They say that basques and gaditans are born wherever they want, and for that reason Íñigo Calleja (San Sebastián, Basque Country) reserved this wildcard while he travelled the world until he played it, deciding to live in Cadiz and then opening a business there. His brave and restless personality got him to become an Engineer in Karlsruhe (Germany) and to work in Munich. After that, he moved to Sidney in 2015, where he opened a business that develops a sustainable automatic irrigation device. These first experiences on the developing of self made products would take him to Chiclana de la Frontera in 2018, where the GR-Natural Design project was born.
Íñigo Calleja claims that purpose, function and balance would be three good concepts to define his approach. This three concepts are linked to his education as an engineer, but it is in the last one, balance, where we can dig deeper, both in Íñigo's creative process and his pieces. Balance in design – calculating and spontaneous -, balance in techniques and processes – hand and machine -, balance as sustainability – upcycling-. From this game of balances, GR-Natural Design's approach in wood is solidly born.
His work with wood has the power to tell stories, like if he was able to keep in its rings and grain the voices and presence of those who lived sheltered under it or only used it. The reutilisation of beams and sleepers as a way of recover memory: that is Ínigo Calleja's amberstories.com project. A genius idea that transcends an engineer's ideas of purpose, functionand balance, and reach the craftsmen and artists idea of emotion . Tables that tell tales, like voices made of wood.
«What I love the most about craft is that is very tangible. It is easy to identify its value. It is something very real, concrete that fulfils the basic deep atemporal necessities...»
And we add that it is thrilling.