The Primary Emotion In All I Create Is love
Fashion designer, businessman operating in many areas of luxury goods which include clothing, accessories, perfumes, jewellery, porcelain, crystals, glass, watches, cosmetics, leather goods, stationery, interior design and sculpture. Man – an institution, one might say
Pascal Morabito, French architect and designer, was born in a family of goldsmiths of Italian origin.
He celebrated last year, 50 years of creation in the fields of luxury; jewellery, silverware, porcelain, crystal, watchmaking, perfumes, cosmetics, leather goods, writing instruments, fashion, fashion accessories, design, sculpture, packaging, cinema trophies, television, music, home automation, decoration, furnishings, hotels, automobiles, photography, literature, gastronomy, well-being, art of living.
Pascal Morabito illustrates by his fantasy and his seriousness, a man's style with a creative sensibility in love with technique, science and beauty. Reconciling trade and creation, science and poetry, a true humanist craftsman, each of his creations is a message, a means of communication, a synthesis.
His famous perfume Or Noir was launched in 1980. Or Noir by Pascal Morabito is a Chypre Floral fragrance for women. A year later a men's version called Or Black was released. Both fragrances are still available for sale alongside several others launched in subsequent years, although their availability is very limited.
What inspired you about design and arts?
I was very fond of architecture and if you see the world around I could only notice architecture. In fact when you look around you what do you see? Isn’t it architecture all around you?
If you go thousands of years in the past, for example into the tombs of the kings and queens of Egypt, you will be surrounded by architecture, jewellery and you will see perfumes. My parents had excellent taste and I was blessed to be surrounded by beautiful things since childhood.
You went beyond architecture, early in your career. Tell us about your experiences.
I didn’t want to limit the creativity in my life to just one domain. You could say that the first thing I did outside of architecture was jewellery and I’d like to refer to it as ‘micro-architecture’.
I enjoyed working with my friends like Arman, Andy Warhol, César, Dali, Keith Haring, and Vasarely. I designed a jewel called the ‘Diamant captif’, confined in a cube of Plexiglas, set with gold, which went round the world and allowed me a place in the Museum of Modern Art in New York. I’ve also created the gold compressions which went on to become the ‘César du cinéma’.
What is your earliest memory of a fragrance?
My great uncle was manufacturing perfumes in Grasse. And I spent my holidays in Grasse as a child. At that time, maybe I didn’t realise how important this experience was and how I would carry this experience with me all my life.
As a 5-year-old I had the opportunity to be part of the process where we cut Jasmine to create fragrances. I’ve lived in an area that was in those days a factory for fragrance. I may be an architect but these experiences helped me see life beyond just architecture and my concept of life expanded with such experiences.
What was the inspiration behind ‘Or Noir’, your first perfume that was launched in 1980?
Or Noir is packaged in a round shape and it’s a sexual symbol of a woman and Or Black is a rectangular shape and is symbolic of a man. All my creations are about love. So these two perfumes were for me a symbol of love.
What is your most cherished perfume of all time? Could you tell us a little about it?
I tried to recreate the fragrance of my childhood. But I didn’t succeed. But the results were interesting. And I ended up creating 2 beautiful love stories Or Noir and Or Black.
I also have a special place in my heart for my 6th creation Nagada. I released the bottle which was a 6000-year-old design recreated by me using all my architectural knowledge. The design is inspired by a bottle from the Egyptian period of Nagada around 6000 years ago.
Having a career in the fashion industry, what inspired you to create a fragrance too?
I would say that as an artist one tries one’s best to do what the five primary senses allow you to feel and express. So creating a fragrance was my need to explore and create something with my sense of smell. I knew I could do something great and I think with Or Noir, Or Black and Nagada I was able to satisfy the artist within me.
From designing luxury goods to being an architect, what do you prefer?
I’d like to believe that everything I do is from the perspective of an architect. That’s something that comes naturally to me and I use that instinct and talent to satisfy my creations that require other senses and faculties. So yes, I love creating and it doesn’t matter what medium or what mode it is.
If I can see ‘love’ in something I want to create it. If it’s a stone and I see love in it, I’ll sculpt. If it’s a smell that arouses me, I’ll try to explore the love in a fragrance. But all the time I am doing this, the underlying factor that guides me is always my sense of architecture.
Is there anything else you still dream to design?
I wake up every morning with a desire to create. When I see some of what’s created today in Dubai and Uzbekistan and some other places I want to explore how I can create something like this with architecture. And I feel more than ever the potential to achieve architectural feats that European techniques and urban planning have previously forbidden me with a freedom of expression that was impossible before.
Right now we are sitting and watching Bingin Beach in Bali from one of my creations. This house that we are currently sitting in is my idea of a “world in a village”- a village that encompasses the experiences of multiple countries and places. I like to travel and I’m feeling so good in Bali. I’m also enjoying building my version of the “world in a village”. This way I can travel to my village where the climate is always at its best.
So I have recreated my own vision of the world in this place. It’s a villa with rooms and artefacts that allow you to experience 20 countries as of today. There's Mykonos down there, there’s St Tropez, there’s Nice, Capri, Venice.
I aim to grow this to have the experience of 60 countries someday. Bali is beautiful and I love the fact that I am able to get this experience here in Bali to visit 60 countries without having to leave my home. I’ve created this world around me in Bali that I will continue to build and expand.
I will also exhibit my latest collection soon in Dubai I think. It’s called the ‘lovestone’. And I have this idea of creating a light-based projection of Victor Vasarely's work. I hope I am able to do