After 20 years in investment banking and private equity, Philippe Nacson (TRIUM 2012) left the comforts of his financial career this past summer to pursue his creative passion full time. Despite his late start and lack of formal training in design, Philippe credits his TRIUM experience for having given him the tools and the confidence to make the career change. This experience, coupled with the success of the official launch of the Philippe Nacson Design brand in Milan in April at the Ventura Lambrate Salone del Mobile (Furniture Design Salon), provided him the foundation to finally follow his dreams.
When deciding to pursue further graduate education back in 2007, Philippe, a French national, knew that he was keen to make a professional change – but was not sure as to what direction to orient his career. At the time, during the era of the Lehman Brothers crisis, he was working in the financial services sector. As Philippe states, “coming to TRIUM provided me a breath of fresh air to explore new paths and opportunities. I was looking for a new direction, and all of the sudden I found myself in an entrepreneurial environment with classmates from around the world from a variety of different sectors.”
Following your Childhood Dreams
Studying at TRIUM also inspired him. As he points out, “people are here because they want to evolve and do things and go beyond what they have lived, creating a positive atmosphere.” This creative and positive environment, he states, moved him to consider his boyhood drawings to be more than just a hobby. Philippe recalls that from an early age spent living in Senegal and Israel, he was always drawing. A chance meeting with an industry professional led to making him consider his childhood passion a potential serious professional reality. Fast forward; following months of research and experiments with artisans, his first collection of four luxury furniture pieces (the Aunt Lounge Chair, the Crab Chair, the Paper Clip and Staples Console, and the Floating Bookcase) were exhibited at the prestigious Milan Fair, where experts in the field of contemporary design come to witness emerging trends, debut designers, and new talent.
Early success for the budding designer is no easy feat, but TRIUM pushes its students to explore their limits. As Philippe states, following one’s studies at TRIUM, “it is pretty hard to go back to your job – it is like you have been given this big chocolate cake and you want to eat it forever.“
As the work of a debut designer, Philippe’s initial collection is receiving quite a lot of buzz. Following press coverage in contemporary design publications such as Elle Déco, Marie Claire Maison, Stiletto and Oregon Live, this fall, Philippe Nascon Designs will be on display at Paris Design Week (September 6 to 13) and in London at the London Design Festival from September 18 to 21.
By following his dream, it would seem that Philippe can have his cake and eat it too!