Christian Vivanco runs his own design studio developing products for international and local companies. Vivanco bases his practice in promoting a permacultural culture, revalorizing principles, local customs and values on a global context, stimulating authenticity and cultural inclusiveness.
Christian is currently in charge of the Industrial Design department at The Monterrey Center for Higher Learning of Design (Spanish: CEDIM, Centro de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey Design), a University dedicated to design, innovation, and business, where contributes to the formation and dissemination of design in Mexico.
In 2007 Vivanco graduated as an industrial designer with honors from Universidad Autónoma San Luis Potosi in Mexico. He later moved to Barcelona, Spain where he obtained the degree of Master in Product Conceptualization and Development at Elisava, School of Design. After graduating, Vivanco worked for three years as Senior Designer at DesignCode and HTDS, in Europe.
In 2009 he was selected by the renoun publication Wallpaper* as one of the emerging designers to follow worldwide. That same year, together with Tom Allen, Marta Rodríguez Falcón and Yago Rodriguez, he founded The Emotion Lab, a collaborative exercise focused on research on the value of emotions in the design process, creating conceptual projects with huge international recognition.
In 2011 several projects were featured by Gestalten, in the book “Once Upon a Chair: Design Beyond the Icon.” Other publications include Elle, Vogue, Monocle, Architectural Digest, Abitare, Domus, House International, O2, among many others.
His influences come from social and cultural factors from the Mexican chaotic and colorful history, contrasting with the relaxed Mediterranean everyday life, all of it through a heavy influence by Japanese’s nature-based culture and interaction.
We dedicate our efforts towards generating meaningful experiences through the design of services and products, focused on the stimulation of thoughtful and emotional connections between you and our products, ensuring the positioning of our partners in the social collective.
We love working closely with our partners, offering solutions tailored to the needs of their market. Our goal is to make informed business decisions based on extensive research on topics such as culture, art, media, production, materials and technology, ensuring a holistic and appropriate approach in each of our projects.
Our international commissions cross business worlds and audiences – consumer electronics, food industry, domestic products, furniture, lighting, artisan communities, universities and galleries.
Please contact us for a personalized introduction to our services.
In addition to his work as a designer, Christian is in charge of the Industrial Design department at The Monterrey Center for Higher Learning of Design (Spanish: CEDIM, Centro de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey Design), a university dedicated to design, innovation, and business, where contributes to the formation and dissemination of design in Mexico.
Since his appointment at CEDIM, the Industrial Design Department has been collaborating with several companies in Mexico, United States and Europe, covering a range of different industries and sectors.
At the same time, Christian keeps his search for improving design education and share his experiences with the youngest, giving lectures and workshops across México.
Lectures & Workshops
Conscious Furniture | DECODE | Monterrey
Design Works | Universidad Iberoamericana | México city
Social Innovation | Entrepreneur Week | México city
Social Design | Tecnológico de Monterrey | Puebla
Emotional Simplicity | CEDIM | Monterrey
Design works | Casa Gutiérrez Nájera | Querétaro
Stone. Culture. Design | CaSa | Oaxaca
Emotional Simplicity | U.A.A.| Aguascalientes
Emotional Simplicity | U.A.C.J. | Ciudad Juarez
Objects with Soul | Virus | U.A.G.| Guanajuato
Objects with Soul | Casa Gutiérrez Nájera | Querétaro
Objects with Soul | U.A.A.| Aguascalientes
Design Process | Hábitat Faculty | San Luis Potosí
Objects with Soul | Hábitat Faculty | San Luis Potosí
Christian's work has been exhibited in America, Asia and Europe, in some of the most important events and venues in the industry.
Milan | Milan Design Week 2015
Paris | Maison & Objet 2015
Paris | Playtime 2015
México City | Ánfora at Zona Maco 2014
New York | Cooperativa Panorámica at ICFF
México City | “CGN: Zona Maco 2013”
Querétaro | “Colectivo Casa Gutiérrez Nájera”
México City | "Nuevo Diseño en México"
México City | “CGN: Zona Maco 2012”
Querétaro | “Colectivo Casa Gutiérrez Nájera”
México City | “Fabrica Mexicana”, Museo de Arte Contemporáneo.
