Exquisite Objects for Experimental Design from Mexico City, A Story of Art, Family and Collaborative Vision | 417 | Sten Studio

I’m Josh Cooperman and this is Convo By Design with a journey south, Mexico City to be exact, to speak with Sten Studio founder Jose Miguel Schnaider. We are talking about stone, sculpture, lighting, art and so much more.

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From a family quarry to original works of art suing beautiful gifts painstakingly unwrapped from their multi-million year formation process, that is both a big responsibility and an unparalleled opportunity to create something truly unique.  Using the minerals and materials unearthed using select manufacturing techniques, Juan Miguel crafts some incredible works. But not alone. This is also a conversation about collaboration and teamwork. 

It dawned on my while writing the preamble for this episode that a consistent and constant theme that is present in every one of the 400+ previous conversations and from each of the 800+ creatives I have spoken with over the past 10 years, there is this state of wonder I feel. I was having a conversation recently with the CEO of a rather large company. We were just chatting about life in general and I realized something. My friend’s creative pilot light had gone out. As we delved deeper, it became evident that there was no joy in what he did, only obligations. The need to keep things going forward. Sales, R & D, stock price, no bad press, no scandals… Burnout will surely follow at some point, and he knows this. The goal, for him, is to hang on as long as possible. Get as close as he can to the day when he can eventually cut the cord and let go.

Think about that for a moment. Just keeping all the balls in the air versus living each breath in a state of awe and wonder. Nobody I know has reached that level of awareness, some are far closer than I but the goal is to eventually get there. Why so philosophical today? Not sure, but I think it has to do with this conversation and the idea of walking through a yard of newly unearthed minerals, geodes, and all different shapes of materials knowing that I would have the opportunity to craft them into something completely unique. Art. Isn’t that what life is all about? Taking the unknown, opportunity, discovery and crafting it into something you can be proud of?

Thank you Juan Miguel. I enjoyed our chat and love what you do. Thank you CXD partners and sponsors; ThermaSol, Moya Living and Design Hardware for your continued support. And thank you for taking the time every week to share some time together and hear the stories behind sublime design. Check the show notes for links to Sten Studio, our social media links and please keep emailing me with your suggestions and guest submissions. Convo By Design @ Outlook dot com. Until next week, remember why you do what you do and for whom you do it, be well and take today first. -CXD