BF: How did you know you wanted to dedicate yourself to product design in the field of furniture and lighting?
J.H: Well, it’s something that matured little by little, possibly during my degree in Technical Engineering in Industrial Design. At first I really liked automotive design; designing cars, motorbikes, etc.
I clearly remember drawing cars from a very early age at my parents’ house. But as I went through my education I realised that what really interested me was the design of objects, whatever their nature.
The fact that in the end I have dedicated myself more to furniture and lighting design is simply a consequence of the industry we have in Valencia/Spain.
BF: Is there an anecdote from your professional career that you like to remember? What is it?
J.H: I have many anecdotes… I remember fondly when I won 1st Prize in the CETEM competition with my colleagues Marcos and Lluïsa from Ebualà, it was a real boost for young designers who were just starting to take their first steps as professionals.
It was great, when I made the first sketch of that project (*the “Café con Leche” sofa) I already knew it was a good idea, I saw it clearly.
That’s why, apart from the prize, I also have that feeling when you have a great idea, for me it’s incredible!
BF: What has been the most complicated thing you’ve experienced as a designer?
J.H: Possibly the first years of the crisis when many small and medium-sized companies in the sector were unable to adapt to the new situation and were forced to close. Unfortunately, I know of many cases.
BF: Which phrase motivates you or do you like to remember in your day-to-day work?
J.H: I always think that I’m very lucky to work in something I’m really passionate about, and that my best design is yet to come!
BF: What do you look for in the design of each piece of furniture?
J.H: That it excites me, that it tells me things, that it’s honest, that it works well?
BF: What do you look at every time you see an exclusive piece of furniture?
J.H: I always make a first reading of the concept behind it, to see if it brings something new and why. Then, logically, I look at the details, how it is made, the materials and whether or not it fulfils the function for which it was designed. I’m becoming more and more demanding with the latter.
BF: Which author or authors have inspired you?
J.H: I don’t know if I’ve been inspired by anyone in particular, I wouldn’t say no, but I can name some of the ones I like the most: Miquel Milá, Patricia Urquiola, Mario Ruiz, Enzo Mari, Nendo, Jasper Morrison, … I could take something from each of them (and from many others), without a doubt.
BF: What do you think characterises you as a designer?
J.H: Well, that’s a good question I sometimes ask myself. A few years ago I didn’t see that common thread that defined me as a designer/author. Now, I look back and I see more and more clearly in my designs an inspiration in nature and in what surrounds me. Although it sounds a bit cliché, that’s how it is.
BF: If you had to say two words to a designer who is just starting out in the professional world, what would you say?
J.H: If I could only say two, they would be: tenacity and curiosity. But apart from that, I would tell them not to be afraid to propose new things, that there is a lot to do and to learn?
BF: What requirements do you consider necessary to be a good designer?
J.H: As in any profession, you have to be hard-working and responsible, but here you also have to be creative, curious, precise, decisive… And analyse the present to dream of the future!
BF: What would you highlight the most about your work for Beltá Frajumar?
J.H: I think that over the last few years we have jointly developed a series of pieces that bring personality and quality in equal parts.
I really enjoy working with them, especially the prototyping process; they don’t skimp on testing a new model until they achieve the optimum result and that is very gratifying from the designer’s point of view.
BF: What would you highlight about the DELTA armchair?
J.H: For me, Delta is a “calm” and timeless piece, it is iconic but without stridency and that allows it to fit well in any space. Proof of this is the project at the Parador Nacional de Costa da Morte, where it coexists perfectly in the rooms with other masterpieces from major brands.
BF: Can you tell us three characteristics that define the MUST sofa? And the WELL sofa?
J.H: MUST sofa is elegant and light, with a very nice detail where the armrests meet the base.
WELL, however, is warm and casual, like a cloud that welcomes you inside.
Both are exceptionally well made, from the skeleton to the last seam.
I am very happy with the result!