‘What is Spain?’ is a campaign that was established by Interiors from Spain, itself an initiative of ICEX Spain Trade and Investment—this corporation promotes the internationalisation of Spanish companies, and seeks to attract foreign investment to Spain. 

Spain is a country with a rich and varied manufacturing tradition, producing furniture, lighting, objets d’art, textiles, and more. By asking the question ‘What is Spain?’, the aim is to focus attention on those distinguishing features found across Spain’s design sector, including: tradition, innovation, creativity, expertise, and new technology. Such features are attributed to the sector’s industrial talent, productive capacity, and creative edge.

The ‘What is Spain?’ campaign was presented during an online event in early December 2020. The initiative was promoted in a conversation that highlighted Spanish design’s international achievements. A number of notable design authorities took part: architect Ramón Esteve of Ramón Esteve Estudio; Imanol Calderón Elósegui and Marta Alonso Yebra of Mayice; Pablo Conde Diez del Corral, Director of Fashion, Habitat and Cultural Industries at ICEX; and LZF’s very own Mariví Calvo and Sandro Tothill. The conversation was facilitated by Marisa Santamaría, Director of RED-AEDE.

What is Spain? Some notable quotes from the conversation:

Ramón Esteve: ‘We have two great traditions in Spain: craftsmanship and, perhaps less known, the legacy of the modern movement. With these two cornerstones, we have trained excellent professionals who know how to technically solve a product, while at the same time giving it a design that reaches people’s hearts.’

What is Spain?, Interiors from Spain, Spanish design

Ramón Esteve (centre), Marisa Santamaría (left), and Sandro Tothill (right).

Mariví Calvo: ‘Our country has many different and very rich cultures. There is now a major concern with not losing our cultural values, and learning from artisans and traditions.’

What is Spain?, Interiors from Spain, Spanish design

From Left: Mariví Calvo, Sandro Tothill, Marisa Santamaría, and Ramón Esteve.

Marta Alonso Yebra: ‘[At Mayice] we always work with a lot of emotion: we love nature, music, and beauty. In the end, these kinds of references are full of rhythm, silence, noise, light, and shadows… so, poetry may somehow be a part of our subconscious.’

What is Spain?, Interiors from Spain, Spanish design

(Left) Pablo Conde Diez del Corral; (back row) Imanol Calderón Elósegui, Sandro Tothill, Marisa Santamaría, and Ramón Esteve; (centre) Marta Alonso Yebra; (front) Mariví Calvo.

Find more at Interiors from Spain.