Meet Interior Designer Felix Patrat.
We met up with our old friend Felix, who has been using Dragdis since the first day the app came out of beta, in New York on his way to Canada. Felix is a Parisian freelance interior designer, currently involved with Nordkraft.com.
Felix, Can you tell us a little bit about what you do and how did you get to this point?
I really got interested in design when was around 15. My parents where both working in art and fashion, so I guess it all was somewhere hidden in my DNA. I always had a lot of imagination and always kept an eye on my environment. Somehow I was always analyzing everything in my head, and I soon found an ability to model spaces and to think about how to use my environment.
I spent some time on the benches of a law school, and it brought a lot to me, but I was not made to wear a black robe apparently!
I didn’t know how to channel my ideas and impressions before my first year in an industrial design school in Paris, where I met a fabulous teacher. It was the first time I truly wanted to be the best and impress someone I really had a lot of respect for. The teacher was totally eccentric and very talented, and this is probably what I liked a lot. He wasn’t “classic” at all. After this year I decided to change to an interior design school, and it was the beginning to where I am now.
Where do you find your inspirations? How do you keep yourself inspired?
I think that inspirations can’t really be found. They are rather flowing through you, and depend on many aspects of your life. Think how music or lyrics come to a musician’s mind depending on how he feels.
But what keeps me always inspired is an enthusiasm that I (am trying to) keep. Being inspired means to be open to many different opportunities, meetings, and always keep a line ahead of you. This line has to represent the vision you have of design, how it is important to you, the values you want to fight for and the values you want to share. I always believed that in order to be a designer you have to keep a strong will to bring something new to the others and to the Design itself, to make your work matter.
Can you tell us what’s your favorite movie?
I can’t think of only one. But I do have three that I love a lot.
The first could be “Les Invasions Barbares”, a Canadian movie from Denys Arcand. My brother is from Montréal, and I always had a part of myself in that country. From my childhood to now, it has been very important for us and our dad. This movie, speaking about difficult, but very strong relations between a dad and his soon really touched me.
The second one would be “Lost In Translation”. It is a kind of “new youth” cinema that I love. A story about a young woman and a bored movie star, and how they meet to make their life extraordinary during a short blink of time. This is the kind of experience I like, and it is the way of life I believe in. Everything is fast, possible, available. Just catch it.
The last one would be “The Last Emperor” from Bertolucci. It really shocked me when I saw it for the first time.
All these three movies talk about life, and how uncontrollable events can have an amazingly strong impact on who you are and what you do. I think this is something designers are always running after: controlling life and events, and creating a better future, but in reality nothing can be controlled and we always have to manage life.
Who’s your favorite artist?
My father is an art dealer. More than that, he is a talent developer, and an amazingly wise and intelligent man. He had a very strong impact on me.
On the other hand, my mother is a fashion designer. They both, in different ways, helped me to be accurate and sharp.
Moreover, I’ve always been more interested in techniques, rather than concepts. The conception of an object comes from my strong feelings, and of how I analyze life, and how it will be used. I am not impressed by art when it’s only a “concept”. So I would say that for sculpture, i have a very strong affection for Giacometti. As for paintings, I actually once found myself crying in front of a Picasso in NYC! Art is feeling, and it represents an amazing amount of intelligence and work. As Picasso used to say “ I didn’t do this drawing in ten minutes. It took me forty years AND ten minutes”. Pretty evocative, right?
Do you think fashion is important?
Fashion has a very big importance for me personally. But more than fashion, style does. In every aspect of my life.
I am always hunting for new and very specials brands. Right now I am following the work of Han Kobenhavn and Rains, 2 Danish brands, soon exposed in the Nordkraft.com showroom in Paris.
Felix, how would you define a good design?
A good design is the one that doesn’t have anything more, neither anything less than needed. Design has to be free from tendance, coming from history, and out of time. We talk a lot about how design has to be “ecological” and “ethical”, and this goes in line with what I believe in. Use craftsmen’s talents to create valuable designs, durable designs, and ,once again, make design matter.
Right now, I am very interested in the work of different scandinavian design agencies: Note from Sweden, and Norm Architect and Menu from Denmark. Two brilliant design companies I wrote about on the nordkraft.com blog. Their approach of design totally corresponds to my values.
How do you use Dragdis?
I can be rather messy. Especially when it comes to my inspirations or sources. Dragdis is my simple answer to all of this.
It’s sleek, simple and intuitive.
Do you have any tips on how to stay creative?
Keep your eyes opened. It’s really easy to get lost now. Some would rather stay focused on Pinterest, some others at exhibitions. My opinion is that you have to meet people. If you believe in something, you want to be part of it, are impressed by a person or an agency, just go for it and make it happen. Recently I made many different choices and I had to jump to meet new people I admired. I did it and I succeeded. Because if you believe in what you are doing, and in the vision of art you want to defend, you will succeed.