Why is our butter dish called Iris?

More Than Function

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More Than Function

butter dish Why is our butter dish called Iris? down arrow 2x

May 19th, 2021

Why is our butter dish called Iris?

Many years ago, and for many decades, a restaurant in Vila Nova de Famalicão (Portugal) located at a service station was a gastronomic reference for travel guides.

It was a mandatory stop for fuel supply and, of course, for having lunch or dinner. That restaurant was called Íris and, unfortunately, closed a few years ago, leaving many with their hearts broken.

Among its amenities, such as the silver cutlery, was the butter also served in small silver cylinders with holes on the top.

When the restaurant closed, we desperately tried to buy one of these butter dishes for a souvenir. But it was impossible. In its final dismantles, they had all disappeared … Nobody knew where they were …

A few years later, still missing the restaurant and the butter cylinders, João Faria decides to reproduce them for himself. He spoke to a goldsmith and had the first prototype made for what would become Iris. However, the piece did not look as he wanted, and, disappointed, he kept it in a kitchen drawer for several years.

Iris Butter Dish butter dish Why is our butter dish called Iris? Iris Butter Dish

In 2014, he decided to present the butter dish in a design contest promoted by the Serralves Museum in Porto – POPs Objects. In the previous year, the Bluetooth speakers OLD FRIEND were finalists, and João wanted to repeat the excellent experience.

The piece was redesigned for its current clean shape and size. Instead of silver, polished stainless steel 316 (suitable for food use) was the chosen material.

butter dish Why is our butter dish called Iris? Iris Butter Dish 1

One of the requirements of the POPs contest was to name the pieces. That was an easy task because the name came naturally – Iris – in honor of the cherished restaurant, with its cylinder-shaped silver jars of butter.

At the contest, Iris was selected for the final. On the day of its presentation to the jury, an early summer afternoon, the butter proved to be such a challenge that would give another story alone.

The presentation went well, but nothing made us think we were going to win. On the contrary, we were just about to abandon the awards ceremony earlier. We just didn’t do it because some staff elements convinced us to stay a few more minutes.

Tired and thinking about the next day’s professional commitments (João Faria was a teacher back then), we were bored at the back of the room. Then, surprisingly, our butter dish was announced as the first prize in the 2014 Decorative Objects category. We became almost hysterical! The first prize ever won has an extraordinary and unrepeatable flavor.

butter dish Why is our butter dish called Iris? 3

After this victory, poor Iris returned to the kitchen drawer a few more months. Until the beginning of 2015, when João decided to compete with her again, this time for an international design award. And, once again, Iris won with gold!

This second victory gave the most needed push for the formal start of Emotional Objects as a commercial brand – trademark registration, logo, website, catalogs, etc. Everything that hadn’t been done before, because it was only for fun.

For this reason, we often say that, although small, Iris was responsible for the birth of Emotional Objects. Without her, we might not be here.

Iris Butter Dish butter dish Why is our butter dish called Iris? Iris Butter Dish

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João Faria, Artist or Maker?

More Than Function

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More Than Function

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October 5th, 2020

João Faria, Artist or Maker?

Sometimes people asked if João Faria, the mastermind and co-founder of Emotional Objects, is an “artist” or a “maker.” He is both and likes to be both.

His work is an inspiring process where every Emotional Object has a meaningful story.

Starting each piece with a sketch, João finds inspiration from the most unusual things around him – a fabric, a boat or a car, or only a memory. After he has an idea and explores it in his mind, an extensive search is done by his team to find out if the object is original. If not, he abandons it. João believes that good products are timeless and loves balanced and straightforward designs. Not all get the honor of being called Emotional Objects. To be one, a strong impression must happen to people. Many ideas were left behind because they weren’t bold enough or someone thought of something similar before. But, if it is original, then the magic starts.

