“We’re seeking innovation, To continue evolving as a creative studio,
to be increasingly authentic”
Starting out at the height of the economic crisis, without contacts or finance, and in a mere eight years they have revolutionised the world of interior design with their “Mediterranean style”. The secret of their success? Their ambition to work and dedication to creativity. Always looking for a fresh vision! Lovers of retro-futurism and colour, they look ahead to new challenges, such as designing their own furniture collection. The craziest project yet! Hisbalit invites you to meet Ana and Chris, the founders of Masqueespacio.
IN JUST 8 YEARS YOU HAVE REVOLUTIONISED THE WORLD OF INTERIOR DESIGN WITH EXPLOSIVE PROJECTS FULL OF VITALITY AND CREATIVITY. WHAT IS YOUR MAIN SOURCE OF INSPIRATION?
We draw our inspiration from many sources, but everything begins with our clients, their mission and their objectives. From then on, we are inspired from everything around us; fashion, design and lifestyle magazines and blogs. In recent years, what has really fed our inspiration are the trips we have taken. That’s why, whenever we have a project outside Valencia, we take a few days to get to know the city where we are.
COLOUR, FRESHNESS, INNOVATION…IN YOUR OWN WORDS, WHAT ARE THE HALLMARKS OF MASQUESPACIO?
We always try to bring the client a step further. We never like to settle for the original brief of the project. Our objective is always to offer a different vision from what you find on social networks. The visual pollution in the digital age is all absorbing and often the client has seen everything before starting to work with us. To continue to make a mark there is no alternative to innovation. This is the only way to create extraordinary experiences.
HOW WAS YOUR START IN THE WORLD OF INTERIOR DESIGN?
We started out in the midst of the financial crisis, without contacts or finance. The only thing we had was our ambition to work. And so we had to work our way, step by step, from zero. That allowed us to reflect on each project and helped us to evolve. We took maximum advantage of the digital era and social networks, available to us from day one. Apart from that, we also knew some design studios have a 10 or 20-year track innovation was the only way to survive in the market.
WHAT WAS THE CRAZIEST PROJECT, THE ONE THAT MARKED A BEFORE AND AFTER IN YOUR PROFESSIONAL CAREER?
We’ve asked ourselves many times which project was our most important, but we can honestly say that we have always gone step by step, without any big upheavals. Each project has allowed us to evolve a bit further. Although we can say that after finishing two projects for The Student Hotel , in Barcelona, we had the sensation that for the first time we’d reached out peak.
The Student Hotel was a client we aspired to work with, since their style is very similar to our own. And one of our objectives was to do a big hotel at some point, and so we completed the circle by working with them.
After those projects we have not stopped thinking about how to reorient ourselves and try to be more authentic. We have been working on this process for over a year and we are gradually seeing projects that represent this evolution. In this way, we’re working on a new line of furniture through our new brand called Mas Creations. . This is a totally personal project and we suspect it will be our craziest project yet. But the presentation will be in Design Week in Milan.
THEY SAY THE KEY TO YOUR SUCCESS IS TO MAKE A PERFECT TANDEM. ANA, HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE CHRISTOPHER? AND YOU CHRISTOPHER, WHAT ADJECTIVES DESCRIBE ANA?
Chris has integrity and curiosity. Ana is emotion and explosive vitality.
COLOMBIA, BELGIUM, SPAIN. HOW DOES YOUR GLOBAL FOCUS INFLUENCE YOUR APPROACH TO A NEW PROJECT?
They say you are what you eat and in our case it’s completely true. Our kitchen is often a combination of ingredients from different cultures that we are a part of. But over the years, the media and our followers have interpreted our work within this ‘Mediterranean style’ frame. Perhaps this is because of the colours and the light that characterise our projects.
On the other hand, thanks to globalisation and the digital era, now you don’t have to leave home to see what’s happening in another part of the world. This means you can find any type of style anywhere in the world. For us, we now prefer to study the past of the cities we visit and bring it into the future.
RENOVATE A SPACE OR START FROM SCRATCH?
We always try to start a project using the existing interior architecture. We’re big fans of preserving the past, but sometimes complying with building codes in the renovation make it impossible to preserve the past.
A MATERIAL, A COLOUR AND A FORM?
Terracotta, semi-sphere and purple.
WHAT CURRENT TREND DO YOU FIND MOST ATTRACTIVE?
IN 2006, YOU WON THE “MASSIMO DUTTI NEW VALUES” AWARD. SINCE THEN YOUR SUCCESSES HAVEN’T STOPPED. LAST YEAR YOU WON THE ARCHILOVERS COMPETITION FOR BEST PROJECT FOR THE RESTAURANT KAIKAYA… WHAT IS YOUR NEXT PROFESSIONAL CHALLENGE?
We have a lot of challenges to look forward to. We want to continue evolving as a creative studio and become increasingly more authentic. On the other hand, we would like to have the opportunity to do projects in other countries and cities with different cultures; for years we’ve dreamed about doing a boutique hotel in New York.
MOSAIC TILES ARE ONE OF YOUR PREFERRED MATERIALS. YOU CHOSE IT FOR EXPLOSIVE PROJECTS LIKE THE KENTO SHOP IN VALENCIA, USING ”ULTRAVIOLET” TESSERAE IN ROUND FORMAT. WHY MOSAIC TILES?
Mosaic tiles allow us to create an explosive effect with a single material that can be applied to both walls and floors. Also, we like colours. Tiles are a perfect material because you can choose from a huge range of colours.
YOU HAVE WORKED WITH HISBALIT PREVIOUSLY. WHAT DOES OUR SELECTION OF COLOURS BRING TO YOUR WORK?
The broader the range of colours of the material the more possibilities we have to use it. We have ruled out using a lot of materials in projects because they were not available in the colours we needed. That’s why we love that Hisbalit is always evolving its palette of colours. It’s a real plus for studios like ours who work a lot with current colours.
IF YOU HAD TO CREATE AN INSPIRATIONAL MOODBOARD WITH ONE OF OUR COLLECTIONS, WHICH WOULD YOU CHOOSE?
We’d choose Unicolor because of its wide range of colours.