Valencia | “Feria Hábitat”
Querétaro | “Cholochair en Casa Gutiérrez Nájera”
Milán | “Feria Salone Internazionale del Mobile”
Tokyo | “Designer’s Week Tokyo”
Washington & Paris | “El Cambio”
Frankfurt | “Ambiente Fair”
London | “Wallpaper Graduate Directory”
Once Upon a Chair is a detailed international survey of current trends and developments in furniture and interior design. Following in the footsteps of the highly successful Furnish book in 2007, it brings together a collection of work by the world's best young designers, capturing the zeitgeist of this rigorous field.
Once Upon a Chair examines several key trends indicating a recognisable shift towards progressive design that makes a social impact designers are collaborating with artisans to revive the tradition of craft, elevating it to new levels of luxury. A conscious effort to produce sustainable and ethical design is also evident where designers are not only working with environmentally friendly material and production methods but also creating furnishings that are made to be durable and retain their value over a long period of time.
Toys and sweets are just not enough for our children today. With an insatiable appetite for new things, children are eager to explore and learn. They are the most open-minded and spontaneous audience, who are at all times building and living in a world of their own imagination. These young customers rely on their instincts, not patience, to judge and pick what they love and hate. Victionary's new title Just Kidding studies how contemporary product, environmental, and graphic designs for children draw on bold characters and decisions to inspire and appeal.
Just Kidding presents today's most serious designs that not only look endearing, but are also creative, instructional, useful, and safe for children to play and interact with.
La finalidad de esta singular publicación es mostrar que en México hay una gran capacidad creativa, misma que permite diseñar desde incubadoras para recién nacidos hasta lavadoras ecológicas, pasando por autos deportivos y bolsas para dama. diseños que —por su concepto, componentes o proceso de elaboración— pueden ser considerados no solo como propuestas alternativas, sino como verdaderas innovaciones.
El libro presenta una excelente muestra del trabajo de mas de 200 diseñadores de México y se enfoca en el Diseño Industrial, el Diseño Gráfico, el Diseño de Moda y el Diseño de Interiores, realizados dentro y fuera del país.
La publicación, en inglés y en español, consta de 536 páginas a todo color e incluye mas de 1,700 fotografías.
Este libro acompaña a la muestra que ofrecio una lectura crítica y reflexiva del panorama del diseño contemporáneo en México, a través de la praxis como la investigación, los proyectos y el diseño de objetos, bajo la coordinación curatorial de Graciela Kasep.
Christian Vivanco is pleased to present during Maison&Objet at Paris the result of his first collaboration with Nido Muebles, a company dedicated to the development an appropriate environment for children at home. The result of this project has the name "Traven", in honor to a short story called "Baskets in series' from the writer Bruno Traven which refers to the relationship between craft and industry of contemporary consumption.
Designing for children involves a careful and sensitive approach, not only in terms of safety for the infant but also in seeking to resolve existing circumstances and moments in everyday life of a contemporary family, where children occupy a prime position.
From this point of view Traven has been created. A set of furniture for children and parents composed of an armchair, a stool and a toybox. Each of these units contains guidelines defined by various factors including the design, choice of materials and the ability to adapt as needed.
A key aspect in Traven’s development was the use of different materials and the transformation of social and environmental contexts. The application of wicker, certified wood, handmade wool and natural finishes, have guaranteed a product that is adaptable to any reality.
The Traven family is known for recognizing the importance of play time when using a piece of furniture; volumes and simple shapes propose different scenarios where children could live a different experience with each of the designed objects.
Christian Vivanco seek with Traven that children can live an experience through each of these objects. Traven wants to become part of these experiences, games, learning and leisure - objects that would become part of their childhood.
The smallest of the family, and therefore the most dynamic. It is a small basket that allows keeping secrets and surprises inside.
A big and generous space. Ideal for stimulating moments of peace and quiet for the child, providing a natural comfort through the use of natural wool cushions.
It is the most representative piece of furniture of the family because of its composition inspired by baskets, which become a kind of frame or shelf for toys and most valued belongings for the child. Baskets can rotate 360 ° to "see" in any direction, facilitating the conditioning to different types of spaces and needs.
