August 22st 2013
Benedetta Tagliabue: "Fun is one of the key elements in my profession"

We know Benedetta Tagliabue (currently head of Miralles Tagliabue EMBT) for his career as one of the state’s most prestigious architects. Even so, a priori, know the feelings that give us short distances, in the "face to face". ESDi Design School interview his as part of the conference "Rock Paper Pixel" about communication and design, held in Barcelona DHUB. Arrives input and wears a genuine smile, the kind that is contagious. Dress sociable, cheerful walks, talks cheerful (a Milan-Catalan) ... She is cheerful. Enthusiastic about making fun with his profession and, I say, when you do things with passion the results are immeasurable.

Benedetta, since now you did buildings architecture, and now you dare even to the design a chair ...
Yes, we have made our home furniture, furniture of the Scottish Parliament, the furniture of the University of Vigo, ... and this time we have decided to do something we really wanted was to do a job with wicker material. We had worked with wicker in Spain Pavilion and had been a great experience, ... and, well, now I’ve decided to make a very traditional furniture with this material, but with a twist. Thus was born this chair and the sofa that would be Tina (like my dog) and pepe (like my bird)

who you thought when designing this furniture?
It is designed for people like me who like pretty things. In fact, it is thought selfishly. We have made a very basic thought. It’s what I would like to have at home. But in fact, I ordered one for home and still not have reached me.

At first glance there is a perceptible difference between designing a building and design a piece of furniture, but there are so many? Routines and strategies are still very different?
yes but not. We, in the studio, to make this chair have done exactly the same thing we do when we do other things. We have been a long time doing tests, samples, ... which is the same as we always do we design buildings, up to a number acceptable. And based on these variants we de prototypes and testing it to see what improvements we could make. In this regard, I remember a conversation I had with Rolf Fehlbaum from Vitra around the design of a chair and he asked me: - how long you have to develop it. And we said: - three years. And he answered: - Too little time!. - Are we working on the building of the Scottish Parliament, responded. - Well, it’s much easier to make a parliament building that a good chair, finished telling.

Yes I mean that if you have at least 4 years do not get to make a chair because, of course, chairs and thousands have been made, and has already reached very high levels of sophistication. Or you do something new or do anything useless. And, to make something new you must be a long time studying the material, ergonomics, as is the body ... and reach the end, a product that makes sense to do. The phrase I liked: it is much harder to make a chair that make a building. For a building very easily get reasons to exist, a new chair does not have to look for a reason.

It is increasingly difficult to find things that are not invented?
Surely. Sometimes ignorance helps (laughs). A little ignorance, a little fantasy, a little dream....

Do you want to do more Tina? or more furniture pieces?
I hope so. Now they are getting more, a lamp, and things with which I identify now.

How would you define Benedetta as a designer both spaces and products?
I believe I am a person who is always bringing natural materials, materials that have the pleasure to behold. Wicker, for example, is one of these, wood .... but also to more experimental. This is me having a blast. Seeking an architecture or interior design very friendly, very close to the people.

One of the things that has been said in the days of "Rock Paper Pixel" is that many of the people who are dedicated to the design world do so because they have fun. can you apply this statement in your work?
A lot. I always think that fun is one of the fundamental things of my profession. And sometimes I think it is not worth it because you end up losing money. And also, you have difficulty: inner crises, rivalries, egos, ... but then, if you balance, make up. Also because you always go beyond your limits, take him for something beyond that, sometimes, you end up finding.

is there a fear that one day you find it. This means that you wake up without creativity?
No. Because, really, we always do things that are a kind of hybridization of complex realities. No author ever noticed me, I like to work in teams, to work at my clients who come with ideas. I like doing things arise situations that I come into the studio. This makes me think that there will always be something new, special, beautiful ... the world is very large, very complex, very wonderful ... and teamwork helps tremendously. We do many things that are like having almost the same actually give you the product.

And today, what projects do you have to do?
We have many projects in Asia: a major project at a university in central Shanghai, theme parks ... Crazy stuff, too! in China will reach very experimentalists many projects because society is experiencing. Now they are making a theme park in Europe. As we go to Disneyland and found the world of Mickey Mouse, the Chinese think about going to an island and find miniature Europe. One of the crazy projects we are doing is to recreate a part of Europe for a theme park. To have given us Germany, Switzerland and Austria.

In my work I try to balance serious matters with more fun things like this.

Is this the most beautiful day of your profession, the fact that it’s never the same?
Yes, I love that. And the truth is that we are now at a very exotic and very to go in totally different worlds, also how lucky we are that China and much of Asia, she is really discovering things, inventing things ... and sometimes what we have discovered us, but sometimes we interpret what we have in a way so different than invent something new.


Benedetta  Benedetta