At 37, architect Laura Gonzalez is already wellknown for working her magic across Paris, and for the past two years has been spreading her wings overseas, stamping her “reworked classical” style on a whole host of restaurants, bars, hotels and stores. MASON&OBJET is delighted to be giving this exceptionally talented and prolific designer a helping hand along the road to success by naming her Designer of the Year.
No-one else combines fabrics, motifs, materials, colours and eras quite like this bold young architect, resulting in a thoroughly unique signature style. And as Gonzalez herself explains, “I love adding a plethora of details, ensuring there’s always something of interest, no matter where the gaze falls.”
Her love for mixing-and-matching became clear the second she unveiled her first project as a freshly qualified architect, aged just 26. The project in question was the Bus Palladium, a shining star of the Parisian night scene, which she chose to refurbish with a pot-pourri of no fewer than thirty-five wallpapers, furnishing the place with vintage finds and simultaneously dragging the brass fixtures and fittings kicking and screaming
into the twenty-first century.
What was to become her signature style has since been further enriched over the years, fuelled by numerous collaborations with some of France’s very best craftsmen, including marble masons, cabinetmakers, glassmakers, glass blowers, mosaic specialists and lacquerers.
“I really enjoy seeing all that creativity at work” says Gonzalez, with a smile. “The difficulty I then have is striking the right balance between tasteful maximilism and an end-product that’s totally over the top”.
Her secret? She follows her instincts, following in the footsteps of her design
mentor, Madeleine Castaing.
Laura Gonzalez is currently busy working on a brand new project that sits just perfectly with her Latin sense of exuberance, inherited from her Spanish mother: renovating a mansion in the Vexin to create what she calls a “living showroom”.
It’s a place where she intends to welcome clients, craftsmen, chefs, journalists, in a space where she will display vintage finds – hunting for vintage pieces is one of her passions – alongside her brand new furniture range, featuring sofas, lights and tables.
“My furniture is very “me” – everything is bespoke, you can choose the colour of a chair, combine an endless number of fabrics on a fireside chair.” The pieces in the
collection will sit alongside one-off creations designed hand-in-hand with craftsmen, such as an onyx backgammon table and an obsidian lamp. The showroom is due to open in November, so watch this space!