Traven was designed in collaboration with Nido Muebles
It is a pleasure to introduce our first collaboration with Ánfora, the largest Mexican manufacturer of vitrified ceramics, running since 1920. Together we developed Corazón Coraza (Spanish for Heart Shell), a small jar inspired by the Uruguayan poet Mario Benedetti´s work. Coraza it´s a jar for one or two glasses of water, perfect for sharing in simple moments.
Porque te tengo y no, porque te pienso
porque la noche está de ojos abiertos
porque la noche pasa y digo amor
porque has venido a recoger tu imagen
y eres mejor que todas tus imágenes
porque eres linda desde el pie hasta el alma
porque eres buena desde el alma a mí
porque te escondes dulce en el orgullo
pequeña y dulce, corazón coraza
Corazón Coraza´s morphology is compact, intimate and highly symbolic, great to have at home or office. Its shape integrates seamlessly functionality and a figurative aesthetic, representative of it´s inspiration. Coraza is crafted in glazed ceramic debuted on Ánfora´s stand at Zona Maco Art Fair earlier this month as a 100 units limited edition.
Available in matt white, chocolat and coral.
A tray for kids, adults and everyone who love their favorite objects.
Inspired by the the traditional cottage, with its angled red roof, easy to find in both sides of the Atlantic and evolved into a kind of dollhouse focused in organize and store small items, specially in environments such as homes, offices, desks, children's rooms, etc.
Under My Roof is a tray that makes use of architectural elements reflecting the possibility of different uses, finding new values, not just functional, but rather, emotional.
Now your favourite everyday objects have their own home sweet home too.
Los Tabos are a stools family created from a reflection on the identity of this kind of furniture throughout our recent history. While since its origins the stool has been a humble, helpful and quiet piece of furniture, today responds to increasingly relevant needs, related to our daily life: fast, dynamic, which demands immediate and smart objects that respond instantly.
Los Tabos replies to this argument to be presented as a series of stools that fit their context, providing not only use as temporary resting places, but promoting improvisation and dialogue, not only with their context and users, but more importantly among the people that use them to talk, interact, and live.
The Tabos were originally developed in collaboration with the Chilean company MASISA and GLOCAL design magazine.
Inspired by the Shanty towns* around South America, from las ciudades perdidas in Mexico city to las favelas in Rio de Janeiro, FALC tries to preserve the improvisation’s essence, the grids absence, the disorder´s liberty.
In this case we are witnesses to a relationship between fabrics, wood sticks and boxes in different dimensions and materials (osb, bamboo and polycarbonate), to show us a different piece of furniture with a complete and efficient functionality. We can use it for storage, as a work surface or as kitchen furniture. Accordingly, the drawers come in different sizes, for different necessities (office, kitchen, workshop, bedroom, living room, etc.).
*"Shanty towns are units of irregular self-constructed housing that are typically unlicensed and occupied illegally. They are usually on lands belonging to third parties, and are most often located on the urban periphery. Shanty town residences are built randomly, although ad hoc networks of stairways, sidewalks, and simple tracks allow passage through them. Most are inaccessible by vehicle, due to their narrow and irregular streets and walkways and often steep inclines.”
Why a functional piece of furniture can't aspire for a smile and an emotional relief?
Pancha is a discrete approximation to the stool, with the perfect balance between functionality, neutrality and fun. It is inspired by household animals; our pets, dogs and cats.
Using reused materials such as OSB, and with a configuration that requires no more than a simple assembly, Pancha is an easily separable and recyclable piece of furniture.
Pancha is produced by Notwaste.
According to The Maya mythology, Alux is a creature similar to a goblin or a naughty elf that lives in the forest; welcome to the inspiration for this project.
Alux is the perfect solution for small spaces; thanks to its dual functionality lets it be a bedside table, an occasional table, or a hallway lamp. Alux takes the idea of a table lamp to the most literal conclusion, incorporating both terms in one product. It adds a whole new meaning to the term ‘tablelamp’.
Alux (380 x 380 x 400 mm) its manufactured by Almerich.
