”(..) A lot happens when I’m asleep. Every night after putting my book down, I leave for work. I say to my wife: “I’m off to work.” It’s awful really, I lead my real life at night, visiting different worlds, experiencing situations and smells, seeing things that don’t exist and of which there is no sign in the real world. Night after night I go somewhere else, dreaming intensely. Sometimes, on waking, I think it was beautiful, forgetting it was just a dream. In practice it’s not a great deal of use in my work, apart from François Mitterrand’s desk, which I designed after seeing it in a dream, making a sketch when I woke up.
“I’ve always thought that if I ever wrote about myself in a book, I would call it Elsewhere, because that’s where I spend my life. When people ask me where I live, I feel obliged to answer: ‘Elsewhere’. I’m neither nowhere, nor everywhere, nor yet here or there. I’m in a world of my own, be it day or night. But it’s worse at night. I stray so far afield I’m often absolutely exhausted. (…)
What I’m interested in is not design, it’s our life as part of the human species, our ongoing efforts to achieve progress, evolution and change. I’m leftwing so it’s hardly surprising these ideas interest me. People often criticise me for being leftwing. Some of my friends don’t even believe me. But it’s ridiculous to criticise me on the grounds that I can’t be leftwing because I earn a lot. My position on that is very simple: being leftwing is about humanism and altruism. The right is selfish and I still believe I’m more altruistic than selfish. I may be self-centred, but I’m altruistic too. I give work to many people. At Studio Starck, for starters, but also in a whole series of trades which work for the firm.”