41 has made us grow. How do you approach each contract project? Ana: As we say, in interior design we try to imitate the client. Now we have just finished the new Gnomo Store in Valencia. And for me, Gnomo is Álvaro, Esther and Ánibal, his son, who is part of the team. Nozomi is José Miguel and Nuria. And its personality, its character, its commitment to Japan and its passion for it. Its brave and risky personality translates, for example, into the materials we use. In the origami elements of the ceiling, something unusual in our plans, and in the wood. When we start a project, we make a route through the city together. They explain to Un objeto cotidiano: Las piñas/ An everyday object: Pineapples Un material: El granito/ A material: Granite Una pieza en casa por la que sentís devoción: Nuestra colección Toadstool./ A piece at home for which you feel devotion: Our Toadstool Collection Un diseñador/ A designer: Neri & Hu Espacio inspirador: la Fundación Prada en Milán./ An Inspiring space: the Prada Foundation in Milan. Proyecto contract: Algo hecho a medida./ A Contract Business project: Something made to measure. Proyecto que os gustaría realizar: un hotel/ Project you would like to do: a hotel. Una ciudad donde vivir/ A city to live in: Nueva York Una habitación de la casa: el salón/ A room of the house: the living room Un sueño a largo plazo: Tener nuestra propia editora de muebles./ A long-term dream: To have our own furniture publisher. Qué le pedís a la sociedad: Que sepamos comunicarlo/ What do you ask of society: That we can communicate. EXPRESSO me what places they like and why. We try to get to know them better so that we can appreciate their tastes and to think like them. I try to transform their tastes into the essence of its premises. You also work with product design, how would you define your style? Ana: Our most authentic side, our personal self is found in product design. In the direction of art, interiors and graphic we imitate the customer and consider the needs of his market and starting from that point, we design. In this case, we do what we really like. And yes, it is risky, colourful and fun. Our first product design was “Toadstool”, for the company of Missana, with which we initially collaborated in direction of They met in Valencia but neither of them was born there: Ana Milena Hernández is from Bogotá and Christophe Penasse is from Belgium. They met on the Turia River, and found a place to get to know each other, to work and to develop their careers. He, a graduate in Marketing and Public Relations, knew how to get things moving despite his limited Spanish, and used his knowledge to give wings to her immense creativity as an interior designer. So, they decided to found a studio of design, communication and marketing that they called Masquespacio. After six years, it is one of the most sought after studios both nationally and internationally. Its interior design for the Nozomi Sushi Bar (2015 Restaurant & Bar Design Awards 2015 finalist), the Valencia Lounge Hostel, and its campaign and art direction for LZF – Winner of the Red Dot Communication Award in 2016 - are just some of the projects that have made it famous. But they broke through alone, at the very beginning of the crisis, without contacts, without friends, and by distributing flyers throughout Valencia. art. We decided to let our imagination fly and to create a family of couches and sofa very closely related to our style, influenced by graphic design and the fusion of colours and materials. And the truth has been a real media hit. Chris: We are not going to launch ourselves into the furniture market in order to make proposals to companies. It’s the other way around. If someone likes our way of designing and wants a product that we believe will become a trend and that will speak out loud, we will be happy to work with him; But we do not want to feel obliged to design, it must be something purely passionate. What are your next projects in space design? Chris: We’re working on Hikari Yakitori Bar, the second restaurant owned by the owners of Nozomi. We have also just finished the new Gnomo store in Valencia, where we have made all the custom lamps, working hand in hand with the blacksmith to achieve special and unique lamps that make the space stand out. Internationally, we are also working with gourmet supermarkets in Germany, Cologne and in Portugal we are tackling an integrated design project: branding, art direction, a consultancy of designers, web and a new product. We are also in an initial phase of contacts with a foreign chain of hotels, to develop the rooms and common areas.
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