IED BARCELONA & ARTESANIA CATALUNYA COMBINE DESIGN WITH TRADITION
Year-three students on the Undergraduate Degree in Product Design at IED Barcelona Design University have been working with the Artesania de Catalunya craftsmanship association to explore synergies between tradition and design. Each student worked hand-in-hand with a craftsperson to create unique, top-quality products that provide innovative solutions and help revitalise the sector. Taking part in the collaboration were all kinds of craftspeople, including glass makers, potters, luthiers, jewellers and marble workers.
The project arose from IED Barcelona’s desire to instil the magic of craftsmanship in future designers as a way of reviving traditions that reflect the culture, people, geography and essence of Catalonia. What’s more, the experience the students live at the workshops, working away from their computers, is essential for them to discover different creative processes and combine the latest in technology with craft techniques to make new and innovative products.
Local craftsmanship is a catalyst for sparking new ideas, and over the course of the collaboration, students have reconnected with the roots of a specific region. They were given the opportunity to explore a certain field of design and link it to a specific handcraft method so as to trace the history of the product’s design, from the initial idea to the final piece, in an inspiring journey. Students were required to take into account the real market context, costs, production feasibility and logistics in their final proposals.
Student: Ana María Valdivieso
Craftsman: Xavier Vidal i Roca
62 grados (62 degrees) is a wine bottle holder inspired by Catalonian music and wine. The project was developed in collaboration with luthier Xavier Vidal, a craftsman who works with wooden string instruments. Inspired by product design, Xavier has expanded the sinuous shapes of a violin to create a unique and contemporary piece. The product displays wine bottles at a 62-degree angle on an elegant, balanced and geometrically stunning holder.
Student: Natalia Barinova
Craftswoman: Gemma López
Gemstories is an item of jewellery inspired by the iconic architecture of the Eixample quarter in Barcelona. The production process began with a 3D print-out of the piece. A mould was then made based on the model and they applied the casting (melting) technique to produce the final pieces in silver. This is a fine example of the blend between technology and craftsmanship. The pendant is inspired by the stories and emotions that emerge when traveling to explore other cities or countries. Gemstories intends to reinvent the souvenir concept. Souvenirs are usually impersonal, so the idea was to create a jewellery collection that builds a more intimate connection with the experience to be remembered.
Student: Paula Chacartegui
Craftsman: Ferrán Collado – Glass artist
CREMA is a set of glasses and jugs made by glassblowing and inspired by the traditional Catalonian dessert crema catalana, similar to crème brûlée. The set comprises several small glasses, several tall glasses and a jug, all with a matte finish and a seemingly deformed shape to represent the toasted sugar on top and its texture. Thanks to the skill of glass artist Ferrán Collado, the final pieces are beautifully evocative and unique. Crema is a visual and tactile experience for the user.
Student: Tienyu Hsing
Craftwork: Granits Barbany
Generós is a money box made of granite. Small on the inside and robust on the outside, it is designed to save less and spend more. The design and especially the closing device has been fashioned to make it more difficult to open the more coins it contains. To achieve this, the student worked with Granits Barbany to develop a system comprising two modules that is easy to open by applying a vertical movement, making the savings easy to access.
Student: Vanessa Vargas Barreto
Craftswoman: Annie Michie
Cosy Column is a cylindrical cushion inspired by the architecture of the Sagrada Familia temple. The design represents the shape of the columns inside the building, while the top and bottom portray the colours and shapes of the windows, thanks to the colourful embroidery work of Annie Michie. These carefully embroidered adornments represent the stained glass windows of this emblematic temple, making the cushion a unique and delicate item that transmits magic to the touch and the essence of colour.