Josep Lluscá is an industrial designer with a degree from the Eina School of Barcelona, he has been a professor in the Product Design Department, a member of its Board of Rectors, and is currently a member of the Board of Trustees of the EINA Foundation. Since 1972, he has collaborated with prestigious international companies: Antonio Puig Perfumes, Cassina, DD Resol, Driade, Enea, Escofet, Figueras Internacional, Flos, General Electric, Grupo Forma5, Inoxcrom, Isogona-Bra, Rosenthal, Simón/Fluvia, Vilagrasa, WMF, etc.
His varied projects have allowed him to collaborate in industrial areas as diverse as lighting, furniture, packaging, appliances, leisure and toys, sports and fitness equipment, urban equipment, household items, electrical equipment ... and we could go on. His works and designs have been recognised worldwide and awarded with the most prestigious international awards such as the Red Dot Award; IF Product Design; Best of NeoCon in Chicago; Gold Delta from ADI-FAD; and LAUS from ADG-FAD, The National Design Award in Spain.
Interiorsfromspain tries to get to know a little more about this design thinker, who has many anecdotes and experiences to share with us.
Interiorsfromspain: Do you remember what your first design was? How was it for you at the beginning in this world?
Josep Lluscá: As a professional, my first design was the modular seating system ‘Prolongue’, developed in 1973 together with Maribel Quero, which is currently on display and is part of the permanent collection of the Barcelona Design Hub. And the ‘Grulla’ table for hotels, for which I received my first ADI-FAD Gold Delta Award.
Interiorsfromspain: As a designer, in which area, out of all the ones you have worked in, are you most comfortable?
Josep Lluscá: I’m a compulsive chair designer, although I enjoy designing for sectors like lighting or furniture in general a lot.
Interiorsfromspain: How was your relationship with American design? Do you think it influenced your way of understanding design?
Josep Lluscá: The proximity of Montreal, where I was living in the late sixties, to New York, a city I went to often, allowed me to get to know the work of designers such as the Eames and Raymond Loewy who—logically, I was 20 years old—influenced my way of understanding design, not only from the ‘form-function’ point of view but also from the ‘form-emotion’ point of view.
Interiorsfromspain: For years, you have collaborated in particular with Fluvia – Simón. How is the relationship with the world of lighting and with this leading company in electrical equipment?
Josep Lluscá: We started collaborating in 2012, with the intention of creating a new lighting company. I love being at the origin of the creation of a new brand, I’ve done it many times. For example, with Fluvia, Enea, Blauet, Norda, DD-Resol, etc. In the specific case of Fluvia, the general manager of Simón contacted me and commissioned me to do the project of a lighting system for work environments with LED technology which we then expanded to other sectors such as hotels, commerce and even the household sector. The system is SLIM, which achieved several important design awards in a record time such as the RED DOT Award, the IF Design Award and a Silver Delta, in addition to other lesser known ones.
Later on, I designed the ARCH collection. There was a good feeling from the beginning and a very open mind on both sides, which has allowed the company to position itself alongside the best in the sector. It’s an honour to collaborate with them. The Simón group is a great company with a magnificent team, highly qualified and with an impressive R+D+I capacity.
Interiorsfromspain: After almost a 45-year career, do you think you’ve contributed something important in the world of design?
Josep Lluscá: I've always understood this profession as a service to society. My humble contribution to the world of design could be the diversity of products that I’ve designed during these 45 years of my career—most of them still on the market—always with the intention for them to be useful and to be used to meet the real needs of people who use them, from an aesthetic point of view, as well as a functional and emotional one. I’ve designed from an electrocardiograph, which works with solar energy to be used in rural areas of countries where electricity does not reach yet and which I, of course, designed altruistically for an NGO, to hundreds of pieces of furniture, as well as toys, containers, bicycles, pens, refrigerators, cutlery, pots, elevators, etc.
Interiorsfromspain: We see then that large companies, leaders in different sectors, whether it be furniture, household items, sports, etc., have relied on you as a studio. What is the way to reach everyone? And to succeed?
Josep Lluscá: When I founded my own design studio in Barcelona in 1973, I was lucky to earn a Golden Delta with my first job and I received the support of specialised media that published most of the projects that came out of the studio. This helped my work to become known and companies, both from here and the rest of the world, to call me. In particular, I remember a ten page report that the Italian magazine Domus did in the 1980s about my work, which caused Italian companies such as Cassina, Driade and Flos, German companies like WMF and Rosenthal and American companies like General Electric, for whom I was designing kitchens, refrigerators, washing machines for years, to call me all of a sudden. Every year, this company also sent to my studio in Barcelona a designer from its technical office to train and to learn what we were doing in Europe.
Interiorsfromspain: You've gone to the Milan Fair again this year. What did you think about this edition? Do you think it’s a good design showcase?
Josep Lluscá: The fair in Milan is the best for the household furniture sector. This year's edition has seemed very interesting to me from the point of view of trends in terms of finishes, colours, etc. It seems that diversity has been accepted, the coexistence of different styles, from the most vulgar, kitsch or tacky for the nouveau riche to the most elegant and sophisticated. We’ve left minimalism behind, sometimes excessively dull and boring, to dive into fun and a more creative or imaginative design, like what happened in the 1950s.
Ifs: What can you tell us about your projects for the near future?
Josep Lluscá: Currently, I’m very focused on furniture and lighting projects for contracts, offices, hotels and also households…
Interiorsfromspain: What advice would you give young designers who are starting their journey?
Josep Lluscá: Fifty years ago in Spain, everything still had to be done. Designing was easy, but manufacturing was very difficult. Today, the opposite happens. Manufacturing is very easy but designing and what you design being successful in a globalised world is very difficult. So creativity, creativity and more creativity, knowledge of human needs, common sense and succeed!
Interiorsfromspain: Lastly, what do you think about the way of promoting yourself or making yourself known through social networks? Do you like them and are you an active participant?
Josep Lluscá: Until recently, I wasn’t on the networks due to lack of time to take care of it personally. Since I've been on Facebook and Instagram, I've become aware that you have to be present to communicate new products or simply to keep the memory of your work