We invite you to discover The Collectors — our interview series that unearths the treasures, trinkets and thoughtful things that the most exciting creatives that we follow are holding onto. It’s here that we find out why collectibles hold such value and in fact, how value is so much more than a price tag. Introducing Léa Ginac, our fifth find for The Collectors.
Léa Ginac is a French designer based in Nice, whose body of work ranges from furniture and lighting to ceramic vases and objects. Following in the footsteps of her father, she started working as an antique dealer while designing pieces on the side. When looking at Léa's pieces, it is immediately apparent that she spent her childhood going to markets, auctions, and "vide-greniers," filling her head with an abundance of images and knowledge that now serve to fuel her creativity. Léa works closely with her artisans in Nice and in Italy, keeping things local so that she's involved every step of the way. We sat down with Léa to discuss everything from her ever-expanding Capron collection, to how she gets inspired.
What’s the first thing you remember collecting?
Léa Ginac// From my passion for ceramics, I fell in love with Roger Capron. I started buying one, then another...until it became a sort of obsession to have a whole collection of his pieces. I've been collecting them for 8 years now.
What’s your favourite thing to collect today?
LG// I love objects.
The most special piece of jewellery that you own?
LG// A Roman intaglio ring that was given to me for my 20th birthday.
Do you wear the same jewellery everyday?
LG// Yes, just my Roman intaglio ring. I don't like wearing too much jewellery and like delicate, meaninginful pieces.
You grew up with parents that are antique dealers, and started working in the trade at a young age. Are there any pieces of jewellery that have particularly touched you over the years?
LG// Roman intaglios and Picasso pendants. My dad was specialised in antiquities so I've seen a lot.
"I grew up surrounded by objects, furniture, sculptures...all from different periods and with totally differing styles."
How did you start designing homeware and furniture?
LG// I had just finished my studies and I wanted to work in the trade so I said to my dad: "How about I work with you and launch my first furniture collection at the same time?" He high-fived me and that's how it all began.
Has collecting influenced you work and the way that you design your collections?
LG// I've seen a lot of objects throughout my life, and they've influenced me a lot. I grew up surrounded by objects, furniture, sculptures...all from different periods and with totally differing styles.
What is your design process?
LG// I create shapes with the objective of them being functional, sculptural, and timeless.
Is there a piece or a collection that you are particularly proud of?
LG// I think it's more the way that people react to my pieces that gives me a sense of satisfaction.
What are you reading at the moment?
LG// Nothing...I really wish I loved reading.
LG// A glass of red wine.
What artists or designers have influenced you the most?
LG// I don't think there is a specific one that has influenced me.
Last film or TV show you watched?
LG// Master of None.
What's your uniform?
LG// Shirt — Jeans — trainers.
How do you spend your Sundays?
LG// Hyperactively — I hate not doing anything!
A restaurant or a café you would recommend to someone who is visiting Nice?
LG// PIPO for the best Socca (a local specialty) and L'auberge de l'aire Saint Michel for more local specialties.
If you were a smell, what would you be?
LG// Fleur d'oranger by Fragonard.
This or That?
Silver or Yellow Gold?
LG// Yellow Gold.
Paris or Nice?
Trainers or Heels?
Ice cream or Crêpes?
LG// Ice cream.
Picasso or Giacometti?
Marble or Ceramic?
Tea or Coffee?
Lastly, which piece from our collection would you wear?
LG// All of them! My favourite is the oeuf au plat ring.
Make sure to check out Léa's instagram to discover her latest pieces.