Manuel Bañó: Maximizing the Use Without the Waste and excess

product photography:
Alejandro Ramírez Orozco


                                                                               Manuel Bañó, the renowned artist hailing from Valencia, Spain, emerged from a lineage of artistic talent, enveloped in an environment that nurtured his innate creativity. From an early age, the allure of drawing captivated him, a burning desire that still lingers in his memories. Growing up, Bañó's mother, a painter herself, maintained her studio in the basement of their home, a space where young Manuel spent countless hours immersed in his craft. His mother fondly recalls that his first artistic endeavors centered around sketching horses, a powerful symbol encapsulating the transformation of a child into an internationally recognized artist. These memories hold a cherished place in Bañó's heart, as he vividly recalls one of his earliest drawings, proudly displayed in his parents' house for many years. Reflecting upon this recollection, Bañó nostalgically conjures up an image—a verdant, mountainous landscape adorned with wild horses, and he believes there may have even been a figure accompanying them. Regrettably, the drawing has been lost to time, leaving Bañó with a poignant longing for its retrieval. His artistic journey, guided by his family's influence and his early endeavors in capturing the spirit of horses on paper, was undeniably ordained. This is the essence of Manuel Bañó.

From his decision to dedicate himself to art, to his education in Industrial Design at CEU Cardenal Herrera University in Valencia, Spain, and his subsequent master's degree in furniture and lighting, Bañó has paved a path full of achievements and renowned collaborations.

His journey led him to join the prestigious studio of Magnus Long in London, where he had the opportunity to work on projects for the renowned Central Saint Martins University. From the very start, Manuel's trajectory was marked by signs of future accomplishments. His significant collaborations and list of accomplishments speak for themselves: his work has been exhibited at design fairs such as Design Miami/Basel, Salone Satellite in Milan, Maison&Objet in Paris, and Zona Maco in Mexico. He has also been honored with awards such as the "Best of Year" awarded by Interior Design magazine, as well as a design award and the prestigious IF Design Award.

Within the realm of Manuel Bañó's artistic endeavors, one project stands out for its elegant simplicity and thoughtful design: OBJ-01. This collection, composed of a series of simple objects, embodies the fundamental principles of working with raw materials, industrial processes, and intentional gestures.

At the core of his approach, Manuel shares his vision, shedding light on the meticulous consideration behind his work. He carefully selects commercial metal plates and tubes, making the most of their dimensions. When discussing his OBJ-01 lamps, he ensures that whether they are large floor accessories or intimate table illuminators, they maximize the use of the entire plate, without waste or excess.

Every detail of Manuel's creations reflects his intention and meticulous dedication. His goal is to create relics that withstand the test of time and become cherished heirlooms for future generations”.

Mexico City became the cherished home and creative sanctuary of Manuel Bañó in 2013, where he found inspiration amidst its bustling embrace. A transformative moment arrived in 2017 when Bañó joined forces with the brilliance of Héctor Esrawe and Age Salajoe, merging their visionary spirits for the creation of EWE Studio.


Do you think about the environmental footprint? Why or why not ?

Manuel Bañó

A good friend once told me that the most ecologically sustainable thing to do is to do nothing. He meant that any activity, as in my case producing objects, will leave a footprint. I work a lot from the optimization of the material, I do not waste anything. The size of my objects responds to the optimization of commercial metal plates and tubes. My OBJ-01 lamps, both floor and table lamps, have that size because those are the measures that allow me to use all the commercial brass or steel plate without wasting any material. I also believe in durable products, working with metal, my intention is that my objects are imperishable, that they will last for generations.


Think of the three people you spend the most time with... What do they all have in common ?

Manuel Bañó

The three people I spend the most time with are my girlfriend Laura, my friend and collaborator Natán and my friend Roberto. All three are perfectionists, talented and passionate about their respective jobs. They are also very demanding with themselves, joyful, cultured and fun. In all three cases, they are people that since I met them (Natán and Laura about 8 years ago and Roberto 4 years ago) we have never separated, we live together daily, we travel together, we work together, ect....


What is the drawing of yours that your mind always comes back to ?

Manuel Bañó

My mother is a painter and throughout my childhood she had her studio in the basement of our home. I always went downstairs to draw with her. I don't remember well, but my mother says that the first thing I learned to draw was horses. One of my first drawings was hanging in my parents' house for many years. Now they no longer live there and I don't know what became of that drawing, but when I think of my first drawings, that's the one that comes to mind. It was a green mountain landscape in which there were several wild horses and I think I remember that there were also some people.