Monsieur is a reading lamp, designed in collaboration with Tom Allen and Yago Rodriguez. After researching different users, we present "Monsieur", a reading lamp as a response to an emotional need. We consider that when you are reading, a strong link is created between you and the book. "Monsieur" encourages this connection, creating a unique, intimate and personal atmosphere.
The result is a light and stable reading lamp, able to be placed in virtually any room of the house; it'll fit nicely beside your bed, next to the sofa or in the study. The addition of a small auxiliary surface, ideal for a book, a coffee mug or other small object completes the experience. The rotation system allows two movements covering more than 300 degrees each, being flexible and practical.
Monsieur's design responds directly to the use and function of a reading lamp, where with a single arm movement you can adjust its position and take the book to read. Monsieur is part of our collaboration with Almerich.
Toldo is a design exercise based on a research for maximum simplicity and functionality.
With expressive influences found in the aesthetics of México's street markets, particularly in the juxtaposition of temporary fabric roofs, Toldo embodies a concept through simple geometries with clear references to traditional utilitarian furniture, however express a well defined contemporary identity, answering daily needs, through the generation of multiple different horizontal planes vertical levels.
The diversity in size and positions of these surfaces generate multiple uses and functions, making of Toldo a flexible piece of furniture capable to adapt to different contexts and users.
Toldo is handmade produced by mexican artisans located in San Luis Potosi, Mexico ("the making of" photos are available here).
Dimensions: 50 x 50 x 50 cm
Materials: Pine wood / MDF
"Quieto" (the spanish for -Stay-) is an expression that denotes a lot in contemporary Mexican culture, "Says a lot by saying little". And it is precisely here, in the brevity of the idea where lies the value of this project.
Using the language of the iconic object, you get a simple but very expressive setup, full of nuances and details that engage the eye of the observer. "Quieto" is anything but a passive object, that becomes into something that arouses curiosity, interaction and dialogue.
"Quieto" is produced by La Metropolitana. as part of the collection 10 100 1000., a project developed by La Metropolitana and the designer Francisco Torres, who invited 10 contemporary mexican designers to create a stool under the same brief:
One stool made out of wood; designed to fit a 35 x 35 x 35 cardboard box, to be built using Metropolitana's construction techniques.
The project's goal is to create an affordable collection, reachable to a wider audience, while at the same time representative of mexican design. The collection also aims to generate a dialogue between the mexican design community and the public.
All the pieces in this collection were made at La Metropolitana's woodshop, located in the heart of Mexico City. All the wood used in the process is environmentally certified, and finished with natural waxes developed by the studio.
This design from 2007, constructed of laminated bamboo, combines the functionality of a chair and a coat rack and begs the question, “a tree transformed into furniture or furniture morphing into a tree?”.
Beam is a small (actually tiny) table lamp, comprising a solid block of pine wood and a thermoformed mma sheet.
This project came along accidentally after having constant contact with a series of lumberyards in town. There I got the chance to realize how beautiful wood can be against an urban background, planks and beams stacked one above the other, some of them rough and other refined.
Then it struck me, how interesting it could be to give proper respect to the material and its basic physical qualities; weight, texture, appearance, etc.
From the beginning I intended to apply these features on an object and a context rather foreign: I was intrigued by the possible relationship between a visibly heavy object and something ephemeral and inert as light. How could it work? The interaction was resolved by itself, using the essential intermediaries; just a bulb and a screen, both fitting perfectly into a pre-defined grid. Nothing else.
Beam’s main objective is not only to illuminate a space, but framing the intrinsic value of the selected materials. To achieve this, the lamp should be as close as possible to the person using it. Rounding the edges closest to the user's hand provide not only direct contact with the wood, but also allows greater mobility of the lamp. The use of intentionally disproportionate screws, add a touch of expression to the lamp's serene personality.
You can check some "Making Of" photographs in our Workshop Diary!
Materials: pine, mma 3 mm.
Dimensions: 180 x 90 x 180 mm.
Pic-Nic is the start of a project that is inspired by the rattan basket used for outdoors picnics. The contained emotions in such a simple and universal element were fundamental to create a very unique piece furniture.
