With the world becoming ever more diverse and multi-cultural, it’s only natural for the world of design to follow suit. Speaking exclusively to the Hausie editorial team, Beatriz Vegara of Hissia guides us through her tropical haze of creativity and anthropological design inspirations.
Gold Luna Double Ring | Hissia
Born and raised in the Canary islands, Spain, Vegara has a wealth of experience living in a variety of countries such as the UK, U.S, and Germany. This in turn has influenced her cross-cultural design philosophy.
Based in the tropical terrain of Tenerife, the talented designer’s work reflects the Island’s organic atmosphere of volcanic slopes, hazy tones, and desert flora. Inspired by the search for something natural and raw, the Spanish designer also has a stark adoration for ancient civilisations.
“Greek, Egyptian, pre-Columbian and African art, is to me the greatest lesson for modernity.”Beatriz Vegara (2016)
Citing painting, sculpture, architecture, and photography as her major interests, the designer keeps her brand modern by staying alert with the happenings within contemporary art. Amongst her favourite artists are Richard Serra, Rothko, and Pollock. The eclectic mix of references explains the cross-cultural nature of Hissia’s jewellery, where “the strength of African tribal art, the subtleness and sophistication of European art and the functionality of American sensibility” (Vegara, 2016) meet. By combining the beauty found in the new and the old, one can create work that can reach the hearts of many.
Infused within her brand, is a story of strength and blessings. Derived from Swahili, “Hissia” means “emotion, feeling and passion”. Evoking the emotions Vegara herself feels for her work and what she hopes the wearer of her jewellery will feel too. Commenting on her aims for Hissia, the designer says “My commitment is to create effortlessly luxurious jewels made with exceptional quality”(Vegara, 2016). Vegara over sees the quality control herself, and ensures the brand’s vision is not lost due to commercialism through a simple but effective business philosophy: “I also put a strong focus on creating jewels that are comfortable and easy to incorporate in everyday life. I like creating sculptural shapes that adapt easily to the body. I somehow reject the idea of having jewels that are meant to be used only on special occasions” (Vegara, 2016). By making her jewellery wearable for the everyday, yet maintaining its quality, Vegara is able to balance creativity with commerce.
Packaging | Hissia
The labour intensive and handmade areas of jewellery creation are often sacrificed in production for the sake of saving costs. However, Hissia is able to maintain the principle of artisan work. By keeping production small, only working with small ateliers, and producing limited collections, quality control can be monitored closely and the spirit of artisan jewellery can be upheld. With a reputation of quality craftsmanship, Hissia becomes a brand that customers will always come back to.
Hand Crafting | Hissia
Combining the raw and the refined, Hissia’s jewellery is created by master’s across the globe. Beginning in Western Africa, organic materials such as ebony wood, cow’s horn, and bone are sourced and carved locally by skilled artisans. The craftsman’s wealth of experience infuses the raw natural beauty of the land into Hissia’s pieces. With organic materials, each piece is unique, adding to the ‘one of a kind’ philosophy that makes Hissia jewellery so timeless. Once carved, the jewellery travels back to Spain, where the designer meticulously oversees the plating and polishing by hand.18 Carart gold, Rhodium, Silver and Brass are Vegara’s preferred materials.
Bronze Head from Ife Sketch | Luna Collection
The Luna collection features modern and powerful pieces characterised by delicate engravings. Deeply influenced by the sculptured heads of Kings she saw in the National Museum of Nigeria; Vegara translated the engravings of Nigerian art to her designs. Through her use of materials and modern aesthetic, the Luna collection makes tribal wearable from day to night. The combination of 14th century art in fluencies and minimalist execution is a perfect equilibrium of old and new.
“In this collection, I wanted to show the influence of African tribal, ancient art, which is usually quite powerful with a contemporary flare.”Beatriz Vegara (2016)
At the core of Hissia is a philosophy that many share and perhaps that is why the brand is so attractive. Remaining true to her aesthetic vision and paying homage to her travels, Vegara finds meaning through her jewellery and shares this with the world.
With special thanks to Beatriz Vegara, for her time and insightful words.
Written by Sonia Wan
Edited by Christina Wright
Hissia (2016) About [Online] Available at http://hissia.com/en/content/17-about-us[Accessed 26/04/16]