Some work by Liliana Ovalle




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En Concreto
Open Fires
Sinkhole Vessels
Vera Thinks of Boxes
Looking Pewter
The Chroma Season
Colour Me Tables
Piedras Tables
Piedras Lamp
El Otro (de los Mugrosos)
Table Stripping
Crash Bench
Fragment of a Staircase
Fuego Lento
Altar in a Corner
Table Shedding

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Liliana Ovalle (b. Mexico City)

Liliana Ovalle is a London-based designer from Mexico who graduated from the Royal College of Art in 2006. Her work includes commissions and production pieces for Plusdesign Gallery, MAXXI Museum and Nodus amongst others.  Her designs, diverse in materials and techniques, reflect different themes and processes, from referencing situations observed in the urban context to exploring vernacular craft techniques.

In 2006 she received the Talent Award by the British Council and in 2008 the Mexican Clara Porset Special Award. In 2015 she was granted the Talents à la Carte recognition by Maison&Object.

Her work has been selected for multiple exhibitions including Design Miami, Gallery Libby Sellers and Museo Poldi Pezzoli.  Her pieces Sinkhole Vessels are part of the permanent collection at Museum of Arts and Design in New York, and her table Colour Me Red was recently acquired by the Centre National des Arts Plastiques in France.

Since February 2011 Liliana is researcher at the Interaction Research Studio, Goldsmiths University of London.

2004 - 2006
MA Design Products, Royal College of Art, London.
1995 - 2000
Bachelor with Major in Industrial Design. Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México. Graduated with Honours.
Erasmus Exchange Program at Les Ateliers, École Nationale Supérieure de Création Industrielle, Paris.

“Nelle sue opere di sottile, cerebrale ironia, Liliana Ovalle mostra le pregevoli stimmate dei suoi studi al Royal College of Art di Londra, dove si è diplomata nel 2006. Ricordo di aver visto i suoi sottopentola Small Flame al Salone del Mobile di Milano, per l’evento organizzato dallo stesso college al British Council, e di aver letto la sua spiegazione: «Ispirati alle mie radici messicane, questi oggetti sono basati su continue avversità, vissute e affrontate come opportunità. Il comfort e la funzionalità dialogano così con caratteristiche di segno opposto, come lo sporco, il pericoloso, lo scassato e l’improvvisato».Viene difficile coniugare queste dichiarazioni con il senso di serenità che emanano le sue opere, ma non c’è nulla di più messicano del canalizzare l’angoscia nella bellezza, e giocare a canasta con il dolore e la morte. Il talento di Ovalle è profondo, versatile e a prova di luoghi comuni.”

Paola Antonelli, Senior Curator of Architecture and Design, MOMA, NY
Style Magazine, Il Corriere della Sera. June, 2009. Italy.

“In her work of subtle and clever irony, Liliana Ovalle demonstrates the distinctive seal from her studies at the Royal College of Art in London, where she graduated in 2006. I remember having seen her hot-pot stand Small Flame in the Salone del Mobile di Milano, at the event organized by the British Council, where I read her explanation: ‘Inspired on my mexican background, these objects are based on a continous adversity, which is many times seen as an opportunity. Comfort and functionality dialogue with opposite values, such as the unsafe, the improvised, the broken and filthy’. It might seem difficult to conjugate this approach with the sense of serenity her objects emanate, but there is nothing more mexican than sublimating anguish into beauty, and play face to face with pain and death. Ovalle’s talent is deep, versatile, and goes beyond cliches.”

Translated by Lulú Campos

  © 2017 Liliana Ovalle