"One of the most talented and promising designer of his generation"
Guillaume Alan started his career at the age of 22, in Saint-Germain-des-Prés in Paris opening there his own studio.
Moved by the poetic performance, calm and serene sense that space can give us, Guillaume Alan always focuses on his projects with a global intention in mind.
That consistency brought him to be described as “one of the most talented and promising designer of his generation” (‘Generation Next’ published by BetaPlus Publishing)
"Simplicty is complexity resolved" as stated Constantin Brancusi.
We got a chance to meet a little bit more Guillaume Alan and how he faces new challenges, maintaining is philosophy intact through start to finish on his projects.
CentralDesign (CD) Whatʼs your background?
Guillaume Alan (GA) I was born and grew up in the world of architecture and design, my father was an architect, my mother an interior designer and grandmother an antique dealer, so gravitating to my career was natural. I launched my own studio when I was 22, in Saint-Germain-des-Prés in Paris.
CD What do you do?
GA I have three main prongs to my work: architectural concept, interior design, and furniture design, they are seamlessly interlinked. Thatʼs the reason why our projects are pure, flawless and harmonious meaning that when you enter and discover the place every element appears to make only one. The architecture, the light, the floor, the materials used, the color palette, all the furniture pieces are all perfectly linked.
CD What’s your work-day like?
GA Depending on where I am: I share my time between my 2 design studios in Paris and London (launched 8 years ago) or traveling for projects.
CD What inspires you?
GA Walking with my dog in Hyde Park. One of my favorite moments.
CD What is your design philosophy?
GA ʻSimplicty is complexity resolvedʼ as stated Constantin Brancusi.
CD What is your most important artist tool? Is there something you can’t work without?
GA My wooden pencil.
CD How do you approach a new project?
GA We have a global approach, we apprehend a project as a whole, creating and working on architecture, interior design and furniture, that is indeed a French exception, even today very rare, in harmony with the finest tradition of French design and “décorateurs ensembliers” as J.M. Frank did in France in the first part of XXth Century.
CD What elements define your style? Forms, materials, etc
GA Pure color, bold material, simple line, poetic performance, calm and serene sense. I have a passion for craftsmanship and for detail. I love the contrast but adding douceur, using woods like oak or ash-woods in brushed finishes, natural marble, brass, natural linen, soft leather, wool, silk, bronze. We always work on a « bespoke » palette. The « Craie » (chalk) or « Béluga » finishes that weʼve created and made bespoke weaving through different supports, meet a huge success.
CD What’s the favorite part of your job?
GA During the first presentation to our clients, when they have given you ʻcarte blancheʼ and when they adhere to our ideas, our creativity, and our world of imagination.
This gives us an incredible energy that pushes us to be even better in order to deliver a real exceptional project.
CD Can you explain your design process?
GA When we start a project, we always look to embrace all the space. Thatʼs why we put everything down trying to reach the structure, breaking down ceilings, walls, floor when they donʼt represent something or when they donʼt have a value for the project obviously. After the “mise à nue” then, we can see all the potential. And we concentrate our work on the light because light and shadows make architecture.
CD What qualities do you look for in a client?
GA I am very proud to have and to keep very lovely relationships with the homeowners of our projects. This is a relationship based on trust, theyʼre always very supportive, embracing our elaborate plans. The idea of being able to create and to open the doors of imagination is extraordinary.
CD How do you know when a work is finished?
GA We are always working around «how to create emotions». Rather than being “flashy”, we try to deliver a project based on surprise and rhythm with douceur. With an obsession for precision, all elements are visible but not in the “showing off”. Itʼs all but a “decor”. Instead, we try to engender a vibrant emotion and awaken the mind with sobriety.
Itʼs all about restraint in architecture and elements but opulent in spirit.
CD What do you find most challenging about designing?
GA Not to repeat ourselves. Always letting doors open to creativity and imagination. My philosophy is how to create a feeling of appeasement, appeasement through beauty and purity.
CD Name three designer/architect/artist you’d like to be compared to.
GA Mies van der Rohe, Tadao Ando, Le Corbusier, Kengo Kuma.
CD Professionally, what’s your goal?
GA To be among the best, keeping my integrity.
CD What advice would you give to your younger self?
GA Be confident in what you do.
CD Where can people find you and how to reach you?
Paris design studio
22 rue de Bourgogne
Hyde Park design studio