State of play

Spanish design is more than just Jaime Hayon. If you can’t name any other Spanish talent, then Conversational Spanish, which runs at the Aram Gallery this winter, is worth a visit. It showcases the work of established and young designers from the country, with a mix of commercial products and experimental concepts on display. Surprisingly, curator Daniel Charny is adamant that the exhibition is not about Spanishness. ‘We’re not trying to prove a point,’ he says. ‘We’re seeing what’s happening rather than saying what’s happening.’ That may be true, but national distinctions do emerge. From Hector Serrano’s exhibition design – featuring large, white cones as speakers in which visitors have to immerse their heads to hear conversations with the designers on show – to the work itself, there is an instinctive mix of the playful and everyday. It’s clearly distinct from the British, Italian or Dutch style, with a humanistic and less formal approach. Among the best of the products are Martin Ruiz de Azua’s ingenious outdoor sink for Cosmic and his delicately beautiful, bird-nest brick designs; Luis Eslava’s Oh Maria Keep My Data Safe, a USB stick in the style of a religious icon; and Azzimonti Pigem’s quirky toilet roll holder.

Conversational Spanish runs from 23 November to 13 January 2007 at the Aram Gallery, 110 Drury Lane, Covent Garden, London WC2

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