27 July 2011
by Raquel Sereno
I was born in Mexico City and lived for the first 18 years of my life in Toluca, an industrial city in the outskirts of a volcano (Xinantecatl) just 45 minutes from the Capital District. For as long as I remember, I have always wanted to be a designer. The urge for making and creating, made me realize I did not want to take a course that was computer based or too industrial. Therefore, I was encouraged to look at study opportunities overseas. With the advantage of the language, the UK offered me the courses and workshop facilities that I was looking for.
Recently, I graduated with a BA in 3D Design at the University of Brighton and I am continuing my studies on an MA in Sustainable Design with Jonathan Chapman, our course leader. In the meantime, I have been kindly invited to be the ADF team’s summer intern. As one of my first tasks, they have asked me to introduce myself and tell you a bit of what I do.
My latest work, Quau-Eco-Design is focused in Mexico. I explored the context of cultural heritage and the continuous exchange of identity in our global day-to-day life. Through the study, analysis, and exploration of the imperatives of Mexico my research led me to Mexico’s forestry.
Mexican forestland covers more than a third of the national territory. The forests are valued for their high biodiversity as well as for the production of numerous economic benefits. Depositories of ancestral knowledge from natural resources place Mexico as one of the 12 multi-diverse countries of the world. Today, this land is under great threat, if deforestation continues at this pace it is estimated that in 30 years there could be a complete loss.
My aim is to transmit this situation, using the object as a metaphor for a better understanding and for the increase in awareness of this matter amongst Mexican society. My chosen scenario is a coffee table with its accessories. Using it as the centre of juxtaposition between deforestation and the day-to-day life in Mexican society, as a coffee table is the meeting point in all social levels and an object of common use. The objects work as a physical graph by altering their proportions and through the design and function of each of the pieces, I have represented Mexico’s forests and the causes of deforestation.
Personal interests: Design of course!, but also the love for my country. I am a huge fan of our wide variety of arts and crafts. I love going into small towns and villages and getting to know the artisans and their way of working. I’ve always been fascinated by different cultures. I enjoy eating food from all over the world and making friends from all sorts of backgrounds. I am a passionate dancer, folk dances in specific; currently I dance Flamenco and Irish dance.