David Martínez, the Mallorcan interior designer who parades a chair on the catwalk
Architect, engineer and interior designer. If something defines Juan David Martínez Jofre (Palma, 36 years old) it is the multidisciplinary adjective. To his minimalist and delicate architectural designs, executed with materials from nature, he annually adds a collection of furniture that, with some thirty pieces, aims to reflect the aesthetic current of his work at Minimal Studio. From the cabinet of architecture and interior design that he founded and directs in Alcúdia, in the north of the island of Mallorca, he works not only on projects in which the structure of places and buildings is a fundamental part of the aesthetic design, but also on the product design, which has led him to design everything from glasses to armchairs.
“Our premise is minimalist, but not centered on ‘less is more’, rather we intend to create the projects by giving a great aesthetic representation to what the structural element itself is”, says Martínez. They carry out their work both in new construction and in reforms, always using a minimalist premise that turns the structures into the main motifs of the design. If they have to make a ceiling in a restaurant, they directly take advantage of the ceiling’s own structure to turn it into a final decorative element in itself. An example of this is the reform of Can Rudayla, a house nestled on a cliff in Ibiza for which the designer was recognized with the IF Design Award 2022. In it, the studio captured his idea of balance between the brutality of materials such as concrete with the delicacy of natural textiles, giving light a prominent role.
An important part of the firm’s work is focused on product design that, for the first time in Spain, has been put on a catwalk to parade. It has happened in the recent fourth edition of Mallorca Design Day, a contest for emerging young people that promotes Balearic and national design in different disciplines and that also includes interior design and food design. The Ramis de Inca factory hosted the catwalk, in which several models dressed in work overalls pushed cargo transport platforms with the products on top. A collection of eight pieces with various aesthetic peculiarities: from an armored glass lounger with sewn steel to a polyurethane chair covered with concrete, going through totally transparent pieces.
“We have been working for months with a special carbon that is the one used by Lamborghini and other automotive brands that does not have the normal grid of a carbon, but rather has a camouflage effect. We have designed a chaise longue two meters long and four millimeters thick, is to go to the limit of the material”, explains Martínez. Another outstanding piece that he took to the catwalk is an armchair inspired by the rock singers of the eighties of the last century, made with 43 drumsticks. “I had been thinking for some time that I had never witnessed a product parade and we wanted to create a camouflage with the world of fashion, but giving prominence to the product on parade,” says Rodríguez.
His relationship with fashion does not end there. Minimal Studio also has a brand of motorcycles, of which each year they launch five models made by hand from scratch and installed as sculptures. Motorcycles related to the houses in which they are going to be located and that are created solely and exclusively to be placed in those places. One of those enclaves is the Minimal Design Hall, a transversal and creative space to host exhibitions that the studio has opened in Alcúdia, facing the Mediterranean. “It is a multidisciplinary and multicultural space that aims to disseminate and deepen the world of design”. A space, like all of Martínez’s, minimalist to its foundations.