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Cristian Zuzunaga's superb Inca Kilim series originally sprang from his travels to Peru, his father's homeland, where he was entranced by the ancient stone monuments at Cuzco and Macchu Picchu. The analog geometric pattern he developed as a result comes as an intriguing switch-up for the Catalan designer, widely acclaimed for his computer-borne pixel prints. Handmade of pure wool by artisans in India and designed in Cristian's native Barcelona, the richly colored rug comes in a range of earthy hues and provides a marvelous footing for a room—and an ineffable link between past and present.
“We are alchemists. We are not robots. We are so much more than something mechanical that is simply switched off when we die,” says artist and designer Cristian Zuzunaga. It’s an interesting comment from someone whose work focuses on the pixel, the cynosure of our digital life. Yet this Barcelona-born, London-based citizen of the world interprets that inspiration with analog traditions of the finest materials and a sustainable sensibility, grounded in hand craftsmanship. For the work, he has garnered awards including the ICFF Award for Best Textiles in New York and the coveted Les Découvertes award at Maison & Objet in Paris.
The son of a Catalan mother and a Peruvian father, Cristian set out at age 17 to travel the globe and define his place in it. Now settled in London where he finished his studies with an MA at the Royal College of Art, he also maintains a studio in his native city. Both his training as a graphic designer and his original interest as a student of biology inform his micro/macro view and use of color to provoke an emotional response. “We have to live for and through the senses,” he says. “That’s why I use multicolors.”