The first approach to this concept is a chair made of poplar wood with a cushion in cotton. Its configuration allows you to generate a temporary and practical storage space, ideal for books, pots or pets, posing as a quiet, serene and passive piece of furniture.
Pic-Nic was designed especially for Studio Roca.
A minimalistic approach to a cultural archetype: material, technique and form.
14 identical pieces of plywood are NC cut and assembled by hand to a core using forms and clamps. This repetition creates a unique expression without losing functionality.
N° 14 summarizes the historical icon of the vase without losing sight of a contemporary context. A silhouette strengthened by the balance and harmony of forms, and the material's nature (pine plywood). The perfect synchrony between craft and technology.
N° 14 is designed and manufactured in Mexican workshops.
Just one single outline to create a sofa that is a mixture between outdoor and indoor furniture.
The concept started with the search for an all in one furniture, but at the same time looking for a new expression for this kind of piece.
The result was a steel wireframe structure that support a comfortable but slim couch.
After spending several summers in the Mexican Caribbean the inspiration to develop a very special project was more than enough; I've always felt a great curiosity about the seaweed and coral reefs, their ability to generate a variety of colors and intensities, and in the case of seaweeds, their constant movement under water, resembling a slow dance.
Algae is a suspension lamp inspired by this memories, resembling an seaweed suspended in the air, constantly changing its shape, depending on the angle from where you look at it.
Its made of two acrylic surfaces, which embrace a compact fluorescent tube, hiding the entire electronic system. The use of two layers give you the chance to diffuse the intensity of the internal color, creating a delicate and cheerful atmosphere.
Algae is part of a collection of lamps developed for Almerich, a Spanish company located in the Mediterranean city of Valencia.
Technical Information here.
A Kondo is the centerpiece of an ancient Buddhist temple's garan in Japan. The origin of the name may derive from the perceived preciousness of its content, or from the fact that the interior was lined with gold.
Kondo is an answer to a basic question: How can a simple and functional object convey one of the most iconic elements in oriental architecture?
The result of this simplification and synthesis exercise is a pair of lamps constructed from only 2 laser-cut metal sheets.
Kondo's shape cannot be simpler; a couple of folds in each of the sheets allow us to create a functional and expressive volume, and the scale generates a compact and tight body that emphasizes efficiency.
Kondo is produced in two versions; Kondo XL is a highly decorative element perfect for large spaces, and Kondo S works better in an intimate space, perfect for a nightstand, dresser or desk.
El Paradero (The Whereabout) is the response to an invitation by Codigo Magazine to generate a proposal for the contemporary metropolis; after a research stage focused in the city and some problems related to everyday people who inhabit it, we came along with a design intended to address needs regarding the flow of people and the new dynamics of urban life.
Public spaces like parks and avenues replicate the urban structure stablished to the mid-80s, where the city presented itself as a passive space, absent of interaction. People sat to see the others pasing by, unhurried, calm. That reality has mutated, leading to a context where the city's speed is becoming faster, more intense, with no space to rest.
El Paradero is an object with several uses, each suited to needs that revolve around electronics and motion; their interaction zones reflect maximum flexibility, inviting users to talk with the furniture in a dynamic and easy way. You can sit and work for long periods with your notebook, rest in the intermediate area or for short periods at the highest part.
El Paradero can work together, as a family of sculptural elements full of functionality.
The proposed materials are reinforced concrete and ash.
The concept of freedom and the conversation between man and nature have always been a main concern for me. For this reason, the idea of representing a classic theme as the fence at the hill has been around for some time.
"The grass is always greener on the other side of the fence" represents two fundamental ideas: the first is the name of the project, with it I tried to express this innate human desire for what is not ours. The fence represents the man's hand and his effort to control what does not belong to him.
The second inspirational topic, equally important, was the intention of express the values mentioned above by proposing a set of volumes, spaces and textures which may provoke a sense of freedom and comfort.
The best excuse to reflect the concept was a casual sofa, simple and with a personality rather playful and relaxed. Materials, finishes and configuration allow you to use it in different spaces; the backs are removable, giving you the option to create different configurations depending on the needs of the people who are going to use it, it can be a children's playground or the sofa in the living room of a young home.