Interview with Architect and artist RAÚL ALMENARA
I reached out to Artictect and Artitst Raúl Almenara as I was fascinated by his amazing work. He has a bachelor in Fine Arts and he work has been he is also the Founder of R A D studio. Here's what we talked about.
Object of Reference: How would you define your design style?
Raúl Almenara: "A personalized approach combining the origin, environment and needs to create a concept that spreads through the whole project. To conceive that idea I always nurture other artistic disciplines such as dance, fashion, music, painting, sculpture, decorative arts, theatre and literature. My designs are always a bet to break the barriers between artistic disciplines and architecture or design."
Object of Reference: Tell me a little bit about yourself and your background. Did you always wanted to be involved with design?
Raúl Almenara: "I am the grandson of a good cook. I spent many hours as a child in the kitchen next to her. I used to do my school homework in the kitchen for example. I think she taught me that everything was invented but that everything really was about to be invented. Every time you had to cook something was a challenge, it was a new recipe. I think that made me understand the world with a different vision, a critical and creative vision. This vision was accompanied by my curiosity since childhood to find out more about buildings. And that made understand that architecture was vocational incline."
Object of Reference: What is the definition of “good design” according to you?
Raúl Almenara:"Good design has to be proactive, practical and necessary."
Object of Reference: When it comes to design are there any basic “rules” that you always follow, and so what are those?
Raúl Almenara: "There are two fundamental rules. The main rule is “the concept”. There has never been a work of mine that does not have a clear concept behind it. That’s what structures the entire project. It is impossible for me to design if I don’t have a concept, an idea behind it. The second one is (design) "without barriers". I am aware that by training, I am an architect and an artist, but when I design I don’t think that is my only role. I intervene in everything that affects the space. My role as an architect extends to any decorative, functional or spatial aspect, and they are all in sync with my idea and concept. From the colours to the fabrics, materials, works of art and everything in between."
Object of Reference: What would your dream project be?
Raúl Almenara:"Every project I am involved with could be considered a dream, they are all renewed continuously and propose a constant challenge for me. And in addition, I have visual;ised them way before they are even constructed. If a project doesn’t ignite my passion/dream to be involved with it, I wouldn’t do it.
But if there is something concrete that I would like to achieve, it is to be able to build a public space in which society can enjoy, where people find a place that generates an experience, a special experience that would generates a positive mood."
Object of Reference: What are you working on at the moment?
Raúl Almenara: "We are working on a total of 17 new projects. From public scale (school, chapel, hangar for airplanes, public library) on a more particular scale (singular, local houses) without forgetting the small scale (furniture and window dressing). Everything we have with great enthusiasm and I hope we can inaugurate them shortly but you know, our world is simmering."