I work with no boundaries. I am always on a journey between different scales–architecture, interior, art installation, furniture–exploring new “forms” of color.”

Our February collections, New (Master)Pieces and The Art of Personal Style, celebrate art in a bright, vivacious way. We hand-selected several artists and chatted with them about their art, love of color and personal style. Emmanuelle Moureaux uses color in her architectural designs to create space and emotion. She is currently based in Tokyo, Japan. We chatted with Emmanuelle about her relationship with color in her art, architecture and personal style.

BR: What role does color play in your art?

For me, color is a medium to create space and emotion. With colors, I try to give emotions to people. Color can make people smile, give energy, joy and, most importantly, make people happy.

BR: Describe your creative process.

When I start a project, I first decide the number of colors I will use–depending on the function, site and my inspiration. Simultaneously, I study the concept by writing and sketching. When the concept is complete, we create several real-scale models in my studio to experience the design with all senses.

BR: Do your artistic tastes, such as your love of bright color, translate into your wardrobe? 

White is very important in all my projects–it makes colors appear beautifully. Because my studio is full of colors, I often wear black, grey and white with a multicolored touch, for example, a multicolored scarf or bag.

BR: Where do you find creative inspiration?

When I saw the cityscape of Tokyo for the first time, I was so impressed by the colors in the city: thousands of colors seemingly floating in the cityscape, as layers, as three-dimensional elements. It was as if it was the first time I had seen color. I was so overwhelmed by this and it made me decide to move to Tokyo.  The colors and layers I feel in Tokyo inspired my design concept of “shikiri”, which means dividing, or creating, space with colors: “I use colors as three-dimensional elements, like layers, in order to create spaces, not as a finishing touch applied to surfaces.” I have been living in Tokyo for 23 years, and the cityscape of Tokyo continues to give me inspiration.

Color can make people smile, give energy, joy and, most importantly, make people happy.”

Photography: Daisuke Shima / Nacasa & Partners Inc.

BR: Living a life with no boundaries is a huge part of our DNA. How do you continue to push boundaries within your art?

I work with no boundaries. I am always on a journey between different scales–architecture, interior, art installation, furniture–exploring new “forms” of color.

BR: What’s your favorite color to work with, and what is your favorite color to wear? 

I would choose multicolor to work with and white to wear. “Multicolor” is my favorite color. In my designs, using a multicolor palette is essential to feel depth, rhythm and emotions. But if I had to choose only one color, I would choose white. For me, white is the only color necessary to make other colors appear beautifully.

BR: An item in your wardrobe you can’t live without and why?

For winter, my black wool and leather coat is essential. It’s very warm and I love the asymmetric design. I can’t live without these in winter because I teach at a university in a very snowy and cold city in Japan. For summer, a multicolored hand-dyed scarf, with beautiful colors that make me happy.

BR: You have creative freedom when it comes to getting dressed for work. Do you find yourself exercising your creative muscle when you get dressed, or do you resort to uniform-style dressing?

I move a lot for my work so I almost always wear jeans and comfortable clothes. I am simple: minimal on the outside, but colorful on the inside.

BR: What is your proudest artistic moment so far?

I would say my “100 colors” series which is a never-ending project made for everyone. “100 colors” is an installation series which began in 2013, created for the 10th anniversary of my studio, which forms space using 100 shades of colors. In their daily life, people are usually not so conscious about color. I want people to breathe and immerse in 100 shades of colors: to see colors, touch colors, and feel colors with all their senses.

Emmanuelle’s personal style and colorful architecture are creative storytelling outlets. Find her work, then explore our February collections, New (Master)Pieces and The Art of Personal Style