Lucas Muñoz Muñoz
21 Oct 2016
The average kilos of asphalt produced by second, the amount of copper tube that we consume, the water volume used by person every day in Spain and the amount of metres of cable stolen per hour are data transformed into objects for this collection. Taking as a starting point United nations information about production and consume in his country, Lucas Muñoz Muñoz has calculated the material equivalents to create a series of furniture in which the function is defined by the volume and quantity of material. Taking this way an observationist point of view over design and using it as a Trojan horse to infiltrate information in the domestic realm. Information that represents each of us and as a whole that, once decontextualised from graphics and abstract numbers in newspapers and located in human space, materialises the footprint of our presence as citizens and consumers.
In addition to this, completes this exhibition two more pieces that are the antithesis of the statement before. If the other pieces go further than their physicality and are loaded with meaning, these other two pieces represent the opposite exercise. They are objects before becoming objects,embryos of a process still to be defined but already capable of performing their function. using temporal unions to create this function, but with the minimum intervention over the material, Muñoz Muñoz defines two objects that search for a high qualitative level using the minimum quantitative action to create structure. In both cases, this collection is the result of a deconstructing design dynamic within which concept and context are drives for exploration and for the definition of our domestic objects morphology.
Lucas Muñoz Muñoz
Lucas Muñoz Muñoz likes to hit the conceptual ball straight and hard and head on: ‘When we talk about design, we are talking about creating, and then we are simply talking about combining. Any creation process – from writing this text to cooking an omelette to bio-nano-technology experiments in genetical modification, you name it – is purely based on combining, and nothing else.’ Read more
This is a true statement. Parthenogenesis is a fantasy. Athena rose, in full armour, from her father’s head, who lived to tell the tale. All design projects are children of other design projects – perhaps illegitimate children, but children nonetheless. This awareness is, I think, the great engine in all of Lucas’ projects. He often works alone, in the vacuum of the studio, but more often he works in teams, outdoors. There are always others involved: gallerists, craftsmen, designers, workshoppers, passers-by.
In a recent design research project in Lithuania Lucas stumbled on a recipe for a type of hearty Lithuanian potato pudding, kugelis. Not really the stuff you’ll find in contemporary design, but the recipe had a nice ring to it, and Lucas asked the choir of the Vilnius Academy of Art to sing it, in a purely improvised way – no notes, just the words. The result was charming: lyrical, a bit comic, but true; a mini-oratorio inspired by a chat with a friendly neighbour about an ancient dish. This is a typical Lucas project, I think: a process of transformation, using an unassuming thing, turning that into another thing altogether and in the process breathe life into something that was, perhaps, losing its place in the world. This readiness to engage with other fields is key, I think, to the success of any designer in the 21st century. I consider Lucas in this sense to be a true alchemist, a borrower, an explorer of cultures, subcultures, of knowledge unknown; but above all a lover of the experiment, flexible in action, never bound down by respect for ‘usefulness’ or ‘aesthetics’. Both concept and context drive exploration and new definitions for the morphology of our domestic objects.
The ‘TEMPORAL’ collection for Machado Muñoz gallery is a tribute to this vibrant vision of using design skills to further the transformation of one thing into another and breathe life into a new child. The starting point for this collection is a range of data about Spain: the average number of kilos of asphalt produced every second (59,55 kgs), the amount of copper tube consumed in the same time (490 grammes), the volume of water used everyday by any citizen of the country (150 litres), the amount of electric cable stolen per hour (31,24 metres). These raw data – and their concurrent material – are transformed into objects. Lucas Muñoz Muñoz created a series of furniture in which the function is defined by the volume and quantity of material. Once contained in abstract graphics, this information now materialises, and shows the footprint of our presence on earth as citizens and consumers (and thieves).
In making poignant statements on the use and loss of material in everyday Spain, these objects, children of so many other contexts, go further than their physicality. Loaded with meaning they stake out a new presence in the world, the home, the room.
The exhibition wouldn’t be complete without also showing the antithesis, the opposite: objects that are still in a state of becoming, still in transformation, still wondering about their place in the world. Muñoz Muñoz presents two objects are the result of a minimal ‘quantitative’ action to create a structure: a table and a set of shelves held together by temporary clamps. Everything is still possible; the objects are functional, but the design intervention is minimal, the outcome is still to be defined. Of one thing I’m sure, though: out of the head of the god, a new god will arise, and most likely she’ll be wearing that divine suit of armour: beauty.