Paris – The decade-long studio career of designer Guto Requena has mostly taken place in his native Brazil, where he’s created stools made from the extracted parameters of a samba song, projected data visualisation that ends up looking like faces and even pieces of kinetic architecture that dance along with pedestrians. Two of his recent projects, Sensitive Star and The Year, used complex interactive lighting to shake up the already sophisticated nightlife of São Paulo – and we were so impressed that we featured them on Night Fever 5, our survey of global hospitality design.
We checked back with him after hearing about his first international commission, an insane arachnoid light installation for nightclub Terminal 7 in the French capital. How did it happen? ‘The client, a group that owns many bars, restaurants and clubs in Paris, got in touch with my work for the first time through the Night Fever book,’ he told us – and by the way, we’re working on Night Fever 6 and it’s currently open for submissions.
We spoke with Requena about how his background — he’s a former club kid from the countryside of Brazil — and his hopes for parametric design came together in this project.
Nightlife spaces are becoming increasingly competitive in terms of interior design. Did you take the photogenic qualities of the space into account for this proposal? Or did you approach it from a live, sensorial perspective?
GUTO REQUENA: I’m a nightlife culture lover. I believe a good clubbing experience should invite us to escape, to dream, to forget about our problems. It should somehow be a lapse in space and time, to make us happy and to recharge our batteries. So I wanted a space with a strong visual identity, but with a lot of flexibility in order to create several experiences – from dinners to fashion shows to concerts and clubbing. That’s why the DJ booth and the concert stage can be positioned anywhere, allowing for different floor plans.