For Liliana Ovalle, an object is never truly complete. “I’m interested in ad hoc assemblages because they reveal people’s expectations of how things should be,” she says. “They are the ‘unofficial’ version of function and efficiency.” Ovalle’s designs capture this spontaneity, like the Mugroso series, which began as a graduation project at London’s Royal College of Art in 2006. Inspired by the changing historic center
of her native Mexico City, El Otro, the final installment in the series, has a metal frame with wooden slats through which cushions are tangled over time—a unique seating arrangement that evolves with use. Likewise, her Totem series of stacked ceramic containers rewards experimentation: Because there is no fixed configuration, users are free to create their own visual compositions. Though her work promotes unpredictability, Ovalle has long-term goals: namely, to set up a new studio in Mexico City’s flourishing design scene.

Liliana Ovalle (Mexico City, 1977)

Product and furniture designer based in London. Since graduating from the Royal College of Art, she has been running her own practice developing design projects in Mexico, Italy and London.

Liliana designs objects where the functional and the aesthetic components are accompanied by a reflection of contemporary life aspects. She pays special attention to inquiring themes such as the “incomplete” and the “unrehearsed” observed in the urban context.

She was given the Talent Award by the British Council in 2006 and the Mexican Clara Porset Special Award in 2008.
Since February 2011 Liliana works as a part-time researcher at the Interaction Research Studio, Goldsmiths University of London. In April 2011 she joined Okay Studio, a design collective based in North London.

2004 - 2006

MA Design Products, Royal College of Art, London.

1995 - 2000

Bachelor with Major in Industrial Design. Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México. Graduated with Honours.


Erasmus Exchange Program at Les Ateliers, École Nationale Supérieure de Création Industrielle, Paris.