When I saw the ö tables created by Colapso Studio (founded and run by designer Susana Piquer), I knew that our aesthetics matched. They’re just right: minimalist yet playful, modern and surprising. Spanish and Scandinavian aesthetics don’t have many intersections, perhaps, but Susana’s seems to be the perfect marriage between the two, with a tendency towards clean lines and a love of color and light.
Her journey has a designer began, as so many do, with architecture. She completed her degree in Barcelona then went to Madrid to study design and art direction. After working with an advertising agency in Madrid, she went to New York City to work with an artist. From there, she learned the ins-and-outs of the art world, which she brings into her conceptual design work.
Finally, she found herself back in Madrid where she founded a design collective. In 2015, she forged her own way with Colapso studio. Though she says that each of her designs is created to fit the client, there is a clear aesthetic thread between them; the Colapso touch.
Aesthetics aside, where the Scandi-vibe really comes in is Susana’s desire to create things that are both beautiful and useful. “I don’t like to use a lot of materials or high-cost materials,” she explains, “I often use pine wood. In my last project, I used copper pipes. I like when joints fit together rather than being held together with an additional item – a nail or something else. I want everything I make to be beautiful and easy to understand.”
Does that mean Susana draws inspiration from Scandinavia? “Oh yes!” She exclaims. “I would love to move to Scandinavia soon – maybe Copenhagen. The last time I was there, to do an installation, I felt so at home.”
She continues, “I think Scandinavia has found the perfect formula between what is visually pleasing and what is functional. Design is part of the Scandinavian education; you breathe it when you are there. Maybe you’ll be speaking with a tech professional, but she’ll understand good design. It’s not seen as an extra; it’s necessary.”
Which brings us to her latest product line, Pirineus, consisting of a tray and jeweller that can both be fitted with a mirror. It’s so simple: a ridge wooden base with a dome-shaped mirror that sits between the ridges. And yet it looks so luxe. Because it’s so uncomplicated, it looks just as much at home on an office desk as it does on a vanity.
Though she’s excited about the tray, Susana notes that she’s never just working on one project. She’s also currently designing a home interior as well as teaching at the Istituto Europeo di Design in Madrid. “I like to work with students because they have fresh ideas,” she explains, “but sometimes they don’t even know they have them!”
With such a wide array of opportunities, you’re sure to see more from Susana and Colapso in the future.
See more on Colapso here.
Do you know of a non-Scandinavian business that has the Scandi-aesthetic or principles of craftsmanship? Is it your business? Get in touch to be part of Scandi Dandies!