Yonoh Studio is a multidisciplinary design practice in Valencia, Spain, that’s producing simple, original and functional designs for LZF, Sancal and other European brands. And while there is no excess or extravagance to their creations, there is still a playfulness or whimsy to many.
Clara del Portillo and Alex Selma founded Yonoh Studio in 2006. Having trained as industrial designers, Clara and Alex each established their own careers before meeting at an exhibition in 2004, joining forces two years later. Naming their studio “yonoh” (an ambigram, which is intended to express the multidisciplinary nature of their work), Clara and Alex work across product, graphic and interior design with the aim of creating useful, user-friendly and easily understandable designs that enhance the everyday lives of users.
“Our design is typically sober, simple and elegant and sometimes includes child-like fun touches,” the designers say. “We’re inspired by everything that surrounds us: it could be travelling, a book, a feeling or the Internet.” Clara and Alex’s work is also informed by a thorough and precise understanding of their clients’ needs as well as the market for which they are designing. The results of their creativity, methodology and professionalism has been recognised with international design accolades that include Red Dot Design Award and Wallpaper* Design Award, as well as multiple honours in the IF Design Awards and Chicago Athenaeum Good Design Awards, amongst others.
Yonoh Studio also has an ever-growing list of clients, working with lighting and furniture manufacturers such as LZF and Sancal. One of the studio’s most recent collaborations is the Banga pendant for LZF (above) and it exemplifies the designers’ pursuit to bring a fresh, functional and unique perspective to their work. Launched in Milan in April 2017, the Banga is a colourful wood-veneer lamp that takes the form of an elegant paper parasol. It is comprised of individual veneer pieces set within a lustrous metal framework and its expressive Eastern quality is complemented by the principles of simplicity and symmetry.
In addition to the Banga, Yonoh Studio designed the Chou (above) and Pleg lamps (below) for LZF. The Chou, inspired by the 1960s film The World of Susie Wong, evokes the cinematic portrayal of Hong Kong. Its design explores the folding and overlapping of wood veneer and how to transform a simple screen into a more aesthetic and atmospheric object.
The Pleg is a wall lamp that bends wood veneer into a simple and beautiful curved form, like an exercise in origami. The Pleg lamp can be fixed horizontally or vertically to the wall and it diffuses light through the open sides while passing through the front piece of the veneer.