive human being. 

Massaud Massaud 3D renderings for Manned Cloud, an airship Hotel concept developed with the scientific development of the ONERA (Office National d'Etudes et de Recherche Aérospatiale)

Who gave you the best lessons?

My friends.

If you were not a designer, what would you be?

I would be sitting under a palaver tree, talking with others. 

Don'do rocking chair manufactured by Poltrona Frau, 2005

The best thing you have done so far

To live.

What's next?

Family, friends, life, design of ethic brands.

May 2009


How can you double your money? By folding it in half.

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