A newfangled collaboration has been forged between French designer Philippe Starck and Slovenian wooden-house producer Riko, for a contract to design prefabricated houses, which will be produced and distributed by the latter. And with their results, they hope to leave the environment smiling.
"This contract is only the beginning of our collaboration," Janez Skrabec, head of Riko, told journalists after the signing.
The first prefabricated house will be completed early next year, with the construction of further houses to be launched later in 2010, he added.
Starck wants to see the houses sold like cars and produced in series with varying sets of equipment, Riko said in a statement.
The houses will also be environmentally-friendly and have low energy consumption.
Starck, who presented Slovenian Prime Minister Borut Pahor with his project, "had been looking for a partner for his house idea all over the world, and is delighted to have found it in Slovenia," according to a statement from the premier's office.
The 60-year-old French designer, whose museum-piece designs range from toothbrushes to fly-swats, sofas and motorbikes, has been working over the last years on US luxury hotels and upscale restaurants.
In 2008 he was the "artistic director" of France's six-month EU presidency.