Image credits: Benoit Linero, Damien de Meideros

emmanuellesimon.com

Emmanuelle Simon

designer

Paris-based designer Emmanuelle Simon harmoniously combines architectural details, lighting and the raw nature of materials to create soulful environments that evoke a wonderfully strong sense of calm.

The interior architect began her career working under renowned French architect Pierre Yovanovitch and Jean-Marie Massaud. These formative years allowed her to work on prestigious projects around the world, working on both public and residential, all giving her the unparalleled experience to found her agency in 2017.

Whilst eagerly waiting to see the results of her latest work, I touched base with Emmanuelle to hear more about her approach.

Most designers are defined by a style.
How would you describe yours?

It is hard to define a style; each project is different and has its own singularity. I would say I try to do minimalist things but with character, through strong and authentic materials. The details are very important to me. Each new project allows my style to evolve thanks to the experimentation of new materials.

How did your work at Pierre Yovanovitch’s studio inform your practice?

Working at Pierre Yovanovitch gave me the opportunity to work on incredible luxury projects all over the world. That allowed me to work with very talented craftsmen, with exceptional know-how. I also discovered a way of working in the exchange around the material.

Your work seems to have a profound emphasis on natural light, how is this a crucial factor in your interiors?

For me, the natural light makes it possible to have an evolutionary staging of the space throughout the day. What I like most is the zenith light that gives a feeling of freedom to the sky. The fact that the light comes from above brings a verticality while our eyes are often very horizontal.

Your interior architectural style is exceptionally composed and restrained, with what seems like a great focus on materials - what materials particularly interest you at the moment?

I like working on the architecture of a space by drawing it in a very composed way but it is the raw and craft materials that bring an irregularity or imperfection and thus gives a more lively side to the project. I love ceramics, but I particularly like Raku right now. Indeed, it brings a unique side to each piece because its cracks are formed randomly, never identical. I have also developed a collection of lighting and exceptional furniture around this material.

What is your favourite paint colour?

Hard question… I like natural hues that evoke purity, like hues that break down in the sand. For me, in architecture, too assertive colours can quickly become an artifice or make-up to the volume itself.

You are known for unexpected, yet harmonious pairings of art and objects – what overall effect are you hoping to achieve with these unique combinations?

For me, it is the contrast between two elements that highlights the unicity of each and at the same time, it creates a real dialogue.

Which architects or interior designers have and continue to inspire your work?

I particularly like the work of Carlo Scarpa who really sculpts the space of his architectures.

What is your most admired interior?

A few months ago I travelled to Yucatan and discovered a unique place; a small hotel called Coqui Coqui Coba. Like a Mayan pyramid ruin, you feel like timeless explorers in the middle of stone pools. At the edge of the lake is a space where you eat between indoors and outdoors, covered with a black patina that contrasts with the colourful jungle landscape. You must go there!

What are your favourite pieces of furniture, artworks or artists?

The artist Lee Ufan who works a lot on the repetition of the gesture and the trace that is never identical.

What’s next?

We are currently working on several private apartments in Paris, a cottage in Val-d’Isere and a beach house in Spain. Each project is very singular and has its own soul. The next step will be to market our RAKU YAKI design collection of exceptional lighting and furniture.

Images published show work of Emmanuelle's work at
SPA de la Maison Evidens de Beauté in Paris.

For further inspiration and to follow her latest work, follow the designer at @emmanuelle_simon or visit
emmanuellesimon.com

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