Playfully rejecting the orderly restraint of mid-century design, the French avant-garde designer Pierre Paulin (1927-2009) imagined sleek departure lounges for the jet set, perfume bottles for Courreges, and unforgettable Pop-era pieces like the Orange Slice chair, the shell-shaped Oyster chair and the Tongue, a wavy, low- slung chaise longue. Paulin's signature innovation was to clothe his pieces in colourful stretch fabrics, softening them and concealing their inner steel and wood. A modernist, traditionalist and perfectionist, he took equal care designing everyday objects such as fans, razors and fondue pots as he did outfitting the private elysee quarters of French presidents Pompidou and Mitterand. Ever passionate about the new technologies and inventions that made modernity possible, and deeply sensitive to contemporary colours, shapes and materials, he never ceased to astonish with unexpected and dazzling leaps of imagination. From the 1950s onwards, Paulin - A solitary figure of great natural reserve - has inspired generations of designers. This book is the first definitive account of his life and work.