Interviewing Arnold Goron

His eclectic works remind us of DIY aesthetics, but they do not share the same youth-obsessed, underground look & feel. His favourite materials are generally low cost, but they dialogue with great luxury brands, enriching their spontaneity and their artistic coté. Arnold Goron, designer based in Paris, tells us something about his approach to work and what, day by day, keeps his multi-faced creations so prolific.

Set designer, illustrator, sculptor: does your educational background explain your eclecticism?
Yes. I have studied almost all the disciplines, from graphic design to illustration, photography, art direction, volume, etc. But I always had a real passion for sculpture.

In a time of digital hegemony, do you prefer to express yourself through manual work? Generally speaking, is nowadays hand labour in advertising and communication underrated?
The thing I understood after years of working in graphic design and others, is that in fact I am a manual. I just love to make things by myself, to make a physical effort, and to look at something real at the end of the day. Advertising must touch too many people to be done by hand. And I think it’s great that hand labour and handcraft are still a little exception in our computer world. Some brands understood that it can be great for them to communicate less but with a bigger impact.

On the other hand, has your handcraft experience changed your work as a digital graphic designer?
Yes, because when I was art director, I really liked to make straight and light graphic design. Now I make all the illustrations for Isabel Marant, in handwriting because in a way it looks less pretentious, it’s lighter with this kind of stupid message in a bad French / English sentences. It can be weird, but it takes me quiet a long time to make them. And it looks like the windows in a way, sometimes a little wobbly.

Isabel Marant is your longest collaboration: what makes your artistic relationship so special?
She trusts me. And that’s the best way to make great things.

You spent four days to assemble thousands of matches to re-design the logo of The New York Times‘ style publication T magazine: is patience another virtue we tend to underestimate?
Oh yes! I have always been very patient and oddly. I love to do things very quickly in a way, I want the final creation to look very easy and spontaneous. But I learned, from the window display for Isabel Marant, to find a real pleasure making the same things for weeks. You have to love spending time doing repetitive tasks. I am lucky to have found an assistant who understood that. Otherwise you get crazy.

Is there a work you are particularly proud of? And which is the one you’re more attached to?
I hope it will continue to be the last one I have finished! I just finished three big mobiles sculptures for Le Printemps at the Caroussel du Louvre. The one I am more attached to is Le clown, a very small sculpture.

Besides your assignments, do you still find the time to work on your personal experiments?
Yes, because in fact I try not to make any difference besides commissioned artwork and personal sculptures. I have this chance.

Giulia Zappa