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Interview with Ana Piazza

Home > Designer Interviews > Ana Piazza

Editor Frank Scott (FS) from DesignPRWire has interviewed designer Ana Piazza (AP) for A’ Design Award and Competition. You can access the full profile of Ana Piazza by clicking here.

Interview with Ana Piazza at Tuesday 5th of May 2020
Ana Piazza
FS: Could you please tell us more about your art and design background? What made you become an artist/designer? Have you always wanted to be a designer?
AP: Before taking my first jewellery design course in 2004, I worked in an investment bank in the international area. While taking the course, I decided I had to understand deeply about gemstones because I have always had a passion for them. This passion has to do with my father, who is a geologist, and I grew up listening to him talking about minerals. Pursuing this idea, I took gemological courses in Brazil and in 2007 started the Graduate Gemologist (GG) course with the Gemological Institute of America (GIA-USA), which I finished in 2009. Worked in the gemstone department at Sauer, a Brazilian leading jewellery company, which helped me fine-tune the technical aspect of assessing gemstones in terms of cut, clarity and color. However, besides this gemological expertise, I always imagine a jewellery piece when I see a gemstone I like. After moving to Sao Paulo, I decided in 2010 to focus in the jewellery segment by taking courses on design, silversmithing and creative development in design. Along with that, I started working issuing Identification Reports on special gemstones for jewellers. Later, I became a gemology teacher at the Brazilian Institute for Gemstones and Metals, function I still have. By the end of 2016, I decided to launch my brand, Ana Piazza, with the purpose of creating jewellery pieces with natural gemstones that convey poetry through the stories that inspire them. Creation moves me, makes me dream and feel alive.

FS: Can you tell us more about your company / design studio?
AP: My company started out of a wish to create jewellery pieces that would convey poetry through the stories that inspire them, always carrying a natural gemstone. All the jewellery has at least one natural gemstone. The first collection Horizon was launched by the end of 2016. Two other collections, Concretism and Magic Cube, followed the first one.

FS: What is "design" for you?
AP: Design for me is to deliver a creative product that a person needs or desires. However, you can do more than this, you can enchant the client.

FS: What kinds of works do you like designing most?
AP: I like to design jewellery pieces that convey a story flavoured with poetry, that the user interacts with it; that have movement, volume, asymmetry, interchangeable parts, that it can be used in different ways.

FS: What is your most favorite design, could you please tell more about it?
AP: My favourite design is the Gabo ring because it has almost all the characteristics which I value the most in a jewellery piece. The ring conveys a story, it has movement, volume and offers interaction. Inspired by the wish that people experience again the playful side of life, the magic cube, also known as Rubik Cube, was chosen to represent this wish because of the memories of my son playing with it.

FS: What was the first thing you designed for a company?
AP: I design only for my company, and the first piece was a pair of earrings for the Horizon collection. This collection was inspired in the place I was born, the state of Para, close to the Amazon basin. I chose some elements as inspiration such as the canoes in the rivers, the sun and trees.

FS: What is your favorite material / platform / technology?
AP: Natural gemstones and gold.

FS: When do you feel the most creative?
AP: When my mind is in peace and I feel grateful.

FS: Which aspects of a design do you focus more during designing?
AP: I focus more in asymmetry, volume and movement when designing jewellery pieces. All of them have to carry the story that inspired them.

FS: What kind of emotions do you feel when you design?
AP: I feel happy, empowered, fearless and my mind becomes free of all judgements and preset beliefs.

FS: What kind of emotions do you feel when your designs are realized?
AP: I feel complete and my heart full of joy.

FS: What makes a design successful?
AP: A design is sucessful when the client perceives value in it. For jewellery, the designed piece has to match and fulfil the desire of my client.

FS: When judging a design as good or bad, which aspects do you consider first?
AP: When judging a design as good or bad, I first consider innovation and what that design wants to communicate or accomplish.

FS: From your point of view, what are the responsibilities of a designer for society and environment?
AP: The designer must be respectful to the environment and to society. When I say respectful to society there are some points that need to be covered, such as: do not copy the creation of someone else; pay a fair price to the whole supply chain (input materials and services); be honest by disclosuring all the relevant information needed for the client to decide to buy or not from you. Respectful to the environment means that you should work with people and companies that respect nature by: recycling, recovering soils or/and landscapes, using renewable energy, reusing water.

FS: How do you think the "design field" is evolving? What is the future of design?
AP: The design field is getting more important day after day because of its relation to creativity. In a world where Artificial Intelligence (AI), technology based on machine-learning algorithms, is growing very fast, being creative is what makes the difference.

FS: When was your last exhibition and where was it? And when do you want to hold your next exhibition?
AP: I have not participated in an exhibition yet.

FS: Where does the design inspiration for your works come from? How do you feed your creativity? What are your sources of inspirations?
AP: I find inspiration for my designs in everything I have ever seen, all the places I have ever visited and all the experiences I have ever gone through. And I feed my creativity by travelling, going to exhibitions, watching an orchestra playing, observing feelings, analysing architecture, watching children playing, visiting museums, watching a play in the theatre, walking in the streets and watching how people behave, observing nature and so on. Everything I pay attention to is available as inspirational input for creation.

