Nathanaël Gourdin. From language to orientation. Born in St-Germain-en-Laye as the son of a German mother and a French father, Nathanaël Gourdin came into contact with other cultures and languages at an early age. After studying at the École Régionale des Beaux-Arts de Saint-Étienne and two semesters at the Academy of Fine Arts and Design in Bratislava (Vysoká Škola Výtvarných Umení), in 1997 he graduated in Furniture Design under Éric Jourdan. During this time he also worked as an interpreter, noting how words could provide people with orientation. His passion for language was joined by a fascination with organisational systems, minimalism and architecture. His work for the office of Prof. Ruedi Baur in Paris brought him to Leipzig. Here the idea for his own office took form: signage systems and communication in space became central themes. As founding partner, from 2006 he headed the office of Gourdin & Müller together with Katy Müller, from 2011 the Hamburg site. The conceptual approach and precision of its work has resulted in numerous awards and publications. Nathanaël Gourdin is now continuing this successful work in Hamburg independently with Studio Gourdin.