Spanish design furniture has had its glory, but I think it is making a comeback step by step by the hand of creators, artists, architects and of course furniture designers.
In my case, I came from Belgium to Barcelona in 1992 in full glory of design in Spain and even more so in Catalonia. With a good background in cabinetmaking, design and art, I began step by step to make my own line of furniture. Exhibitions, competitions, prototypes for companies, designers and architects. I think my style is a mixture of my Nordic culture and the good Spanish life with a pinch of humor and art.
I am not Spanish nor do I intend to be, but I feel to be part of this world of designers who help enrich the “Furniture Culture”.
Now perhaps we are talking more about “signature furniture” although the truth is that between design and signature furniture there is only one step. It is even admitted that they mix to form ONE.
How to differentiate between a signature furniture and a design furniture?
As I said before, they often form a mixture of one and the other, although you can also see how a modern design furniture has nothing to do with a designer furniture. Why? By design we often think of furniture with refined, straight lines, a “Nordic” type as they say, but no, there are also “modern” furniture with curved lines.
Good design furniture requires many studies both at the formal, aesthetic and ergonomic level. What at first was called “THE FORM AND THE FUNCTION” of object. If, in addition, the creator-designer manages to give this special and personal touch to his piece, he may get an “author’s furniture”, that is, a personalized piece of furniture with its own soul, a piece of furniture that lasts over time.
Nowadays it is fashionable to speak of “signature furniture” and “sells well” so everyone does the same and they talk about the same thing. From large surfaces such as IKEA, Amazon, Maison du Monde etc. and also the small craftsman, who barely knows how to cut a piece of wood, to great craftsmen, designers, architects etc. It is not bad, but it confuses the consumer and in the end loses its value as an authentic, personal piece and of great value in all its senses. So, I think it is time to invent a new term to speak of “author’s furniture”. Let’s see who comes to mind first….
My creations are the fruit of more than 30 years drawing, experimenting, creating. Going from the sketch to the model, then to the prototype and finally to a real scale with different woods and finishes. Sometimes inspiration arises in a few minutes and sometimes in a few years … Due to my academic studies, I am conditioned but at the same time the “technical baggage” helps me to come to fruition.
The different carpentry, cabinetmaking, antique restorer, carving, upholstery, furniture design studies and culminating in sculpture in Fine Arts. All this “path” helps me in my achievements.
Jean Baptiste Van den Heede.