Air 1 Aquarium by Amaury Poudray



French designer Amaury Poudray has designed a glass, zeppelin-shaped aquarium supported by a steel frame.


More fish tank stories on Dezeen:

Floating Garden by Benjamin Graindorge
Local River by Mathieu Lehanneur
Fish Bowls by Roger Arquer

Here are some words from Audray:


I am exploring structures’ construction and their limits through experiences in furniture design. I add, build with simple elements. These materials, shapes and alive elements combinations makes me think about writing which combine letters to create meaning. Each elements is a part of everything as well as autonomus.


My goal was to elevate this glass shape and create a link between two materials. Glass is highlighted and in danger by the minimal steel legs. Several tries were necessary to find the solution of a glass tube to slide steel legs in. This object is a construction, an assembling, a simple accumulation of elements, alive or not. The construction principle is visible in the product conception as well as in its utilisation.


"Air 1" was built with the glass craftsman Pierre Pignat, Genas (69) France.


Amaury Poudray is part of the brand new design studio "Matiere A" composed also with Remi Bouhaniche, Marie Declerck.

Posted on Wednesday July 1st 2009 at 3:18 pm by Brad Turner. Copyright policy | Comments policy

  • nick the greek

    I would hate to be that fish…

  • Question: Why young french designers design glass aquariums ?
    (5,5 designers, Lehanneur ENSCI, Graindorge ENSCI, Guisset ENSCI…. Poudray St Etienne….)

  • am

    that fish is a ”fighting fish”. it leaves alone and in very little spaces. it seems totally fine for the fish. it also gives an other dimention to the project. I dont know why several aquariums are created. For this one it seems clear that it is a construction game with materials , life , water … it is more a matter of construction balanced between life and shapes than an ecological trend like lehanneur or graindorges …

    • sazure

      It as well lives in the wild in rivers which are highly vegetated… (and dark and dim ie low light)

      As well there is no way to maintain the proper water quality. It only takes a small amount of time for ammonia to build up. (and other poisons)

      Read up on Desmond Morris (zoologist) I've been keeping fish for over 55 years, background in pre vet/zoology and oceanography, biochemistry and more (sculpture and arts materials) – do copious recuse of Betta's – been on river trips to see them in natural habitat (of course this is highly commercialized version) but that said instinct is instinct. NO fish in the wild or at home "want's" to be so "exposed"… they need in this case vegetation. It is not "totally" fine for the fish – do some serious research before you say so.

      Like those who say on askyahoo – betta's live in little puddles – NO they do not. They live in huge systems – and nothing can beat nature for the diversity of systems that keep the water perfect for their needs. Having lived in Asia long ago I can assure you that the rice paddies are giant systems – full of vegetation, algaes and other plant forms – the fish make it into these systems (and do just fine) from their river locations. There are hundreds of wild species of bettas – all short finned – some schooling even.

      The water chemistry in this case will need several small partials each week to keep the amnonia down (hours is all takes actually) and that is a stressor – stress kills (fish like us produces adrenal/cortisol hormones which as well pollutes further his water and himself) This fish will die a slow tortured death.

      BTW breeders who have often hundreds must due to scale of economy keep them prior to selling them in small containers. They add supplents (natural water conditioners) to the set ups – do sometimes several changes a day of water. Small sterile set ups are not good for any living creature.

      Imagine you in a small bathroom, no flushing of toilet except once a week if that… no window open, glaring light day in day out… no furniture and once in a while some dry crappy food shoved under the door….. not good for you – not good for the fish. (from fish forum)

  • O.

    Please everyone, stop doing cages and aquariums…. really

  • Xit
  • Johnny

    the poor fish, there is no air, no filter, an aquarium should offer primary living cuircumstances, this design is not yet finished. If he could keep it slender and elegant and provide all the services fish need to survive… cool design

  • onvn

    The Siamese fighter will be fine in such a small enclosure with no filtration; it doesn’t like movement in the water.. the size is really decent – there are other Siamese Fighter enclosures MUCH smaller than this.. Adding plants and gravel will make them more comfortable though and this is easily done by the keeper.. Very regular water changes is of course needed with such a small and unfiltrated aquaria..

    I’d like to have one of these! Very nice..!

  • modular

    I love this piece! I mean, I really liked it. Yet I believe it wont be very confortable for the fish, but at least it is better than those silly globes, that freak fishes out!

    Congrats Poudray!

  • Luxury Larry

    How many people outhere keep fishes nowadays?

  • Allô Marcus, a new french aaquarium-phone-booth in last Lyon festival…

  • Brousseau Ben

    I love it! Who cares about the fish…
    This is a very nice design!
    Congrats Amaury!

  • Sabir

    I like it. Good and innovative. Fit for fighters and their likes as they can breathe direct from the air. Bravo!!!

  • killing app for fish….. but museal design !!!design for anthology not design solution

  • mame

    “I love it! Who cares about the fish…”

    This made me laugh…. souldless but largely, which tempts me submitting this message.

  • obayashi

    If I were to be that lone fish, I will surely go mad in no time coz the curved glass is giving me a totally warped & distorted view of whatever that’s outside of this tiny enclosure.

  • mame

    the fish is greater than most human kinds.

  • nolok

    design for designers. no market. no sales. nonsense. no beauty. no discus
    just no

  • marco

    poor fish :)

    cool tough

  • @Xit
    french designers has not the monopole in the design of a fish aquarium.
    You must see also young brazilian designer Rafael Morgan cage for fish too… real? surreal?virtual? possible ? impossible? …. or dead end?

    i have a project for the future of animality…following french designers 5,5 designers, Lehanneur ENSCI, Graindorge ENSCI, Guisset ENSCI…. Poudray St Etienne…and R pure. I will send it to deZZZeen in september….

  • sander

    in germany -for example- ordinary fish bowls of any kind are forbidden…. by law!

    guess what they would say about this.

  • … and cage for chicken ?

  • srk

    let the fish decide!

  • junihaoni

    sweet idea. it’ll be cooler if the aquarium was suspended with a wire of sort from the ceiling.

  • Cat

    I would totally walk into that. Then the fish really wouldn’t be happy.

  • Samantha

    Cool design? It looks like a giant, floating multi vitamin capsule or suppository for constipation. I feel so sorry for the fish. How nice would it look when the fish is floating on the surface, upside down because it has died of boredom?

  • Sazure

    A beautiful form (I am a sculpture) but horrific for the fish – no fish lives in a "fish bubble" ie this fish comes from heavily planted vegetation and all that glare light and no hiding means instinctively – danger! (55 years of aquarium keeping, background in biochemistry and oceanography). Long ago I decided to not design such set ups for the sake of the fish. One can do beautiful design and support number one the concerns of the fish (species) first!

    Shame on the designer for the greed of his ego over the needs of the species.

  • sazure

    PS In addition to my earlier comment – easily a mother Anubias plant (needs no substrate although a thin layer of sand would assist in important bio "bugs" for water chemistry which is not maintained in such a sterile tank… Within minutes ammonia spikes are experienced in this type of set up – how would the designer like ammonia poured into his lungs – ouch (I've done decades of rescue including 100's of fish and no the end result).

    This plant is sculptural in appearance and would be suitable for this design and provide much for the fish – security (cover – they live amongst plants) water chemistry maintenance and beauty.