Philippe Starck made his debut as a designer when he in 1969, at the age of twenty, showed an inflatable structure at the Salon de L’Enfance in the Grand Palais, Paris. Not long afterward, Starck was offered the job as artistic director at Pierre Cardin’s fashion house. From 1976 -78, Cardin designed the two nightclubs La Main Bleue in Montreuil and Les Bains Douches in Paris.
In 1980, Starkc founded his own design studio called Starck Products (later re-named Ubik) which offered furniture, household goods, clothes, and vehicles for producers such as Alessi, Kartell and Cassina. In 1983 Starck was appointed to design the private apartment of French president Francois Mitterand at the Élysee Palace in Paris, a project that came to be his real breakthrough. In the following year he designed the Café Costes in the same city.
One of Starck’s most well-known pieces, the lemon squeezer Juicy Salif for Alessi was released in 1988. During the same year he designed the Hotel Royalton in New York which was followed by the expressionistic Nani Nani building in Tokyo in 1989. In 1992, Starck designed the sailing yacht Virtuell (1992), which came to be the first of many boats by him. In 1997 he was awarded the Harvard Excellence in Design Award.
In 2000, Starck designed the transparent plastic chair Louis Ghost for Kartell. Three years later the Gun lamp for Flos was launched. In 2010 he designed the Cultural and Sports center Alhondiga in Bilbao. During the same year, he also made his first car design; the V+ electric car for Volteis. For UNHCR and Library Without Borders, Starck created the Designs Idea Box, a media library kit for use in conflict zones.
Motorbikes, perfumes, prefabricated houses, a smartphone, a machine to help people with sleep apnea, and a beer are just some of the products that Starck has designed since 2012. In 2017 Starck was awarded the Best Designer Prize at the Salone Del Mobile in Milan while the exhibition Starck, Secret Drawings was shown at the Centre Pompidou in Màlaga.
Beyond Louis Ghost, Starck is well-known as a furniture designer with pieces such as the Dr Glob and Masters chairs for Kartell and the chair Costes and the armchair Lord Yo for Driade.