• Could you please present yourself ? 

I am Léa Baert, a 29 years old designer, founder of the Panam Panama project.

After my studies at the ESAA Duperré where I obtained a BTS textile-materials and surfaces, then a DSAA fashion and environment, I did an internship at Maison Martin Margiela to the accessory. As a result of this experience I set up as independent and founded with five other creatives the collaborative workshop FONTA FONTA in 2013.

After working for 4 years as a set designer for the publishing house Petite Friture, I set up the project Panam Panama in January 2016 which inspired a double collection of lightings.

The work of color and experimentation are at the heart of my creative process. It’s by manipulating textiles and materials that I obtain shapes, volumes and surfaces. This step leads me to the creation of objects halfway between art and design, as well as to the design of scenographies.

  • Where does your interest for design come from ?

Design is a huge playground that allows to cross the techniques, and the most diverse materials while affirming its own plastic vocabulary. Finding its space of freedom through the constraints imposed by a field of application is a particular challenge. That’s why I’m fascinated by the creative processes of each other.

  • What are your inspirations ?

I like to draw inspiration from what surrounds me: as part of the Panam Panama project, I took inspiration from the forms that were repeated in the Panamanian landscape – the roofs of the huts, the ceramic furnaces, the piles of stone on the roads – but above all the skills and techniques of the craftsmen that I observed for long hours.

  • What is your favourite creation, the one that you are specially proud of it ?

I would like to be able to answer this question in a few years, for now I am building a plastic universe that I wish coherent and surprising. I find it difficult to isolate one creation among others because what interests me is precisely how works interact with one another.

  • What are your futur projects?

I am working on two beautiful projects that are emerging for the end of the year but unfortunately I can not talk about it yet! This will be an opportunity to work new materials.

Next, I plan a second trip to Panama next year to continue the collection of fiber lightings with craftsmen and exhibit creations  in a Panama City art gallery.