François Chambard founded UM Project in 2004, a hybrid enterprise of strategic design, creative studio, and old-world atelier. François earned a degree from the Marseille Business School and studied at the Rhode Island School of Design. Previous work experience at branding agencies like Swiss firm Zintztmeyer & Lux or Interbrand in New York, and music company Elias Arts in NY and LA, provided a launchpad for François’ artistic ambitions.
The ideals of artist-designer communities of the 20th century, the Bauhaus and Wiener Werkstätte in particular, captured François’ imagination early on. The brilliance of creative engineering or the uncanny ability to create product-like one-of-a-kind artifacts, pioneered by giants like Jean Prouvé or Achille Castiglioni, have been equally influential. François’ expertise and vision have also been shaped by a series of experiences and mentors, including revered glass designer Guillaume Saalburg in Paris and master furniture maker Hank Gilpin in Rhode Island.