Mónica Santos: a Stereo Armchair

Mónica Santos
Par JoÁ£o GALVÁƑO Il y a 6 ans
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Mónica Santos won a design prize with an armchair that enchants us while sings.


We are a small nation in number but enormous in talent. On design, because it is always born of 'socially felt needs', we have many names of international success: it must have to do with the fact that we have, since ever, grown at the tip of Europe and that from here we went nowhere: early Portuguese had to pull through the mill.


One of the good things of witing for many years on the same subject, in this case Home and Design, is to be able to follow the birth and growth of 'stars'. 'Stars' in the best sense, names that grow on merit, extending through borders.

Mónica Santos pictured by Paula Preto. On the opening, Moon armchair, winner of the 10th National Creative Industries Award.


Mónica Santos is one of these cases: she started appearing in the foreign press soon after her international debut, when she joined the Talents group at the Ambient Fair in Frankfurt in 2016. Both Wallpaper and Vogue Brasil saw Serendipity, her table top in porcelain, one of the pieces to highlight in that year's trends.

Serendipity table top collection, Monica first international conquist, at Frankfurt Ambiente Fair.


The Serendipity, in a delicate gradient from one colour to another, was the mirror of the Pantone colour of that year, also of the same name, and also a Pantone debut when presenting not one but two year colours, pink and blue, that intertwined, a mark in the fall of the gender borders that began to gain weight in the society.

Becames Me dining chair, designed for Munna.


Since then Monica has not stopped and this year she won the 1st prize in the 10th National Creative Industries Award, a partnership between Super Bock and the Serralves Foundation. The piece that deserves this highlight was the armchair and footrest Moon, of which she is coauthor, designed for the Horizon47.

Moon is an armchair with an advanced sound system that is concealed (it reminds us of George Michael's armchair in the Fast Love video, but just in intention, Monica's chair does not look like a giant speaker!).

The Moon armchair takes advantage of the structure of the piece to act as a speaker in three specific areas for sound reproduction, making the armchair an incomparable sound experience.

Paisley porcelain table top collection, designed for Zara Home.


Whenever Monica Santos stands out in the national design landscape, I talk to her to know why. How I did it now:


Where, when and in what did you graduate?

At ESAD in Matosinhos, in 2000. I graduated in Equipment Design.


What brands do you work for?

The most recent ones are Quixote, at United States of America, Névoa, Horizon47 and Sentta, all three in Portugal.

Inflorescence Vases, an exemple of Monica´s independent production.


Do you have your own production?

Yes, but only on a small scale. Throughout the year I develop some projects with a more experimental and conceptual character. Sometimes some go on to small-scale production and are put on the market. This was the case for the Serenditipy porcelain collection.


What prize is this that you just won?

Well, actually I did not win it, but the Horizon 47 brand, for which I designed (in co-authoring) the Armchair and the Foot Rest Moon. The prize itself was the 10th National Creative Industries Award, a partnership between Super Bock and Serralves.

Hide and Seek folding screen, designed for Munna.


Being Portugal under the spot, will in any way helps the visibility of national designers?

Yes No doubt. Tourism brings us several foreigners with the desire to better know our country and to decipher our potential. Of these, those related to product development, both for brands and for restaurants / hotel projects, aim to better know our materials, techniques, and industries, which are, after all, our added value and differentiation.

As a result, several end up also having an interest in our creatives and here depositing their projects and partnerships.

I am undoubtedly one of those fortunate ones, and nowadays I collaborate with Portuguese, French or American companies alike.


Images provided by own.