FS: How would you describe your design style? What made you explore more this style and what are the main characteristics of your style? What's your approach to design?
AP: My design style is very clean with emphasis on asymmetry, volume and movement. This style has to do with my journey in life. My life has been movement because of so many places I have lived in and asymmetric with different and contrasting professional roles I have embraced. The volume itself has to do with not enjoying flat things. When a jewellery piece has volume, it seems to me it has life.

FS: Where do you live? Do you feel the cultural heritage of your country affects your designs? What are the pros and cons during designing as a result of living in your country?
AP: My heritage definitely influences my design. I live nowadays in Sao Paulo, Brazil, however I was born in Para, in the northern region of Brazil, close to the Amazon basin, and grew up in Rio de Janeiro. Cities very different with its own positive and negative aspects, however similar by exhaling joy. The cons I see, during designing, as a result of living in my country, are the social and economic problems we face. And the pros are: the vibrant colors, the sunny places, the joyful people, the abundant nature.

FS: How do you work with companies?
AP: I do not work with companies. I design for my own brand.

FS: What are your suggestions to companies for working with a designer? How can companies select a good designer?
AP: This question does not apply to my brand, however I think the companies should allow the designers to create multiple and different design options according to the product briefing and not restrict the creation process. A good designer is the one that delivers a creative product that the clients of the company need or desire.

FS: Can you talk a little about your design process?
AP: My design process starts by defining a theme based on an inspiration, either something I have experienced or seen or different feelings I have or observe. Then I choose which elements of this theme I am going to elaborate and represent in my designs.

FS: What are 5 of your favorite design items at home?
AP: I have only one design item I cherish, a chair.

FS: Can you describe a day in your life?
AP: I manage my brand (interact with clients, create content for social media, manage financial aspects, take hand drawing jewellery design classes), teach gemology courses, exercise, meditate and take care of my home and family. When I work on a new collection once a year, which takes six months from choosing the theme until the products are ready, I reserve 4 hours a day for anything related to it.

FS: Could you please share some pearls of wisdom for young designers? What are your suggestions to young, up and coming designers?
AP: Be authentic. Do not copy from other designers. Follow your heart and create with your mind free of judgments.

FS: From your perspective, what would you say are some positives and negatives of being a designer?
AP: The positive aspect of being a designer is to create products which satisfy the need or desire of a client. The negative aspect is that sometimes the designer faces restrictions and cannot create freely.

FS: What is your "golden rule" in design?
AP: My golden rule in design is to be authentic by not copying other designers.

FS: What skills are most important for a designer?
AP: A designer should be free from any preset beliefs that might interfere in the creative process. It is also important that the designer understands the needs and desires of the client.

FS: Which tools do you use during design? What is inside your toolbox? Such as software, application, hardware, books, sources of inspiration etc.?
AP: During designing, I use: pencils and colored pencils to draw my sketches, 3D modelling - CAD software, paper modelling, wax modelling. As inspiration in my toolbox, I have architecture magazines and books of buildings and bridges.

FS: Designing can sometimes be a really time consuming task, how do you manage your time?
AP: When I design a jewellery, I set a date the piece has to be ready. Establishing this time limit helps me determining how many hours a day I need to work on the project. The project becomes priority and the other tasks will be done along the hours left during the day or postponed.

FS: How long does it take to design an object from beginning to end?
AP: It depends on the complexity of the jewellery I intend to create. Usually, it takes six months for a new collection to be ready, beginning by choosing the theme until the jewellery is ready. If it is a custom jewellery piece, the whole process would take 45 days.

FS: What is the most frequently asked question to you, as a designer?
AP: What are my sources of inspiration.

FS: What was your most important job experience?
AP: I have not worked for another company. I design for my brand.

FS: Who are some of your clients?
AP: My clients are women who value the story behind the product, who love art, design, travelling. She is modern and prefers timeless pieces.

FS: What type of design work do you enjoy the most and why?
AP: I love designing jewellery because of my passion for natural gemstones.

FS: What are your future plans? What is next for you?
AP: I want my brand to be known in Sao Paulo as the best in offering jewellery with natural gemstones that conveys poetry through the stories that inspire them. I also want to participate in other international awards.

FS: Do you work as a team, or do you develop your designs yourself?
AP: The creative process is done by myself. If I need a gemstone special cut for the design, I outsource the work of a cutter. The production of the jewellery is also outsourced, being done by either a goldsmith or a company. Everything is made in Brazil.

FS: Do you have any works-in-progress being designed that you would like to talk about?
AP: I am already creating my new collection called Nest, inspired by the feeling of being embraced and feeling secure.

FS: How can people contact you?
AP: contato@anapiazza.com, @anapiazzajoias, www.anapiazza.com

FS: Any other things you would like to cover that have not been covered in these questions?
AP: Everything was covered, it is a thorough interview.


FS: Thank you for providing us with this opportunity to interview you.

A’ Design Award and Competitions grants rights to press members and bloggers to use parts of this interview. This interview is provided as it is; DesignPRWire and A' Design Award and Competitions cannot be held responsible for the answers given by participating designers.


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