Philippe Starck,  (born January 18, 1949, Paris, France), French designer known for his wide range of designs, including everything from interior design to household objects to boats to watches. He has also worked as an architect. Most likely influenced by his father, who worked as an aircraft engineer, Starck studied at the École Nissim de Camondo, Paris, and in 1968 set up his first company, which produced inflatable objects. Starck first gained international attention when he was commissioned to refurbish the private apartments in the Élysée Palace (1983–84) in Paris for French President François Mitterrand. Starck hoped that his work would improve people’s lives by adding an element of humour and surprise to everyday acts such as brushing one’s teeth or cooking. The designer himself was often featured in ads for his products, since his flamboyant, lighthearted personality embodied the message of his work.