Deliberating on the boundaries between art and design, especially in the context of their creative practice in which every concept and its realization defies a bracketed approach, designers Ana Milena Hernández Palacios and Christophe Penasse of Spanish design agency Masquespacio are all set to present an exhibition within the Isola Design District from June 07-12 at the upcoming Milan Design Week. The showcase titled Forms & Textures will be presented as part of the designers’ dedicated lifestyle brand Mas Creations with which the duo manifests their creative universe of textures, materials and colors in dreamy furniture collections and interiors.
To be presented as a series of independent objects with several contradictions, Masquespacio explains the disposition of the collection as one which “could be interpreted at first sight as a chair, a lamp or a room divider, although these unusual and initially uncomfortable forms are making clear that we are not speaking about a functional design object.”
The collection is said to have emerged from the experimentation of a line drawn on paper to transforming it on a 3D printer. Though the forms could be interpreted as a piece of furniture or a lighting collection, in reality however, devoid of any functionality, these could solely be considered as artworks.
“With the Forms & Textures exhibition we want to start the discussion about the boundaries between art and design. Who is responsible to define if an object is considered an artwork or just a design? Is functionality the only reason to justify an object as a design element instead as an artwork? Or is it the reflection behind the object that makes it an artistic interpretation?,” inquires the design agency.
STIR speaks with Ana Milena Hernández Palacios to know more about the showcase.
Zohra Khan: How would you define the importance of contradictions in your practice?
Ana Milena Hernandez Palacios: Although our designs could be in some sense defined as minimalistic, we acknowledge that they have a lot of contrast especially due to our use of materials, forms, colors and textures that are unusual in combination with each other. I guess it is a bit like I am as a person, full of contrasts and this is, hereby, represented in our designs. At the same time we like to evolve, question ourselves, what we do and have done, but also the evolution of the creative sector in general. All of this comes a bit together in the exhibition we are going to present this year.
Zohra: What do you anticipate people’s response to this showcase would be?
Ana Milena:It is true that although the exhibition wants the visitors to reflect on the boundaries between art and design, at the same time our projects and creations will always have a visual impact on the viewers. In that sense, the exhibition and the collection will definitely have some attraction point on an aesthetic level, but more than that what we expect to provoke is just a reflection of all the creatives, architects, artists, designers,… together, without any boundaries . Everybody is free to speak his/her voice at the exhibition, without any need to agree with what our point of view is. There are so many topics to discuss about the boundaries between art and design, not only about the objects themselves, but also amongst others about the value given to an artist’s work and that of a designer. We hope that the visitors come just with that idea to our exhibition of being open to share their point of view or make the reflection by themselves and question if it is not just because our world is full of labeled identities.
Zohra: Could you talk about the materiality and process of building this collection?
Ana Milena: For this collaboration we worked with an Italian company that has a base in Spain. Iberpoligraph specialties in 3D machining. We started to collaborate with them some time ago for some projects we did. As they are in need of learning new production techniques for their advanced technology they were the perfect match for this collaboration. The whole collection hereby is made of separate forms created by a robot and using recycled foam. On top of it we used two finishes, custom-made paints, with some fluor paints and another finish with projected cork.
Zohra: If you could relate every piece from this collection with an emotion, what would these emotions be?
Ana Milena: If we look at them right now, the emotions they provoke to us are tenacity, serenity, reality and balance. Although these emotions could be completely different tomorrow. The pieces at the end are defined in a way that these invite you to live an emotion and provoke a reflection, although depending on your mood at that moment it could be one of the other emotions.
STIR takes you on a Milanese sojourn! Experience Salone del Mobile and all the design districts – 5vie, Brera, Fuorisalone, Isola, Zona Tortona, and Durini – with us. STIR’s coverage of Milan Design Week 2022, Meanwhile in Milan showcases the best exhibits, moods, studios, events, and folks to look out for. We are also excited to announce our very own STIR press booth at Salone del Mobile – Hall 5/7 P.14, Fiera Milano RHO.