Sometimes influenced by any particular music (João has an eye for spotting musical treasures before they became known), he put on his headphones and listened to it loudly and absorbed as if no one or nothing else exists. Many objects or collections have their unique music that plays over and over during the design process.

With the drawings finished, he moves his attention to the “Lab” (the nickname we gave to his workplace) and tirelessly solves all the problems and technical issues to make the prototypes. It´s not unusual to see him taking some time (sometimes, years) to think and mature about the pieces he has in progress. Sometimes, it takes something to happen to solve an ancient Emotional Object; Iris took four years and Lazy Day more, for example.

He uses mainly wood and metal (stainless steel, brass, and copper), but wood is in his blood. He prefers natural processes that are safer and allow the wood to mature beautifully over time. João always selects the veneers himself and finds profound beauty in its natural imperfections full of character. Due to these variations, there aren’t two objects precisely alike. Nevertheless, seeing his pieces come to life in his hands in a dynamic interplay of forms and surfaces is exciting. Many times, he has to come back to the drawings to perfect the object. Making each prototype by hand himself, he works on one piece at a time to achieve a singular focus and great attention to detail.

Over the years, João has been developing and cultivating relationships with artisans and master craftsmen in his hometown – Vila Nova de Famalicão, near Porto – in Portugal. These are the ones he trusts in the manufacturing of specific parts of his pieces. By empowering and collaborating with all of them, João brings new methods and materials to create unique, contemporary designs that celebrate ancient traditions. He constantly discovers, develops, learns, and fuses traditional with modern techniques and perfecting Emotional Objects’ methods, sometimes with trial and error.

Made to last for generations, the distinction between functional and fine art is not easy to find in his work. But, most important, he only makes pieces that he would want for himself.

artist or maker João Faria, Artist or Maker? Emotional Objects Joao Faria 3 1
Blog Artist or Maker artist or maker João Faria, Artist or Maker? Emotional Objects Joao Faria 1
Blog Artist or Maker artist or maker João Faria, Artist or Maker? Emotional Objects Joao Faria 3 1
Blog Artist or Maker artist or maker João Faria, Artist or Maker? Emotional Objects Joao Faria 2 1
Blog Artist or Maker artist or maker João Faria, Artist or Maker? Emotional Objects Joao Faria 4

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The end is near…

More Than Function

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More Than Function

the end The end is near… down arrow 2x

January 24th, 2020

The end is near…

When our marketer and digital strategist told us that we have to have a blog, we said “no way!”. We are not going to make a blog just to please Google SEO and stuff like that. There are thousands of blogs in that field – “The 10 best interior designers…”; “The 5 top sofas for your living room…”; “The trendiest colours to use in 2020…” – and we don´t want to be another one!

However, after some thoughts, we realize that we have so much to tell people (things that don´t fit the social media networks or the website “normal rules”) and the blog doesn´t look so bad idea after all. As someone said before, only the foolish doesn´t change their minds… 😊 the end The end is near… 1f60a

But we have to warn that we are not going to “follow the trends”! This means we are not going to publish just because we have to and we are not writing about Interior Design unless we have something meaningful to say about that. We can speak about something that inspires us; we can have a political opinion about an issue or we can only publish a song we love.

Saying that, what better way to start this by telling you how is going to be the end of Emotional Objects?

Yes, it´s true, we already have our “dead” schedule. The only mystery is the date… we know how, we just don´t know when.

Curious?

Every time we have an idea for a piece, we give it a number and explore it until its last consequences. Sometimes it´s not feasible, but the idea is not forgotten, just waits until technology catches up. That´s the reason why we have 53 lines drawn in our computer and only 13 produced. (we will come back to this later).

But a few years ago, we decided that Emotional Objects will have an end when we reached the 99th object.  When that happens, we will publish a book – called “99th”, obviously – with all the projects produced or not.

 

People will be able to have Emotional Objects, unless the limited-edition series finished, but no new objects will be made.

Why?

Because we can and because everything ends… 

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