Amaury Poudray's Biography
Amaury Poudray graduated from the École Supérieure d'Art et de Design de Saint-Étienne in 2009. He spent a year studying in the United States at the Rhode Island School of Design, and worked for another year with the design team at FABRICA, Benetton's research and communications centre in Italy.
He is now at the head of his own studio in Lyon, Amaury Poudray Networks, which specialises in art direction and furniture and interior design. His work is built on a network that encourages human-based relations and includes companies in various fields of expertise. Innovation and global/local connections are at the heart of the studio's production, which includes collaborations with publishers, furniture manufacturers, small visionary businesses, large firms, art galleries, and schools. Amaury Poudray is currently a teacher and coordinator at La Coursive, a refresher course for foreign students at ESAD Saint-Étienne.
Excerpt from the preface Assemblages, by Marie Pok, in Arrangements, Amaury Poudray, Design & Produits, published with the support of the Visual Arts Department of the DRAC Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes, Créaphis Editions, 2016
[...] In the quest for meaning that Amaury Poudray follows in his projects, objects exceed their simple functions. They are the indications of a story, the result of collaboration, of a desire to preserve and protect certain skills, and to promote an industry or local craft.
This is, for instance, how his project PAPA should be understood: the stool and boxes covered with bristle fibres redefine the way the material is traditionally used by Julio, a century-old local brush-making factory. The Revival seat, conceived with the Mirima company, is meant to rehabilitate the famous seat of the “Faucheuse” tractor. In doing so, the designer's aim is nothing less than to give new life to our heritage. Wool & Wood celebrates the benefits of collective work. The wooden frame of the console table was made by apprentices of a woodworking school near Grenoble, and the wool used for the surface was knitted by a couple of farmers in the South of France. Therefore, the completion of the project was the culmination of teamwork, the result of a successful collaboration. The importance Amaury Poudray attaches to collaborative approaches dates back to his years working at Fabrica, Benetton's multidisciplinary communications agency, and has since then become the hallmark of his work.
None of his projects appear to be individual and egocentric outputs. He considers encounters to be central elements in the creative process. It is also worth noting that most of Amaury Poudray's collaborations are locally based. However, while he strongly believes that change starts on a small scale, he is also well aware that we must take into account the fact that we live in a globalised world.
The catchphrase “Think globally, act locally”, pronounced by René Dubos at the first Earth Summit in 1972, could rightly be applied to the designer. [...]