We took our Latin-American backgrounds to task by integrating the traditions of weaving and basketry into the design of our Leonia Luminaire and Thesis Bench.
Textile art has been part of indigenous practices since precolonial times; assuming an important role in the development of human civilization and culture. Beyond its practical uses, textile art has also incorporated rich designs and colours into its more than 10,000-year evolution. Most of these designs, as many other ornamental practices, were used to embellish the skin, tell stories or represent tribal traditions. The use of vivid colours, for example, has remained as an expression of happiness and of the positive outlook that characterizes Latin-American culture.
A desire to experiment with humanizing our modern designs with traditional techniques and resources inspired us to create a hybrid that incorporated new materials and technologies with traditional textile art processes. It was a reaction to more than one hundred years of ‘Ornament and Crime’ where “the evolution of culture marched with the elimination of ornament from useful objects.” And from our very own experience of inadvertently removing ornament from our designs. This was an opportunity to celebrate our cultural background and reconnect with the essential aspects of being human.
For this endeavour we invited fellow Latin-American designer and artist Michele Guevara, to collaborate and partake of this creative process of humanization by hybridization.